Video editing is a field that is typically something that is both very specialized and very expensive. But this is a trend that CyberLink is looking to buck with its Essential version of PowerDirector 365. THe video editing suites is available completely free of charge, and while it obviously does not include all of the features and tools found in the paid-for editions, it has more than enough for most people to, at the very least, get started in the world of video editing and creation.
There is a choice of timeline or storyboard interface deepening on how you prefer to work, and you can use the program to combine audio, video and images into all sort of creative projects. In addition to basic video editing options such as arranging clips, trimming and tweaking colors and sound, you can also work with a wide range of special effects and transitions to give your projects a professional feel.
To help take your creations to another level, it is possible to add video overlays and particle effects. For creatives looking to make tutorials, vlogs and other projects, there is a dedicated voiceover recording option that make everything as simple as possible. There's support for a range of aspect ratios, lots of file formats are supported for importing.
If you are intimidated by the idea of working with video editing software, the ability to try out a high quality program such as this without parting with any money is hugely appealing. To help you to get started, there are all manner of tutorials available so you can quickly get to grips with the various tool and options that are on offer.
Should you find that there is something you want to achieve that's not catered for out of the box, support for a range of plugins means it is possible to vastly extend the capability of the program,
As this is a free tool, however, it does mean that some of the features found in the paid-for editions of the software are not available. Perhaps the biggest downside of the free Essential edition, however, is that exported videos are watermarked. In many instances this will not represent a problem, but it might be enough to encourage you to part with some cash and upgrade to another edition.
The program is available for both Windows and macOS, which is great news for anyone who either wants or needs to work across platforms.
Coming from CyberLink, it is little wonder that PowerDirector impresses. While it is fair to say that the program will not meet the needs of professional users or demanding creatives, it is more than sufficient for the majority of people. At worst it serves as a great introduction to the paid-for version of the editor, giving you the opportunity to take it for a test drive without making a financial commitment. But it's also an incredible piece of software in its own right, and the fact that it is available free of charge is pleasing and impressive.