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Library Research Guides

Resources for Video Creation

Do you want to make a video, but don't know where to begin? This guide will introduce you to basic video concepts and helpful resources available to you at the University of Michigan Libraries.

Quicktime Pro

QuickTime Pro LogoQuickTime Pro is a very basic video application for Mac computers. QuickTime can allow for video playback, video recording, audio recording, screencasting, and minor trimming. It's the perfect application for when you need a fast recording or need to trim a few frames from the beginning or end of a video clip. QuickTime is not a full editing application and does not allow you to combine videos or add effects and other media.

Pros: Inexpensive, easy to use, does video, audio, and screencast recordings.
Cons: Limiting, can only trim from beginning and end of clips. No effects, text, or more advanced editing capabilities..


iMovie Application IconiMovie is a great video application for those beginners who are just getting their feet wet, but want to do some creative editing with their videos. You can import video footage from your camcorder, images from your library, or music from iTunes into your video project.iMovie comes with many built-in themes and effects that can be used to produce fun, high-quality videos and photo slideshows. 


Pros: Good for beginners. Lots of themes and templates. Many effects and transitions. Auto-saves. 
Cons: Not very good at stacking multiple clips. Auto-save feature makes saving/moving projects more tricky. Mac only.

Final Cut Pro

Final Cut Pro X Application IconFinal Cut Pro X is a professional video editing application. It is ideal for professionals and those who feel limited in iMovie and want to step it up a level. Final Cut Pro contains many features including multi-cam, chroma keying, interactive timelines, and many built-in effects and transitions. It's a solid program that will have all the feature you'll need!

Pros: Thorough, professional video editing software with broad depth of features. 
Cons: Steeper learning curve than iMovie. Auto-save feature makes saving/moving projects more tricky. Mac only.


Adobe Premiere Pro

Premiere Pro Application IconAdobe Prem
iere Pro is Adobe's version of a professional video editing application. Premiere is comparable to Final Cut Pro in features, but has a more classic video-editing interface. Like Final Cut, it is ideal for professional video projects and contains a ton of features.

Pros: Professional video editing application rich with features. Mac and PC compatible.
Cons: No auto-save feature. 


Camtasia Application IconCamtasia is an application that allows you to create video recordings known as screencasts. Screencasts are essentiallylive recordings of your computer screen. Camtasia allows you to record all actions on your computer screen and then edit, cut, and add effects, called "callouts", to your footage. Screencasts are great for video tutorials and for recording animated presentations such as Prezi or Powerpoint.


Pros: Records computer screen. Good for beginners. Many video editing features and built-in callouts and effects. Can import images, video, and music to a project.
Cons: Interfaces are different and projects are incompatible across platforms. Eg. Projects made in Camtasia Studio 8 (Windows version) cannot be opened in Camtsia 2 (Mac version).