Are you looking for a free video editor for your Mac or Windows pc. Maybe you are new to video editing and you are not ready to invest in expensive software or perhaps you want to create professional videos or add cool effects without paying for pricey programs like preparing pro with so many different needs and reasons to edit there are lots of free programs to choose from.
In this article we are going to compare five key elements of the best free video editing software to help you figure out which is best for you. The elements we will look at are intuitiveness and user friendly basic editing features, advanced editing features, unique features and overall performance and the five video editors we’ll compare in this article are
1. Power director2. Davinci Resolve3. Movie maker online4. imovie5. VSDC
Cut, Refine add Effects and Publish, there’s a good number of reasons why Powerdirector is Pcmag editor’s choice year after year create compelling content with a streamlined user interface powerful editing tools and ever-growing effects. No matter your level of proficiency you can achieve spectacular results.
Powerdirector doesn’t quite fall under the category of beginner video editing software because of how robust it is. However the program’s user interface is highly intuitive and you’ll be able to jump in and start editing right away even if you have little to no experience with video production. Powerdirector has libraries of transitions pre-made motion graphics titles effects and project templates that can give you a great jump start on any project.
If all you need are the most basic editing features like trimming, splitting and cropping you’ll enjoy using Powerdirector. Despite being packed with functionality it’s been designed so all the basic tools are right at your fingertips not only does it have all the basic tools for video editing, it also has all the basics for sound editing and color correction.
Advanced features is what really separates power director from other editors like imovie. You have multiple tools to create professional quality motion graphics and visual effects. The picture-in-picture designer comes with a multi-key chroma key. Making video overlays is easy with mask designers pre-made and custom selection tools and both designers include keyframing for precision control. The blending modes are fantastic for making double exposures You can even add on blending effects like lens flares light, leaks or retro film and tv effects, plus you can add and customize weather elements and motion graphics with a particle designer.
My favorite unique feature in Powerdirector is the video collage designer. I am a big fan of split screens and movies and making them has never been easier. You simply drag and drop footage into pre-designed grids and adjust the settings for the collage animation style. It’s so simple to do it almost feels like cheating.
When it comes to speed and performance Powerdirector ranks among the best. You will experience the fastest video rendering, thanks to cyberlink’s optimization expertise for both software and hardware acceleration. It’s a professional level editor that keeps the end user in mind.
For a free program Davinci resolve offers incredible high-end features that go above and beyond simple editing tools designed for professionals. The program’s detailed color correction allows you to adjust skin tones and eye color and its audio production options are quite extensive.
Davinci Resolve has a massive learning curve. It’s so complex you can’t just sit down and start creating videos with no formal knowledge of video editing even advanced users can struggle with it at first. If you’re looking for an industry level editor without the price tag and are willing to put in the time you’ll love it. No need to pay hundreds of dollars for final cut or adobe premiere pro does.
Davinci have basic editing features absolutely should you use Davinci for only basic editing absolutely not, it would be like trying to shave with the machete that said if you know the program the editing tools are everything you’ll ever need for all your post-production needs Advanced features is why Davinci is on our list it’s professional editing color effects and audio all in one. It’s used to create feature films like Godzilla King of the monsters. It features new images processing for the latest white gamut hdr with hdr grading tools and ai based magic mask an audio engine for immersive 3d audio workflow that supports 2000 tracks plus a node-based visual effects workflow and hundreds of 2d and 3d tools.
A very unique feature of Davinci Resolve arts pages. Each is a dedicated workspace for specific tasks. Editing is done on the cut and edit pages, visual effects and motion graphics on the fusion page, color correction on the color page and so on. You can seamlessly jump between tasks with a single click
Davinci Resolve performs exactly how an industry standard video editor should.
If I worked in hollywood and was editing the next marvel movie, this is definitely the video editing software I would use.
Movie Maker Online
One of the biggest perks of movie maker online is write in the name. Unlike other editors in this list movie maker runs in your browser.
If you can navigate a website then you can use movie maker online it’s that straightforward because it’s literally just a website. There are also prompts throughout the process to help you each step of the way If all you want to do is merge short video clips add a little text or some music you won’t need anything else. This is all the most basic tools you need to cut videos together. There aren’t any advanced features movie maker online is for simple tasks and that’s it.
Definitely nothing unique about it. All the tools can be found in any video editing software. Overall performance will depend on your internet speed but it doesn’t have a ram requirement or a specific operating system to run.
Movie maker online is really only good if you want a quick and easy solution to put in a few clips together or add in some text and music. Beyond that you will need an actual video editing program installed on your machine
imovie is a video editing program that comes pre-installed on mac devices. It features a range of editing tools to create a polished video. It’s a step above movie maker online but not on the same level of Powerdirector or even close to Davinci Resolve. If you’re comfortable using a Mac or iphone you won’t have many issues working on imovie. It feels just like another apple software or app Basic video editing is where imovie really excels. It has all the tools you need to edit both video and audio it’s easy to browse your clips and create hollywood style trailers and sunny videos. Add photos and videos to projects, trim clips and add seamless transitions and fade audio.
There are 13 creative video filters you can add to your footage to make it look like a nostalgic film or a fun comic book.
This is where it becomes obvious that imovie is a free software it does have chroma key picture in picture and split screen effects but that’s about it. Apple has reserved its truly impressive features for final cut pro. One fun feature of imovie has always been their trailers you create fun. Hollywood style movie trailers from your footage. Choose from a range of templates in almost any genre This one impress an audience at your local amc but they’re definitely fun to share with friends and family.
Overall imovie performs well. It’s a solid program and like almost everything. apple it hardly ever crashes. Of course you won’t be pushing a mac very hard when using the software because it just doesn’t have the advanced features.
If you are a beginner video editor and looking to make a professional presentation, you’ll love VSDC. Though I would say VSDC is more suitable for creating presentations. The casual video editor will find its features sufficient to make fun videos.
The VSDC interface comes off as a bit crowded for my taste. This makes it feel a bit more intimidating than it should for such a basic editor. This isn’t to say it’s bad but it just doesn’t have as nice as a feel as imovie or Powerdirector. As far as being user friendly it is especially if you have experience in video editing, if not it may take a few minutes or even an hour to learn where everything is.
VSDC definitely has all the basics. It can be used to create anything from a family video greeting card to a company presentation Cut, merge video files, apply visual and audio effects, use filtration, make slideshows and add music. This is where VSDC as a free editor comes up short You have to get VSDC Pro to use most of the advanced features.
For example motion tracking, video stabilization and multi-color chroma key, all require pro whereas in Powerdirector you have access to all these features in the free version.
There’s nothing unique about it. Everything available in VSDC can be found in almost all the other video editing software from this list.
Hardware acceleration adjustable parameter settings and enhanced resolution make VSDC a real time and effort saving tool when creating large hd videos. it isn’t the fastest video editing software on this list but it is solid.
All in all you can’t go wrong using any of these programs they all include. The basic features you’ll need to create a quality video. Some are better for professional editing while others are more suitable for hobbyists or beginners. Whether you’re using Windows or Mac, we do recommend at least downloading and trying Powerdirector as our overall best video editor for both Windows and Mac operating system users. It’s free.
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