Making Videos On Old Computers

Although we have access to wonderful Macs on campus, many of us live off campus and must use PCs  in order to complete our class projects. This is not initially a problem. PCs can run the Adobe suite and use most of the same programs we use on Macs in class. However, trouble begins when you have an older PC, perhaps a laptop which is still functioning but not easily upgradeable. If you can’t justify buying a new computer, there is a simple way to get make videos without causing your old one to burst into flames — use a different program!

While I was on Spring Break and away from the University computers, I used Windows Live Movie Maker to produce my rough-cut video. The pros of this method were numerous.

  • Windows Live Movie Maker is free for owners of a newer Windows operating system.
  • WLMM is simple to use. If you’ve used Flip cam software, this is similar.
  • It has the basics — trim, split, fade, cut, add music, etc. WLMM will do it!
  • Creating your final project means clicking “save movie” and selecting your preferred quality/file size.
  • Your clips are saved in their original file types, ready to be used again.

There are, of course, downsides to using WLMM.

  • It’s a Windows product, which means when you download it, it also prompts you to install other unnecessary software.
  • It’s simplistic. Once you get ambitious with your videos, you should graduate to a better, more in-depth program.
  • The final movie file is saved as a WMV. You may need to convert it.
  • Windows likes to play WMV files in Windows Media Player. Bad, if you don’t like WMP.

Overall, Windows Live Movie Maker is a decent alternative to Final Cut or Adobe Premier when your computer is a piece of junk (which you of course love, hate, and would replace in a second if you won the lottery).

I’ve also heard good things about Wax and Zwei-Stein Video Editor, which are both free and offer much more complex manipulation of video files.



~ by katiedigicomp on March 21, 2011.

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