I received a message the other day from someone who wanted to get into some video editing but was uncertain about just how deep he wanted to dive into the software pool.
Basically he was asking whether to go for a basic version of the software he was looking at or should he go the whole hog and get the super deluxe version.
You can see the original exchange below but I thought it raised a good point that was worth exploring in a dedicated post for others that may be in this position.
The key to this really is not looking at where you are as a video editor when you start because the truth is… you are pretty well nowhere!
A more productive question to ask yourself is where do I want go? To what degree do I want to get involved in this activity?
If you are like many people who simply want to capture video as they are going about their daily lives, at family events and moments or just your life in general, then your purpose is basically to record events.
It is most likely that people in this category are going to just do some quick editing to cut out the garbage, add some music or narration, possibly throw in some still images and render it out to a DVD or upload to YouTube.
In this case with the current batch of software choices I cover on this site the basic versions are more than enough.
If on the other hand you see yourself taking it a bit further, perhaps vlogging, starting a YouTube channel, promoting yourself or your business then although it may not make total sense at the time, the advanced version will ultimately serve you better.
The only caveat I place on this is that if you want to go “all pro” on it keep the reality in mind!
We all perhaps start with delusions of grandeur and figure ourselve a budding Hollywood editor in the making and maybe that’s true for you… just don’t get too carried away!
The Original Exchange:
From: Dave Henry
“Hi there. I’m a beginner when it comes to videos and will be making short movies and product reviews using Gopro and Iphone. I will be using my pc or windows tablet to edit them.
These videos will be featured on a blog.
I’m looking for video and photo editing software and want something great but not pricy. I’ve been leaning towards the Corel software.
My question is whether or not to get the entry level versions or just go with the top of the line programs and grow into them.
The paintshop and video suite software is within my budget but do you think it might be way over my head?
Thanks in advance.”
My name is Lance and I run DIY Video Editor… I only say that just so you know you have made contact with a fellow human.
The bottom line here is that using video editing software is going to be a foreign experience to anyone who has never done it before.
No editing software can be designed to mimic it’s counterpart in the real world because there is none. If you look at database software it mimics an old fashioned card file system. A word processor mimics a sheet of paper on a typewriter.
Most software can at least get a starting point from it’s real world activity… not so with editing software!
So regardless of how you start there will be a learning curve.
The real question is where you want to finish. From your email it seems to me that you are wanting to get into all of this pretty seriously so my advice would be to bite the bullet and go for the full version of whatever software you choose.
You mention VideoStudio and that’s a great choice at the moment. Their current version is stable, mature and will offer you everything you need to get started.
Furthermore once you have begun to get the basics under control you will inevitably want to be able to do more and VideoStudio is more than equipped to do that.
As far as getting the PaintShop product as well, that question is not so obvious.
At this point and probably for a little while until you get comfortable with the video aspect of things, the PaintShop software may not appear to be that important.
However as you progress the features you can use within image software that can then be incorporated into your video projects can open up a whole new world of possibilities.
My recommendation would be to go for the top of the line if you can afford it because it will pay off in the end provided you put the time in.
If you do go with the Corel product make sure you go to the forum they run, register and take advantage of the world of experience those guys have. I personally think it’s one of the best forums for video editing software around… but that may be because I am a moderator there!