best video editing software for filmmakers
Photo by Peter Stumpf on Unsplash

Standing in 2021, not only me but everyone understands the importance of videos in the digital world. Videos have started a new revolution in the content creation market and are drastically reaching their peak. The peak that we don’t know of. 

Today, the most consumed content in digital or traditional media is video. Digital media has brought upon a new trend of conveying messages and information through videos or most commonly known as ‘vlogs’.

With this accelerating widespread of video production, it is common that the demand for video editing software has increased.

One out of every ten individuals is involved in some form of video production as an independent filmmaker or YouTube vlogger and finds the necessity to deal with various video editing software and mobile apps.

Whether it be YouTube, Facebook, Tik Tok, or Instagram Reels, videos and their processing in social media have been widely popular leading to the growing demand for free video editing software.

Previously a major video editing pad was available in the industry that was used by professionals for film editing, production control room services, live editing, etc.

Nowadays, the availability of free open-source video editors has been made easy for enthusiasts who actively make and edit videos for various purposes.

Thus, here’s a list of the top video editing software that can be used by professionals as well as beginners to fulfill their video editing needs for free and with subscriptions.

All the software are introduced and reviewed to provide the best of knowledge to emerging video editors. 

Here are the top 15 video editing software for filmmakers, editors and beginners.

1. Adobe Premiere Pro

adobe premiere pro

Adobe Premiere Pro is one of the most used, standard video editing software worldwide. It is a very professional tool, filled with a plethora of features that keep updating with time.

Premiere Pro is the first choice for professionals involved in high-end video editing for films, production control room, etc.

Adobe Premiere Pro is a product of the Adobe cloud creation that can be used for any type of video editing in your windows and Mac computers. Premiere Pro can be used for creating Ken Burns effect, adding keyframes, stabilizing images, adding special effects, and many more. 

Premiere Pro supports all kinds of video formats including 4K and 8K, offering a smooth and seamless experience in video trimming and editing.

The automatic sync feature works efficiently at finalizing videos taken from different angles. However, it can be controlled. Premiere Pro has a highly technical audio editing system that can cancel noise, add echo, and other cinematic sound effects. 

Top Features

  • High-end video editing capabilities
  • Professional sound editing tab
  • Rich media library with insightful multimedia effects
  • Supports 4K and 8K videos
  • Customizable internal tabs
  • Unlimited video editing and project sharing feature
  • Compatible for Windows and Mac

Price: 

  • Free- 7 days of Trial
  • Monthly- $20.99
  • Yearly- $239.88

2. Final Cut Pro X

final cut pro video editing

Final Cut Pro X is an Apple-exclusive professional video editing product that can be installed on your Apple device with a one-time purchase, making it free of subscription charges.

It is an adaptable video editing software for mac that can be used for all types of professional video editing functions.

Final Cut Pro offers exciting features including a magnetic timeline, enriched media library, grouping tools, and a wide range of editing features.

It is a software with friendly user interface and runs without any dispute to the system. The software can seamlessly edit unlimited videos with a dedicated audio editing platform.

Final Cut Pro is a one-time purchase software that does not undergo automatic updates, however, one can manually update the software and buy new features.

This is an exciting software to use considering a 90 days trial period which is enough to figure out its features and necessity over other software. 

Top Features

  • Supports 360 degrees videos, panorama view, and HDR video formats.
  • Efficient with all types of professional video and audio editing features
  • Rich media library with diversified sound and video effects
  • One time purchase
  • Brilliant color correction and grading tools

Price

  • Free- 90 Day Trial
  • One-time purchase- $299.99

3. CyberLink PowerDirector 365

cyberlink powerDirector video editing

CyberLink PowerDirector 365 is an innovative video editing software that caters to consumer-level needs and is super easy to understand and create exciting videos.

It has stunning features such as 360-degree video editing, supporting all formats of multimedia. It can be used to produce creative videos, slideshows, pictures with music, etc with minimal clicks.

Powerdirector 365 comes with a limited yet enough 100 footage timeline that makes it ideal for short videos, documentaries, short films, vlogs, etc.

One can use its seamless trimming feature to easily trim videos while editing in the timeline itself. The user interface might look difficult, but a guided tour can easily help you to understand the software in a short time.

Top Features

  • Motion tracking features with easy keyframes
  • Great sound coverage with speech enhancement and in-app recording.
  • Object detection and 360-degree video editing capability
  • Extended media library with access to content from shutter stock
  • Image stabilization to reduce the shakiness of videos
  • Green screen editing like a pro
  • Easy video clip trimming
  • Compatible with Windows and Mac

Price

  • Cyberlink PowerDirector 365- $4.08/mth
  • Cyberlink PowerDirector 365 for Mac- $51.99/year
  • Powerdirector 365- $69.99/year

4. DaVinci Resolve 17

DaVinci resolve video editing

DaVinci Resolve is the latest version of the software with exciting features that make pro editing easy. The three primary features of the software involve video editing, color grading, and sound editing, making it a perfect video editing software for professional use. 

DaVinci Resolve is quite powerful and challenging software to use. But, it is definitely worth it. The software has an elaborative manual for the new users that can be read with patience to find out its functionality.

Once understood, it can get easy to operate. However, the software is a professional-level operating system and requires practice before one can set his style.

DaVinci is widely used for film editing and cinematic videos. The color grading features of Davinci Resolve are one of a kind and are regarded as the best in the industry.

So, it is an all-in-one software with delightful features that can make your video editing experience enjoyable. It also supports Multicam editing and can be easily connected through different screens.

Top Features

  • All-in-one editing platform
  • Smooth editing of video with no limit to video tracks.
  • Special color grading features
  • Best for creating cinematic reels
  • Complicated but professional-level editing
  • Compatible for Windows and Mac
  • Machine learning technology with facial recognition.
  • Compatible audio editing tab

Price 

  • DaVinci Resolve- Free
  • DaVinci Resolve Studio(One Time Purchase): $299 USD
  • DaVinci Resolve Speed Editor- $295 USD

5. Pinnacle Studio

pinnacle studio video editing

One of the best professional-level video editing software can be crowned to Pinnacle studio. It has a wide range of useful features that helps create smooth videos. One can easily import, edit, and export videos from Pinnacle studio.

As a benefit, the software includes an effects library with technical cinematic effects that makes the editing better and enjoyable.

It is a professional software, but it still lacks features needed for professional film editing, making it not the first choice for film editing or big video creations.

However, it is an efficient free video editing tool that can be used to create vlogs, short films, and other videos, making it one of the best free video editing software for windows 10.

Pinnacle Studio comes with a home screen tutorial to figure out the application providing simple guided steps. As an addition to the latest version, Pinnacle Studio has a proficient audio editing system with enhanced rendering speed.

It also includes pro features such as clip masking and a vast library of effects and presets.

Top Features

  • Fast functioning of import and export of videos
  • Ultra-smooth rendering and seamless editing
  • Best audio editing tools
  • A vast library of LUT presets and Visual effects
  • Easy user-interface
  • Available for Windows only

Price

  • Pinnacle Studio-$59.95, 
  • Pinnacle Studio Plus- $99.95
  • Pinnacle Studio Ultimate- $129.95

6. Corel VideoStudio Ultimate

video editing corel videostudio

Corel has been one of the top competitors for Adobe and emerges with new and different software that prominent visual creation. Corel VideoStudio Ultimatum is a beginner-level video editing software for windows that is rich with features and easy-to-understand configuration. 

VideoStudio Ultimate supports all forms of videos allowing Multicam video editing and 360-degree editing advantage. One can import multiple video clips for editing irrespective of its format.

The software gives an advantage to the beginners and learners group by offering a simple interface and powerful tools without creating any chaos.

It can efficiently help one create simple videos with enriched effects from the media library. One can also use its lens correction features to make the videos brilliant and attractive. The 3D text editing feature is also something to look up to.

Top Features

  • Multicam editing 
  • 360-degree editing with a supportive interface for 4k, 8k, 1080p HD, 720p HD video.
  • Smooth rendering 
  • Multi-screen editing
  • 3D text editing
  • Preset factory

Price

  • VideoStudio Ultimate 2021- $99.99 USD

7. Wondershare Filmora9

wondershare filmora video editing

Wondershare Filmora9 is an enthusiast-level free video editing software. It can be used to trim, speed, cut, overlay, etc video clips with the attractive use of available presets, effects, music library, etc. It is a sound software with a good interface that can be comfortable for beginners and enthusiasts. 

Wondershare Filmora has a special collection of effects and presets that can make editing easier with try-on effective features. The software is a good choice for general editings and can be brilliant for beginner-level video editors. 

However, the software is not the first choice for professionals or intermediate video editors as the interface can get complex and cannot be customized while leveling up video editing.

Top Features

  • Efficient tools for beginners
  • Large music library
  • Fair collection of VR tools
  • Smooth and fast rendering
  • Motion tracking
  • Colour correction
  • Image stabilization and keyframe tracks

Price

  • Wondershare Filmora9- $59.99 USD

8. Lightworks

lightworks video editing software

Lightworks is a free video editing software that can be very useful but when one chooses to buy its premium version, it results in the production of award-winning films such as Pulp Fiction and Jerry Maguire. Lightworks is a brilliant video editing software for windows, mac, and Linux. 

Lightworks has an intermediate interface with 360 degrees video editing features that can be helped to create and edit videos at ease with split-screen functionality.

The software can be used by a beginner, intermediate, and professional-level video editor. The user interface is not as easy as other software but one can get a hold of it given the fast and high-end functionary offered. 

Top Features

  • 360 Degree editing- supports all forms of video resolution
  • Multicam editing with split-screen facility
  • Advanced tools with fair sound and audio editing 
  • Great tools to cater to visual effects 
  • Color adjustments like a pro

Price

  • Lightworks Pro- $240/year USD
  • One time Purchase- $390 USD

9. Clipchamp

Clipchamp video editing software

Clipchamp is an online web-based video editing software that is owned by Microsoft. As a first-party app of Microsoft, Clipchamp is finely coded and is an effective web-based video editing software.

It can be generously termed as an intermediate-level video editing software and can be used for general video editing.

Clipchamp is efficient for general video editing and can be very easily understood by a new user. As a basic video editing software, it does not have a strong learning curve and too many advanced features.

The free plan can offer video export resolution up to 480p, but the paid plan can get one higher resolution. It can be used as a general photo to video maker with music or video creation with music.

Top Features

  • Web-based software
  • Easy user interface
  • Smooth Import, render, and export functionality
  • Easy trimming and timeline alteration of video clips
  • Inexpensive

Price

  • Creator plan- $9/month
  • Business plan- $19/month
  • Business Platinum plan- $39/month

10. Sony Vegas Pro 

sony vegas pro video editing

Sony Vegas Pro is one of the best tools for audio editing but can perform fair as a video editing software too. To get this free video editor, one can be a beginner or professional level video editor as the user interface can get complicated to understand. 

However, the advanced tools powered by Sony Vegas Pro are awesome and can give you a brilliant editing experience. The smooth trimming, timeline extension, text overlay, color correction, lens correction, etc are something to look forward to while choosing the software.

Of course, it is a Sony product and bound to be good, considering the brand. 

However, the software is much popular for its vast and advanced audio editing features that can create long playlists even for radio stations.

Editing a feature-length film might not be a brilliant idea, but one can definitely edit a short film and rock the project.

Top Features

  • Advance video editing tools
  • Brilliant audio editing system
  • Creative but comfortable user interface
  • Supports 360-degree video editing
  • Customizable
  • Works effectively for color correction and lens correction

Price

  • Sony Vegas Pro- $898 USD

11. VideoPad

videopad video editing software

VideoPad editor is a well-known video editing software for basic edits. It can be used effectively for creating reels, short videos, trimming, timing, and color grading video clips. Videopad video editor is available for free download and can be operated in Windows.

It offers all basic features for free. It has a simple and well-organized interface that allows users to efficiently carry out their work as most of the users are beginner levels.

One can import videos and also drag and drop them to start quick editing.

Top Features

  • Trimming and processing of videos
  • Speed enhancer
  • Drop and drag import
  • High range of export video quality
  • Well-organized interface
  • Free of cost
  • Effective audio editing tools
  • Music library
  • Text and image adding

12. HitFilm Pro

hitfilm pro video editing

HitFilm Pro is one of the best video editing software for free. It can be used for consumer-level edits as well, but it might lack special effects or advanced creations.

The video editing software is best for the category as no other software performs as well as it, for free. It can be used for casual and professional video editing, given that the requirements are basic. 

HitFilm Pro can be installed on three computers and used for multi-screen editing. It has a decent collection of audio editing tools that can be used for efficient sound creation. It is a good tool as a compositor with a versatile interface.

Top Features

  • Good compositor
  • Supports video editing and export up to 8K resolution
  • Animation of videos
  • Clipping, trimming, overlaying made easy
  • Special effects library to help instant creation

Price

  • HitFilm Pro- $359 USD

13. Edius Pro 9 

Edius Pro video editing

Edius Pro 9 is one of the best video editing software that offers all the features that are necessary to combat leading names in the niche.

The software does not offer any free version or trial mode, but every feature of it is worth a try. It can trim, copy, overlay, keyframe, color correct, lens correct, import, export, render, etc at high speed that is a primary flaunt.

Edius Pro 9 is a simple and well-organized software that can be easily customized according to the editor’s needs. It is web-based software and allows fast editing.

One of the primary features of Edius Pro 9 includes its vast media library of effects and presets. This makes it a tough competitor for the well-known brands out there.

Top Features

  • 360-degree video editing
  • Timeline trimming
  • Drag and drop import
  • Huge effects and presets library
  • Audio editing tools
  • Advanced video editing tools
  • VFX adding mechanism

Price

  • EDIUS Pro 9 Jump Upgrade- $299 USD
  • EDIUS Pro 9- $499 USD
  • EDIUS Pro 9 Education- $199 USD

14. OpenShot

openshot video editing software

OpenShot is a free and open-source video editing software that can perform all types of major edits required for a basic or intermediate level video creation.

It can also be used for professional videos if the requirement matches the features offered by OpenShot.

Open Shot is easy to use software and has a customizable interface. One can seamlessly edit videos and their audios in the software on its vivid timeline and export it in high-resolution format. It is a brilliant tool for creating vlogs and reels.

The software is not efficient like a paid and pro-level video editing tool but can be used as an alternative for all types of basic needs.

Top Features

  • Import, render, and export videos seamlessly
  • Create video effects and use them from the library
  • Edit audio using efficient editing tools
  • Keyframe videos
  • Add effects on videos 
  • Export high-resolution videos
  • H.264 codec
  • Open-source video editing software

Price

  • OpenShot- Free
  • OpenShot Cloud API- $0.15/instance hour

15. Blender

blender video editing software

Blender is an amazing video editing and creation tool if one is inclined towards animation and illustrations. It can be used as a 3D creation suite to create all types of visual treatment with added graphics. It is also a great tool for compositing.

The other remarkable features of Blender include animating, rendering, and motion tracking objects. It can be used to create and modify audio to fit in the video or animation.

The integrated 3D modeling software supports all types of file formats and provides pipeline storage with a media library.

Top Features

  • Animation and 3D Modelling tools
  • Motion tracking advanced features
  • Variety of brushes for drawing
  • Sculpting and topology tools
  • Library of effects
  • High rendering capacity

Price

  • Free and Open-source software

Conclusion

There is always a plethora of options available for even minute service in the contemporary world. This has made choosing the best difficult as most of the services offered are top-rated and highly efficient.

In such cases, one can choose the software that is best suited according to the work they need to be catered to.

With a plethora of filmmaking courses and screenwriting majors, video editing has become important to learn if one wants to be a part of the industry. It is a useful skill to know generally but when mastered, it can cater to big goals.

There are several award-winning films that have a story to tell but the editing makes the story aloud.

If you want to be a successful video editor, one primary thing that might come in handy is practice and never give up attitude.

About the Author

Disha Saha

Disha is a media student with a soft corner dedicated to film, music, literature, and arts. Apart from being able to escape the real world through fiction, she enjoys being productive as a content writer and marketer. She is also passionate about photography and admires aesthetics. Check out her Linkedin profile.

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