Event DV Vegas VelocityOur Battle of the Software NLEs series continues with a look at two key effects for pro video editors: slow motion and image stabilization. While slow motion is popularly used to enhance detail during action shots and add drama, image stabilization is more of a corrective, reducing shakiness on footage that couldn’t be shot with a tripod. Once again, we face off our five familiar contenders: Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro, Avid Xpress Pro, Pinnacle Liquid Edition, and Sony Vegas. Welcome back to our four-part series on software NLE performance and workflow. In the first two installments we explored chromakey and overlay, followed by HDV editing. In this episode, we'll turn our attention to two essential features that often have been lacking in mainstream prosumer nonlinear editors: slow motion (a.k.a. motion control) and image stabilization. In earlier articles exploring the more sophisticated and pro-centric features of NLEs, such as Stephen F. Nathans' "Pro Tools, Pro Tasks" (March, pp. 22-29), we've found NLE vendors pointing us to third-party plug-ins and other alternative sources for most effective motion control and stabilization performance. In some cases, these plug-ins have been cheap and accessible and fit well into existing workflow; in other cases, they've tipped the cost and usability scales away from the NLE in question. read more...

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