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Video editing software is a type of software application designed to help users create, edit, and manipulate video content. It allows users to combine and rearrange video clips, add music, sound effects, text overlays, transitions, and special effects to create a final polished video production.
Video editing software has become increasingly popular with the rise of social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, as well as the growing demand for video content in the entertainment and marketing industries. It has become an essential tool for anyone looking to create high-quality, engaging video content.
10 Best Free and Open Source Video Editing Software
Although it was initially created as a 3D animation suite, it has since evolved into an all-in-one tool that includes a fantastic video editor app.
Blender’s video editor is intuitive and easy to navigate, catering to both beginners and advanced users. Users can undertake basic actions such as video trimming and splicing, or more intricate tasks like video masking. This versatility allows Blender to be used in a range of settings, from professional video production to personal video editing projects.
With its live preview, luma waveform, chroma vectorscope, and histogram displays, this software empowers users to monitor and make real-time edits to their footage. The software also includes audio mixing, syncing, scrubbing, and waveform visualization, which enables users to perfect the audio aspect of their videos.
Additionally, Blender offers up to 32 slots for adding video, images, audio, and effects, providing great flexibility for users.
- Flexible video editing capabilities for beginners and advanced users
- User-friendly and intuitive interface
- Completely free and open-source
- Most of the tutorials available online focus on the 3D animation
KDEnlive is compatible with multiple platforms, including Microsoft Windows and Mac OS, and offers a wide range of support for various file formats. The software’s flexible layout and proxy video editing feature give users a lot of freedom in their editing workflows. It comes with a good collection of presets and templates, making it easy to achieve professional-looking results.
Despite its professional-level feature set, KDEnlive’s user interface is familiar and accessible, making it an excellent choice for absolute beginners as well.
- Free and open-source
- Professional-level features
- Familiar and accessible user interface
- Good collection of presets and templates
- It can be slow without GPU-supported acceleration
OpenShot takes video editing to the next level by providing unlimited layers and audio mixing capabilities.
It carries a wide array of features that enable users to perform a range of actions on their video clips, such as resizing, scaling, trimming, snapping, rotating, and cutting. Moreover, users can include video transitions that provide live previews, compositing, image overlays, watermarks, title templates, subtitles, and even 3D animated titles.
This free video editor strikes a perfect balance between advanced features and simplicity, making it an excellent option for users who are just starting with video editing.
- The advanced timeline features for greater precision
- Real-time previews of transitions
- User-friendly and intuitive interface
- Some stability issues when working with larger projects
This software offers a range of useful features that can help you create high-quality footage, including high-precision video trimming and multicam support. The highlight of Lightworks is its support for 4K video in a variety of formats.
In addition to its impressive feature set, Lightworks has a user-friendly interface that’s highly customizable to suit your individual needs. The software’s advanced features may prove to be too complex for certain users with less experience in video editing.
- User-friendly interface
- Supports 4K video
- Multicam support
- 4K video support requires the paid version
VidCutter is ideal for beginners or anyone seeking to perform specific editing functions, such as video cutting, without the complexities of a more advanced editor. It is compatible with Microsoft Windows, Mac OS, and Linux, making it a versatile cross-platform tool that can be used by a diverse range of users.
VidCutter’s suite of basic editing functions, including cutting and trimming, is supported by its ability to handle different video file formats. This enables users to easily work with their video files without the hassle of worrying about compatibility issues.
- Sleek and intuitive interface
- Fast and efficient video trimming and merging
- Basic editing functions like cutting and trimming
- Easy drag-and-drop functionality
- Limited advanced editing features
As an open-source program, all of Shotcut’s features are available without the necessity for a paid upgrade.
Although Shotcut boasts a variety of impressive features and helpful tutorial videos, the interface may feel somewhat unconventional to some users due to its original design for Linux.
Despite this, the software maintains its status as a high-quality video editor with numerous practical tools. It’s rare to find a free video editor that offers support for 4K resolution, making Shotcut an excellent option for anyone who needs high-quality videos.
- Native timeline editing and 4K support
- Compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux
- No need to import videos
- Quirky interface
7: OBS Studio
A robust suite for video recording, editing, and sharing, Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) Studio is an impressive open-source option. It provides users with a wide range of features, including a robust screen capture tool with exceptional performance that makes it a go-to choice for gamers and YouTubers.
OBS Studio’s streamlined and user-friendly interface facilitates the production of professional-grade videos for users. Although it offers only surface-level video editing options, the software offers all the basic video editing tools built-in.
- Robust screen capture tool
- All basic video editing tools built-in
- One platform for recording, editing, and streaming videos
- Compatible with Microsoft Windows, Mac OS, and Linux
- Can be resource-intensive during the use
8: DaVinci Resolve
With its advanced capabilities in trimming, multicam editing, color correction, and audio mastering, DaVinci Resolve stands out as a highly sophisticated video editing software that is hard to match. Despite its professional-grade capabilities, DaVinci Resolve’s interfaces are user-friendly, making it an excellent option for both novice and experienced editors.
DaVinci Resolve has the ability to not only slice and trim videos but also to master audio and correct color.
While the comprehensive set of features in DaVinci Resolve may be too extensive for those who only need to trim and upload videos, it’s an excellent choice for more advanced projects.
- Versatile file support
- Collaborative editing
- Title creation tools
- Professional-grade color grading
- High system requirements
Flowblade’s key strength is its lightweight design, which requires less system resources than many other video editing programs. With its efficient performance, it offers multi-track video editing, keyframe video editing, and other advanced features that are essential for professional-quality video production.
It’s simple and attractive layout makes it an excellent choice for beginners, while its quick processing speed and powerful features are appreciated by more advanced users.
- Eye-catching layout that encourages learning
- Quick processing speed
- Advanced features like multi-track and keyframe video editing
- Requires less system resources
- Only available on Linux-based systems
The software’s intuitive interface makes it one of the best video editing tools for those who are just starting their editing journey. It allows users to perform fundamental editing tasks like cutting, encoding, and filtering with ease.
The Avidemux has an easy-to-use interface, which means that users can carry out basic editing tasks without having to spend time poring over technical documentation.
- Suitable for video editing learners
- Performs basic editing tasks like cutting, encoding, and filtering with ease
- Accessible to everyone with no technical documentation required
- Free and open-source
- Lack advanced features
There are many great free and open-source video editing software options available for anyone looking to create professional-quality videos without breaking the bank. From basic video editing tools to more advanced software, there's something for everyone. These programs offer a wide range of features, including video and audio editing, special effects, and more.
Whether you're a professional video editor or just starting out, the 10 best free and open-source video editing software on this list are definitely worth considering. Not only are they affordable and accessible, but they also offer a great opportunity to learn and experiment with video editing techniques.