Pinnacle Studio 25 Ultimate is the nec plus ultra video editing software from Corel. It’s essentially a professional version of the company’s excellent consumer-level editor, video studio†
Top of the line in terms of features and capabilities, it is one of the best alternatives to Adobe Premiere Pro† And there are no subscriptions here – just a one-time purchase.
We gave the latest version an impressive 4 star ratinghighlighting it as a “great piece of software that lets you create complex projects with impressive modern tools that do much of the complex work for you, leaving you free to focus on your creative side.”
Let’s take a look at some of the new features introduced since we last tried this video editor.
A big addition is one that you may not notice or even need yet, but it’s great to hear that you can now work with Pinnacle Studio 25 8K videowhich offers compatibility with some of the latest phones and cameras out there.
8K files may not be mainstream yet, but the trend is inevitably in that direction. First, we had HD – which is now pretty much universal – and 4K is quickly gaining ground. It’s good to know that when you start dabbling in 8K, your chosen video editing tool is there waiting for you.
If you’ve used one Photo editor rather, like Photoshop or one of many Photoshop Alternatives, you are familiar with blending modes. It allows you to manipulate the dark and light areas of some images and blend them with another below.
Now you can with moving images in Pinnacle’s video editor. This one video effects work exactly as you’d expect, helping you get more creative and artistic with the project you’re working on, allowing you to play with light in ways that weren’t possible before. A great addition to this video editing software.
Motion Tracking is a big thing these days and any video editing software worth its salt already has it, or will be introducing it soon. Pinnacle Studio’s implementation is excellent.
It comes with smart masking tools that allow you to pick an object and refine the selection with great precision. The tracking option is done for you automatically, but may take a while, and you also have tools to fine-tune and fix the tracking afterwards, if needed.
The next stage is to be able to control both the mask and background separately, adding color correction and other filters to create truly unique looks.
More advanced options allow you to completely remove the background, add text layers, and even duplicate the masked object. It is a powerful tool that works as advertised and as expected.
Speaking of masks, those tools have been refined making it even easier to select objects, using raster and vector shapes to perfect your masks. Using a mask to track an object as mentioned above is such a smart idea. We have enjoyed experimenting with that feature.
It’s all about the basics
Pinnacle Studio already had pretty good audio editing tools. You were already able to expand the audio portion in the timeline and do a lot of your work there, like manipulating the audio of each layer, or even switch keyframing to control the levels over time. .
You can control the 5.1 surround sound via the Panner tool, which now supports Angle, Spread and Centre. You also have keyframing options.
In the Noise Reduction section you have been given the option to ‘Generate a noise profile’. Allows you to select a portion of a clip that illustrates the background noise you want to remove.
Pinnacle Studio then analyzes it and gives you the Reduction, Sensitivity, and Smoothing buttons to remove or mute that noise. You will also find a new audio tool known as Pitch Scaling. It is a way to change the pitch and frequency of the audio without affecting the duration.
A new addition that we were surprised not to have already (as it has been available on competing products for years) was the ability to keyframe the font size and color of a title.
This is actually quite an important tool and it is a quick and easy way to animate words on the screen in an effective way. Such a check that was previously unavailable was a serious omission, but now that it is there, we are pleased to report that it works flawlessly.
We were able to change the size of a title in seconds, while changing the color from yellow to blue over time. Perfect execution, and better late than never.
We also noticed that the whole UI felt more responsive and stable. Although we should mention that the software crashed on us twice, both times when importing footage.
At that point, the import section still feels clunky. There is still a delay between selecting a folder on your drive. Being able to actually see and select the clips included in it becomes tricky.
The video editing software appears to be running an analysis subroutine. That only frustrates users, who have to wait before they can do anything.
Pinnacle Studio comes in three flavors, Studio, Studio Plus, and Studio Ultimate. They all allow you to work in 8K, but the first two have certain limitations. We tested the Ultimate version.
For example, you can only work on six tracks in Studio, you have some color correction tools, easy 2-camera editing for multi-camera work, and keyframe controls.
Studio Plus ups the ante with 24 tracks, the ability to work with 4 cameras in multi-camera mode, you can access basic motion capture tools, blend mode, advanced audio editor, and batch processing.
Ultimate has everything, including video masking, smart object tracking, 360˚ video editing, and alpha channel support.
Pinnacle Studio 25 is a good improvement over its predecessor. Overall, the new editing tools are very welcome and will please editors of all experience levels. They are well implemented and easy to use, which is really all you can ask for.
The interface hasn’t changed, but that’s okay. Pinnacle has always excelled in this area. The only complaint we really have is the import section which we found slow and unstable.
Since this is the first part of the experience with the software, it made a bad first impression on an otherwise great experience.