Unify the interface and feature sets
Premiere Pro has so many features and panels that us pro users have grown accustomed to, but there is so much room for improvement with how it is all layed out and I believe soon Premiere is in need of a major UI overhaul as more features are added in a very band-aid like fashion.
My biggest problem areas are...
- Essential Panels: While they bring some many needed features to premiere, it basically splits your control of paramters to various different panels. You got the Essential Graphics panel, where you can modify many features of a graphic, and the Effects Controls, where I can also edit SOME of the parameters that are available in the Essential Graphics panel, but not all. When applying a mix of effects, titles, graphics with control parameters, you have to have both panels open to modify the parameters that are spread between the two, and sometimes exist on both. The Essential Graphics panel is also a browser? Baked into the panel itself, and you can't separate them. Who designed this?
- Audio: Editing audio in Premiere is archaic. Track based effects are handled with the most unintuitive UI I've ever seen. With a limitation of 8 effects maximum, you can't even move effects between the effect slots once you've created them... not being able to numerically adjust track keyframes... or even just keyframe track based effects.. you can only raise the levels of a clip to +6db in the Effects Controls Panel... but then add completely different amount of gain with the "Audio Gain" pop window, that isn't represented anywhere else in the UI but that pop-up window. I could go on forever. Basically, why are so many of the controls that we use to manipulate audio spread out in various different panels and windows with different looks, ways of interacting with them, and behaviors for each one?
What we really need is a unified "Parameters/Controls" panel that dynamically changes based on your selection. At the clip level and track level. If you are selecting a MOGRT clip, the necessary paramters show up in the panel. If it's a text item, all of the font, align, character size paramters show up. Not too far from the current Effects Controls panel, but more comprehensive and not as static. Basically, if it's a modifiable parameter for a track item, there should be a consistent place you go to for adjusting those parameters. Look at some pro compositing programs that do this. They have ONE controls panel that changes dynamically. Also, the Motion Graphics Browser should be a completely separate panel, just like the Media Browser, or Libraries.
Just put similar controls/functionality together, and make them all behave consistently. For audio, lets have the track based effects handled in a similar way to clip based effects. Let's bring some of the functionality from the various pop-up windows into these Parameter Control Panels so they aren't hidden. Like why is the speed of a clip in a separate pop-up window when the more advanced time remapping is out there in the open in the Effect Controls? Those are very similar parameters that could so easily be combined into one cohesive set of tools in a Parameters Panel.
We've all gotten used to how Premiere works and can live with the current way of doing things. But my fear is that with every new feature being added, we are getting farther and farther away from a unified experience because you are finding ways to jam them in with new custom panels or band-aid solutions instead of fixing the underlying structure of how its all organized.