Have you ever spent hours editing your video with a free program, only to export it and have the video turn out like this or this? Today we’re going to fix that.
In this article, I’m going to be going over the top five best free video editing software that you can use for your next video.
Now, there’s hundreds of programs you can choose from, so I wanna make sure that I choose the best software, so every single one must meet the following criteria.
Each program must be available for both Windows and Mac.
There must be absolutely no watermarks.
And the program must have all basic functionality available, so you should be able to add a bunch of video clips, trim them, add effects to them, as well as edit the music and text and be able to export it as a full video.
And so with that being said, let’s get started.
DaVinci Resolve 16
Now these programs aren’t being mentioned in any particular, but the first one we’re going to be talking about is DaVinci Resolve 16. And DaVinci Resolve is one of my favorite editors.
It’s available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, and has all of the functionality that you can ask for. You can not only combine clips, edit your video and audio, add transitions and effects, but you can also do some key frame editing as well as color grading.
DaVinci Resolve also has more robust features, such as a frame rate editor, as well as facial recognition, so you can literally make anything you want within this software.
You can also easily export videos in a perfect format for YouTube, and there’s no limitations on the length of the video. I’m actually pretty surprised that all of this is available for free within DaVinci Resolve.
Some Limitations of DaVinci Resolve
Now the biggest limitation is that the maximum resolution you can export videos at is 4K. Unfortunately, you can’t export videos in 8K with the free version, but I can’t see any reason why you’d wanna be exporting videos in 8K in the first place.
You also don’t get all of the facial recognition features and effects in the free version, and you do need a pretty powerful computer, but all in all, with DaVinci Resolve 16, you can literally make 99.9% of the YouTube videos you want to with the free version.
Now, if you have a PC that’s less powerful and you want something that’s web-based, the web-based editor I would recommend is Kapwing.
Kapwing is one of the only online editors I found that has no watermark, so I’m pretty surprised that all of this is available for free.
The only limitation you have is that within the free version, you can’t export videos that are longer than 10 minutes, but I wouldn’t see this as a big restriction.
Next up on the list, we have Shotcut. Shotcut is a really good choice because it is completely free.
It is an open-source editor available for Windows, Macs, and Linux, and you don’t need to operate to any pro version to access all of the features because everything is available in the main version at no cost.
For this reason, if you’re somebody who wants to commit to learning one software that you’re going to be using for a long time, I would recommend Shotcut because you’re never going to have to upgrade to any pro version, and you have a lot of different things that you can do within the software. It has all of the functionality you can ask for.
Not only does Shotcut have all of the video editing features you need, but it’s probably the most robust audio editor on this list as well. Within Shotcut, you can change the pitch, normalize your audio, change the reverb, as well as the speed, and also remove noise.
And so if you’re someone who’s shooting vlogs or music videos, and you have a lot of different audio inputs and you want to make sure that your videos have consistent audio as well, I would highly recommend Shotcut.
The fourth program on this list is Lightworks. Lightworks is also available for Windows, Mac, and Linux.
Lightworks has a variety of different features, including the ability to crop clips, color grade, combine them, add different effects, as well as add different element, adjust pictures and text, right into your video so you can create a cohesive product.
One thing that’s really cool about Lightworks is that it’s optimized for speed. Lightworks ensures that it lags as little as possible, and this is done by having a lot of processes run in the background. So as you’re editing, the videos will automatically be rendering and so everything will be very smooth, fast, and seamless.
However, because this is the case, you do need a powerful computer to be able to run Lightworks, similar to DaVinci Resolve, and one of the limitations of Lightworks is that within the free version, you can only export videos up to 720p, which is still fine because that is HD, but if you’re someone who wants to, you know, be able to export videos at 1080p or 4K for whatever reason, then I would stay away from Lightworks and use the other four alternatives that I mentioned in this article.
HitFilm Express 4
And the last program on this list is HitFilm Express 4. Now HitFilm is very similar to DaVinci Resolve where you can not only do basic edits to your video, but also do very advanced things, such as key frame editing and color grading.
There is no time restrictions on your video exports and you can export all the way up to 4K in the free version. What makes it very different from DaVinci Resolve is that it doesn’t have the option to sync multiple cameras at once. But other than than, HitFilm Express is very solid. You can make basically any YouTube video you want on it.
It doesn’t have any exporting constraints. You can export videos that are over 20 minutes long, and they can be up to 4K, which is perfect for YouTube. And it doesn’t require as much processing power as a program such as DaVinci Resolve. So if you have a less powerful computer, HitFilm Express 4 might be the perfect product for you. But those are all the programs I’m going to be covering for this video.