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Alternatives to Pinnacle Studio Are there competitors to Pinnacle Studio ?

In 2014, are there alternatives to Pinnacle Studio for nonlinear video editing ? Yes, of course.

But does it worth it ? Has the competitor less bugs ? Is it better elsewhere ? Do you have all features that we know on Pinnacle Studio ? Should we learn everything again, in a new environment, is it difficult to jump to the competitor ? Are we coming back to Pinnacle Studio after been with the competitor ? If yes, why, if not, why not ? Effects / titles are they as good as Studio ? Are there plugins ? What about proDAD, RedGiant, SmartSound and Scorefitter ? Are forums user friendly, can we find help ? Is support/helpdesk free ? Is it of good level ? Are there any websites similar to ours, which provides tips, tricks and tutorials ? Does it make sense to use Pinnacle Studio for some features and competitor for other features ...


Here's a whole bunch of questions that we are entitled to ask in 2014, when we begin to have some problems with our favorite software. I do not have all answers to these questions, or even if it's interesting to go further. This article was written as a result of various conversations / comments I've read here in our comments section, and I thought it was time to group all those kind of discussion into one article, so that everyone can join and participate, to discuss on the topic, but being correct and constructive (we will not hesitate to moderate comments that we deem inappropriate). The idea is to have a healthy competition. In the past, we wrote a similar article: A competitor for Pinnacle Studio 15 ?


So if you have ideas , if you have experiences to share, comments below are right for you. The idea is not to criticize any of the software or the other, but to know which one is doing better and what are the interesting features. Following these discussions, we'll see if we make a compilation and if it's interesting to go further...

Let's join the comment section below...

PS: the size and order of the logo at the left is done in alphabetical order.

Actions: E-mail | Permalink | Comments (21) |


Monday, May 12, 2014 10:42 AM
I guess I will be first. Let me start by saying I cut my teeth with Pinnacle DV500 and Premiere. Then went to Pinnacle Edition, then Pinnacle Liquid to Avid Liquid. I also had Studio from version 9. Every version. Editing with Premiere and Liquid, you edit with everything in reverse. Titles go over the video. Overlays are just that, overlayed on the video. With Pinnacle Studio legacy (8-15), it was reversed. Titles and overlays are UNDER the main video track. Studio was good for a lot of people. Easy to use, fairly stable. But competition grew and didn't stop. With Avid Studio, I was sort of happy. Back to editing the way I feel comfortable. Then PS16 (Corel bought it when it was Avid Studio v2). Now PS17, which has been problematic in functioning for a lot of people.
With that said, I decided to see what others offered. I bought PowerDirector 12U and VideoStudioPro X6U. I downloaded trials of Magix MovieEditPro and their Pro X6. I also have Lightworks 11.5 64bit. I wanted features in those others that were not available in PS. Multicam. Mercalli. Secondary color correction, and to see if 64bit actually made a difference in the "here and now" with the editing I do. Each has limitations in the fact that OVERLAYS are UNDER the main video track. I hate it. Multicam with sync works with PD12U better than either Magix. VSP has Mercalli, Boris and dynamic timewarping and subtitling. But I still go back to PS, in spite of some of it's maddening issues. I can edit very fast with it, and as long as I make incremental saves, I am good to go. My computer is fast with lots of RAM, but I would like features in the other programs available even if there were a price increase. You can say that I am very comfortable with PS and I like the way it works (when it is) for me. If I had to put an order of "liking", PS16/17U first, VSP X6 second, Magix X6/MEP third and PD12U last (which only limits you to 2500 assets at one time). There is so much to like about PS16/17 if it only worked as advertised. One can only hope.
Priscilla Gwilt
#Priscilla Gwilt
Monday, May 12, 2014 10:57 AM
I have used PS since verson 10, upgrading each time to Avid (15) then they went back to PS 17. I'm still with Avid Studio, and have really liked it. But just last week, looked at reviews and found Cyberlink... much cheaper to buy than upgrade, and it had several features that I loved... motion, their sound editor. and multi cam. Yes, it does reverse the order I am used to using, and may take some learning, so will play with it and see if it is a full cross over or will use both programs. Haven't even thought about changing till now, so funny this discussion comes up.
Monday, May 12, 2014 1:07 PM
@Priscilla... I use the programs as tools. I needed multicam with sync. PD12 was able to sync my 3 cameras just fine. Only problem is, PD is not "my" cup of tea. So, it sits there doing nothing. Do not believe all the "review" hype for PD as being the "fastest". The bubble was burst with PS16 rendering faster and it has far more editing tools (I really don't need zillions of, to me, useless transitions, etc). Download the trial and give it a good workout before making a decision. I would recommend getting trials for everything and see what makes "you" happy. I'll set up a multicam shoot on PD and then bring it into PS. Now, if PS had those features and few more.....
Monday, May 12, 2014 2:10 PM
My experience is not as broad as TonyP but it is similar and my conclusions are the same. Stay with Pinnacle. I believe Avid did us all a favor and jumped PS up a notch which was a little difficult to get used to but now feels natural. I have tried others and it doesn't take long before feeling deprived and I'm looking to go back to PS. I should disclose I have not migrated to PS17. Early problems and meager improvements kept me away. PS16 meets my skill/effort levels. I’ll upgrade for stability, disc menus, 64 bit speed bump and sound resources, more montages. I believe Corel stumbled out of the gate but now is not the time for me to jump ship.
Monday, May 12, 2014 4:30 PM
I have used PS since version 7. Bought every one of them and love it, but having said that, HATE Studio 16, and now 17. I can't even import my files without feeling stressed. Why fiddle with a great product? Since then, in frustration and rage, I have bought Corel VideoStudio ProX7 and am getting used to it. Nice introductions, very easy to make a quick movie, middles, exits, and Mercelli!!! Love the different DVD menus too. You have no idea how bored I am with the current batch in PS! I often make a movie, stabilized, then import it back into SP 15 which I can do in my sleep. So easy! I know exactly which transitions are where, and I can easily find my music, sound effects etc. I really want to love PS 17, but my guts just go into a knot every time I open it. Hate it, with a passion. :( *sobs
Monday, May 12, 2014 4:38 PM
@Pattycam, they did not "fiddle" with a great product. There was Avid Studio and S15. Avid sold Pinnacle to Corel while Avid Studio 2 was being developed. So, instead of Corel continuing support for a competing product (Studio), they ended it. But think, when was the last time Pinnacle had any patches for Studio? S14? No. S15? No. So, Corel used the Studio name and renamed Avid Studio to Pinnacle Studio. There you have it. Yes, for someone using it on weekends only, it is a more complex product. But after Avid Studio, I dumped S15 and haven't looked back. But I know how you feel about PS17... there is always that nagging feeling that it is going to crash... But with PS16, it was darn stable. At least Corel has put out a ton of patches (you remember S10?) to try and fix it. Problem is, it should not have been released in the first place in this condition.
Monday, May 12, 2014 4:43 PM
Oh Tony, you know what I mean. They completely turned PS on it's head! And I note there have already been 3 patches for PS17. Sheesh. I miss the timeline 'drag' feature, and easily finding my transitions. I'll persist with it, but boy, it's an effort! Just keep your fingers crossed PS 15 remains. " for someone using it on weekends only" - ouch! :)
Peter Dort
#Peter Dort
Monday, May 12, 2014 5:04 PM
I changed over from PS17Ult to Adobe Premiere CS6 suite and I wont be going back. I gave away PS17U but retained PS14U & PS17U for the older movies. CS6 is far superior in their feature range but I love Mercalli as a plug in. Aucun regret
Monday, May 12, 2014 7:34 PM
Man I LOVE studio 17.
I am one of the lucky ones who hasn't had problems (Yet) I jumped from 15 into 17 and yes, Wholly cow! It's so different. Things are in different places and I waste time looking for them, but when I do, I add it to my "favorites" folder. I would like a "Pro" version which would have "Motion tracking" Multi cam with audio sync. The ability to create and use masks would also be beneficial to me. Better Audio editing facilities would help. Really do miss the audio sliders that were in 15 and I have absolutely no need for all those transitions. Cross fade is all I use when I need one.
I love the limitless number of timeline tracks. Did a 40 second intro using 2 for music, 2 for video, 3 for sound effects, 8 for title (layered over the top of each other) with a heap of key framing (motion tracking would have been so much easier) and three tracks for photo montage. Couldn't do that in S15 !! And S17 handled all of that with no effort.
I would have to do so many work around's in S15. Make so many clips and re-introduce them into the time line - OMG How did I cope with the previous versions of Studio?

Looking at using Photoshop CS6 to do major enhancements to the video. CS6 is fantastic for this, especially with the oh so easy use of masks. It is also easy for doing special effects /enhancements with masks. It's editing capabilities are basic, but I will be using it for its enhancement power!

Pattycam, I understand your horror. S17 is soooo different to P15, but that's all it is - Different. Things are in different places. Though I do admit I am having trouble getting S17 to "See" some of my third party plug ins. Mercalli and NewBlue especially. I am just going to look-up some of Declic's tutorials and get them in there, in the meantime I'll use S15 to do it, save and import into 17.

There are two ways you can learn S17.
1) Be like me and Play, play, experiment and play - just like I did with all the other versions

2) COME TO Beerwah Grafx Group on Thursdays and be shown!!!!!!!!
Monday, May 12, 2014 7:42 PM
Aha!! Good advice Pete aka Videoman. Yes, I like the fact there are more tracks etc, but it makes my brain hurt and I don't like it. *hands on hips, lol. The one thing I will say against Corel is that when I use an image - it doesn't tell me! No orange tick. Hmp!
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 4:16 AM
@Peter v Dort , how much did Adobe CS6 cost you? It really isn't fair comparing a pro app to a consumer app. That would be like me comparing Media Composer, Edius or Vegas Pro to PS17. Different apps for different needs. If you need the pro features (and the learning curve to go with it), then by all means, go that route. For me, those days are over and I have no need for a pro app and certainly do not want to spend all that money (and subscription in Adobe's case) for what is now just a hobby to me.

@videoman3857, if you have NewBlue working in other earlier versions of Studio, they will work in PS17. BUT, there are certain ones that will not work with PS such as Equalizer, and Lightning. I do have LightBlends, and Essentials I & II working just fine. I also have proDAD Vitascene V2 working also. You just have to know when installing them, which directory they go in.
Peter v Dort
#Peter v Dort
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 4:30 AM
TonyP, I bought the CS6 Production Suite. Glad I did. Though I am still learning the workings of the full package, I like it. I was not comparing the two but why not, I asked myself? I enjoy working with these programs. I am not using the Cloud and am against the idea of it. I bought the last CS6 package. In 3 years time they will discontinue and subject their customers to 'renting' and I am banking on their customers forcing them to reconsider. That is all.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 6:41 AM
@Peter v Dort, nothing wrong with Adobe CS products. And of course, if you need the added flexibility and features it offers, go with it. I did with Liquid Pro even though there were consumer products out there for far less. But comparing CS to PS is not really fair. Again, what is the cost difference? Comparing CS to MC would be "fair". Same price range and products are designed for that level of work. While you can edit "home videos" with CS, for most people here, it is expensive and overkill. And let's not forget the learning curve. People complained about the learning curve going from S15 to PS16. Think about going to CS.
But I agree with you about the "cloud". I hate the idea of "renting" and never ever owning. But Adobe is committed to it, so get ready. Others are watching, and there have been even surveys put out by Corel on the same thing. Bummer if it happens....
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:04 AM
@ TonyP and Peter V Dort. You NEVER own computer programs. Read the terms and conditions. You only purchase a licence to use the program. CS cloud in theory is a great idea. You are able to access all the latest up to date versions of their programs for a monthly fee instead of a one off big whack . And provided you have the internet speed and bandwidth it's good to use. IF, you are like me and are limited to slow connection speeds and band width , it's nothing but heart ache.
I am on your side = I hate the idea of a monthly fee etc, etc, etc.
I prefer to purchase a disc and license that will allow me to us the program until I decide when I want to change or upgrade.

CS6 Production suite - lucky you. I desire to learn after effects, but for now my budget will only allow mastering studio 17

I have not re installed New Blue_ was hoping they'd come over. Tried re-installing Mercalli -no luck. Like I said, I'll have to follow DV advice on how to install the plug ins,but I am too busy ; so for now I swap between S 15 and 17
Peter v Dort
#Peter v Dort
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 5:04 PM
Videoman, you are being pedantic. I paid for the software and they sent me a hard disc to install. That is mine. I gave away PS16 to a good friend who is on a learning curve. I retained PS17 for use with my older projects- done on PS series. Don't get me wrong, I cut my teeth on ps9 and then to Movie Box (I seem to recall) and up it went. Like you videoman I wanted to get to Adobe and I took on odd jobs to cover the cost of the software. I am not sorry I went that route. I am now out of this conversation - bye!
Priscilla Gwilt
#Priscilla Gwilt
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 10:42 PM
I have to say I am not upset with Adobe going to subscription. At $50 a month ($600 a year) for every program they have is not a bad deal, as it would be more than that to upgrade regularly. But, I do make my living with Indesign, Photoshop, etc.. so to me it is worth it. But I haven't taken the time to even play with Premire as I know PS and what video I do, needs to be a quick turnaround. I am enjoying playing with the new PD.
Wednesday, May 14, 2014 4:43 AM
When I was a "business", it really didn't matter much on the cost of software. If I needed it to be productive and creative, I got it. It's a business expense and deduction, hence the use of Liquid Pro. Those days are way behind me now and don't need all the stuff (but would still love it at a more prosumer price level) so PS17/16 works for me. The other editors fill in what I need. Mercalli is certainly better at stabilizing than PS17. And Boris (or just about any other editor) produce sharper text in titles than PS17. There are those of us that shoot with more than one camera and need subtitling. It would be nice if there was a mid range product that did that instead of buying several products to achieve it. But it's way less than subscribing to Adobe... at least at the moment......
Monday, July 21, 2014 1:41 PM
Bonjour à tous,
Conclusion après expérimentation de Power Director12 sur un film de 1h45mn:
*PD12 est beaucoup plus rapide que Studio 16 ou17 :gain de 50% dans exporter (ou éditer ).
PD12 est beaucoup plus fiable que Studio : aucun plantage sur toute la durée de l'édition
L'autoring de PD12 n'est pas terrible et bien en dessous de celui de Studio
Il n'est pas possible de créer une image du film à graver avant de le graver
*SI l'on ne peut pas ou souhaite pas morceler son film de longue durée( supérieure à 30mn et à fortiori de l'ordre de 1 à 2h) en séquences de 20 à 30mn il est préférable pour l'édition d'utiliser PD12 quitte à récupérer le fichier créé avec PD12 dans Studio pour la phase d'autoring
*Si l'on accepte de découper son film en séquences max de 15 à 30 mn alors Studio s'impose pour toutes ses fonctionnalités et assistance sites internet
Bonne soirée
Tuesday, July 22, 2014 10:26 PM
I have changed over from Pinnacle 17 to Adobe Production suite CS6 (bought one of the last few before that damn CC thing). I must say that it is a totally different way of going about editing but it is very rewarding indeed to be able to fine tune everything. However, the product on Adobe for stabilising video clips is not as good a ProDad's Mercalli and I am happy to say that it is a plug-In for Adobe too. The variety of plug-Ins are about the same for both software programs. Once in a while I use Pinnacle just to keep the hand in, as it were. I am happy with Adobe, indeed very happy and I keep Pinnacle for nostalgia - as I started with Pinnacle Movie box 9 ( I think). Both are excellent software programs and I can recommend both. However,. I also recommend this web page Declic Video FX to everyone I know, especially those using PInnacle. Thanks for being there fellows!
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 3:47 PM
I have had pritty much all versions of Pinnacle and now going with 17.6. There was a time I wanted more and went with Avid Liqued. From there I went with Avid Composer and spend a lot of money. Composer was great but took a lots of time to learn and even then then was more and more to be learned. Since editing is not my actual work, it was too much. So I went back using PS and was quite satisfied with it - its just that easy to use. With right add-ons, one can do pritty much. But then came PS17. OMG what a software. Nothing works. Titles are total sh*t and there no way that I would publish a video with that title quality that PS17 produces. Ok, once again lets go shopping and go for ProDad products to solve the issue. Then I needed to do some other creative work like printed ads, brochures etc. So I went and joined Adobe Community and bought the creative CC pack with all that staff, like Premiere Pro, After Effect, InDisign etc. Again thats all 100% pro software and you have to pay for that. Now I use AE for some things but I STILL often would like to do work (final) with Pinnacle. One could say are you crazy - maybe I am but it is so user friendly and easy - IF IT WORKS!!. I really hope that PS18 wil be something else than 17. With clear titles and ALPHA CHANNEL capability also for video (not for pics only). OMG, you can find alpha from Adobe elements that costs less than 50€... So you fellows at Pinnacle development - HERE A LOYAL CUSTOMER WHO WANTS TO STAY WITH YOU - make it worthwhile, please!
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 4:00 PM
Well said, Risto.
I too can say HERE A LOYAL CUSTOMER WHO WANTS TO STAY WITH YOU - make it worthwhile, please!

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