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Workflow for video editing – the software

This is the second entry in my series on my workflow for video editing. Last time, I discussed my organisation system; this time I’ll talk about software:

Where editing video used to be a manual, physical, process, those days are long since gone, and computers have replaced the cutting and splicing equipment of old. Video editing has become something that you can learn by experimentation at relatively low cost. When you decide that the time has come to do more than what you can do with the tools you have available, you can then upgrade.

I have experience with six different tools:

  • Windows Movie Maker
    • I have a whopping two videos edited on WMM. It’s fairly bare bones, but worked well when I last used it.
  • iMovie
    • Apple’s free tool, I found iMovie to be less than ideal for entry-level video editing, and I soon left it by the wayside, replacing it with…
  • GoPro Studio
    • GoPro Studio is intuitive, if a bit too hand-holding for my tastes. I still use it to stitch together timelapses shot with my GoPro cameras, as well as to remove fisheye from wide-angle shots taken with the same. Review here.
  • YouTube Video editor
    • YouTube offers an online video editor, which works well, but necessitates uploading your source files to YouTube before beginning an edit. I prefer doing everything locally, uploading the finished product, so YTVE doesn’t see much use with me.
  • Adobe Premiere Elements
    • After using GoPro Studio for most of my edits, I upgraded to Adobe Premiere Elements in August 2016. It is fairly intuitive, and lets me work on projects in a way that works very well for me. It is been my go-to for all my editing sessions since, though has now been superceded by…
  • Adobe Premiere Pro
    • While Premiere Elements is an excellent tool, and one which I will happily recommend for anyone who only uses a single camera, or who doesn’t need to edit multiple camera angles into a single, cohesive story, if you need to work with multiple camera angles, the audio-based synchronisation of Premiere Pro lightens the load immensely, and means that you can take control of your audio, too, adding external audio recording as needed or desired.

The one I currently use is Adobe Premiere Pro. Though the learning curve is high, it yields far greater control over the end product, and a better end product to boot. In the time to come, I hope to be able to leverage the expanded tool-set to increase my production value even more. For now, I’m just happy to be able to perform multi-angle edits with ease.

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