Increasingly, new capabilities trickle down from professional-level software to the consumer category. That's a good thing for nonprofessional movie editors, since the more-consumer-oriented software makes formerly difficult procedures a cinch for them. Read on for a survey of the latest trends in video editing software and our top picks in the field.
Those that have followed my video posts here on Stark Insider over the years know that I’m a die-hard 70D fan. I’ve used it to shoot interviews, live music concerts, backstage Broadway segments, and various food and travel episodes. I especially like the flip-out LCD (handy for framing shots when holding the camera high or very low), the sweet Dual Pixel auto-focus with subject tracking, and quiet performance of Canon’s STM lenses.
I won’t hide the fact that I’m a Canon fanboy. Canon just gets a lot of things right. Many of them are, in my books, the most important things, like great color science (images look beautiful and skin tones are rendered organically), the aforementioned stellar auto-focus (after all, what use is an out of focus photo or video?), and long battery life so you can shoot for hours without worry.
One of iMovie’s most coveted features is its green-screen, or “chroma-key” tool, which allows you to place your characters in exotic locations—Hawaii, say—at a moment’s notice. Want to overlay the scene with “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”? iMovie ties directly in with iTunes and GarageBand, so you can easily implement custom tracks and sounds. When your movie’s finally ready to ship, release it into the wild using iMessage, Facebook, YouTube, or any other of iMovie’s succinctly connected platforms.
The most basic way to produce a finished project is to export it as a video file. You can then use this file as a master copy of your video and keep it for archiving purposes. But you can also manually upload that file to various internet sites where it can be seen and shared. However, you can skip that step by uploading your finished project directly to YouTube, Facebook, and other sharing sites from within the program's interface. It allows you to input all the necessary information, metadata, descriptions and keywords to optimize your video so as many people see it as possible.
Hitfilm Express 9's high-energy style appeals to budding filmmakers who want to put a special touch on a personal event or get creative with a video blog, but it's still easy enough for the adventurous friends-and-family crowd. The one concession you have to make is that you have to give the software maker a shout out on social media in order to download the free app.
Blender is mainly 3D animation program but it has the best video editing and compose tool set that is hard to compete with. You can download this software on www.blender.org. The best thing about Blender is that they are always improving, new versions of the programs are released extremely quickly, and there are new and exciting features. It is also a difficult program to learn, but once you get used to it, you can do everything you want with it. Blender has a new rendering engine which is called Cycles and it offers amazing and realistic rendering. The modeling tools are easy to use. You have keyboard shortcuts for a fast workflow. With this software you can transform a model into a real character in just minutes. It also offers amazing simulations, whether you need rain, fire or hair that blows in the wind.
One of the capabilities that has been making its way into consumer-level video editing software is support for LUTs (lookup tables), also known as CLUTs (color lookup tables). This staple of pro-level software lets you quickly change the look of a video to give it a specific mood. For example, think of the dark blue look of thriller movies like The Revenant. You can download LUTs for free from several sites or use those included with some video software to give your video a specific look. One well-known LUT type is the kind that can make a daytime scene look like it was shot at night.
Blender is mainly 3D animation program but it has the best video editing and compose tool set that is hard to compete with. You can download this software on www.blender.org. The best thing about Blender is that they are always improving, new versions of the programs are released extremely quickly, and there are new and exciting features. It is also a difficult program to learn, but once you get used to it, you can do everything you want with it. Blender has a new rendering engine which is called Cycles and it offers amazing and realistic rendering. The modeling tools are easy to use. You have keyboard shortcuts for a fast workflow. With this software you can transform a model into a real character in just minutes. It also offers amazing simulations, whether you need rain, fire or hair that blows in the wind.
One of the capabilities that has been making its way into consumer-level video editing software is support for LUTs (lookup tables), also known as CLUTs (color lookup tables). This staple of pro-level software lets you quickly change the look of a video to give it a specific mood. For example, think of the dark blue look of thriller movies like The Revenant. You can download LUTs for free from several sites or use those included with some video software to give your video a specific look. One well-known LUT type is the kind that can make a daytime scene look like it was shot at night.
Sony Movie Studio 13 was made with the digital filmmaker in mind – once you’ve edited your video to your satisfaction, you can directly upload it to Facebook or other social media for fast sharing. Create video in beautiful 4K (ultra HD) XAVCS, or AVCHD to give your vlogs a high-production, professional feel. Movie Studio 13 Platinum is touch-enabled, too, so you can create and edit movies even faster using your PC’s touchscreen. With large, easy-to-use buttons, fewer menus and the popular Simple Edit Mode, Sony Movie Studio 13 makes video editing fast and easy, so you can keep up with the Internet’s viral pace. The software also comes with ACID Music Studio 10 and Sound Forge Audio Studio 10 to take your online media up a notch.
In the production industry, when most people think about editing software, their minds don't go to Windows Movie Maker on a PC. I'm not an expert on how to achieve that, but I gather a revamped look (which seems more like a professional editing suite) that retains the intuitive, user-friendly feel would be a start. The issue may not be with Movie Maker, but more so a computer's ability to handle the rich files (raw video) and storage required to edit.
It´s a pleasure that Windows Movie Maker is really easy to use. What I mostly love about this free software is that it allows me to drag and drop pieces of videos that I have inside it, and then it lets me edit them and join them easily. I also love the upper menu that allows me to add text, music, and even effects (such as HQ video image and Black and White "textures"), by only clicking once on the desired option. I really think that editing videos is super easy when I use Windows Movie Maker.
Avid Media Composer's latest version comes with a wealth of new and improved features, such as accelerated high-res-to-HD workflows and automated media management to handle background media tasks while you focus on your creative vision. The $999 price tag is steep for amateurs, but worth it if you're looking for a professional-grade software. As the editing software of choice for summer blockbusters like Star Trek and The Great Gatsby, Avid Media Composer 7 can handle any editing challenge with ease.
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However, simple editing can be done on the cheap if you’re willing to ditch powerful, high-end software such as Final Cut Pro, or Adobe Premiere, in favor of a more modest program. Let’s face it, you’re probably not going to be taking home the Palme d’Or with the film you cut on your laptop, but your home movies and YouTube uploads can take on a whole new shine with a few straightforward tools. 
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