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Thread: Recommendations for video editing software?

  1. #1

    Default Recommendations for video editing software?

    Hello,

    I hope this post is acceptable for this forum. I'm a rank newbie at video editing, having messed around a little with Windows Movie Maker, but would like to do some more.

    My daughter got married last week, and I have loads of photos and videos from people's digital cameras. I would like to make one DVD containing the best of this lot. The reason I'm looking for something more than WMM is that ideally I would like to be able to do things like...

    *) fade between two videos of the same event. For example, several people videoed the actual wedding ceremony, each from their own angle. Instead of just looking at one video, I would like to fade from one to another (and possibly to others), whilst using the sound from only one video. That way, we could see the ceremony from various angles, but wouldn't have any variation in the sound quality (which there is between the videos), nor any jumps where I move from one video to another.

    *) show stills pics over a video. For example, we ahve footage of the reception, some of which is just general video of people milling around. On its own, this isn't so exciting, but would be good if I could have some still pics fly in and out.

    *) add my own soundtrack at various points, and fade between that and the video sound

    *) obviously I would like the usual stuff like transitions between videos, and titles, but I reckon any package would give me that.

    Anyone able to recommend something free or not too expensive? I have been looking at Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum Production Suite 11 and Avid Studio, both of which look like good packages. However, it's very hard to tell if they will do what I want without trying them. They both have trial versions, and I intend to try them out, but I was hoping to pick up on some experienced voice here.

    One other issue is that the videos are in several different formats and sizes. Some were taken on a video camera, some on digital cameras, some on an iPhone, etc. I don't know the best way to handle this, but it's an important issue, as I don't want to lose any of the video, nor have black bars at the edges. The ability to pan a wide video woudl be good.

    Thanks for any help you can give. Remember, I'm not a video expert, nor do I have the time to be. I am a very experienced computer user though.
    Last edited by MrYossu; 03-27-2012 at 05:04 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    I would recommend Sony Vegas HD Platinum. It has lots of features will do all that you have mentioned and more. If you get stuck with it there is lots of help around in the forum.

    Mixing the different types of media shouldn't be a problem the software is made to take different types of formats etc. To stop the black bars you will have to crop the image to the right aspect ratio this is very easy to do, just a couple of clicks.

    Good luck.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Midnight Blue View Post
    I would recommend Sony Vegas HD Platinum. It has lots of features will do all that you have mentioned and more. If you get stuck with it there is lots of help around in the forum.

    Mixing the different types of media shouldn't be a problem the software is made to take different types of formats etc. To stop the black bars you will have to crop the image to the right aspect ratio this is very easy to do, just a couple of clicks.
    Thanks, I'm just having a play with a trial version now. It's a bit overwhelming, but I think I'm getting somewhere. It's just rendering my first attempt, which if it works, will mix two videos the way I wanted.

    Just a quick question for now, what's the best format to use when exporting the video if I just want to play it on my computer? There's quite a lot of choice there, and I'm not sure what they all are. Right now, I would like to play around, and just export to a file so I can show my wife what I've done.

    Quote Originally Posted by Midnight Blue View Post
    Good luck.
    Hee hee, I think I'll need it!

    Thanks again.

  4. #4

    Default

    Us the interactive tutorial to help you get around and familiarise your self with the screen and some of the options.

    The render settings will depend on a number of factors, for example, if you want HD or SD resolution. If it's just SD then I would go for mpeg2. There are lots of templates to choose from. Choose the Main-Concept mpeg2 "save as type" and choose the DV Architect PAL Wide screen template. Make sure the "Include audio stream" box is ticked in the customise options audio tab or you won't have any sound.

    If you want HD then go for the same "save as type" but choose the 1080 or 720 HDV template depending on the original footage.

  5. #5

    Default

    Hello again,

    Well, I was getting somewhat frustrated, as my video was as silent as a Laurel & Hardy movie! After some poking around, I spotted that the audio was set not to be included by default, which seems extremely odd to me. I then had to work out how to include the audio with the video in one file, but I have cracked it! My first requirement is settled, as I can now mix two videos.

    Maybe you can give me some help on the next one. Suppose I have a video, and want to fly some static images across it. Can I do this? If so, how?

    Thanks again for your help.

  6. #6

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    This is easier to show and do than to explain in words. So I'll point you to YouTube and do a search for "picture in picture Sony Vegas"

  7. #7
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    Default

    Without wishin to overwhelm you with info:
    Quote Originally Posted by MrYossu View Post
    Well, I was getting somewhat frustrated, as my video was as silent as a Laurel & Hardy movie!
    Laurel and Hardy movies aren't silent!
    Quote Originally Posted by MrYossu View Post
    After some poking around, I spotted that the audio was set not to be included by default, which seems extremely odd to me.
    That particular setting defaults that way as it assumes you are going to encode audio using ac3 - Dolby, which takes up less space on your DVD (DVD Architect works well with the separate audio and video files)

    Midnight should petrhaps have suggested you use the "Program Stream PAL widescreen" template whic, as far as I can tell is the same as the "DVD Architect video stream" template but with the audio ticked
    [/QUOTE]
    Tim

  8. #8

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    Midnight didn't suggest it because he doesn't know about it. BUT I did tell him to tick the include audio stream box.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Midnight Blue View Post
    This is easier to show and do than to explain in words. So I'll point you to YouTube and do a search for "picture in picture Sony Vegas"
    Wow, what a lot of videos there are! Thanks very much for that. I would probably never have thought of searching on those words.

    Which brings me to another point. Is there a good tutorial somewhere that walks you through a lot of this stuff? The docs that come with the program aren't very good for learning, and I would have to know the right keywords to be able to search for help on the web. Has someone done a set of tutorials that starts easy and builds up? that would be really useful.

    Thanks again for the help. Whilst I'm still struggling getting it to do what I want, I can see that it can be done, and just requires more practice. I have some pictures flying across over a video, I just need to work out how to control the movement a little more accurately.

  10. #10

    Default

    It's usually best to search for a specific thing but if you're just after some basics to get you started try HERE

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