Fix your video in seconds

Intelligent tools that correct shaky shots, poor colour and add eye-catching effects

Pinnacle Studio 14

This is a sponsored article in association with Pinnacle Studio 14

It's hard enough getting a perfect photograph. But when you're dealing with moving images it's even harder, unless you're on a film set where everything can be controlled. Just as an image processing package will enable you to edit and adjust a photo, so a good video editing package will help you adjust colour, audio and apply effects to your clips.

As we've already seen, Pinnacle Studio 14 provides a host of easy-to-use but powerful features, while specific tools like its Motion Titlermake creating effects easy.

One great example of how Pinnacle Studio 14 effects can help create that flawless end-product can be found in its Video Toolbox. A common problem all video users can suffer is hand-shake while panning without a tripod.

Pinnacle studio 14

ADD EFFECTS: The Video Toolbox makes adding powerful effects a snap

It's unavoidable that an amount of wobble is picked up by the camera. If you click the Video Toolbox icon that sits in the top-left above the Timeline, click the plugin icon and choose Studio HD RTFx and Stabilize, Pinnacle Studio 14 will 'smooth' out the camera shake. What's more, there are plenty of other one-click effects that help to reduce noise and correct colour.

Getting effects

More complex effects are also possible and aren't necessarily more involved to apply. Two commonly seen effects that are both genuinely useful and are highly eye-catching are picture-in-picture and chroma keying. Both of these are available in Pinnacle Studio HD 14.

The latter Chroma Keyer effect, a.k.a. the weatherman effect, a.k.a. greenscreen effect, helps you superimpose one video clip that has a solid colour background onto another clip. This is great if you want to put yourself in another part of the world or on an alien planet. It's also really easy to set up as you simply need to shoot footage in front of a coloured background.

To apply the effect just drag the second chroma-keyed clip to where you want it added in the Overlay timeline, directly under the main timeline. With this new chroma clip selected from the Plug-in tool select the Chroma Keyer effect and you're more or less done.

You'll need to select the background colour with the dropper tool, or use the presets for green or blue screen, and you can then tweak the settings for a better chroma-keyed end effect. Studio Ultimate Collection 14 even comes with a greenscreen sheet.

Pinnacle studio 14

MOVE YOURSELF: Chroma keying made ever-so-easy. It's an effective and simple way to transport yourself anywhere

The exact same process is used for the Picture-in-Picture effect with the Overlay clip being added to the original footage as an additional video image. This is useful if you want to create a mock news report or add footage of something a commentator is discussing. For the majority of these effects you'll see changes applied live to the preview window, enabling you to get a good idea of what the final movie will look like right away.

Ultimate effects

For more advanced video effects, Pinnacle Studio Ultimate Collection 14 comes with a huge selection to choose from. Leaving to one side classics such as Old Film – it adds sepia and grain effects – Blur, Lens Flare, White Balance and other colour correction options, it includes a number of high-end production effects that provide broadcast-style graphics and effects.

For example, 3DStroke provides a way to render swirling animated lines and shapes over a video, the sort of flourish that is often seen on the opening credits to sports programmes rushing around people or that accompanies scene transitions.

The plugin comes with a large number of presets to get you started, but for maximum impact it's best to tailor the flow of the lines to tie-in with your footage and this is possible from its comprehensive settings, which provide controls for every aspect of its movement, line style, colour and key-frame animation.

Another fantastic plug-in for the more advanced user is Magic Bullet Looks, this offers a complete suite of camera and post-processing film controls for your video. At its most basic it provides saturation, gamma and contrast controls for the source video. Moving beyond this, it can apply a host of camera-based effects such from a matte-box or lens effects.

With these you can apply diffusion to even out lighting and gradients that are often used on skylines to add emphasis on sunsets or night scenes. Depth of field and focus looks are highly effective tools to draw viewers to the active object in a scene. Finally, film stock effects help mimic developed film so footage can look like it was shot on black and white stock or other specific film stock.

Pinnacle studio 14

PLUG IT IN: Broadcast-style effects can easily be applied with the help of more advanced plug-ins

This is just a quick overview of the powerful effects found in the Pinnacle Studio 14 range, to try them out for yourself grab the free trial from Pinnacleand get editing!

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