Video editing and conversion

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Let's first present a few definitions, taken from various Wikipedia articles.

“Video editing is the process of re-arranging or modifying segments of video to form another piece of video. The goals of video editing are the same as in film editing - the removal of unwanted footage, the isolation of desired footage, and the arrangement of footage in time to synthesize a new piece of footage.” (Video editing, retrieved 16:46, 2 April 2007 (MEST))

“Video capture is the process of converting an analog video signal—such as that produced by a video camera or DVD player—to digital video. The resulting digital data are computer files referred to as a digital video stream, or more often, simply video stream. This is in contrast with screencasting, in which previously digitized video is captured while displayed on a digital monitor. TV tuner cards have a television tuner with the capabilities to capture broadcast television.” (Video capture, retrieved April 22 2012.)

“Video converters are computer programs that can change the storage format of digital video in a process called transcoding.” Comparison of video converters, retrieved April 22, 2012).

“A screencast is a digital recording of computer screen output, also known as a video screen capture, often containing audio narration. The term screencast compares with the related term screenshot; whereas screenshot is a picture of a computer screen, a screencast is essentially a movie of the changes over time that a user sees on a computer screen, enhanced with audio narration.” (Wikipedia, retrieved April 2012)

This article so far just includes a few software links. See also:

Video editing Software

Video editing introductions and overviews

Free editing software

The following are probably the most popular

Since Movie Maker is discontinued, below is a incomplete list of free video editors made in fall 2017. Not fully explored at this time (Daniel K. Schneider (talk) 20:20, 1 November 2017 (CET)).

Software OpenShot ShotCut VSDC VideoPAD DaVinci Resolve LightWorks Kdenlive Avidemux
OS Linux, Mac, Win. Linux, Mac, Win Win Win, Mac, iPad, Android macOS, Win, Linux Win, Linux, macOS Linux, Mac (?) Win, Linux, macOS
Documentation links User Guide FAQ


How To Videopad support Documentation wiki
Ease of use Fairly easy, Practical context menu Fairly easy, see below. Fairly easy. Also includes a "wizard". Most simple to use (compared to the others) Complex software Fairly easy to use. From the little testing I did, I liked this one best in terms of easy/power ratio. Very simple
Problems Most everything is done with a filter who must be attached to an object. Understanding filters requires reading Icons, ribbons and text do not display well on a 4K screen with big fonts. This is a trial version for home use, but it will export after ignoring the warning Very difficult to install under Debian/Ubuntu.

Registration required.

Less functionality than others (but to nice to have for small quick projects)
Input video formats lots (ffmpeg) lots lots
Other media input Typical raster formats (JPG, PNG, etc.), various sound Most raster image formats, SVG, HTML5, various sound Most raster image formats
Output formats Container formats: MP6(H.264), WebM, OGG, AVI.

Has preset profiles

lots of supported container formats & codecs

No preset profiles.

Basic editing (cut and trim, delete and move segments) yes yes Right click on the object in the timeline. In the editing video one can set markers and apply splitting. yes
Cropping yes yes (through a filter) yes (use clip monitor and add edge crop effect) yes
Adding titles Yes On top of a "color" (open other->color) Yes (plus several other "geometric" objects. yes yes
Multi-track yes yes yes yes yes no
Limitations if freemium ware - - hardware acceleration Restricted to YouTube/Vimeo 720p format -
Tested on: Nov. 2017:Ubuntu 16, Win8 Nov. 2017:Ubuntu 16, Win8 Nov 2017: Win8 Nov 2017: Win8 Nov 2017: Win8 not tested Nov 2017: Ubuntu Nov 2017: Win8

Popular commercial editing software

Cheaper (< $100) systems
Medium-end popular systems, often referred to as the "A-Team"

Specialized commercial

Encoders, converters/transcoders

Free encoders / converters

(Note: These should be separated into encoders, converters and multi-purpose tools)

Online converter services
Adware and nagware
Unknown status
  • Adobe Media Encoder (Win). This product comes with Flash and CS5 suites, but it looks like it can be downloaded (not tested).

Capturing monitor activities

Free software (all sorts of licences)
  • Adobe Captivate
  • Camtasia
  • ... others (needs to be completed)

Other software

  • FFmpeg (Wikipedia). Popular software project that is used in many other open source and commercial products.
  • Gspot is another nice free tool that displays information about at video file. Unfortunately it is outdated (last upgraded in 2007 as of April 2012), i.e. it can't precisely identify new video formats