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Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD 11 review

Vegas HD
Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £30
inc VAT

There could be better signposting of key features, but Vegas's combination of sublime video-editing tools and a very low price add up to a great deal

Five short years ago when home videos were shot on tape, editing software was vital to help you, after having transferred the whole tape to your PC, identify the best clips and cut out the dross. Today’s tapeless cameras make it easy to delete dud clips, watch the good ones on a PC and upload the best straight to YouTube. Now that YouTube lets users top and tail, stabilise and apply effects to videos after upload, there’s little incentive to spend up to £100 on editing software.

Vegas Movie Studio HD 11 is for people who might otherwise do without an editor. It’s based on our current Best Buy, Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 11 but at a lower price and with various features stripped out.

Some of these – 3D editing, surround-sound mixing, XDCAM support – won’t be missed by the vast majority of people whose cameras don’t demand these functions. DVD and Blu-ray authoring is a more significant omission, but these formats are looking increasingly obsolete with the rise of web-based sharing and networked TVs.

Vegas HD

Movie Studio Platinum’s main editing functions remain largely unscathed, with 10 video tracks and support for 1080p video up to 60fps. Its responsive, intuitive controls make light work of truncating and ordering clips, adding text and applying transitions. The effects library is superb, and it can upload directly to YouTube at 1080p.

The Show Me How tutorials give quick overviews of key functions, but they could go further. One tutorial shows where the Project Properties panel is, but not what any of the settings mean or how to match them to your footage. Text overlays are tucked away under the Media Generators tab, and the iPad export template is filed under MainConcept AVC/AAC. The overall air of business-like precision doesn’t have the cosy home-oriented feel of some editors, but after a short initial learning curve, it quickly becomes the quickest and easiest to use of any video editor we’ve seen.

Anyone who’s serious about video should go for Movie Studio Platinum, which costs just £44 including VAT at However, for casual users, this version’s efficient controls and low price make it the ideal choice.


Price £30
Rating ****

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