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Wondershare Filmora9 Review

First up, Why Filmora9?

Before I get into the entire WonderShare Filmora9 review the first thing that needs to be addressed is that in a world of video editing choices, why does Filmora9 have a place?

So here’s the deal.

Over the past few years the average consumer level video editor has become more and more feature rich which is a bit of a “good news – bad news” type of thing.

On the upside this kind of “feature arms race” has resulted in the main software companies improving their products at a furious pace to at least, “keep up with the Jones’” or at best to edge ahead of the pack.

The downside is that every time they add some new feature they also have to add access to that feature and access to the settings of that feature. (Not to mention I have to do a new review!)

This invariably leads to a complication of the user interface resulting in software that is more like the control console of a space shuttle!

Another downside and one that nobody really wants to discuss, is that in many cases the added new features are not necessarily things that everyone wants or needs.

Because of this I have noticed more and more people searching for something simpler and easier to use so here we are with Fimlora9.

What Does Wondershare Filmora9 Do?

The key to Wondershare Filmora9 is that it has quite successfully managed to strike a balance between maintaining simplicity whilst at the same time providing tools and features that the average person would actually use.

They have kept the user interface clean, modern and uncluttered yet at the same time offering easy access to the features and functionality of the program.

Wondershare Filmora9 comes in versions for both Windows and Mac and is my top choice for an easy or simple video editing software.

To get an idea of how it looks and behaves you can take a look at the video below before you continue with the rest of this Wondershare Filmora9 review.

Getting Started

When you open the program each time you are first presented with the simple splash screen below.

This pretty much sets the tone for editing with Filmora with only the relevant information being needed to get going.

You can:

Choose the aspect ratio of the project you want to make based on the aspect ratio of the video you will be working with or the final output you are looking to create.

Most modern devices will be 16:9 but 1:1 for Instagram, 9:16 for portrait, 4:3 for standard definition and 21:9 for cinema widescreen are also covered.

Then you can either select to create a new project or open one you are already working on.

There is also a space to the right that shows some of your recent projects if you want to reopen one of them to continue working.

You are then taken into the full editing interface as shown below.

The User Interface

As you can see from the image below the Filmora interface is very simple with no hidden menus or endless menu trees of features.

The three sections of the interface as shown above are as follows all of which can be adjusted in size to suit the particular action you are engaging in at any time.

1. The library area where you can organize all of your video, audio and image assets as well as gain access to effects, filters and transitions.

Here you can also import media via the Instant Cutter which is a tool for loading footage and as it suggests whilst offering the ability to instantly isolate segments of that footage and render immediately to new files.

This is a very efficient way to pre-process your footage before it reaches the library and can save a bunch of time with footage you know needs to be trimmed or cut before you are going to use it.

2. The preview window where you can play back individual clips, a section of a project or a complete project prior to exporting.

3. The timeline where you can add, arrange and individually edit all your video clips, audio files and image files.

Editing is a simple drag and drop process to add things to the timeline with the timeline itself running on a “magnetic” system which causes assets to automatically stay together.

This is where you can add transitions, filters, special effects and engage in other editing actions and is really where you would be doing the bulk of your work.

There are 100 tracks available to be used for video, audio or images and it is here that you can access some of the more advanced tools on offer.

You really only have to look at the buttons to understand what it is for and that intuitive nature carries on throughout the entire program.

You can cut in the middle of a file by placing the play head at that point and (obviously!) clicking the little scissors icon.

You can lengthen or shorten a file by placing your cursor at the end, clicking and dragging.

Click and drag items on to the timeline, select and hit delete to get rid of them.

Editing Tools

There are quite a few editing tools available in Filmora9 shown in the image below offering excellent control over the look of your final video.

As you can see there are seven types or styles of tools offered which have within them quite good levels of customization allowing you to fine tune your video and image assets.

The Transform tool allows control over rotation and sizing, Compositing lets you apply blend modes to overlays and transitions and the Stabilization module does exactly what it says on the box!

Lens Correction can be applied to a wide range of action Cams already built into the program as presets because the properties of those lenses are already known.

However you can bypass those presets and manually adjust to your own needs.

Drop Shadow adds a shadow to images or videos or can be used when creating titles to give a more professional look.

And finally there is the Auto Enhance that can be gradiently applied to any less than perfect footage. I have to add here that the Auto Enhance is a bit of a “hit or miss” option. Either it works OK or it doesn’t and that depends on just how bad the footage is that you put into it.

Color Correction

On top of all of that you also have a dedicated Color Correction module which allows you to both color correct your videos as well as color grade through the use of LUTs.

Green Screen

The Green Screen or Chroma Key module can not only handle straight green or blue screen applications but you can use it to key out any color you like to create effects.

It also offers a number of settings within the module to further adjust your green screen videos to get them just right.

Transitions and Effects

Hiding in the background until you need them are over 300 special effects, objects, overlays, sound effects, music tracks and transitions you can use.

The software comes with 51 audio samples comprising of 25 sound effects and 26 music tracks that you can use in your projects.

On top of that there are 137 adjustable Titles presets, 178 Transitions most of which can be customized, 158 filters, 87 Overlays and 191 mask elements

There is a dedicated Pan and Zoom feature for adding and customizing animations for still images as well as being able to customize and animate text.

It has motion elements so you can drag and drop moving graphics on to your video and a separate motion tracking module as well.

Video Creation/Exporting

By hitting the Export Button a new module opens offering a vast array of formats in which you can export your project.

As you can see in the image above there are five basic choices to get you started towards exporting your final video into the most suitable format.

  • Local for the creation of the most common video file formats.
  • Device offering presets for the most common video viewing devices such as iPhone, iPad, Smart Phone etc.
  • YouTube and Vimeo both of which are tailored to the latest best practices for uploading to those services.
  • DVD for the creation of standard MPEG2 files for burning to DVD discs as well as the ability to burn the discs as well.

Each of the above are set at a default set of parameters and file types recognized as best for each but at any time you have full control over each one to adjust as you please.

Stuff Even I was Surprised to Find!

I have already mentioned that everything in Filmora9 is tucked neatly away so that the interface stays clean and uncomplicated however there are few little secrets tucked away as well and it wasn’t until I had been using it for a while that I found them!

A Screen Recorder!

Yes, just like most of the $130 to $400 video editing software programs, Filmora9 actually has a screen recorder built into it!

You can launch it from inside the library module under the “Record” button where you can start recording whatever you are doing on your screen to make demonstration videos.

Motion Paths (Sort of!)

It comes with face detection technology so you can automatically attach objects like speech bubbles to a face or to an object that is moving and have it follow along.

Audio Equalizer

Inside the Audio Adjustment module you can alter the pitch of a track, remove noise, do some basic balancing as well as add fade ins and fade outs.

However the real power tool in this grouping is the Graphic Equalizer which is very handy when you are trying to get all of your audio elements balanced correctly.

Summary

Filmora9 is a major upgrade and redesign of the earlier Filmora Video Editor and to be honest I was a little worried at first about how Filmora9 would shape up.

The beauty of Filmora was always that despite a good range of features they always remained focused on keeping the software simple in appearance and easy to learn and use.

Filmora9 in keeping with customer demands, has incorporated a lot of news features and of course had to add access to those features into to the user interface.

I was very happy to see that in doing so they have not compromised on their original philosophy of keeping the software interface clean and intuitive.

It doesn’t really seem to matter what it is you want to do with the program, all you need do is look at the interface and pretty soon it seems obvious what it is.

The real problem in writing this review is trying to communicate the simplicity of the program without making it sound as though it is somehow crippled or lacking in features which is simply not true.

Click Here to See the Full Features at Wondershare Filmora

4.5 / 5 stars

View Comments (48)

  • Lance, very good review, thanks! I appreciate how you explained the program features of Filmora 9 as well as your effort to answer all the questions posted here. It gives me confidence in your review and I will probably go ahead and subscribe to a plan.

  • I would agree, except the software automatically installs to the "C" drive and I can't yet find a way to make it install on a different drive. I have only a 1 TB SSD and I only have the OS, Win 10 pro, on the "C" drive.

    Please tell me you have a way to change the installation directory.

    • Hi Gordon,
      When you first install Filmora the first thing that happens is that Windows asks if you want to do that right?
      The very next splash screen that comes up is from the program itself and has a big "Install" button.
      DO NOT hit that button!!!!
      If you look at that splash screen, in the lower right hand corner you will see "Customize Install."
      Click that and you then get the option to install the software wherever you like on your computer.

  • Hi
    I have just finished creating a video. Everything worked perfectly until I exported my video. In the exported version I have 3 or 4 transitions that do not show although they are all there in the preview. Please let me know what to do!!My video is quite long - about 40 min - with lots of other transitions that were all exported!!

    • Hi Carolien,
      Without knowing too much about the project itself, the settings and your computer specs it sound like your computer has "fallen behind" at some point of the render process.

      Most problems with rendering videos at the end have almost nothing to do with the software but almost everything to do with the computer resources available.

      Try restarting your computer, then when it has restarted look for any programs that have automatically started themselves and shut them down.

      Then reload the project you are working on and try again.

      Get back to me if you are still having trouble.

      Let me know the specs of your computer, especially how much free hard drive space and how much RAM and also the properties of the videos you are using in the project.

  • Lance, thanks for the great information on DIY video editing.

    I downloaded the free version of Filmora today and was easily able to create a DVD with about 20 clips including good transitions, titles, credits, etc.

    The one thing I couldn't find was the ability to create chapters and menus for the DVD with markers to fast forward to specific points. I've been able to do this with other software on my old computer. Any idea whether that capability is present? I couldn't find it with a cursory search today.

    Thanks.

    Ron

    • Hi Ron,
      Thanks for dropping by!
      OK, so the fact is that the DVD burning module in Filmora is very basic and does not allow you to add chapters, menus etc.
      The reality is that I can't even offer you hope in this area!
      These days most of the video editing software packages around are pretty much finished as far as DVD development goes given that DVD as a format is reaching the end of the road.
      To go up to that level of features whislt still keeping things (relatively) simple you would probably be best served by Corel VideoStudio Pro 2018 (that's the basic/cheap version) which offers full control over DVD authoring.
      Review Here
      Lance

  • i was wondering if there was a quick like click and open desktop shortcut instead of having to click setup and install every time i want to use this? I have been using it the past couple of days and love it and was thinking of buying it but having to install it ever time seems like a hassle.

    • Hi Victoria,
      Generally what happens is that when you install the program it creates a quick launch Icon on the desktop so you just click that and the program opens up.
      Bear in mind that all video editing software takes a few seconds to load up because they are all kind of complex BUT!
      You should not have to install it every time!
      Check to see if there is a shortcut icon on your desktop that you may have missed.
      If not then go to the Start Menu (the Windows symbol bottom left on your screen.
      Click that then scroll all the way down to the WonderShare folder and click it to expand it.
      Then, RIGHT CLICK the entry for Filmora, choose MORE then click on Open File Location.
      When that folder opens find the filmora.exe file and RIGHT CLICK again!
      Still with me?
      OK! Now choose to Create a Shortcut.
      Windows will tell you that it cannot create a shortcut in that location BUT it can create one on the Desktop.
      Choose yes and there will be a new shortcut there for you.

  • Lance: Can Filmora apply luts in a chain? Using GH4 Vlog 4k mp4 video, I can apply a vlog to Rec 709 lut. I'd like to then apply a second 709 lut for the final look. Is there a way to do that without having to render out the first vlog to 709 lut and then start over to apply the other lut, one lut at a time?

    • Lance: Thanks. Love the simplicity of Filmora; wasn't trying to "over-reach" - Just thought that I might have missed something while getting familiar with a new program. Now that I've retired, I'm trying to leave the eye wateringly expensive upgrade cycles of some other programs behind.

      • Hi Bruce,
        Well let's call it "aspirational!"

        As a side note I just noticed on one of Filmora's message boards someone asked for the to add the ability to adjust the intensity of LUTs. i.e Increase or decrease the intensity at which the LUT is being applied

        The Filmora guys answered that they were adding that to the development path log on the spot.

        Not quite the ability to chain LUTs but it does indicate Filmora have not just added LUTs to the mix and walked away.

        It seems to still be an active point of development so who knows, you may still get your wish!

    • Hi Bruce,
      Well first of all whoa there tiger, let's get real here!
      Filmora is most decidedly entry level and aimed at the beginner so the fact that it handles LUTs at all is a bit amazing.
      As far as chaining them goes I think we are kind of over-reaching a bit.
      For that kind of control especially in the color grading/correction area you would have to go further up the food chain to somewhere like CyberLink Color Director.
      Sorry.
      Lance

  • Hello,

    I have tried the Filmora trial version and it looks quite easy to use (I just need a simple tool to mix clips for YouTube).
    The only problem I'm facing is the output quality: my camera records in FULL HD @ 50p, but when I export it I can't find a way to save it without losing quality. There's a NOTICEABLE difference.
    I've tried the MP4 and the best output settings, yet my 180MB test video comes out as a 90MB video with noticeable lower quality.
    Recording in 25p reduces this problem but the quality itself is much different, less "smooth".

    How can I fix the problem? I really like the simplicity of this software, but I was also looking at Cyberdirector ans Sony Vegas.

    Thanks for your help.

    • Hi Manuel,
      That shouldn't be a problem.
      Just navigate to the video your are editing and right click it.
      Note down the frame rate, resolution and the total bitrate.
      Then load the video into Filmora, do what you have to do then go to Export.
      In the export window choose MP4 and then click the Settings button.
      Make sure you have exactly the same frame rate, resolution and bitrate chosen then select OK.
      Now output the video and you should be fine.

  • Hi,
    I want to buy filmora video editor from their website.
    Is it safe to buy?
    what is the return n refund policy?
    How will be the support?

    could you please revert back.

    Thanks in advance.

    • I've had a lot of dealings with the Filmora folk. I use the program both at work and at home. The company is great to deal with in all aspects. The program is pretty easy to use, most of the features at least. Lots of choice of export options.

    • Hi Anand,
      I have been recommending this software on my site for over two years now.

      In that time I have never received any compliant about the software, the company or any problem with refunds or customer service.

  • Is there anyway you can get rid of the auto magnet of the film clips and why can't you take a clip from the video time line and drop to the pip below there fore removing it from the video timeline ?

  • Hi. I am considering buying Filmora for a video I plan to do for work. Could I use the free, trial version, and if I'm satisfied, upgrade to the paid version so I can download the video without the watermark -- without it affecting the video? I'm also still undecided whether to get the one-year or lifetime license or the multi-user. It would depend on how the trial works out for me.

    • Hi Rachel,
      When you have finished all the work you want to do on a project you can take two steps from there.
      First, you can just click Save and the entire project gets saved as a project file.
      As long as all the assets you used in that file remain in the same place on your computer you can re-open it at any time.

      The second thing you can do is create a final video file and you do that by clicking on the Export button.
      This renders the entire project to a new video file.

      If you have not paid for a licence that final render of the project into a new video file will have a watermark but will IN NO WAY be any different to a file created with a licensed version of the software.

      So, yes you can complete you project, create a video file with a watermark using the free version to check if you like it or not... BUT!

      If you do like it and want to pay for a licence you will have to re-render the file again using the project file (mentioned at the top) only this time there will be no watermark.

      Finally on the question of licensing.

      That would depend on a few things that I can't really help you with especially whether or not you would want a multi-user licence.

      Personally I still like perpetual licences but I suspect that's more an emotional reaction than hard headed thinking!

      • Thanks, George. This all sounds good. I will definitely give Filmora a try. I'm a Mac user and very familiar with iMovie. How does Filmora compare? Is it a step up from iMovie or down? The reason I ask is because, initially, I had considered getting a used MacBook Pro that I can use for work. (I have a personal one but my husband tends to use it more.) Then I stumbled upon Filmora. I figured, Filmora license is cheaper than a laptop.

          • Hi Rachel,
            Filmora is probably a little more feature rich than iMovie in so far as it offers a few more advanced features like screen recording, green screen, the ability to use LUTs in the color grading module etc.

            More important to me is the fact that as a paid product there is far more pressure on their development team to keep the software maintained.

            By this I don't mean endlessly adding new features.

            I mean keeping the software fully updated to compensate for the ever changing environment of video is general.

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