Sony Vegas Movie Studio Platinum 8.0
- HDV/AVCHD friendly, huge array of effects and transitions, very easy to use
- Training video is for uber-novices only
This is a feature-rich and user-friendly package that should suit amateurs and semi-professionals alike.
Price$ 239.95 (AUD)
Do you regularly put people to sleep with your short movies? Do your dinner guests share wild looks of panic when you pull out the holiday videos? Do your shots seem to last twice as long as the event you were filming? If this sounds uncomfortably familiar to you, chances are you need a new editing package. A production's final cut is what separates an engaging video from an insomnia curing snore-fest -- no matter how 'smooth' or 'in focus' your footage happens to be. Now up to its eighth iteration, Sony's Vegas Movie Studio will definitely inject your production with the professional pizzazz it needs. Whether you're an occasional dabbler in video or a budding Stanley Kubrick, its wealth of features and ease-of-use make it one of the best editing packages around.
Despite being a stripped-down version of the professional Vegas package, Movie Studio still provides more tools and options than most users will ever need. Over 500 video effects and transitions are included, allowing you to make your movies as stylised or avant-garde as you like. The audio options, which have been reworked with a new multithreaded engine, are also highly extensive, including support for Dolby 5.1 surround sound and the ability to extract audio from CDs. This is one area where many non-professional editing packages fall down, so it's nice to see plenty of advanced options.
Sticking to the by-now standard tri-pane interface, everything is clearly laid out and highly intuitive. Once your footage is captured, editing is a simple matter of selecting a clip and dragging it onto the editing timeline, where effects, titles and transitions can be applied with ease. The menus are particularly helpful and the entire process quickly becomes second nature. (One great feature is the ability to automatically convert 4:3 screen ratios to 16:9 (widescreen) and vice-versa; ensuring your mixed footage will match regardless of what ratio it was shot in.)
As with most editing programs, you can spread the interface over two monitors; a useful option for those who want to take advantage of full-screen previews. Incidentally, the default preview window will still give you a pretty good view of the action, even on medium-sized monitors.
Even those who have never used a video-editing program before will find themselves in good hands thanks to a range of in-depth tutorials; covering everything from colour correction to DVD burning. Unlike certain other tutorials which simply regurgitate the manual, Movie Studio 8.0 features step-by-step instructions built right into the software. This allows virtually anyone to edit with confidence straight from installation. For the truly camera shy, a bonus training DVD has also been included, though we feel it might be a bit too basic for its own good (does anyone really need tips on how to hold a camera?).
As you would expect from an editing package of this pedigree, Vegas Movie Studio supports all the latest video formats and codecs, including AVCHD. This is basically essential in today's digital world, particularly for those with non-tape-based camcorders; such as HDD or DVD. Windows Vista users are also supported.
DVD authoring is where Sony Vegas Movie Studio truly comes into its own. Once again, Sony has bundled DVD Architect Studio (4.5) with the package, which combines functionality with ease-of-use. While it's more powerful and complex than some of its rivals, basic tasks are still quite simple to achieve. A series of easy-to-follow steps will have your movie burnt to DVD, VCD or CD in no time -- you can even export directly to a Sony PSP, or reformat files for use on your iPod.
All up, this is a comprehensive editing package that we feel no hesitation in recommending. It strikes an admirable balance between complexity and ease-of-use, making it ideal for any type of user.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Lexar® Portable SSD
Acer Swift 7
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Surface Pro 4
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 2 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
- 3 Panasonic Blu-ray recorder PVR set-top box review
- 4 Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 5 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
Latest News Articles
- 10 powerful, obscure Windows keyboard shortcuts you should know
- Microsoft delays tools for third-party Cortana integrations
- Samsung unveils Bixby voice assistant for upcoming Galaxy S8
- Pwn2Own hacking contest ends with two virtual machine escapes
- It's time to turn on HTTPS: the benefits are well worth the effort
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- Subaru XV 2017 review
- LG G6: unboxing, hands on review and detail shots
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- FTApplication Team Lead - ERP & Microsoft TechnologiesNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystQLD
- FTJava Developer - Short team Contract @ CanberraVIC
- FTProduct Manager - FintechNSW
- TPAgile Implementation LeadNSW
- CCSofware Developer/Architect - Media and telco Network Operations - MelbourneVIC
- FTLinux System AdminstratorQLD
- CCEnterprise/Solution ArchitectNSW
- CCSAP BPC SME/Consultant - BRISBANE BASEDQLD
- CCSenior Project ManagerNSW
- TPSolution Architect - Integration - Bespoke ProjectQLD
- CCSenior Full Stack Web Developer - Port MacquarieQLD
- TPProject Manager - Digital Banking ProjectQLD
- FTService Desk Operators (Part time and Full Time)SA
- TPUnix- Technical Support OfficerVIC
- FTManager Portfolio PlanningQLD
- FTSenior Marketing Analyst | Immediate startVIC
- FTRuby on Rails DeveloperQLD
- FTTest AdvertSA
- FTAutomation Test AnalystSA
- FTHelpdesk TechnicianVIC
- CCSenior Teradata Developer/Analyst Programmer - Financial - Contract - ParramattaNSW
- CCBusiness Analyst - ForecastingNSW
- CCSenior Full Stack Web Developer - Port MacquarieNSW