VideoPad by NCH Software is a basic video editing program that has many of the tools and features we looked for in this category, though it does lack some important ones. It has the familiar timeline/storyboard workflow, which means you can view your project linearly or by each individual object regardless of how long it runs. You can switch back and forth between these two views with all your edits intact, which is great for beginner or novice users because it allows them to construct the basic building blocks in storyboard mode and do their fine-tuning in the timeline.
This video maker software can add unlimited editing tracks to your project, giving you the versatility you need to create complicated projects. It also provides tools like Chroma key (green screen), a video stabilizer and closed captions for the hearing impaired. These features create professional-level videos without investing in expensive professional software.
Another boon for this software is the ability to import, edit and export 4K ultra-high-resolution video footage. Additionally, you can employ motion tracking tools that will recognize and follow moving objects and people and allow you to apply effects and enhancements to them. These tools, plus other advanced features such as a video stabilizer and 3D editing make this video editing software an even better buy.
The picture is only half of your video’s story. The best video editing software should offer robust audio editing tools. VideoPad performs basic edits like adjusting volume and adding effects, including reverb, echo and distortion. However, it’s missing the advanced tools found in the best video editing software, like a full-bodied mixer and the ability to calibrate your audio for surround sound setups.
If you want these audio editing tools, NCH software offers WavePad as part of the larger NCH Suite of media production programs. Other programs available include Prism, a video converter. As well as Express Burn, which allows you to make DVDs and Blu-rays of your video project. And you can get them at the same great value as VideoPad.
You should be able to get the hang of VideoPad rather easily. As with all the video editing software we reviewed, you’ll need to spend a few hours getting to know its features and tools.
However, it lacks some tools we look for that make creating videos even easier. Other products we reviewed, such as our top pick CyberLink PowerDirector, have themes and templates that walk you through the process step by step or even create finished videos automatically.
It’s also missing the ability to create photo slideshows from the images on your machine, although you can do this manually. However, NCH software offers PhotoStage specifically made for that.
Despite what it lacks, what you get for the price tag of VideoPad is quite good. We named it our best value pick because at the time of this writing you can buy VideoPad Home Edition for $60 and the Master’s Edition for $99. The only difference between the two is that you only get two audio tracks, instead of unlimited with the Master version. The Home Edition also lack support for plugins.
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