Our team of reviewers used each program’s editing tools, effects and export options to create identical test DVDs. They timed how long it took to burn a new DVD, complete with menus and chapters when possible. Our video experts then played the new DVDs on a large-screen television and searched for imperfections such as compression artifact, motion blur and interlacing issues. The results of these tests, as well as our reviewers’ personal experiences using each program, were used to decide the programs’ final scores and ranks. All our tests were designed to replicate the experience of an average user as well as a veteran editor.
When it comes to user-friendliness, sophisticated features and ways to output your video, nothing beats the cross-platform Adobe Premiere Elements. With genuinely inspiring but practical features, Elements’ new video collage, audio remix, enhanced face detection, haze removal and adjustment layers focus on what consumers need every day. Its companion Organizer app keeps assets organized and searchable, and the touch-friendly interface works quite well in Windows 10.
One of the things I really like about working in Movie Maker is that most of the effects, transitions, and themes preview automatically when you just hover the mouse cursor over their buttons. Another plus is the undo and redo buttons are right up top—video editing is a very trial-and-error process—but I suppose it's too much to ask for a history window in such a simple application.
Another impressive effect that has made its way into consumer-level video editing software is motion tracking, which lets you attach an object or effect to something moving in your video. You might use it to put a blur over the face of someone you don't want to show up in your video. You specify the target face, and the app takes care of the rest, tracking the face and moving the effect to follow it. This used to be the sole province of special effects software such as Adobe After Effects. Corel VideoStudio was the first of the consumer products to include motion tracking, and it still leads the pack in the depth and usability of its motion-tracking tool, though several others now include the capability.
Facebook has long had an app for people who manage Facebook Pages, and it’s also had an app for celebrities that did this kind of community building, too. In fact, Facebook Creator is really just an updated and rebranded version of that app — originally called Facebook Mentions (and still called that, since it seems to be stuck that way on the App Store for now) — but now it’s open to everyone.
I decided to upgrade (pay) when the free version only allowed 5 min videos max. So I paid for a gold class and now I am told I can only make 10 min videos - WTF! You would assume once you pay you can make much longer videos! That cost me $42 AUD. I also notice that once the video is "completed" some of the processed video is black and only has sound. Windows Movie Maker (which was actually FREE) never did this, and its controls were much easier to use. The controls are also very hard to use.
With an attractive interface, a multitude of video effects and the ability to upload directly to Facebook, Vimeo, Box and YouTube, Pinnacle Studio has long been a favorite in video editing. While it is one of the more expensive options in this list, and it doesn’t have 4K UHD support, Pinnacle serves as a nice middle-ground option for those who aren’t slackers in the video editing department, but who haven’t reached pro status just yet.
Next getting the software to work was another challange. despite having a fast machine with a lot of RAM, I found the Movie Star program to be very unstable. I was able to capture up to 60 minutes of video and save it to the MPEG format, but everytime I tried to edit or export the video as Windows Media or Real, it crashed the machine. I downloaded a copy of Ulead's Video Studio, but couldn't figure out how to import MPEG files. I finally bit the bullet and wound up downloading a free 30-day trial of Adobe Premier. I found Premier to be a very stable and easy to use program. I just wish it didn't cost [so much!]
Of course, none of the extras matter if an app can't do the most basic editing tasks. At this point, however, all of the products included here do a good job of letting you join, trim, and split video clips. They also let you make use of special effects such as animated transitions, picture-in-picture (PiP), chroma-key (the technique that lets you place a subject against any background, often known as green screening), and filters that enhance colors or apply creative effects and distortions. With most of them you can add a multitude of timeline tracks that can accommodate video clips, effects, audio, and text overlays.
Free video editing software often comes with legal and technical limitations, however. Some widely used codecs require licensing fees on the part of the software maker, meaning they can't offer free software that can handle these standard file formats. That said, the impressive open-source Shotcut does a lot of the same things that the paid applications in this roundup do, including things like chroma-keying and picture-in-picture. Shotcut is completely open-source and free, while another free option, Lightworks has paid options that remove a 720p output resolution limit. Note also that both Shotcut and Lightworks run on Linux as well as Windows and Mac.
With ScreenFlow you can record any part of your screen or the entire monitor while also capturing your video camera, iOS device, microphone or multi-channel audio device, and your computer’s audio. The easy-to-use editing interface lets you creatively edit your video. When you are done, use the built-in sharing to publish your video directly to YouTube, Vimeo, Wistia, Facebook, Google Drive, Dropbox or to Telestream Cloud for transcoding. Or export an animated .GIF, ProRes file or .MP4 directly to your desktop.
PowerDirector Ultra is our top choice for video editing software because it's easy and enjoyable to use for beginners, causal users and seasoned editors alike. It provides all the tools you need to transform the footage on your camera into a polished video you can share with family and friends. This program helps you learn video editing without compromising the power of the tools it offers.
Windows Movie Maker was once the world's most popular free video editing tool for Windows and users can make home movies by simple drag-and-drop. It contains features such as video effects, video transitions, adding titles/credits, audio track, timeline narration, and Auto Movie. Although Windows Movie Maker is built for Windows 7, and if you are looking for some free video editing software for Windows 8 or Windows 10, then you should skip Windows Movie Maker. However, Windows Movie Maker has been discontinued by Microsoft, you can still find installation packages on some third-party authoritative download sites:
Hello, I'm just getting into the world of animating and I'm looking for a free video software like this. I'm seeing multiple comments saying it's not free? I'm using Windows Movie Maker and here me out, it's easy to use, but I'm looking for one that I can add effects to my videos. Windows Movie Maker doesn't let me add effects :( I'm trying to find a non-virus free compatible video editor so I can add some effects and make it look good. Any suggestions? I'm not looking to spend any money on things yet since I'm still a beginner
Slightly different from the league is Dvolver.com which is a set up providing moviemaking services. Dvolver organizes online film festival ‘Dfilm’ that gives opportunity to the users to make their own digital films. Dfilm has cartoon based software as well which is fun to use. It allows friends and family to chat and talk through cell phones via SMS, MMS, instant messaging and others.
Cyberlink PowerDirector 16 Ultra is a prosumer video editor that aims to bring every feature under the sun to a video editor that is accessible and affordable. There’s nothing else in this price range that brings you this many well-implemented features, especially in 360 video. Complexity is its one challenge: The user interface is not always self-explanatory, and the inclusion of so many features means it can be difficult to find what you want. Read our full review.
Pinnacle offers an intuitive software program that can be relied on by professionals, but has a simplicity to be navigated by beginners. This program supports a plethora of file formats that has a timeline that makes it extremely easy to edit your video without experiencing any difficulties. However, program has not been updated since 2009 which means there are some compatibility and sustainability issues.
The best advice I can gie you is that you need to solve the issue that appears when you merge images with videos. Let me be clearer with this: if you use the merging effect (for intros and outros) and you use this option when you marge the last part of the video with a new image placed at the end of the same video, the moment when the video is blurring and the image appears, you can see half of the image on the top of the screen, and half of the video on the bottom of the screen. This only happens when you use this option at the end of your work,
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There are tons of in-program effects such as transitions, titles, credits, captions and even included audio scores, meaning you won’t get held up at any step of your editing process. There are panning and shift capabilities, high-quality post-processing zoom, as well as a plethora of color filtering plugins to give you the look you’ll need, even if the raw footage isn’t quite there. You’ll have the ability to export your movies in up to 4K resolution, and the software even supports 360-degree video projects. It’s a great powerhouse for beginners.