A girl working with video editing software on her notebook

16 Best Video Editing Software

I’ve tested a bunch of video editing software. And there are a lot of options for anyone: free video editors, video editors for YouTube and video editors for beginners. So anything you would like to do with your video – start your YouTube channel, treat your friends and family or even look for marketing video maker – we’ve got the best video editing app for you.

Video Editors for YouTube

Creating a video for YouTube demands a lot from the YouTube video editor. It has to have a simple user interface so anyone starting a channel would be able to use it. It has to have a lot of built-in content so you could brand your videos with cool graphics. And it has to be very capable to allow you to implement your creative ideas. So let’s go through video makers for YouTube.

Movavi Video Editor Plus

The best video editor for YouTube

movavi video editor plus color filters

Simply the best video editor that you don’t need to learn.

The biggest advantage of Movavi software is that it doesn’t overwhelm you with complicated controls, uncountable menus and an ocean of small buttons.

Movavi Video Editor Plus is an answer to anyone who thinks that video editing is hard. And one can’t blame them — Adobe Premiere Pro and Sony Vegas were always famous for making beginners afraid. The most popular software always had a steep learning curve. You should spend a day in order to make your first 5-minute video.

Things are much different from Movavi. You only need to follow simple instructions of the tutorial to make your first video in a couple of minutes. It’s hard to believe, but it is really that simple.

Apart from being easy to learn, this Video Editor Plus features a great number of necessary features — great titles, transitions, chromakey, zoom, etc. You also can use a keyframe animation tool which allows you to create a movement of any object at the scene.

For people who love to do some custom tuning of their movies, Movavi has the Effects Store. There you can find some effects sets on different themes — travel, family and seasons. For example, you can add a beautiful transition with a flying plane to your vacation video to make it more entertaining and emotional.

Also, it’s worth to mention Montage Wizard which is an editing mode you can choose when launching the software. This mode is basically made for people who simply can’t find a time to look through all the footage that they have to find interesting moments to include in their videos. How it works: you simply add the whole folder with your clips (your recent trip to Paris, for example) then you choose the length of the desired movie, choose the music and the software just does its magic. That saved me a lot of time when I had to do a report on my recent vacation to my friends.

Movavi Video Editor Plus has a trial version that lasts 7 days. Unfortunately, it adds a big watermark on the exported video, so if you need to show it to someone, you should buy the software. It costs from $39.95 to $59.95 depending on the version.

Read the full review of Movavi Video Editor Plus

Pros

  • Easy and friendly interface with a smooth learning curve
  • Great collection of titles, transitions, and other goodies
  • Thematic effects sets for different occasions
  • Pretty capable for its price
  • Windows and Mac versions
  • Reasonable price

Cons

  • Somewhat short in features compared to more professional software

Adobe Premiere Rush

The best YouTube video editor for iOS and Android

adobe premiere rush on a laptop and iphone

Adobe Premiere Rush is a cross-platform video maker for YouTube. This video editing program is created with bloggers in mind. How’s that? The first thing about Premiere Rush is that it’s really easy to use and has a lot of creative features.

Adding titles, transitions and tune your footage is not a problem. And the thing that important with YouTube videos – channel branding, can also be achieved with Premiere Rush.

But the main killer-feature of Adobe Premiere Rush is its cross-platform functionality. This YouTube video editor works like that. You can start editing your video on iOS or Android and then continue video making with PC or Mac. Hence it’s one of the best video editing apps for iPhone and Android.

You can try Adobe Premiere Rush for free – there is just a limit to 3 video exports. After that, you’d have to buy it.

Read the full review of Adobe Premiere Rush

Pros

  • Cross-platform projects: PC, Mac, iOS, Android.
  • Great title tool and color tuning.
  • Userfriendly interface.

Cons

  • A little bit pricey compared to alternatives.
  • It can be buggy on Android.
  • Not many transitions options.

Wondershare Filmora

The best video editor for YouTube alternative

The interface of Filmora video editor

Here we are once again in the home segment. Filmora is a great editor for anyone who dreams to make cool videos for YouTube. The big reasons for this are the vast library of additional effects that can be used via the subscription — $9.99 a month and $99.99 a year. There are a lot of themes of the effects: travel, retro, neon and so on. The effects are great and they are the main reason that you would like to buy Filmora. Unfortunately, a subscription is sold separately.

The software itself, however, is not so great. The biggest disadvantage for me was a complicated interface, although their website states otherwise. It seems to be easy at first until you start editing. The tools sometimes behave unpredictable, making it hard to be sure how they should work. So be ready to spend some time learning Filmora.

Also, it is a little short on features part, comparing to other software. It is somewhat like Movavi Video Editor but without keyframe animation.

The software itself also can be subscribed to for $44.99 a year. Also, there is an option to buy it for a lifetime for $59.99. Just keep in mind that you would probably want to access that beautiful effects store and it costs money too.

Pros

  • Great Effects Store
  • Reasonable price
  • Windows and Mac versions

Cons

  • Not as easy as Movavi Video Editor Plus
  • Somewhat short in features compared to more professional software
  • Effects Store is subscription only

The Best Video Editors

This video editing software is simply the best in the game. However, it usually comes at the cost – all of the programs are not the ones that you can easily master. But if you do master them – you would be able to use their boundless features and creative abilities. So let’s go through the best video editing software.

Adobe Premiere Pro

The best video editor for professionals

The interface of Adobe Premiere video editor

Adobe is a big name in the software market. This company makes products for everything that there is — photo, video, design, web, documents.

That allows Adobe Premiere to be packed with features like no one else: 4k video, 360 videos, Lumetri Color — you name it. If you would be so brave to follow one of the steepest learning curves ever that is. Simply exporting your video can be a quest by itself — just try to rummage through all the menus and options.

Nevertheless, Adobe Premiere is one of the video industry standards and if you’re really into professional video making you’ll have to pick this or some of its counterparts like Vegas Pro, Avid Media Composer or even something ridiculously expensive such as Foundry Nuke.

Being very popular software with a lot of history, Premiere has just an incredible amount of lessons, courses, etc. to help you to learn it. Be sure that you will find a way to implement any of the creative things that you want — this especially true if you willing to master another of the Adobe software — After Effects which is often used in pair with Premiere.

Speaking of the complimentary software — you can’t really buy any of the Adobe products now. The company has moved towards the subscription model. This basically means that you have to subscribe to get access to the software. The price on the single Adobe Premiere starts with $20.99 for a month if you pay a year upfront. If you want to use After Effects with Premiere, you have to subscribe to a whole Creative Cloud — $52.99 for a month if you pay a year upfront. I don’t know about you, but this is really expensive for me.

Read the full review of Adobe Premiere Pro

Pros

  • Industry-standard with an ocean of features
  • A lot of lessons online to help you handle it
  • Great synergy with other video products like Adobe After Effects
  • Windows and Mac versions

Cons

  • Steep learning curve
  • Limited Media Tagging

Apple Final Cut Pro X

The best video editor for Mac

The interface of Final Cut Pro X video editor

Adobe Premiere alternative for professional video editors on Mac. It has its distinct flavor with a big focus on the video preview instead of the timeline which is not really typical for the professional software because professionals tend to use multiple monitors and timeline size usually made very big to work with a lot of files. That’s not a problem — you can always tune the interface the way you like it — it just shows Apple’s approach to video editing.

Final Cut Pro X is very rich with complicated features, just as Premiere and Vegas Pro are: 360 editings, RAW video formats support, advanced work with audio and so on. Professional staff that is.

Apple software is really good with color grading and performance — perhaps a legacy of the Mac family traits with their little diversity in hardware and focus on the art tasks.

To sum it up — Final Cut Pro X is a great alternative to Adobe Premiere for professionals who work on Mac. It’s really capable and well suited for multiple camera shots and huge RAW video files. The price is $299.99 which is also aimed at the top league.

Pros

  • A lot of professional features
  • Great color correction tools
  • Stable performance

Cons

  • Can be hard for beginners
  • Mac only
  • Expensive price

Vegas Pro Edit

The best video editor for Windows alternative

The interface of Vegas Pro Edit video editor

You could’ve heard about this software when it had a Sony Vegas Pro name. Not so long ago Sony has sold it to MAGIX company, so now it’s just Vegas Pro.

Vegas Pro Edit is a little brother of the Vegas family and the cheapest one — $249 only, when it’s bigger brother Vegas Pro costs $599.

This software is somewhat short on features comparing to its more expensive counterparts but it will allow you to get familiar with Vegas video editing philosophy and workflow. And there will be a lot to learn — just as with Adobe Premiere you will need to watch some lessons to just export your clip because the amount of the menus and options is really overwhelming for a beginner.

In short Vegas Pro is an alternative to Adobe Premiere if you don’t like it. Windows only buy the way, so sorry Mac users, that one is not for you.

Pros

  • A great number of features
  • Widely acknowledged by professionals

Cons

  • Steep learning curve
  • A little short on features, comparing to its bigger brothers
  • Windows only
  • Expensive price

Video Editing Software for Beginners

Video makers for beginners must be easy-to-use and capable at the same time. This type of video editors should be usable with no learning at all. And all the options that I’ve chosen are really easy and would fit any beginner pretty well. So let’s look at video editing software for beginners.

Cyberlink PowerDirector

The best video editor for beginners for Windows

The interface of PowerDirector video editor

This software comes from the times when the bigger was the only better out there. Which basically means that PowerDirector is just bloated with unnecessary features. Of course, it’s nice to have all this fashionable 360 video stuff, where you can work with new formats and so on, but let’s be honest, how many of you have 360 camera?

Apart from that, it’s a very capable video editor with a great bunch of handy features — it’s more packed than Movavi Video Editor or Wondershare Filmora. It can be the right pick if you want to have a lot of like-a-pro features at a reasonable price.

You, however, need to be aware that PowerDirector is not much easier to learn than professional video editing software like Vegas Pro. It can take you some time to get familiar with all the controls and buttons, but the difficulty is not insane.

The reason for this poor usability is the long history of the PowerDirector. A lot of features and controls came from times when one should install all the drivers in order to make a computer work.

Also, just like Movavi Video Editor and Wondershare Filmora, PowerDirector has its own Effects Store. It’s safe to say that CyberLink isn’t very keen on developing it. Sets are few, and there hasn’t been a new one for a long time. Also, they are pretty meh in quality, considering their price which is up to $149.99.

The cost of PowerDirector is from $69.99 to $89.99, depending on the version. Don’t believe the marketing bullshit about the discounts, CyberLink sales are just eternal.

Pros

  • Rich with features
  • Pretty fast export

Cons

  • Not as easy as Movavi Video Editor Plus
  • Additional content is pretty lame comparing to Filmora and Movavi
  • Windows only

Apple iMovie

The best video editor for beginners for Mac

imovie

iMovie is the best video editor for beginners granted you’re using a Mac. The big reason is that it’s a free video maker. It comes pre-installed with any Mac.

iMovie doesn’t bother you with wizards – better it has a movie trailer tool. It’s a great template that allows you to create entertaining videos.

The interface is pretty straightforward. With a couple of tips from the program, you’d be able to start creating your own movies. All the controls are intuitive so you wouldn’t face any inconveniences.

This video editing software for beginners has a lot of impressive titles and transitions. Just be aware that because of iMovie’s popularity people have most likely seen the style of the titles somewhere else.

iMovie also works on iOS which makes it one of the best video editing apps for the iPhone.

Pros

  • Easy-to-use beautiful interface.
  • Great performance.
  • Stylish titles and transitions.
  • It’s free!

Cons

  • No advanced features.
  • The interface is not customizable.
  • Mac only.

Corel Video Studio

The best video editor for Windows alternative

The interface of Corel Video Studio Ultimate

Corel Video Studio has a long history in the video editing world, same as CyberLink PowerDirector — this is a software that loves to do it as in the old days.

Of course, with their new interface that came out just recently, they’ve added a little of freshness to the editor, but it’s still is the type of software that cannot decide whether it’s for pros or for home users. New design beares a strong resemblance to Adobe Premiere by the way.

Nevertheless, Corel Video Studio is tightly packed with features. Here you have your 4k, 360 videos and even 3D (as if anyone still uses it).

What Corel Video Studio is famous for is its big library of transitions and other effects. It is truly vast, but comparing to Movavi Video Editor or Wondershare Filmora you will find out that just a little of them worth your attention. They are not themed and aimed not to make your video great, but to give you a chance to play with them.

The big disadvantage of the cheaper versions is a limited amount of video tracks — for example, in the basic version of the soft you can have only 6 video tracks, in Plus version — 24 tracks and in Ultimate version they are unlimited.

Pricing is pretty average: Corel Video Studio Pro costs $59.99, Corel Video Studio Ultimate costs $99.99

Pros

  • Rich with features
  • Pretty fast export

Cons

  • Effects are numerous but not very good
  • Limited video tracks in less expensive versions
  • Windows only

Free Video Editing Software

Free video editors are many. But not many of them are worth to be called the best. They are usually cluttered or have no features at all. I’ve chosen some of the best free video editing software.

In this part, we look at the open-source video editors and proprietary free video editing software.

HitFilm Express

The best free video editor

hitfilm express

Here we go with one of the most advanced tools for video enthusiasts. HitFilm Express aimed at people who love to work a lot with their footage and add a bunch of CG effects to make their own semi-professional movie.

This video editor is unique because it kind of has two functionalities — both Adobe Premiere and Adobe After Effects. That means that it’s not only a video editor but also a post-production tool for creating animations and complex compositions.

Say you want to add beautiful flying snow to a shot of a man who stands on a top of a mountain? No problem, HitFilm Express allows you to add nice particle effects and pan them in 3D space to make the effect just completely Hollywood-quality. Just make sure that you have half an hour to make a 5 seconds footage look great.

As all professional and semi-professional software, HitFilm Express has a very complicated interface. It’s not the fault of the software — it’s just how it is. One simply cannot make a professional soft without sacrificing simplicity and making the learning curve as steep as hell. Nevertheless, it’s obvious that the developers did the best interface that they could — it’s pretty familiar for people who have been working with Adobe Premiere for example. Also, the interface has just a beautiful design.

HitFilm Express also has a Pro video editor version — it’s called HitFilm Pro, you can also download it from the HitFilm website. Pro version has more features than Express, and it’s still as complicated and aimed at professionals.

The price of HitFilm Pro is $299. For this money, you will have 12 months of updates and support. Also, the license can be used on up to 3 computers simultaneously — a great choice for a small video production studio.

Pros

  • Can do both video editing and cinematic effects making
  • A lot of professional features
  • Stable performance
  • Great UI design
  • Windows and Mac versions

Cons

  • Very hard to learn
  • The price of the Pro version is high for a home user

Shotcut

The best free video editing software for beginners

The interface of Shotcut video editor

Here we go with truly free video editing software. It’s open-source that means that anyone can get the code of the app to find out how it works.

The biggest advantage of Shotcut is that it’s free. Don’t say you’re surprised by it. The interface of the program is cluttered and complicated. You would like to have a lot of spare time just to learn how to handle it, or you must be able to tell the difference between yuv420p and  yuv422 from the start to be sure what you’re doing.

Aside from that, Shotcut is not very stable nor it’s very fast. But this could be expected if you think that it supports Windows, macOS and even Linux. Free software does have its costs after all.

Pros

  • Free video editing software
  • Windows, Mac and even Linux versions

Cons

  • Not stable
  • Not fast
  • Complicated, hard to learn

Lightworks

The best free video editing software alternative

The interface of Lightworks video editor

Another free video editing software. This time it’s from the top league of professional editors which makes it even more complicated. Honestly, at first, I needed 20 minutes just to figure out how to import a file and see the timeline. I guess this software has the steepest learning curve of all from this list.

Workflow is tuned for professional use with a lot of data and settings. Menus are numerous, the interface is quite different from any other video editor. Lightworks kinda has a desktop on which you can place any program windows that you want — a handy feature for professionals with multiple monitors.

Aside from being insanely hard, the program has a lot of pro features like professional working with sound, great effects and ability to work with professional video editing hardware — special controllers and so on.

Pros

  • Free video editing software
  • A lot of features
  • Windows, Mac and even Linux versions

Cons

  • Insanely hard to learn
  • New versions come out rarely — the last one was more than a year ago

Video Editors Online

Video makers online are many to choose from. This type of video editors online is usually divided into two types. The first type uses templates that allow you to create a great short video that would look good at social media. The second type of video editors online looks more like the traditional desktop video editors. Let’s check the best video makers online.

Adobe Spark

The best video editor online

the interface of adobe spark spark video

Adobe Spark is an online video editor that is filled with different features. Alongside editing videos, you can create pictures and website pages with Adobe Spark.

Spark Video interface reminds a little bit of the PowerPoint. After selecting a theme for your video, you see little video slides at the lower part of the screen. The themes vary in designs and you would definitely find something that suits your needs.

The little slides on the lower part of the screen are called a storyboard. It has suggestions on what part of the story you should put right now. For example: About me, What it is, and so on.

Needless to say that Adobe Spark is the video editor online is the first type of software. It’s more like a video PowerPoint than a classic video editor.

Read the full review of Adobe Spark

Pros

  • The user-friendly interface of the platform.
  • Great storyboard for social media videos.
  • Available both for desktop and mobile.

Cons

  • Limited video formatting.
  • Limited recording time.
  • The free version has a watermark.

WeVideo

The best video editor online alternative

wevideo

WeVideo is an online video maker that works the same way as desktop video editing software does. That means that the idea behind the editing process and the interface is basically the same.

WeVideo video editor online has a timeline on which you can drag and drop your video files. The trimming of clips and adding transitions are pretty intuitive and if you’ve ever tried some of the video editors you’d be familiar with the workflow. Adding audio fades and titles is also easy thanks to the responsive user interface.

The big advantage of WeVideo is because it’s an online video editor you can easily collaborate with your friends or colleagues on your project. That means that you can import the video to the project and someone would be able to help you with the editing. Or, perhaps, you and your friend would edit the different parts of the same project. The ability to collaborate on the same project is the big feature of WeVideo which is really proud of.

Pros

  • The user interface is simple and works as desktop video editing software.
  • Collaboration work on the project thanks to the online nature.

Cons

  • The free version has a watermark.
  • It could be pricy comparing to desktop alternatives.
  • Not as fast as desktop software.

Marketing Video Makers

These apps are really good to make marketing videos. Also, you can consider them explainer video makers, since both types of videos are very much alike. Here we have two great marketing video editors.

Techsmith Camtasia

The best marketing video maker

Camtasia

It is the screen recorder and video maker that will allow you to perfectly record your screen and convert it into a professional-looking video. You can easily record the screen, add all the effects that you like while editing the video and it will be perfect. The software is available at an affordable rate and comes with the 30 days money-back guarantee. There are tutorials available with the demos that will allow you to use the software properly. You can make all types of videos for your business. You can even create business presentations using the software.

Pros

  • Screen recording feature.
  • A lot of tutorials to learn it quick.
  • Great for creating explainer videos thanks to callouts.

Cons

  • It’s hard to schedule a screen recording.
  • Pricy ($249) compared to competitors for home-usage.

Active Presenter

The best marketing video maker alternative

Active Presenter 7

t is the all in one software that will provide you the features like eLearning, screen recording and video editing. There are many amazing features of the platform like:

  1. Software stimulation
  2. Video editing
  3. Screen recording
  4. eLearning games
  5. Software guides
  6. Quiz building

It means that you can not only use it for business purposes but also for many other tasks that you have to accomplish. There are several themes and features available that will allow you to change the overall look of the video. You can easily create professional videos for your business.

Pros

  • You can create responsive content for desktop and mobile.
  • A lot of tutorials on the official website.
  • Great for e-learning authoring.

Cons

  • Dated interface.
  • The steep learning curve to use the full spectrum of features.
  • No 4K support.

That wraps it up!

When choosing the video editing software remember that not a tool determines how good your video would be. Professional software won’t make your work look more expensive, as well as home soft won’t make your great footage lose it’s a cool look.

Just be sure to choose the soft that suits you best.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *