iMovie ’09 Review on Talking Tech

Rejoice Apple computer users: the rewrite of iMovie now works. It’s usable, which the previous version wasn’t, and a 100% improvement.
If you recall, in 2007 Apple took a fine, popular program, iMovie HD, and totally rewrote it, in a bid to make it easier to use. The results were a dumbed down mess, taking away way too many popular features, and making it harder to use, in the process.
I have consistently urged readers in my video reviews to steer clear of the new iMovie. Download the old version ( switch to Windows, do anything but use iMovie ’08.
Now, iMovie 09 is still a beginner’s program, but if you can figure your way around it, you can get a nice looking video.
Like Microsoft, which generally doesn’t get it right with the first version, Apple listened to the critics, and put back in the good stuff.
If you look under the hood (and you’ll have to–the features are hidden), Apple has included many of the advanced features from its popular $999 high-end video editing software Final Cut Studio.
These give you the ability to add a second video and audio track, add a “picture in picture” effect and work with “Green screen.” That means you could shoot your segment in front of a well-lit green sheet, and insert your image over a background of the Eiffel Tower.
To find the “cutaway,” and other features, you have to go to iMovie Preferences, and click on “Advanced Features.”
One of the hallmark features of the new iMovie is a “stablization” feature to make your wobbly video steady. It’s a consumer version of “Shake,” which is a Final Cut Studio feature. In my tests, it worked sometimes, other times it didn’t. But for the price of the feature–nothing–why not?
In iMovie 09, you can’t add a third video or audio track, just 2. Other consumer programs, like Adobe’s Premiere Elements and Pinnacle Studio 12, which both sell for around $100, give you multiple video and audio tracks.
In the accompanying video, I used cutaway and separate audio tracks–tools that weren’t available in the previous iMovie, but are standard on such programs as Premiere Elements, Studio 12, iMovie HD and Final Cut.

2 Responses to “iMovie ’09 Review on Talking Tech”

  1. bill auwood Says:

    Have been using imovie since imovie3. Trouble began with 4&5. Now with 6 inpossible to do voice overs and DRM FREE music tracks even for a short video. Stars out well then becomes unusable. What is the cure?

  2. bill auwood Says:

    Please notify me of any comments of previousemail on imovie 6, thanks

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