All products and services featured by IndieWire are independently selected by IndieWire editors. However, IndieWire may receive a commission on orders placed through its retail links, and the retailer may receive certain auditable data for accounting purposes.
Products featured are independently selected by our editorial team and we may earn a commission from purchases made from our links.
Whether you’re an aspiring YouTuber or a seasoned professional videographer or filmmaker, you know that producing quality content requires top-notch editing. That’s why we’ve rounded up a selection of high-quality editing software, all available to purchase on Amazon, beloved by industry insiders and newcomers alike.
Some of the programs are better for less experienced folks, while others are geared toward professionals who have been doing this for a long time. Some programs come in tiered versions that offer additional features at each level, while others come with a full suite of tools right off the bat.
The purchase models are different, too: Some involve just a single, somewhat pricey download that will last you for years, and others are much more budget-friendly. Adobe offers a monthly subscription that provides you with immediate access to the latest features as soon as they’re available.
One thing to note: Most of these programs are made for PCs, but only some of them are compatible with Macs so be sure to note the operating system requirements for each program. (And some only run on Windows 10, so if you have an older version you’ll want to choose software that is compatible with older versions of Windows.)
Read on to figure out which one is best for you.
Price: $239.88 per year or $20.99 billed monthly; or $31.49 for a monthly subscription that can be canceled at any time.
Adobe’s Premiere Pro CC (a.k.a. the most recent version of the creative software company’s pro-level editing suite) is one of the most-used professional editing tools for a reason. Premiere Pro is used by top-level Hollywood filmmakers, TV editors, YouTubers, and more, and allows editing in any modern format (from 8K to virtual reality). The video editing software for film, TV, and online allows users to edit raw footage, adjust color, refine audio, and more. And with the Creative Cloud subscription, users get instant access to new features as soon as the company releases them.
Some recent new additions: Auto Reframe, which “helps accelerate your workflow and optimize footage for social media with intelligent reframing powered by Adobe Sensei, that keeps important content in frame, whether it’s square, vertical, 16:9, or in 4K resolution;” Lumetri Color tools for easy curve adjustments; the ability to search, preview, license, and download Adobe Stock audio tracks entirely within the program; and Scene Edit Detection that “identifies original edit points automatically,” allowing users to add cuts or markers, create subclips, and apply adjustments.
Premiere Pro also works seamlessly with other apps including After Effects, Adobe Audition, and Adobe Stock. It comes with Premiere Rush, a app that allows you to film, edit, and post to social entirely from your phone, or you can open the file in Premiere Pro and work on your desktop.
Amazon’s auto-billing feature will deduct the subscription cost monthly throughout your term, and it renews automatically. Premiere Pro CC is compatible with Mac OS Sierra 10.12, Windows 10, and Mac OS X.
If you’re not quite ready for the expert-level Premiere Pro experience, Adobe Premiere Elements is perfectly suited for beginners. The video editor allows users to quickly make simple videos using Adobe’s automated technology that will, for example, turn grainy low-light clips into crisp videos using the Reduce Noise effect. For more adventurous edits, including time lapse videos, animated GIFs, video collages, slideshows, and even full-length movies, there are 23 step-by-step guided edits.
Instead of a subscription model, this is a one-time purchase and can be installed via CD-ROM or separate download for Mac or PC. It does not require internet for most features (at least not after the initial install), so it can be used offline, and it can be installed on up to two personal computers for non-concurrent use.
You can also purchase a package that includes both Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 and Adobe Photoshop Elements 2020 for just $148.88.
The latest version of this powerful video editing suite seamlessly integrates Vegas Pro, Vegas Prepare (which allows you to organize all your files into libraries and collections, which can then be accessed via Vegas Pro), and Sound Forge Pro (a high-level program for audio editing, repair, and mastering) for a smooth, comprehensive video editing experience for professionals. Vegas Pro uses AI-driven tools (imitate Picasso or Van Gogh with Style Transfer), industry-leading GPU acceleration, and flexible and intuitive color grading options. Vegas Pro also comes with planar motion tracking, industry-leading HDR support, as well as powerful plugin management.
This is a system built for professionals, and the price reflects that. System requirements include Microsoft Windows 10, a 4-core 2.5 GHz processor (or 8-core 3.0 GHz processor for 4K) and 8 GB RAM; you’ll also need an internal sound card and 1.5 GB free for program installation.
The most recent version of this HD, 4K, and 360 video editing software includes quick templates and intuitive features. Use more than 1500 video filters and effects (plus new creative overlays, titles, and backgrounds), and access tools including screen recording, stop motion animation, DVD menu creation, green screen effects, drag-and-drop titles, transitions, and overlays, and more. You can upload directly to YouTube or Vimeo, burn to DVD, or export to most popular file formats. Access a selection of royalty free music from within the program, and combine photos, videos, and audio across multiple tracks.
System requirements include Windows 7, 8, or 10; a 64-bit processor; 4GB of memory; and 6 GB of available storage space. Your purchase includes the video editing software, screen recorder, slideshow maker, and DVD menu creator. You can also access three collections of premium effects from NewBlue, Boris, and ProDAD. An internet connection is required for installation, registration, and updates, but not to access all the features.
The Ultimate version of Corel’s 2020 release is just $20 more and includes more than 15 collections of premium effects from NewBlue, Boris, and ProDAD, increasing the number of video filters and effects available to more than 2000. MultiCam editing is upped from four cameras to six, full color grading controls, video mask creator, morph and seamless transitions, video stabilization, and more special features. It also comes with a free copy of PhotoMirage Express, worth about $50, that you can use to create photo animations in minutes. Your download includes the video editing software, screen recorder, slideshow maker, DVD menu creator, and premium effects collections.
Each copy of the intuitive, creative software is downloadable on one machine only, and it has pretty much the same system requirements as VideoStudio Pro (so Windows 7, 8, or 10; a 64-bit processor; 4GB of memory; and 10 GB of available storage space). Because it does not need to be renewed, your purchase is good for as long as computer operating systems will continue to support it.
Price: $129.99; the Ultra version is available for $79.99, and a combination of the Ultra version and PhotoDirector 11 is available for $109.99.
This video editing software offers professional tools and high-end performance capabilities for creators and aspiring content producers, including impressive motion graphics and animated titles, completely customizable vector shapes with auto-fit text and keyframe controls, and an improved Chroma Key engine for green screen editing.
While the most basic versions of PowerDirector 18 include standard video editing features like Express projects, video collage, and action camera center, the Ultimate version comes with advanced video editing features including shape designer, 4K preview, audio scrubbing, and 10 bit HDR import.
All versions include 25GB of cloud storage for a year, as well as 50 tracks of background music and 100 sound clips. You’ll get four packs of premium video plug-ins and effects from NewBlueFX, proDAD and BorisFX with Ultra, while the Ultimate version comes with six packs.
Price: $89.99 for a one-year subscription.
Complete all your professional video, audio, and photo editing with CyberLink’s Director Suite, a complete editing studio that includes the latest versions of PowerDirector, PhotoDirector, Audio Director, and Color Director with round-trip editing support. You’ll also get access to the Director Suite learning center, which includes free video tutorials, webinars, and guides to help you make the most of your purchase. Even more than PowerDirector Ultra or Ultimate, the Director Suite offers more than 50 packs of premium video plug-ins and effects, plus eight packs of third party plug-ins and effects from NewBlueFX, proDAD, and BorisFX. You’ll get more than 190 tracks of background music and more than 480 sound clips, plus 100GB of cloud storage for a year. That’s all in addition to PhotoDirector 11 Ultra for photo editing, AudioDirector 10 for Audio Editing, and ColorDirector 8 for color grading.