free video editing software

Best Free Video Editing Software for Every Beginner

Being a filmmaker costs much—from equipment to software, you need to afford good quality resources to produce great content. While it’s crucial to scrimp on gears, but you can definitely do so with video editing software. This is most especially applicable to aspiring filmmakers who are just building their portfolio. The good news is that there are several free video editing software that you can use, whether your editing skills are for beginners or intermediate.

The costs of video editing software can go high up as much as $1000. You might find this pretty expensive, most especially if you are only beginning in the field. While some think that quality output from these paid tools is worth the price tag, it can be overwhelming for beginners. 

Even if you are a total beginner, you can quickly transform your editing skills from zero to hero with the free video editing software we’re going to share with you. Here are the best editing software for desktop you can try for absolutely free:

Shotcut

(For Windows, macOS, and Linux)

Shotcut is among the top free video editing software anyone can get their hands to. It is an open-source, cross-platform video editing tool that allows users to work with a wide array of video resolutions and formats. Its major highlight is the broad compatibility of its format support, which makes editing swift. It supports hundreds of formats, including FFmpeg, 4K, DNxHD, ProRes, and more.

With a customizable interface, any beginner can easily navigate through the software. It also boasts of intricate audio effects and transitions that will level up your editing game. 

Highlights:

  • Compatibility with latest video and audio formats
  • Native timeline editing
  • Multi-format timeline
  • Inclusion of advanced audio filters

Cost: Free

If you need a comprehensive tutorial on how to master Shotcut, here’s an online class for you: How to Use Shotcut – Video Editing for Beginners. Expect to reap heaps of tricks on how you can amp up your video editing skill with the free software. 

free video editing software

Hitfilm Express

(For Windows and macOS)

Most professional editors recommend Hitfilm Express for beginners as it offers everything an editor needs in his timeline. Even more, it is worth mentioning that Hitfilm has established a strong reputation with the professional industry as it was released by FXHome Limited, a community of coders responsible for the development of Imerge and Action Pro.

FXHome has ties with Hollywood studios, software companies, and YouTubers, which manifests how good it is. It allows both 2D and 3D compositing, 4k support, 360-degree video editing, and lens distortion correction for action cameras.

Highlights:

  • Best for professional editing
  • Advanced trimming tools
  • 3D video support
  • Composite shot enhancements
  • Unlimited track creation for both audio and video
  • Easy copying of group attributes
  • Advanced audio mixer for professional quality

Cost: Free; $847 for Pro Suite

iMovie

(Exclusive for macOS)

If you are a Mac user, you probably know what iMovie is. It is the free video editing software that comes bundled in your Mac device. This is the best option if you are a serial Mac user who does not want to install other software to perform your editing. It has a simple interface that allows users to drag-and-drop attributes and edit videos with up to 4k resolution.

However, it has limited features that you may seem constricting for more advanced editing. But still, iMovie offers an excellent array of perks like storing files on iCloud and directly uploading videos on YouTube and Vimeo.

Highlights:

  • Drag-and-drop surface
  • Support for 4k resolution
  • Apple cloud storage functionality
  • Inclusion of contemporary video filters
  • Split screen
  • A wide array of available transitions

Cost: Free for macOS

Need a tutorial on how to edit with iMovie? Here’s an in-depth class to help you get started with the software, Make an Easy Promo Video: iMovie Spotlight.

Movie Maker 10

(Exclusive for Windows)

If Mac has iMovie, Windows has Movie Maker pre-installed to any Windows computer. Any Windows user is familiar with the free video editing software, but do not downsize its functionality. Movie Maker 10 may be convenient and too basic for most editors, but it still gets the job done. This is a perfect tool for those who like to edit short clips that don’t need any complexity. 

Highlights:

  • Best for short clips
  • Convenient for beginners
  • Library of video effects and transitions
  • Animation tab for audio, titles, and credits

Cost: Free for Windows

video editing

Openshot

(For Windows, macOS, and Linux)

Openshot is an open-source video editing tool that’s packed with powerful features. It has a drag-and-drop interface making it similar to iMovie but has more remarkable features than the latter. Openshot is among the top free video editing software for beginners as it has simple interface yet advanced tools that both make editing efficient. 

If you are editing simple videos with minimal designs and transitions, this is an excellent software for you. With basic functions and advanced features, the learning curve is smooth. 

Highlights:

  • Drag-and-drop interface
  • Library of advanced video effects like filters, chroma-key composite, hues, gamma, and more
  • Unlimited layers
  • Customizable title templates
  • Keyframe animation functions

Cost: Free

Avidemux

(For Windows, macOS, and Linux)

If you are an absolute beginner who seeks to start with a slow-paced approach in your learning curve, Avidemux is your best option. Its interface is pretty straightforward and simple-to-use. It allows basic functions such as trimming, encoding, adding of filters and transitions, and more.

Since this software offers limited features, Avidemux is a great software to introduce oneself in video editing before jumping onto more advanced options. It might be simple, but it gets the job done for essential functions every editor needs to execute.

Highlights:

  • Best for beginners
  • Inclusion of basic editing features
  • Simple interface

Cost: Free

Blender

(For Windows, macOS, and Linux)

You might be familiar with Blender for animation and 3D sculpting, but it also supports editing and rendering of videos. It is an open-source 3D animation suite that can handle adding intermediate edits, effects, compositing, masking, and more. Don’t be overwhelmed for its animation functionality as the software caters to both beginner and intermediate users.

If you are editing videos that need 3D animations, Blender is made for that exact purpose.

Highlights:

  • Best for animated clips
  • Suitable for 3D animation
  • Advanced rendering process
  • A vast library of visual effects and transitions
  • Has up to 32 slots for layering of videos, audios, and effects
  • Key features of live preview, luma waveform, chroma vectorscope, audio mixing, syncing, scrubbing, waveform visualization, histogram display, and color grading
  • Speed controls, filters, adjustment layers, and keyframes

Cost: Free

Beginning your video editing journey doesn’t have to come with an expensive subscription to a paid video editing software. You can definitely wing it through free programs that offer the same functions. Either way, it’s how you inject your creativity that’ll make your content stand out among others.

Ready to pick your first video  editing software? Click here to get started.

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