John asks: I have a full time IT job but like to put together engaging video content. What editing software is the biggest bang for the buck?
Answer: Why buy a video editor when you can do most normal video editing with a free tool? This is a VERY EXHAUSTIVE (always updated) list of 18 of the best free video editors out there right now with links to download instantly.
Most have been used on major films!
1. DaVinci Resolve
DaVinci Resolve has hundreds of new features for editors, colorists and now, for the first time, audio professionals.
The new playback engine dramatically increases responsiveness with up to 10x better performance for editors. You also get a whole new page with the full Fairlight audio post production tools that let you record, edit, mix, sweeten and master sound with full 3D audio space and up to 1000 channels.
Colorists will find amazing new Resolve FX that include automatic facial recognition and tracking for quickly smoothing skin tones, brightening eyes, changing lip color and more!
Plus, DaVinci Resolve features revolutionary new multi user collaboration tools such as bin locking, chat and timeline merging that allow editors, colorists, and sound editors to all work on the same project at the same time! All these new features make DaVinci Resolve the world’s most advanced post production software!
Whether you need to pull a key, track objects, retouch images, animate titles, or create amazing particle effects, Fusion has a massive toolset that lets you tackle the most demanding jobs. You get a true 3D workspace along with tools for compositing, keying, painting, animation, virtual reality, stereoscopic 3D and more. Fusion combines effects and motion graphics, along with 3D modeling and rendering into a single toolset. That means you can import and render 3D models and scenes with the rest of your composite in Fusion. You don’t have to pre‑render assets or transfer between multiple applications!
3. Hitfilm Express
HitFilm Express is the most powerful, FREE editing and VFX software to date.
Blaze a trail through the new frontier of filmmaking with:
- 2D and 3D effects compositing
- Compatible with Mac & Windows
- Over 180 visual effects
- Free video tutorials & training
- Editor with transitions & unlimited tracks
- Join our international filmmaking community
Non-linear video editing is much more powerful than beginners’ (linear) editors, hence it requires a bit more organization before starting. However, it is not reserved to specialists and can be used for small personal projects.
Through the MLT framework, Kdenlive integrates many plugin effects for video and sound processing or creation. Furthermore Kdenlive brings a powerful titling tool, a DVD authoring (menus) solution, and can then be used as a complete studio for video creation.
5. Lightworks Free
Lightworks Free has all the power of Lightworks, although it has a limitation: you can only to export only to MPEG-4 (Web, YouTube and Vimeo) at a maximum resolution of 720p. If that’s enough for you, you can download the program and start using it right away. Lightworks Free users can now download the 64 bit version, which was previously limited to Pro users. The Free version now also comes with a 30 day Pro Trial period. Maybe after exploring it for a while you will decide to go further and buy the Pro version.
Whether you need to make video for social media, YouTube or for a 4K film project, Lightworks makes it all possible!
Natron is a free open-source, cross-platform compositing software, created as a tool for people who needed it and that may felt left-aside by the software editors pricing plans: students and schools that may not be able to buy expensive software licenses.
Available for Windows, Linux and Mac, Natron offers an interface similar to Nuke. According to the creators of the program, it was chosen “so it is easy for artists to pick up Natron if they know how to use the industry standard.”
7. OpenShot Video Editor
OpenShot Video Editor is a FREE, open-source video editor for Linux. With it you can mix your videos, photos and music or audio files, to create the film you have always dreamed of. Created in 2008, by Jonathan Thomas, the program is the solution to a problem.
8. HyperEngine AV
Basically, it succeeds where iMovie has failed. Not focused on the home user who may only ever use iMovie once or twice. This is for someone who will use their video editing software on a regular basis, for example producing a regular video podcast or producing an online mini-series.
Users can capture, arrange, edit and process video, audio and text in a free-form, trackless document, to create movies and slide shows
9. Cinefx Jashaka
Cinefx is an offline playback, editing, encoding, animation and visual effects tool based on the Jahshaka technology that allows you to create professional digital media on your desktop. Use the tools that hollywood uses to create blockbuster films and special effects.
Avidemux is a free video editor designed for simple cutting, filtering and encoding tasks. It supports many file types, including AVI, DVD compatible MPEG files, MP4 and ASF, using a variety of codecs. Tasks can be automated using projects, job queue and powerful scripting.
Another video editing system. It is designed to be simple to use, yet powerful. It is small in size, yet it has many advanced features.
LiVES mixes realtime video performance and non-linear editing in one professional quality application. It will let you start editing and making video right away, without having to worry about formats, frame sizes, or framerates. It is a very flexible tool which is used by both professional VJ’s and video editors – mix and switch clips from the keyboard, use dozens of realtime effects, trim and edit your clips in the clip editor, and bring them together using the multitrack timeline. You can even record your performance in real time, and then edit it further or render it straight away.
12. Avid Media Composer
Media Composer | First provides users with a comprehensive yet simple-to-use editing toolset with many of the same features and functionality that award-winning Media Composer editors rely on, in a new powerful, streamlined interface. With four video tracks, eight audio tracks, and a host of built-in visual effects, transitions, color correction presets and titling templates, users can quickly cut together layers of video, dialog, music and sound effects to produce captivating, professional-quality video content. Media Composer | First also allows easy sharing, with one-click publishing to popular social media channels including YouTube, Vimeo and Facebook.
13. Cinelerra is a video editing and compositing software package. It is designed for the Linux operating system.
14. Pitivi is a Free video editor with a beautiful and intuitive user interface, a clean codebase and a fantastic community
15. Vivia is a video editing program for Linux and Windows that offers very user-friendly editing of DV video material. Vivia is Free Software with a GPL license.
16.Machete Video Editor Lite allows you to cut, copy, and paste different sections of video. The program’s intuitive interface means you won’t have to waste time shuffling through technical support documents.
17. Shotcut supports hundreds of audio and video formats and codecs thanks to FFmpeg. No import required which means native editing, plus multi-format timelines, resolutions and frame-rates within a project. Frame accurate seeking supported for many video formats.
18. WeVideo is the online video editor that makes it easy to capture, create, view and share your movies at up to 4K resolution for stunning playback anywhere.
19. Kizoa allows you to easily cut videos into as many clips as you want using our straightforward interface. Use the time-bar underneath the video to drag the beginning or end of the video to whatever second you want. You can preview the video at the same time for extra precision.
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