GoPro Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 choppy issues in Premiere Pro

If you experience choppy playback issues working with GoPro Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 footage in Premiere Pro, you may wish to read this tutorial. It guides you through the process of converting Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 files to DNxHD or ProRes codec for use in Premiere Pro smoothly.
hero 6 hevc choppy in premiere
The playback of GoPro Hero 6 H.265 footage is choppy in Premiere Pro
“Hey guys, I have a bundle of Hero 6 footage shot in 4K 60fps, which uses the H.265 (HEVC) codec. The playback is very choppy in Premiere Pro, even though I have the Preview window set to 1/8 resolution. Is there anything I can do to make the playback smoother? Do I need to convert all the footage to H.264 before I start editing? Please kindly suggest a solution if you know. Thanks.”

Don’t convert to H.264, because it is also a format that requires heavy lifting by your CPU. Before starting an edit, convert all your Hero 6 H.265/HEVC footage to an edit friendly codec like DNxHD or ProRes and that will eliminate the laggy playback issue in Premiere Pro. DNxHD and ProRes are file types that work natively with Premiere and therefore even if you have a lesser computer they will play back just fine. You can follow this guide to convert GoPro Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 to DNxHD/ProRes for Adobe Premiere.

How to convert GoPro Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 files to DNxHD/ProRes for Premiere Pro?

Here’s what you need
HD Video Converter (simply download the proper version depending on your computer’s OS)
Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 choppy issues in Premiere ProHero 6 HEVC/H.265 choppy issues in Premiere Pro

Step 1: Start up HD Video Converter as a Hero 6 HEVC to Premiere Pro Converter.

Step 2: Click ‘Add File’ to import your source media to the program.
Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 choppy issues in Premiere Pro

Step 3: Select output format
* If you are on a Windows PC, from the “Profile” bar, choose ‘Avid DNxHD 1080p (*.mov)’ as output under ‘Avid Media Composer’ column. (See the screenshot above)

** If you are on a Mac computer, choose ‘Apple ProRes 422 (*.mov)’ as target under ‘Final Cut Pro’ catalogue.
Hero 6 HEVC/H.265 choppy issues in Premiere Pro

*** Note that this converter program can only output Apple ProRes and DNxHD video up to 1080p, if you want to preserve 4K quality of your source files, you can select “4K Video” > “4K H.264/MPEG-4 AVC Video (*.mp4)” as target format. To export 4K files, please make sure your computer has enough power to process 4K H.264. If not, simply select Apple ProRes or DNxHD as output format depending on your OS.
transcoding HEVC for Premiere

Step 4: Custom video and audio settings (for advanced users)
Click ‘Settings’ button, the ‘Profile Settings’ panel pops up, on which you are able to modify video and audio settings like resolution, bit rate, frame rate, sample rate and audio channel.

Step 5: When ready, click ‘Convert’ to start transcoding Hero 6 HEVC H.265 files to Premiere Pro supported format. As soon as the conversion is complete, click ‘Open Folder’ button to locate the generated files and now you are able to open them in Premiere Pro for further editing smoothly.

Also read
How to edit Hero6 240fps HEVC in DaVinci Resolve?
Avid Media Composer won’t import Hero6 240fps HEVC files
How to convert Hero 6 240 fps H.265 video to ProRes?
MTS in iMovie 10.1.8-High Sierra won’t import AVCHD
How to install ProRes codec for Windows Premiere?