Windows Essentials Movie Maker 2012 is the latest version of Microsoft’s free, easy-to-use video editor, which works in Windows 7 and 8. You can use its simple timeline tool to link videos and photos into longer films and slideshows. It can also trim and split your video, change the speed and add special effects.
Movie Maker’s new features include background music options, so you can import free tracks from AudioMicro , Free Music Archive and Vimeo to create a new soundtrack.
There are some new audio-editing options. A waveform is displayed beneath each video, which can be clipped, split and moved along the timeline. Other new tools include Text Effects that let you add outlines, change the font and add animations to captions. There’s also a Video Stabilization tool to help you correct wobbles and shakes when filming with a hand-held camera or phone. However, this is only available in Windows 8. Movie Maker is part of Microsoft’s Windows Live Essentials 2012 suite. During installation, you can choose which programs you want to download.
Steps 1. Click the right-hand editing pane 1 to browse for your video clips and photos. You can select multiple clips and images by holding down the Ctrl key. You can also drag and drop files 2 from your PC to the Movie Maker editing pane.
Step 2. Select a clip and click Edit. 1 To cut a clip, move the ￼cursor to the correct place in your clip and click Split. 2 You can see the cursor’s location in the clip on the Preview panel. 3 You can also move between individual frames using the arrows. 4
Step 3. You can drag and drop clips and photos around your timeline. 1 All photos are shown for seven seconds, by default, but you can change this using the Duration drop-down menu. 2 You can also set start and end times, 3 trim clips 4 and change playback speed and volume.
Step 4. To add a soundtrack using Movie Maker’s new music tools, click Home 1 and ‘Add music’. 2 You can look for 3 ￼￼￼￼￼music online or upload tracks from your PC. You can also start tracks from a specific frame by choosing ‘Add music at the current point’. 5
Step 5. In Music Tools, 1 you can edit the soundtrack’s volume 2 ￼￼￼and more. The new waveform 3 helps with editing, but ￼￼￼￼you can turn this off in View. 4 To add sounds or narration, click Home 5 and ‘Record narration’. Movie Maker 2012 lets you record narration while the video is playing.
Step 6. To manage audio, go to Project. 1 Change the track that’s loudest by selecting ‘ Emphasize narration’, 2 ‘Emphasize video’ 3 or Emphasize music’. 4 ‘No Emphasize’ 5 means each track plays at its original level. ‘Fit to music’ 6 stretches the duration of photos to make your video fit the soundtrack.
Step 7. To add a video title, captions and end credits, click the ￼Home tab 1 and choose the element you want. Double-click the text track on the timeline 2 and type your title, 3 captions or credits. To reposition a text box, drag it around ￼￼the frame. 4
Step 8. In Text Tools, 1 Movie Maker now lets you outline your titles. You can choose the color as well as the thickness ￼￼￼of the outline. 2 ￼ You can also change the text’s font 3 and its transparency level. 4 Effects 5 changes how the text ￼￼￼the frame. 4 appears.
Step 9. Click ‘Save movie’. 1 Movie Maker 2012 saves files in the h.264 format by default. Android phones and tablets, iPhones, iPads, Windows 8 tablets and specific website settings have been updated, too. Choose the most appropriate setting from the list or create your own. 2
Step 10. You can also share your video directly with people on Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo, among others, ￼by using the Share box. 1 Click the site you want to share on and choose a resolution. You will have to sign into your account for that particular site. 2 Click Publish.
Tip : Windows 8 users can correct shaky camerawork and wobbly videos using the new Video Stabilization options. Upload a clip to Movie Maker, click Edit and select Video Stabilization. You can choose from ‘Anti-shake’, ‘Anti-shake and wobble correction – low’ or ‘Anti-shake and wobble correction – high’. It’s only available in Windows 8 because it uses technology built into Microsoft’s latest operating system.
You can try even more free software like Windows Movie Maker from the 19 Best Video Editing Software list.