With technology continuously evolving, what we’re able to achieve at our fingertips is astounding. Think about the internet and the age of information. What once took someone countless hours to discover can be answered via a quick Google search. One such industry that has been massively impacted by technology is film production. Before the age of portable tech, aspiring filmmakers only dreamed of shooting their own content—as equipment was widely inaccessible and expensive, it would simply cost too much money.
On the flipside, today you can purchase a good camera and sound equipment under $1k that’s capable of capturing industry-grade footage. That wouldn’t be as much of a perk if you didn’t also have the means of editing it. Thankfully, software and hardware in the editing space are both accessible and affordable. In which case, what are some tools that every video editor needs?
The Right Hardware
Software and editing tools would be rendered useless if not for having the proper hardware to run them on. Unfortunately, a laptop that would complement a college student is not necessarily one capable of video editing. For video editing, you’re going to need a computer with a powerful video card, tons of storage (hard drive) and a quality CPU (central processing unit). It’s important to know the specifications of your computer and, at the very least, if it’s compatible with industry-standard editing software. Hardware can always be upgraded but an older machine, with an older operating system, may need to be scratched completely.
The Right Monitor
It should be obvious that a quality monitor is needed for video editing, is that video is a visual medium. If your computer sports a top-tier video card, all the better. A current trend is that video editors are switching from their regular unit to a curved monitor. This is due to the science of curved monitors, as a curved screen directs all angles of light directly at the editor’s eye. Translation? The picture is viewed as larger and the experience is more immersive, which is perfect for a professional creating a piece for the silver screen.
The Basic Software
When it comes to video editing, choosing a software can be an arduous process. With so many reviews and options on the web, wading through these different choices—especially to a novice—isn’t easy. Below are three of the most commonly used types of editing software.
Adobe Premiere is a video editing software that many people consider to be the standard. It’s use of non-linear editing timelines and the ability to communicate with other programs like Photoshop and Lightroom make it perfect for both industry professionals and freelancing beginners.
The iMovie software comes automatically installed with any Mac iOS devices (except for mobile). It’s not necessarily a user-friendly tool, but the features offered are impressive for a free video editing program. If you have an Apple computer, you should utilize iMovie to acquaint yourself with the editing process.
Pinnacle Studio 21 is considered an incredible editing software for its price-point. It’s industry-grade, fleshed out with special features, and it allows you to expertly manipulate audio when your microphone didn’t quite capture sound the way you wanted.
Despite the industry standards, there does exist a host of free software that work as fantastic introductory tools to video editing. If you’re unsure what platform you like and don’t want to risk money on a software you may not enjoy, then consider the programs below.
VideoPad is compatible with both Mac and Windows operating systems. It’s absolutely free (unless you’re going to use it commercially) and supports 3D videos, narration, stabilization, drag-and-drop, effects (of which many are integrated), and colouring. These are but a few of the capabilities VideoPad has in its arsenal. Utilize this free software too, at the very least, start chipping away at video editing.
Freemake Video Converter
The Freemake Video Converter’s main function is, as you could guess, conversion. Yet, it’s editing tools are brilliantly simple, allowing for editors to do light editing sweeps on the content they’ve uploaded. These ‘minimal’ features serve as a fantastic taste test for what video editing has to offer. Better yet, they can be done while converting the video into another format. Add subtitles, render sound, merge files together, splice, and start cutting away at your content.
As a video editor, you’re going to need two essentials: the proper hardware and the right software. The combination of these two components will allow you to edit videos efficiently, professionally, and creatively.