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Best FREE Video Editing Software For Video Creators

Because we love free stuff, and we know you love free stuff, we decided to compile a list of the absolute crème de la crème FREE editing software on the market at this very moment.

A few things to note: all video editing applications featured on this list are available on both Mac and Windows (#inclusion), we’ve only rated professional-grade editors, and for funsies, we’ve ranked them lowest to highest.

Okay, glad we got that cleared up. Now without further ado, let’s dive in!

Blender

Rating 3/5
Available on  Mac, Windows, and Linux

Don’t be fooled by the buzzwords. Just because Blender calls itself an open-source 3D creation suite, it doesn’t mean you regular editors can’t get in on the fun. Yes, the program may come packed to the rafters with complex features for modeling and animation. But at the same time, it also serves up a sturdy video editor equipped with many of the tools one needs to see an post-production project from start to finish, from your basic cutting a cropping, all the way through to chroma vectorscope, audio mixing, and video effects.

That said, we wouldn’t recommend Blender for everyone. If you’re interested in learning the ways of 3D animation, then definitely, this program is a no-brainer. If not, then Blender probably isn’t the amazing, free, professional video editor for you. (But don’t worry, there are plenty more fish in the sea.)

Hitfilm Express  

Rating: 3.5/5
Available on Mac and Windows

As far as professional video editors go, Hitfilm Express ticks all the boxes—or at least nearly all of them. Its basic editor comes packed with an array of features to keep you busy (advanced cutting tools, chroma keying to create green screen effects, audio and video filters, 3D video support, and more). However, when it comes to the more advanced bells and whistles, these will need to be purchased, usually as a part of an add-on package. (Packages start at US$10).

Aside these from the sneaky add-ons, the only other drawback when it comes to Hitfilm Express would be its technical requirements. In order to run the application, your computer will need to meet certain system specifications. Oh, and one more thing: in order to access Hitfilm’s download page, you will be required to share a social media status update first. A little annoying yes, but a small price to pay for an kickass free editor!

Shotcut

Rating: 4/5
Available on Mac, Windows, and Linux

Like Hitfilm Express, Shotcut’s dynamic, cross-platform editor fits snugly in the professional category. It supports a wide range of audio and video formats—including 4K!—and boasts an impressive selection of features that you won’t require charging through multiple pay-walls to get to. Shotcut is an open-source program, meaning once you’ve downloaded it, you’ll have access to ALL its spoils, which includes three-point editing, multitrack timelines, and an abundance of video effects.

Our only complaint would be Shotcut’s interface. Originally designed for Linux, the program operates a little differently to most other editing applications. Nevertheless, anyone who’s willing to put in the time to learn their way around Shotcut won’t be disappointed. For a free editing program, this one delivers the goods!

Lightworks

Rating 4.5/5
Available on Mac, Windows, and Linux

This post production powerhouse is widely-adored in the filmmaking biz and it’s easy to see why. It offers virtually all the features one would find on a paid professional NLE, from world-class trimming to multi-cam editing to a fully-customizable interface.

But you really don’t you need to trawl through the specs to see why this application is so awesome. The fact that Lightworks has been used on some the biggest and bested film productions to roll out of Hollywood over the past few years (think The Wolf of Wall Street, The King Speech, Road to Perdition), provides all the proof you need.

The only downside: the program's limit on output formats. Lightworks only supports export of stock standard web compatible files and Vimeo/YouTube 720p. But should you ever find yourself needing more than this, you can easily upgrade to the Lightworks Pro license for $24.99/month through which you can benefit from the full range of output formats, plus a few extra goodies like Boris Graffiti and FX packages.

DaVinci Resolve

Rating 5/5
Available on Mac, Windows, and Linux

Okay, so in case you haven’t heard, the team over at Blackmagic Design seriously upped its game earlier this year and they did it with the release of DaVinci Resolve 15—the world’s first solution combining offline and online editing, color correction, audio post-production, and visual effects all in the one piece of software.

As part of this game-changing software release, Blackmagic Design also tacked on a free version of Davinci Resolve (huzzah!) which only lacks a few of the features its paid counterpart offers. In doing so, it’s essentially handed consumers a professional-grade editor capable of achieving serious movie magic for literally $0.

With DaVinci Resolve, you get advanced trimming, a fully kitted-out audio mastering suite, multi-cam editing, and la pièce de résistance: DaVinci's legendary color corrector! What’s more, compared to the other advanced video editors on this list, it boasts the easiest-to-use, most intuitive interface.

Long story short, if you’re looking for the best free professional-grade video editor on the market is at this very moment, look no further than DaVinci Resolve. But remember, the video editing world changes fast. So just how much longer DaVinci will hold this position, is anyone’s guess.

And remember guys, the applications we were looking at here today are all free. So if it just so happens that none of them float your boat, or you’re looking for something a little more advanced, then you can always think about stepping up to a paid video editor. And for help with that, be sure to check out our post on the Best Video Editing Software of 2018.

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