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best software for editing
6722 10 2018-3-16
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Lugard_696
lvl.4

United States
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good afternoon, what software do you recommend to edit the videos of the zenmuse x3 (premiere pro, davinci)?
2018-3-16
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Arcobaleno Reborn
lvl.4

Philippines
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Let's face it: some of you, guys don't even get to video editing. And some might find Movie Maker cutting/splitting feature quite sufficient - that's just fine. You probably have one less thing to occupy your mind with.

Yet, for those who care about uploading a brushed and polished piece of footage to the Internet, choosing the right software is quite important. And since video editing questions pop up on DJI forum on a regular basis, it's safe to assume there is no one-size-fits-all solution.

The perfect feature-set?
What are the must-have features a video editor should have to be considered good for drone footage? Most drone owners say video editing is video editing after all, no matter whether you were shooting on a drone or on a smartphone. That being said, there is still a list of tools you'll be using more frequently (than a smartphone owner) because of aerial camera ins and outs.   

easy cut/split feature - because that unexpected crash from last flight must be cut out.
video stabilization tool - because even the best drones might make use of it sometimes.
color/brightness correction - because if the sun is around, there is always a chance of under- or overexposure.
video zooming - because you can't always fly too close to the object of interest.
footage speed settings - because timelapses rule.


Besides, it's important to be able to work with high quality videos effortlessly. In other words, the video editor should be able to open drone footage, process it and export in the high quality as well.

Whether you just recently started thinking of editing your drone recordings, or you're looking for a better piece of software, below is a list you may make use of. It's been gathered with help of drone forum members and drone YouTubers, whom I'll quote below.

If you're well experienced at video editing

Adobe Premiere Pro   ($19,99 per month with annual commitment)

This one doesn't need to be introduced. Having become a de-facto standard in the world of professional video editing, Adobe Premiere Pro is also the most frequently named piece of software among drone owners. Starting this year, Adobe PP has gone cross-platform, so even some Mac users tend to choose it over Final Cut Pro despite slower performance and higher costs in the long run.



Format Advice: If you host Premiere Pro on a strong PC, it will easily handle 4K videos from Phantom. If you feel, however, that 4K may be too much for your machine, simply convert footage to MPEG-2, which is a recommended codec for Adobe.

While Adobe is a powerful video editor as is, some experienced users also recommend installing de-noising plugins - such as Neat Video - especially if you're using D-log. (advice from TomTechTime community member)
Free Option:  Davinci Resolve 12.5

If you strive for the highest color grading quality, but not quite ready to pay for it yet, Davinci Resolve is your best bet. While doing the research for this roundup, I've found almost as many mentions of Davinci Resolve, as of PP. That makes me think, we're talking about the most powerful free crossplatform video editor available out there. My biggest struggle, though, were multiple crashes even before I deep dived into editing, so i definitely don't recommend it if your machine resources are limited.



Format advice: Davinci Resolve appears to be slightly unfriendly with uncompressed codecs, which sometimes results into program crashing while trying to open a simple AVI file. Don't get discouraged and just convert your video to Quicktime MOV - the most recommended format for this piece of software.

If you're somewhat experienced at video editing

Cyberlink Power Director for Windows ($59 per year)

If you got to play with a 360 degree drone camera, and you're on Windows - look no further. Cyberlink is a well known software developer which is always among the first to adopt the latest trends, and 360 degree videos are not an exception. Those looking for a powerful video editor with precise trimming and clean interface will be quite satisfied.



Another reason I selected Power Director 15 was the multi-cam ability. I also record with a camcorder on a tripod so it's a nice function to be able to edit in sync (PhantomPilots forum member)
Free Alternative: VSDC Video Editor (Windows)
VSDC stands out for its format compatibility and comparatively stable performance on machines unable to cope with heavy guys like Adobe and Davinci. Say, if you're somewhat Win7/64b struggling to find a decent post-production tool, VSDC is the best choice. It has every basic feature you can think of and even offers big guns like color grading, motion blur effect and blending modes.  





"I'm still as impressed with VSDC today as when I first tried it years ago. Every one of the videos on my channel (over 900) had been edited through use of VSDC" (Drone YouTuber, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC90A4JdsSoFm1Okfu0DHTuQ)

Export advice: when exporting a large file, don't get confused with "Hardware Acceleration" pop-up. Simply click on a grey "Continue" button below and worry not about watermarks or any other unpleasant "surprises". Export speed will be moderate, though, so if you really want to speed up the output process, you might want to consider purchasing an annual PRO license for $20.

Filmora for Mac ($44,99 per year)

Somewhere between iMovie and Final Cut you might want to consider Filmora (used to be known as Wondershare in the past). It is a cross-platform piece of software, and since there are so few video editing apps of that level available for Mac, it might be a lifesaver that doesn't cost you an arm and a leg.
What's different about Filmora, is that besides basic video editing features, it offers a variety of extra tools like noise reduction, tilt shift, plus video effects & filters library that is monthly being added to.



Export Tip: Filmora has a free trial version that is functionally the same as a registered version, so it gives you a full taste of the program. Yet, it places a huge watermark on your video when you export it after editing. Therefore, make sure to start with a small test project to avoid "unpleasant surprises" at the end of a several-hour process.

If you're about to edit your first video

Avidemux (Free for Windows, Mac, Linux)

Should you set your requirements low - say, a simple cut/filter/encode feature-set - Avidemux is the way to go. It is a linear video editor, and it's absolutely free. Think of it as of a crossplatform version of Movie Maker, which is more appreciated by the geek community though (perhaps, because it is distributed under GNU GPL license).



Avidemux supports the most frequently used formats, including MKV, VOB and ASF and can be useful for making your video more lightweight. There is also a good number of filters you can apply and preview in a separate window. The software interface is not the most intuitive one, however, you'll find a wikipedia-style how-to guide for both - users and developers interested in Avidemux capabilities, so with a bit of effort you'll figure out what to do.

Afterword

Among the video editors mentioned above, there were few other pieces of software - mostly for Windows though, such as Pinnacle,Magix and Sony Vegas. How about we continue the list and create somewhat an ultimate guide on choosing a video editing program?

Tell what you're using for post-production, describe why it's different and worth the drone community's attention. Post a couple of screenshots and share your tips on working with aerial videos! How about that?
2018-3-16
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Lucas775
Captain
Flight distance : 11546526 ft
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United States
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I use the iMovie on my Mac.
2018-3-16
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Rob W
Captain
Flight distance : 75413 ft
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Sweden
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I have Final Cut Pro, Adobes suite (Premiere, After Effects), and DaVinci Resolve. I tend to use a mix of them. My workflow is generally using After Effects for importing the RAW CDNG:s through Adobe RAW (removing chromatic aberrations, vignetting and distortions using the embededd RAW lens data) and then converting it to ProRes 4444 or a lossless format. Then I use DaVinci Resolve for editing and coloring and audio.

For the X3 you could import directly into Resolve and do the editing. DaVinci Resolve have improved a lot with version 14, having a quite good audio module also with Fairlight, making it very versatile since it handles editing, coloring, audio in one single package.

But, it is all up to the user. You have to find the tools you like, the workflow you feel comfortable with. It takes some time to test and find that. Also, if you do films commercially, you have to find a balance of what the customers want to pay, and the costs for your toolset including the amount of time you generally spend with that toolset and workflow.
2018-3-16
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A CW
Captain
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United Kingdom
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iMovies on Mac (free)
FCP on Mac for pro editing
2018-3-17
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Chief Pilot
lvl.4
Flight distance : 1674354 ft
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United States
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Mac Pro tools on the iMac Pro are perfect and powerful for me and my I2 X7.
2018-3-19
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DJI-Mark
Moderator

United States
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Lucas775 Posted at 2018-3-16 19:20
I use the iMovie on my Mac.

I actually made plenty of videos with iMovie. It is pretty intuitive. Unless you are real serious or pro, it may be the easiest way to go for any Mac user.
2018-3-19
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christing
lvl.3

Hong Kong
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Arcobaleno Reborn Posted at 2018-3-16 10:19
Let's face it: some of you, guys don't even get to video editing. And some might find Movie Maker cutting/splitting feature quite sufficient - that's just fine. You probably have one less thing to occupy your mind with.

Yet, for those who care about uploading a brushed and polished piece of footage to the Internet, choosing the right software is quite important. And since video editing questions pop up on DJI forum on a regular basis, it's safe to assume there is no one-size-fits-all solution.

After multiple testing, we found that to maintain maximum image quality while providing the smoothest editing experience, we will need to transcode the DJI Zenmuse X3 source files into MPGE-2, Adobe Premiere most compatible format. The point here is which is the best tool to transcode 4K videos to MPEG-2.

Source: http://www.videoediting-help.com ... 4k-to-premiere-pro/
2018-6-25
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Jane Smith
lvl.1

United States
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When I first come to the video editing field, I used Joyoshare media cutter to cut and edit videos on my Mac. This simple video cutter mac program is easy to use and great for video cutting, trimming, splitting and joining, etc. But now it's too simple for me and i begin to use premiere pro which offers more editing features that i need.
4-2 03:25
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Lonesome Crow
First Officer
Flight distance : 279311 ft
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United States
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Lightroom and Davinci Resolve.
4-2 12:39
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mendo
lvl.2

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As for me, I used DRmare Video Converter Software to edit my movies from iTunes so that I can stream the movies to other devices for offline playback.
10-9 18:10
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