Step 3: 
Post Production 

Video Editing 

What Software Do I Use?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions in the post production process. While many people are familiar with the phrase "fix it in post," not many people know what they should use to actually "fix it."

Once we have collected the video content from our camera, we need to use a video editing program to cut, remove, add, or alter our footage to fit our vision. This is where our video project really comes together.

Below we have a quick breakdown of all the programs available for use at Student Multimedia Studio open lab space. 

Video Editing Software

Difficulty Level: EASY
Comes preloaded with most Mac computers 
MAC OS only

iMovie is a great program to start off with if you are brand new to video editing. iMovie's intuitive design and use of visuals means that you won't get lost in the weeds of what this program can do. This software is easy to use and is SMS' first choice for people who are new to the video production process. 
Windows users are out of luck, however, this program can only be found on the Apple App store.

Difficulty Level: MEDIUM
Free online download, great low budget alternative to Premiere Pro

While Da Vinci Resolve doesn't have the cult following like Premiere Pro...yet, it's recent updates have made it a strong competitor -- and it's unbeatable price of FREE makes this a tantalizing option. Da Vinci's step by step layout walks you through your video step by step and provides as many free titles and assets as Premiere or iMovie. 

SMS has recently started supporting Da Vinci -- so expect to see the program in our open labs and tutorials soon. 

Find it here:

Difficulty Level: HARD
Only available on SMS computers or Monthly Fee

If you are more familiar with video editing concepts, or if you are eager to begin a career in video editing, we suggest you look no further. Premiere Pro is used everywhere from beginners to Hollywood professionals. The program can be initially daunting, but once you get comfortable, lots of options and possibilities open up.  This program allows you adjust every detail down to the pixel. 

Find it here:

Difficulty Level: Medium
$300 single purchase on Apple App Store
MAC OS only

Final Cut Pro is an excellent upgrade from Apple's iMovie. Where iMovie's prebuilt templates can be limiting, Final Cut allows for manual controls of pre-loaded graphic templates, and a wider selection of thematic elements.  While expensive right away, this one time purchase means that the program will 'pay for itself' quickly, and updates to the program will always come free; therefore making this option more economical in the long run against it's Adobe competitor. 

Final Cut Pro X is a commonly used program by newcomers and experts alike, and is a favorite of social media influencers and documentary filmmakers. 
Windows users are out of luck, however, this program can only be found on the Apple App store.
Find it here:
Apple App Store


Photo Editing Software 

Taking photos is one thing, but making them pop takes the right tools. If you don't have photo editing software on your device, we suggest these options. 


Pixlr is a free online photo editor with lots of tools, add ons, and ways to make your photo pop. This is also a good tool to use to crop, or resize your photos to exact dimensions



We've mentioned Canva before on our site, and to know that it has a photo editing tool is an extra bonus. Not as many options for flair as Pilxr, but we like the interface


Adobe Photoshop

For those of you who want a challenge, or want to learn photo editing skills like the pros, you have to use the program that the pros use. 
Adobe Photoshop is a paid subscription. You can find Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom together for $10 per month or the entire Adobe Creative Cloud Suite for $20 per month


Audio Editing 

Not all recordings are created equal, and not every recording is ready for the podcast.

Trimming, cleaning, and adding backing track music can take your podcast assignment to the next level. 

We recommend the following software: 


Difficulty: Medium
Cost: Free

Intro to Audacity


Adobe Audition

Difficulty: Hard
Cost: $20 per month (Part of Adobe Creative Cloud Suite) 

Intro to AuditionAdvanced Audition