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.
The simplest way to create a digital movie in Movie Maker is to add your clips to the timeline and choose one of the seven AutoMovie Themes—Default, Contemporary, Cinematic, Fade, Pan and Zoom (best used with photos), Black and White, and Sepia. It's nowhere near as extensive a set of options you'll see in iMovie, let alone Adobe Premiere Elements, but they're in simple good taste. These are displayed as thumbnails in the center of the Home ribbon. They add an intro title screen, transitions, and credits to the production.
What I like best abut Windows Movie Maker is that it is so simple to use! It's been the standard movie editing program for me for a while now, for basic movie editing needs. There is no need for countless controls and buttons. The interface is so simple and easy to use. Easily import footage such as photos and videos, and easily edit/cut and combine them all together. Even very easy to add pre-made transitions without having to manually animate them.
Apple’s Final Cut Pro X software falls into what we call the “prosumer” category because it treads the line between a product for consumers who want to up their video-editing game and one for professionals who need powerful editing tools. It lacks a traditional timeline-track interface, which is enough to scare some users off, but the software is intuitive and powerful nonetheless. It has great organizational tools like libraries, ratings, tagging, auto analysis for faces and scenes, and automatic color coding for track-specific clips, useful keyboard short-cuts and drag-and-drop media importing give Adobe’s Premiere Elements a run for its money. Unfortunately, you can't directly open projects from Final Cut Pro 7 or earlier, but there are many third-party plug-ins that will help you out there.
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.
You can choose among a few different speeds, and the app will show you how long the hyperlapsed video will be for every speed in comparison to the length of the video in real time. (So a 40-second video in real time will become roughly a seven-second video in Hyperlapse at 6X speed.) It's a really cool way to capture something that usually lasts a while -- like a sunset or an event setup.
We host professional development events for faculty members at our university and not everyone who is interested in each event is able to attend. With Movie Maker, we are taking our recordings of the live event, editing out the pre- and post-workshop conversations and any dead time during the event (i.e., individual activities), and making the recordings available to all faculty members (and graduate students). These events (both live and archived) are playing a role in increasing faculty members' activity and development.
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.