Once upon a time you needed a studio and expensive machinery to make a quality movie. With the ever-expanding skills and abilities of computers and code, anyone can now make a decent movie with the click of a mouse. As the list of new and exciting programs grow with each day, it can be difficult to figure out where to start. The hardest part is figuring out which ones to use.
With our helpful list, you can decide based on budget, formats, systems, and the highlight features of each. Hopefully our list will help you make an educated decision on to which program will work and allow you the tools needed to make the next cinematic masterpiece. Here is our list of the Best Software for Video Editing
The lighter, less complicated version of Sony Pro, Sony Vegas still packs quite a punch into such a little package. This one can make movies, slideshows, and more without having to take up a lot of your computers ram to do it. It also works with touch computers, allowing you to drag and drop scenes and record voice over with the touch of a finger. It also comes with helpful Show Me How tutorials to make getting started easy and learning the ins and outs a breeze.
Budget: $49.95 or Trial Version (Free)
Formats: MP4, WAV, WMV, MPEG 4, Quicktime and more
Systems: Windows PC
Highlights: Works with touch PCs, Instant and easy sharing videos online via YouTube and Facebook, and in-depth tutorial for an easy start.
Cons: Cost a lot to get all the features unlocked, doesn’t do as much on trial version, and limited languages.
This Hollywood grade program is well know in the professional scene as thee go to editor for people serious about their movies. Created and developed by Apple, it brings Apple’s signature shortcut keys and clean-cut user interface to the table. With 4k-export pre-set allowing you to easily create movies for Apple devices, this is a must to Apple product fans and users.
Formats: Quicktime and Quicktime compatible
Highlights: Can display up to four video scopes simultaneously, colour correction effect, 3D titles, cinematic templates with built-in backgrounds, and extremely highly rated.
Cons: Cost is extreme, learning all the program has to offer takes a while,
With a wide variety of formats and the ability to make HD videos, AVS is shaping up to be a great program for newcomers. This program allows you to take video directly from your recording device straight into edit mode. You can even take your finished project and burn it to a DVD in Blu-ray format. With so many features it’s easy to see why so many start with this program.
Budget: $59.00 to $39.00 till July 31, 2016, also a Limited Trial Version
Formats: AVI, VOB, MP4, DVD, WMV, 3GP, MOV, MKV, HD, Full HD, 2K Quad HD and 4K Ultra HD.
Highlights: Blu-ray and HD videos, easy to learn, multiple languages supported, cheaper then most programs with same features.
Cons: Only for Windows, takes 2GB Ram or Higher, takes up a lot of space on computer
A powerful background import and render engine, Multi-channel audio mixer and 3D LUTS with over 40 templates, this program comes out of the box ready to get to work. With many features include in both the Free and Pro, this program has everything you need to put your videos directly to YouTube and Vimeo.
Budget: $24.99 to $437.99 depending on License for Pro, Free remains Free
Formats: 4K, HD, SD
Systems: Windows, OS X, Linux
Highlights: Export to SD, HD and 4K, Simple playback and editing controls, extensive effects, and multilayered timeline.
Cons: Only the Pro lets you make Blu-ray, DVD and Avid DnxHD videos, free is limited to YouTube and vimeo.
The more advanced and specialized version of Sony Vegas, this program comes with more advance features such as milti-track audio and more in-depth special effects for the professional movie director and editor. With an advanced plug-in architecture based on OpenFX, and a powerful Colour Match with a wide range of colour-correct tools, this one is for those getting serious about eh quality of their videos.
Formats: MP4, WMV, MP4, OMA, OGG, AAF
Highlights: Colour match plug in for near perfect colour-corrections, Online and offline mode, GPU acceleration, and Gesture Controls.
Cons: Price is high, and not for beginners. Controls take time to master.
An editing program that is supported for Linux, this is a gem for people who want to make their videos shine. With real time processing, OpenGL and 64-bit compliant, it’s made to run on Linux. With over 15 audio effects and over 20 video effects, you’re sure to add that special touch to your video without having to export to another machine.
Formats: Most video formats and HD
Highlights: Uncapped limit to audio and video tracks, HD file support, easy to read
Cons: Admits to being buggy, may need code changes to run properly. Last updated in 2015.
Pinnacle Studio is open, honest, and lays it all out for the buy to read. They have a long list of effects ranging from Drag and Drop HD video editor to 6-track frame-accurate editing. Depending on which of the three versions you get, the list of features only gets better with each upgrade. The different levels allow you to pick and choose which one fits your style and budget.
Budget: $59.99 to $129.95
Formats: DVD, MVC, HDV, AC3, Quicktime and more
Highlights: HD video support, DVD compatible, Long list of royalty music free for use.
Cons: The least expensive option is lacking in effects, the better effects are in the middle to high cost range.
From the same people who brought you CoralDraw comes Coral VideoStudio. Labeled as “Perfect video software for all skill levels” both versions of this program come with an impressive list of features and effects.
Budget: $84.99 to $47.99
Formats: XAVC, MXF, MPA, MOV, WAV, WMA, MP4, M4A, Aiff, AU, and more
Highlights: Long list of features, supports all video formats, effects list is long.
Cons: Even low end is expensive for beginners, lots of features to learn, long list of system requirements.
Extremely popular and very useful, iMovie has dominated the iStore for ages as the go-to program for Mac users just learning to edit. You can use it on any iDevice so long as it is iOS based. The drag and drop interface along with the preview of each scene make iMovie easy to read. The addition of iMovie Theater lets you watch movies on your Apple TV.
Formats: Quicktime and HD
Highlights: Tons of languages, cost is low, and works on all iDevices
Cons: Impossible for newbie users to use without training, layout is confusing, and hard to navigate
From the well-known Adobe program family comes Adobe Premier. With a steep price range in the thousands, it’s no surprise the expansive list of features, effects and audio tuning plug ins that come with this program.
Formats: All industry know formats.
Systems: Windows and Mac
Highlights: Beautiful features, tons of effects and audio, movies come out professional grade and quality.
Cons: Extreme price range, steep learning curve, and takes a lot of memory.
Another Open-Source program for Linux, with its impressive user interface, Pitivi will become a Linux user’s best friend quickly. Popular with Let’s Play video artist and toted as “Open Source Swiss Army Knife of Multimedia Editing” Pitivi comes in two forms, Pre-built and Development version. If you’re a coder and an editor you can do even more with this already impressive package.
Formats: All popular video formats
Highlights: Easy to use UI, easy edit features, tons of scene change effects, multiple languages.
Cons: geared mostly towards Gstreamers, for Linux only
Geared to be user friendly, with an open, easy to follow and visually pleasing user interface, CyberLink PowerDirector lives up to its name. No matter what type of movie or animation you want to create, CyberLink puts the tools at your fingertips and makes it easy to discover why this is one of the most popular programs for Windows video editors.
Budget: From $49.95 to $69.99
Formats: 3GP, AVI, WMV, MPEG 4 and more
Highlights: Transition Designer, theme creator, multi-cam and screen recorder to name a few.
Cons: Takes a lot of memory, Windows Vista or higher, and 7GB minimum required.
With an open community that continues to stride to make this program advance and still user friendly, Kdenlive is an open-source program that is continuing to get better with each upgrade. You can control the rate of rendering, a huge list of scene cut effects, and the multi-track editing allow this home-grown program to stand against the bigger guys.
Formats: MP4, MPEG2, AVI, WMP, HD and more
Systems: FreeBSD, Linux and Mac
Highlights: free, open sourced programming, has an open discussion on making the program better, continued upgrades via community.
Cons: Still working out all the bugs, updates are slow, only 2 video tracks and 4 audio.
Created in Italy and proud of it, ivsEdit is one of the more power free programs. With a interface made to make movie editing the easiest possible, ivsEdits is made for beginners who have a shoe string budget but big dreams. With the ability to connect multiple live inputs and real-time video input, this program is great for those just starting out.
Formats: 4K, 2K, HD and SD
Highlights: It’s free, has a lot of features and allows hardware install.
Cons: Site can be hard to navigate, doesn’t support Vista
Windows Movie Maker is the most simplistic way of beginning your journey through editing. Movie Maker comes with every Windows system in some format, and can be used with Windows Media to view your videos when you’re done editing. With scene change effects, audio track addition and simple interface, it’s the easiest program to start with.
Formats: MP3, WMP, MP4 and more
Highlights: Free with windows, easy to learn, and well documented
Cons: limited in effects, doesn’t support all formats, low grade.
The free version of a more complex pay-for program, Machete is made for quick and easy slicing of video files. You can edit losslessly, and within a few minutes you can edit without prior knowledge of the program. The User interface is all about getting the editing down without flashy bells and whistles.
Budget: Free for lite ($19.95 for paid)
Formats: AVI and WMV only in lite version
Highlights: Simple and clean UI, fast, free for lite version
Cons: Lite version is limited in file types, does charge for upgrades once you buy the full version.
With a stunningly beautiful and customizable user interface, with easy to follow set up and effortless editing tools, Wondershare Filmora is made for people who want to share their artwork across social media and the world. With frame-by-frame preview and an advance text and title editor, it’s easy to see why this program is one of the highest rated ones on the net.
Budget: Free (paid is $29.99 a year or $49.99 for a lifetime license)
Formats: DVD, MP3, AVI and more
Highlights: Comes with a handy app FilmoraGo, and has a effortless user interface.
Cons: Doesn’t really have any
We hope these 17 programs will help you on your journey to become a great movie editor and help with your future projects. As always, I you have an addition, comments or things you would like to see us add please feel free to comment below.