Creating your own movies out of your home videos or even editing more complex projects in a pro-looking environment is what VideoPad Video Editor offers to both amateur and more experienced users. It comes with an extensive set of tools that will let you edit both your video and audio streams, a timeline for you to arrange your media files, and a nice set of transitions and effects to help you give your personal touch to your movies.
At first sight, VideoPad’s interface may seem too complicated and cluttered for novice users and maybe a bit amateurish for professionals. After browsing the program’s functions and features, I still have the impression of facing some sort of in-between functionality. For one thing, amateur users will search for a straightforward slideshow maker or a disc burning tool with template-based DVD authoring capabilities to no avail, while pro users will look for the surround sound settings with the same success. (Note that some of these functions are performed by other NCH apps, which you will be asked to download, install, and use in conjunction with VideoPad.) Not that these limitations at both ends of the functionality spectrum make this app a useless tool – there are ways of making your own slideshows and of burning your discs using VideoPad and, most probably, the majority of users of media editing tools are in-between users. It just makes it harder to categorize, while looking at this app from this not-here-not-there point of view creates more opportunity for surprise.
The program’s support for video codecs and resolutions goes from 3GP files for your smartphone to 4K (2160p and above) for high-definition movies, with a wide range of formats in between. It supports both 2D and 3D stereoscopic video editing, allows you to add subtitles to your movies and to use a chroma key green screen to customize the background, as well as add text and movie credits to your productions. Effects, transitions, and filters are also well represented, and you are free to combine them as you wish and save them as custom templates for future use. You can speed, slow down, and reverse the video playback; mix all types of media using the timeline, and preview the results in its built-in media player.
As for the audio, this app supports various lossy and lossless formats and offers you a waveform graphical interface for a more accurate and intuitive editing. You can use the program’s multi-track mixer to produce your own soundtrack, and even add your own voiceover narration to it thanks to its internal audio recorder.
The more you explore the program’s capabilities, the more you realize that this in-between approach is more of a blessing than a curse. It may not be at Hollywood level, but for a fraction of the price you pay for those you are getting much, much more than a slideshow maker with DVD authoring capabilities. Regrettably, and unlike many other NCH brilliant tools, VideoPad Video Editor doesn’t offer a fully-functional free edition for those with no commercial intent. Instead, you will find a Home Edition limited to two audio tracks per project and no support for external plug-ins, and the Master’s Edition with all its functionality intact.