March 25th, 2008

Video editing software recs for relative beginners?

Hi, all:

I've been vidding for about 6 months using WMM, and I've made over 60 vids this way.

However, I've now reached the point that I've become frustrated with WMM's restrictions and I'm looking for another editing program that is a bit more sophisticated in its range of features and options but that is still quite easy and intuitive to use for a relative beginner who's not particularly techy or patient.

I've had one recommendation for Sony Vegas 8, which looks like it might be appropriate.  But I'm open to other suggestions.

My most important requirements for a new software program are:

1. It provides a "pan/scan" function that will easily allow me to crop 16:9 ratio clips to fit a 4:3 frame, so that I can mix material from different sources.  (This was the deal-breaker for me and WMM, which can't do this.)

2. It's easy and obvious to use, not requiring a lot of technical knowledge or aptitude. (Which was WMM's original appeal.)

3. When I import an .avi file to the program, it will automatically segment the file into smaller "clips", hopefully at the point of scene changes, and provide a visual inventory of these "clips" in the form of thumbnails. (Just as WMM does)  

So, with those requirements in mind, what editing software would people recommend I get?

Cheers, Pyrate Anny