What Adobe Premiere Pro is to Windows PCs, Final Cut Pro X is to Mac users. It's the best video editing software for Mac. And, as you would suspect with Apple software, the must-have editor is consummately easy to use and comes packed with enough features to warrant the admittedly high price tag. We like the grouping tools, effect options and the simplistic way you can add and edit audio. If you're already entwined in Apple's ecosystem, you'll appreciate how Final Cut cleverly coordinates with your Photos or iTunes collections.
Movie Maker uses a very simple version of standard video editor timeline along with clips which are represented by “long thumbnails”. The thumbnail tracks provide options to show the audio waveforms along the bottom, such that you can where are the quiet and loud parts of your video. You also get five different size choices for the thumbs, along with zoom control at the bottom to let you stretch out these clip representation. You can easily trim and split clips by using the cursor insertion point combined with available edit buttons.

Ignore all the unfavorable reviews of the Dazzle DM4100, unless you like AOL or would recommend AOL to a friend. I tend to be a tough critic when it comes to inferior technology, but the Dazzle TRULY IMPRESSED ME!!! 15 minutes to install on an AMD K6-450 notebook, default settings, smooth 30fps better-than-VHS capture, and a reasonable price. Yes, the video out works well too, naysayers! OK, I had to figure out a couple of software issues as I experimented with options, but if you can't deal with software quirks, you shouldn't own a PC !! ....but if you do, you probably think "AOL is #1" means AOL is the best. No, it just means an unrelenting high-budget sales campaign can easily brainwash the cranially-challenged. The rest of us just ignore the ads, and enjoy using quality products like the Dazzle 4100, without opening the manual, or whining to/about tech support.
Cyberlink is often the first to roll out new and innovative tools and features. For example, it pioneered multi-cam functionality for consumer-level software. That technology was previously only found in professional programs like Adobe Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro. Cyberlink’s basics are also top-notch. This program has a 99-track timeline, which gives nearly unlimited versatility. You can make simple videos quickly but also delve deeply into complex projects. You may never edit a feature film with this software, but it is more than capable of that task. In our ease-of-use tests, PowerDirector earned an A. Our reviewers noted that the interface is intuitive, the tools are accessible, and even the most advanced features are simple to learn. You can unlock the fullest potential of the program easily if you learn how to use the tools properly.
Cyberlink is often the first to roll out new and innovative tools and features. For example, it pioneered multi-cam functionality for consumer-level software. That technology was previously only found in professional programs like Adobe Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro. Cyberlink’s basics are also top-notch. This program has a 99-track timeline, which gives nearly unlimited versatility. You can make simple videos quickly but also delve deeply into complex projects. You may never edit a feature film with this software, but it is more than capable of that task. In our ease-of-use tests, PowerDirector earned an A. Our reviewers noted that the interface is intuitive, the tools are accessible, and even the most advanced features are simple to learn. You can unlock the fullest potential of the program easily if you learn how to use the tools properly.
Michael Muchmore is PC Magazine's lead analyst for software and web applications. A native New Yorker, he has at various times headed up PC Magazine's coverage of Web development, enterprise software, and display technologies. Michael cowrote one of the first overviews of web services for a general audience. Before that he worked on PC Magazine's S... See Full Bio
Disc authoring tools are another essential feature to consider if you intend to distribute DVDs or Blu-ray discs of your videos. Authoring options can be quite extensive; for example, you may be able to insert chapter markers, build disc menus and include extra features, just like in Hollywood-produced movies. The best video editor programs have a lot of authoring tools.
VSDC Free Video Editor looks and feels just like a professional video editor. In fact, if feels almost identical to Final Cut Pro in a lot of ways. If you want to experience that style of in-depth video editing, this program is an epic way to do it for free. Be warned, though, that there's a steep learning curve unless you already have some experience.
The Full Feature Editor contains simplified versions of nearly all the tools available in professional video editing software. For example, you have access to an audio mixer that lets you fine-tune your sound, the chroma key that allows you to create green-screen effects, and a surround-sound configurator that optimizes your video for home entertainment systems and even movie theaters. These tools and others allow you to make the same type of videos as Hollywood professionals. PowerDirector is a great program not only for creating great videos, but also for learning nonlinear editing in case you decide to upgrade to professional video editing programs.

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The last downside, and perhaps the biggest one for some people, is the lack of 4K video recording. It's kind of a disappointment that phones can do it now but this DSLR still cannot. There are some comparably priced DSLRs from Nikon and others like Sony that have this feature. But honestly, even without this I will still prefer to stay with Canon simply because your camera is only as good as your lens, and Canon has probably the best lenses out there, but definitely without question has the widest selection of lenses to choose from.
Apple’s iMovie has long been one of the most consumer-orientated video editors out there. It’s bundled with all new Macs, and touts some serious practicality for the everyday user. The latest version of the software allows you to import and edit 4K video clips from a variety of external devices, such as smartphones and GoPro cameras, and sports a clean interface that is attractive and easy to navigate. The ability to start editing on iPhone or iPad and finish on a Mac renders it even more convenient.

Other measures of performance include startup time and simple stability. Again, video editing is a taxing activity for any computer, involving many components. In the past, video editing programs took longer than most other apps to start up, and unexpected shutdowns were unfortunately common, even in top apps from top developers such as Adobe and Apple. The stability situation has greatly improved, but the complexity of the process, which increases as more powerful effects are added, means crashes will likely never be fully eliminated, and they often raise their ugly heads after a program update, as I found with the latest version of Pinnacle Studio.
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