posted by Eugenia Loli on Sun 7th Dec 2003 07:44 UTC
IconMy husband and I are thinking of buying the Canon Optura Xi camcorder soon (in our opinion, the best DV camera at this range). Because I run so many OSes I always have 'embedded' in me this "thing" to only buy supported hardware by the major OSes. I am sure Optura's DV part will work fine with some Linux tools, but then what? How do I easily edit my... masterpiece and burn DVDs or VCDs via an integrated solution and send them to our families in Greece and France?

With a quick look at the home video editing solutions on Linux today I can only say that there is a huge problem in this department today. There is actually a... market, waiting for you, the young entrepreneur, to bring us a workable solution on Unix.

The current offers in the video editing category are sparce and hugely problematic:

* LVE - Maybe the most promising solution today (full screenshot). Still, far from complete though.
* Cinelerra - The most powerful free solution today. But it not intended for home users and it's interface is really not nice. And I managed to crash it 10 minutes after started working with it.
* MJpeg Tools - Command line only, but pretty well done I must say.
* Kino - Very basic and not complete. But if it had more help from other coders might could've being even better.
* KDEnLive - Still alpha version, but thankfully it enjoys an active development.
* Main Actor - The best and most complete video solution today on Linux (commercial). Worth a look definately, even if its Linux version is not as full-featured as its Windows one. Too bad it segfaults on load on my Slackware.
* Jashaka - Pretty powerful, but it is only for applying special effects, it is not a full editing solution. And it's still alpha quality and requires OpenGL.
* OpenVIP - Might get more interesting if more people jump in and enhance it.
* AVIdeMux - A kind of weird-looking app. It doesn't feel welcome with that raw UI.
(Note for those who suggested it: CinePaint/FilmGimp is not a home video editing solution.)

Most of the above apps are pretty involved to get them installed because of external dependencies while getting Firewire and DV (v4l) up and running on some distros might be tricky for non-technical users. Let's hope that the state of home digital video will be more mature in a year from now and a company like Ximian or TheKompany step up to create a really sexy, but also easy to use and powerful video editing application and would use new technologies like HAL or gstreamer. My point is, there is a certain "market" to be filled up here and it would be interesting to see a well-done video editing solution that is not a port, a nightmare to use or a half-baked hobby.

Until then, it is iMovie or MovieMaker for me (or whatever software the Optura Xi comes with for Mac and Windows). But I will keep an eye on Unix solutions too for use with my Slackware and FreeBSD in the future.

Further reading: "Movies & Linux: Jahshaka, MainActor, SuSE 8.2, a Killer Combination".

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