Because of end of YouTube editor, I'd like to as for a recommendation for it as a video editor.

First of all, my most common use-case, is that I have multiple videos from the same source & with the same format (and res 720p) - and I want to join them with simple transition animation & put out to YouTube.

What I really liked about YouTube editor: I didn't have to care about output format options & rendering on my PC, it was done on YouTube servers in background, and time of final publication is not urgent for me. Need for uploading "parts" to YouTube was not an issue, because finally I needed it only on YouTube.

Ideal software for me would be (priority list):

  • Windows desktop, offline & free (at best open source - I don't like software that has "free" & "pro" version, because sooner or later some limitations of "free" one shows up)
  • Somehow active development (last version done in 2017)
  • Easy & fast rendering, with ability to keep source format/encoding/resolution in project with multiple source input videos (if they have the same format of course)
  • Timeline feature
  • rich output format/encoding/resolution (for handling other use-cases than my most common one)
  • Allow to add static pictures & transitions - but I guess it is feature of all, even simplest video editor
  • Easy, intuitive interface

What is not important for me:

  • feature of uploading directly to YouTube (come on, everyone can do this 2 clicks themselves)

With my initial research (Google + Wiki chart), I found some potential candidates, but I'm not sure which will fill best my requirements:

  1. OpenShot
  2. Kdenlive
  3. Shotcut
  4. Filmora Wondershare (this is something new? never saw it before)

Can you please help in choosing best one or recommending better ones?

  • The free version of LightWorks explicitly exports to youtube - not sure about your other requirements, but may be worth looking at
    – ivanivan
    Sep 16, 2018 at 22:46

4 Answers 4


HitFilm Express is one of the best NLE editing software available there. I would definitely compare it to After Effects because you can use it also to create 2D or 3D compositions. The software is available for free, offers support for popular video formats and can export videos to YouTube.

For sure there is no free video editing tool with as many features to what offers HitFilm Express. The software is easy to use and you have full control over the footage. There is also a lot of tutorials showing you how to create some great effects using the free version.

  • Please describe how the software implements each of the bullet requirements in the question. Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Oct 17, 2017 at 3:35
  • I think Blender actually has a more intuitive interface than this. However that editor is designed for film production. Probably outside the scope of what the OP asked for. Further it's Freemium which the OP specifically stated they did not want.
    – jdwolf
    Oct 17, 2017 at 3:58

A good video editor for your purpose is VSDC Free Video Editor.

It meets all the bullet points you asked for.

  • It is free Windows (x86 and x86_64) software.
  • The most recent version was made in 2018.
  • Rendering is easy and fast, and it should be able to keep most formats/encodings/resolutions.
  • It has a timeline feature.
  • It supports formats like WMV and MP4 up to 4K.
  • Allows you to add static pictures and transitions.
  • (This is subjective) It has a good UI.

It is freemium software (which you mentioned you hated) but the free version does not have a lot of restrictions.


YouTube Video Editor is quite a simple editor meaning that for the most part most desktop video editors out preform it in features by far. Further almost any open source video editor will work on Linux and Windows.

I would recommend either OpenShot or Kdenlive which have all the same features including timeline, clip editing, transitions, merging and splitting, video and sound processing (like zooming), effects and info frames. They are both also actively developed.

They both can source video clips without changing them referenced in a project file. The speed at which it encodes will depend on the performance of your system but use well developed libraries for encoding.

Virtually all popular video editors support timeline video editing including these two.

Both can output in a variety of modes with the MP4 and WEBM formats. For more exotic codec options you might wanna look into software like Handbrake.

Both also can handle pretty much any type of transmission animation and importing pictures.

Kdenlive has more of a poweruser interface while OpenShot is more "simple." In terms of what that means for your workflow both have very intuitive interfaces so its up to you what you prefer.

Kdenlive does have a few more features like live video capture. You would have to download and reupload your own videos as well as any free music.

  • Please describe how the software implements each of the bullet requirements in the question. Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Oct 17, 2017 at 3:34

Filmora Wondershare is brilliant I've used it before, it has some higher end features but you don't have to be able to understand them to get it to work. It's very intuitive and anything you don't understand can be solved with a a quick YouTube tutorial (or question here). I'd recommend that. I'm not sure the limitations of the free version but there are serial keys that work every time if you look up "Wondershare free" on YouTube. I'm not condoning that however, it's up to you to decide whether you mind that. But yes, it's a very competent video editor and will do everything you've outlined in your question and much, much more. I'd say it can do anything but high budget editing for things like paid content online and anything more serious. Hope this helps.

  • 2
    Please describe how the software implements each of the bullet requirements in the question. Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Oct 17, 2017 at 3:34

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