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Magix Movie Edit Pro 17 Plus HD review

Ben Pitt
26 Jan 2011
Magix 3D
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
63
inc VAT

Impressive new 3D editing facilities are the highlight of this capable editor, but it’s still not as polished as it could be.

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The name of Magix’s video-editing software reads more like an exercise in search engine optimisation than branding. The same could be said of its features, which are stacked to the rafters in an attempt to satisfy as many potential customers as possible. In earlier versions this lead to an untidy, disjointed interface, but more recently Magix has got its act together, presenting tidier controls that focus on core editing tasks.

Magix 3D

The big news for version 17 is 3D support. Tying in with recent launches of 3D cameras such as the Fujifilm Real 3D W3, Movie Edit Pro imports footage from these cameras and provides various ways to preview the 3D effect.

The easiest is to select Anaglyph View and use the red-cyan 3D glasses included in the box. We found these glasses a little disorienting and the original colours in footage became muted, but otherwise the 3D effect was pretty convincing. There’s also support for 3D monitors that use polarised or active shutter glasses, although we didn’t have the opportunity to try these with the software.

Options for editing in 3D are surprisingly sophisticated. There’s an automatic alignment function for fine-tuning the stereoscopic effect with a single click, plus various controls for aligning footage manually. This proved highly effective in restoring the parallax correction that was lost when we uploaded the Fujifilm W3’s photos to the PC. It also worked for videos shot with the Panasonic SDT750 but was strangely unavailable for the W3’s videos.

This automatic alignment came into its own when editing 3D clips shot with a pair of conventional cameras. We strapped two cameras together on a crossbar and were pleasantly surprised to find that the resulting 3D footage was borderline successful. Movie Edit Pro even synchronised the two clips automatically based on their soundtracks. There’s not much scope for creative 3D manipulation, with just a solitary Stereo depth control for moving layers in and out of the screen. However, a range of 3D text designs are included, based on the Xara 3D engine.

3D export is either in anaglyph or side-by-side modes. The latter uses a split screen for the left and right images, and can be burned to DVD, AVCHD or Blu-ray disc (3D TVs can be set to interpret a side-by-side source as a 3D image). It’s also possible to upload side-by-side exports to YouTube, and with some deft use of tags, allow others to watch them using a range of 3D viewing techniques – see tinyurl.com/youtube3Dtag.

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