The problem may well be that my all-in-one Lenovo isn’t quite up to the task of rendering video and audio edits in real time; you could also make a fairly compelling case that I barely know what I’m doing. The fact is, I really, really wanted to tell you how easy it is to edit and render video with Ubuntu Linux, but I’m not sure I can — at least not yet.
Here’s how I got on with three popular video editors…
OpenShot seemed at first glance like the Linux equivalent to iMovie — an earlier version, I mean; iMovie’s latest interface is a lot like Kino’s, in that I don’t really understand it at all.
In my brief testing OpenShot suffered from two minor issues:
- It crashed constantly;
- It wouldn’t save any of my edits before it went down.
In retrospect I think the app might have been busy rendering audio waveforms (something I noticed the next candidate doing), but there was no visual indication of any critical processes going on. Ever.
I had a much better experience with PiTiVi, and can see why it’s now the default video editor in Ubuntu Lucid. The interface is more towards that of Final Cut Pro, without the extra clutter. And the export options for audio and video alike are simply staggering.
Unfortunately it’s currently a cuts-only product.
Yup, you read correctly — there are, at present, no available transitions beyond straight cuts. PiTiVi is designed to have such basic functionality added via plug-ins, but nobody seems to have written any yet.
In desperation I turned to Open Movie Editor, knowing full well that it was abandonware (the author ceased active development on it late last year). I figured that if it was still the bundled editing app in Ubuntu Studio that it must be doing something right.
Unfortunately I couldn’t get the audio in any of my imported clips to play back, let alone get any of the fancy transitions to work.
I’m down but not out, as there are at least three more Linux video editors but a download away:
LiVES is really a video tool for DJs, isn’t it? I’m willing to give it a go anyway, unless someone tells me not to.
Cinelerra honestly scares me. The steep learning curve is one thing, but what I’m really worried about is that installing it will break my delicate sound setup and I won’t be able to figure out how to fix it.
I’m not giving up on this challenge just yet; look for part two of this continuing saga soon. In the meantime if you care to help me out with some sage advice please do so in the comments below.