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The Digital Director Experience: Video Editing Fundamentals

Editing without a computer

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Iíve been a reluctant iPad convert, but itís slowly pushed out my laptop over the last year. I now rarely use my PC for anything other than video editing. And itís not just the iPad, but the apps themselves that make the iPad a real alternative to using a PC. The apps often outperform their bloated PC counterpart, and at a price that suits almost anyoneís budget. So could I do without my PC? Is there an app that can compete with a PC for video editing? Could an app take a fresh approach to editing?

Iíve found two apps that fit the bill in the Apple store. Both cost less than £10 and both from software developers with a history in video editing - iMove and Avid Studio. It certainly bodes well for an early grave for my laptop.

If youíve ever edited video before, youíll instantly recognise both iMovie and Avid Studio. They both follow the classic, tried and tested layout. Thereís a file viewer for clip selection, the monitor window and a timeline which fills the bottom half of the screen. So thereís not really any innovation here. In fact the only real difference is the way you scrub the timeline. Instead of moving the timeline marker, you move the timeline itself.

Itís a similar story with just about every feature. Put simply, Avid Studio does a reasonable job attempting to bring sophisticated editing to the iPad, but let itself down with a clunky interface. iMovie tries harder to adapt to the iPad market, bringing the ease of editing created in the apps bigger mac brother, but thereís one fundamental issue.

These apps assume youíll be editing video youíve captured on an iPad or iPhone - iMovie even has a video record function. And thereís no practical way of transferring footage from a separate camcorder. iMovieís a perfect accompaniment to the new iPadís camera (the second generation iPadís camera leaves a lot to be desired), and the iPad works surprisingly well as a camcorder.

So if you want to knock together a simple edit, iMovie is a great tool. But if youíre looking to for anything more, donít sell your PC just yet.

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Updated 04-08-2012 at 06:59 PM by Marc Peters

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  1. Midnight Blue's Avatar
    I don't get how they can sell software (an App) for £10 for an iPad but sell it for £50 for a PC. Is there something I'm missing ?
  2. enc's Avatar
    How does the ipad cope with 1080 footage from the iphone ?