Trying to decide which editor to try learning with



I'd like to try learning to do some basic video editing, to be able to mix in shots from different vids and from different sections in the same vid and shorten things etc. Also to be able to add sounds and music. And as you can tell I'm not only very new to it but haven't even tried doing any yet. At this point I'm trying to find the best free or cheap editor to use, so would like one that's fairly easy to learn and also that's popular enough I can ask for help in forums. Maybe even some of them have their own forums? I found that to be true and a great forum it is for Reaper DAW for example. Right now from a review I read and then some Youtube tutorials I'm thinking hard about trying Openshot. Would that be as good to start out with as any?

Thank you for any help or suggestions!


El Director

If your computer can handle it, Resolve. It's free, has world class color tools, and is also an all-in-one solution that does editing (which is really the same no matter what app you use), vfx, sound and color.
Editing Software Preferences

Hi David,

I've been editing professionally for about 10 years. I've edited on Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut, and Avid. My personal opinion is to stick with Adobe! It integrates effortlessly with all the other softwares in the Adobe Creative Suite if you ever want to learn those as well. My advice is to eventually learn After Effects as well, but not until you have a semi-solid grasp of Premiere Pro.

I don't know if you plan on entering the professional market for editing ever, but Premiere is rapidly becoming the go-to edit software for companies (because it is so cost effective and compatible with the full Creative Suite). Avid is still the film industry main platform, but it's for old-tymers! Final Cut X is a complete joke in the industry, however Final Cut 7 was alright, but it still isn't very widely used.

The moral of the story is, with Adobe Premiere Pro you have a huge opportunity to learn and grow in the future with the easiest user interface for editing software in my opinion.

I talk a bit about project creation and editing software in my blog here:

Hope this helps!
Joseph Cadwell


Thank you folks for your suggestions! Adobe Pro looks like $200+ which is a good bit more than I want to spend at this point. And Resolve might be more than my computer is up to. Right now I'm thinking about Lightworks or VSDC, but is the pro version of VSDC and also Lightworks $20 every month? You don't really own them, just rent them? If so, is that true of all the stuff you pay for?

Also, do all these programs have a video cutter? Or if they do, is it sometimes/frequently more convenient to use a different smaller program designed specifically for that part of the process? I ask because just doing a quick search I saw a number of free downloadable video cutters.

Thanks again for your help!!!

El Director

I've been doing this 20 years and have no idea what a video cutter is. If you're wanting something more lightweight, check out Vegas or Avid Media Composer First (which is free). There used to be a $100 version of Vegas called Vegas Movie Studio.

Adobe is subscription only, so you're renting it. It's what all the "cool kids" are using, but it's not the most stable.

Avid Media Composer is whats used on almost every Hollywood movie. This is what I use. You can rent it or buy it, and they have the free version.

FCPX is pretty affordable to buy, but it's Mac only.

Resolve as you know has both a buy it for $300 or use a free version model, but it is system heavy. Might be worth at least trying though, the cool kids are moving to it.

Vegas is pretty intuitive but will run on lower end systems. And like I said, they used to have a cheap version and the pro version, but both cost money.

Less used is stuff like Lightworks, Kdenlive, Open Shot, Hit Film, etc... I really don't know too much about them, except I would pick Lightworks if I had to use one of them.