What’s the first thing you think of when you hear “free video editor”? If you’re like me, you immediately assume that there are extreme limitations, such as minimum features, watermarks, or the ability to edit only a limited number of videos. The VSDC Free Video Editor which also has a premium version called VSDC Pro makes most of the features free and fully functional.
Let’s see how the two versions compare and if the free version can really meet most video editing needs.
Features of VSDC Free Video Editor
The first step is to take a look at VSDC Free Video Editor features. Granted, the free version actually offers more features than many premium video editors I’ve tried. Some of the main features that really set VSDC apart include:
- Nonlinear editor – rearrange objects however you want without the typical sequence editing you may be used to
- Wide variety of effects, both visual and audio
- Filters and merge options
- Support for almost all video, audio and image formats
- 4K and HD support
- DVD Burning Tool
- File converter
- Screen recorder (ideal for tutorials)
- Direct upload to YouTube
Plus, there are no watermarks, annoying ads, or trying. All of this is included in the free version. Yes, I am already impressed with this.
The installation only took a few minutes at most, and then I was good to go. I enjoyed the quick start and the intro of what Pro had to offer. The gentle suggestions for upgrading to the Pro version are the only ads you’ll see while using the editor.
You can start with the first step or just click on the X to open the editor. I loved the main dashboard. The large icons make it easy to find what you’re looking for, and the “Discover the main features” area helps you get started even faster.
You can start from scratch with a blank project, import existing content for editing, create a slideshow, or even capture a video from your screen or webcam.
Opening the editor to a blank project instantly shows that the free VSDC video editor is not your typical freebie. In fact, I have access to more effects and editing features than some expensive editors. I don’t have to spend a fortune and I get a full video editor. Plus, when you first create a project, you can access templates to help you get started faster.
If you’re new to video editing, this can all seem daunting. I’m definitely not a professional, but after playing around with the different options it’s surprisingly easy to use and understand everything.
But don’t let this fool you. You can easily get carried away and spend hours perfecting a video to upload to YouTube.
Another thing I would like to highlight is the Edit Wizard which allows you to quickly create a sequence of files. It’s under the Editor menu. Just choose the type of wizard to run to start a slideshow-like project in seconds. The rest is just choosing your effect and adding files.
I had to test the screen recorder. I do video tutorials every now and then, and some screen recorders are just a huge puzzle. After selecting Screenshot from the main screen, I just had to choose a few settings (I went with the defaults for the most part), size the capture window (I loved that option) and hit save .
The save options are well defined at the bottom of my screen and even include drawing options to highlight areas on the screen, like drawing red circles around options that I ask users to click.
Effects of any kind are generally rare in any free video editor. In many premium editors, the effects are simply grouped together. VSDC Free Video Editor not only gives you most of the effects you could want, but organizes them for easier access.
Of course, as you can see, you have a choice of video and audio effects to really personalize your projects. It’s worth taking the time to try out the effects of a test project to get a feel for how each works.
The easiest way, however, is to browse Quick Styles. Most of your commonly used effects can be found here, so it’s a good editing shortcut.
Another part that I liked was the filter effects. Think Instagram, but much better. You can blur, sharpen, rasterize, and more.
Upgrade to Pro
Obviously VSDC has to be making money somehow, right? That’s why there is VSDC Pro. This is the free version but with great extras.
As a side note, you might need to go to editor settings to turn off hardware acceleration in order to export projects in the free version.
As one of the big extras, hardware acceleration helps speed things up considerably. Personally, I liked the extra speed, but it wasn’t a deciding factor. Video stabilization is also useful, depending on the types of videos you plan to edit.
As you might notice, Pro also gives you additional options with some of the features already included in the free version. It’s available for $ 19.99 per year, which is surprisingly affordable for a high-end video editor. And it’s a great way to support developers if you really love the software.
Free vs. Pro
For most users, the free version is all you need. Yes, the additional Pro features are great, but you can do almost anything you need for free.
I recommend Pro for more advanced editing or for professionals. It is reasonably priced and adds features that make your job a bit easier.
Try it VSDC Free Video Editor before buying anything, however. It’s completely free, doesn’t come with any other software, and you can use it for as long as you want for as many projects as you want. There really is nothing to lose.
If you like it but want some extra features, upgrade to VSDC Pro. You get a full year for just under $ 20. Plus, if you decide to go back to the free version after a year, skip the automatic renewal and you’re good to go.
This is a sponsored article and was made possible by VSDC Free Video Editor. Actual content and opinions are the only views of the author that maintains editorial independence, even when a sponsored article.
Is this article useful?