Not everyone has the time or inclination to tinker with their videos using the diverse array of tools provided by a full-on editing suite such as our recent Best Buy, Sony’s Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 11. Or the money to buy a more heavyweight package, for that matter. Ashampoo’s Video Styler is aimed at those who want a quick and easy way to swiftly edit in a few effects, with a budget price tag to boot.
Load up a video, and it plays in the main program window, with a linear timeline above it showing periodic freeze frames that allow the user to quickly jump to certain scenes.
The effects menu is off to the right, sporting three sub-menus: colour correction, background music, and the effects themselves.
Effects include the likes of greyscale, sepia tones or inverted colours for a psychedelic appearance. There’s also an old movie effect that’s similar to sepia, but a little darker with added squiggles and blotches.
There isn’t a huge range of options, to be honest – but they’re easily applied using one click, and the old movie setting is actually pretty effective.
Under the colour correction option, brightness, contrast, gamma and saturation can be adjusted. Some tweaking here can produce good results to lighten and liven up dimmer footage, and adjustments are made using simple sliders. The effects appear in real time, and a handy button flicks between the original and enhanced footage, so it’s possible to clearly see the difference.
Background music can be added from any audio file, and the program automatically fades it out at the end of the clip if the track is longer than the film. Your modified video can then be exported with a choice of file formats and compression levels. YouTube uploading is also integrated.
So, some basic editing can be implemented here – but the scope is pretty limited, with fundamentals missing, such as simply being able to cut a film. We also ran into a few issues with file support – no MOV files are handled for instance – and some of our AVIs didn’t come out correctly, with the sound quite badly distorted for no apparent reason.
Contact: Ashampoo on +49 441 933790
- Easy to use; cheap.
- Pretty limited scope.
This is a reasonable effort at a budget video enhancer (it can't really be called an editor), which allows novices to easily apply some basic effects. We encountered a few hitches, and feel there could have been a few more effects filters added, but overall the program isn't bad value for a tenner.