AVS Video Editor Review

How To Use AVS Video Editor

If this is your first time using a video editor you might get a little overwhelmed when you first open AVS Video Editor. Don't get overwhelmed because using this software is very simple. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes to figure out how this works as long as you read this tutorial.

After you install the software the first thing you'll see is a video player, a few buttons and a timeline that looks like something out of a music book. The top right-hand corner is where you preview your videos while you're editing them. The timeline area is where you move all of your imported video files for editing. And the buttons above the timeline include video effects and other options for editing your videos.

Importing Your Media

In order to get started the first thing you want to do is import your media. Your media include all of the files that you're going to need to "piece together" your video. This includes the video clips that you recorded with your camera, music clips, audio recordings and images that you would like to include in your video.

Click on the Media Libary button and then click on Import. Find the locations of the media and click on Open. All of the files should appear in the area that says Click here to add files and that message should disappear after you import your media.

Moving Your Media To The Timeline

Now that you have your media imported it's time to move your media to the timeline. All of your video clips and images should be moved to the top line. Any audio clips you have should be moved to the line with the music sign. Your voice recordings should be moved down to the line with the microphone. The reason why you have two separate lines for your audio files is because it's possible to have music playing in the background while you're talking. 

Moving Your Slides and Setting Duration

If you move your slides over to the timeline and you find that some of them are in the wrong order, you can easily move the slides to the appropriate areas. Simply click on the slide that you want to move. Hold on the click button on your mouse and move the slide in the right area. The slide should click perfectly in place.

You can also set the duration for an images that you decide to add in your video. By default, all images that are add in your video are 5 seconds long. In other words, when somebody views that image in your video, they'll view it for 5 seconds before moving on to the next slide or video clip. If you want to make it 10 seconds long, simply right-click on the image and select Duration from the menu. Change the duration and click on OK. Please note that you only have to set the duration for images and not video clips.

If you want to delete a file or other media from the timeline, simply right-click on the file that you want to delete and select Delete Object. You can delete any object that's on the timeline including any effects that you add. I'll tell you how to add effects in a little bit.

Changing The Aspect Ratio Of Your Slides

All videos on sites such as YouTube are viewed using a 16:9 aspect ratio. In other words, if your video is 1600 pixels in width and 900 pixels in length it will fit perfectly in the screen of your YouTube videos. If you want to make that video 1100 pixels wide, the width will change to 619 pixels in order to maintain a 16:9 aspect ratio. 

Changing the aspect ratio for your video clips is pretty simple with AVS Video Editor. Click on Edit from the top menu and select Aspect Ratio. Choose 16x9 and you're done. Now your video should fit perfectly when played on Youtube. Otherwise you would see black spaces to the left and to the right of your video.

Please note that whenever you add a new file to the timeline in AVS Video Editor, the software will sometimes ask you whether or not you want to use the same aspect ratio as the rest of the files. Make sure you choose this option to ensure that all of your slides are the same size.

Adding Transitions, Visual Effects and Text To Your Video

Adding effects to your video is pretty straightforward. After you add all of your media to the timeline simply click on the Transitions, Video Effects and Text buttons that appear above the timeline.

If you click on the Transitions button you should see a menu with hundreds of neat transitions. Below the transitions, you should see your video clips with arrows in-between. 

To add a transition between your video clips, simply drag-and-drop the transition to the arrow where you want it to appear. You can use the same transition between every clip or a different one. You don't have to add a transition between ever clip.

When you're done, you can switch back to the timeline by clicking on the Projects button.

In case you don't already know, a transition is a cool effect that happens when you switch from one video clip to another. I gave you an example of a transition in the video that's on the homepage of this site. 

Besides transitions, you can also add video effects to every clip. This includes effects such as snow and even an effect that looks like a televsion screen with bad reception. Since you're just get started you might not find a purpose for these effects. But my suggestion to you is to give them a try to decide whether or not you can use them to make your video more creative.

To add a video effect simply click on the Video Effects button, click on the video effect that you want to use and drag it down to the second line. Move it below the clip where you want it to appear.

Most video effects have a default duration The duration for the video effect called TV Simulation is 1 minute and 10 seconds long. If I place it underneath a video clip thats 30 seconds long I'll have to adjust the duration to make it appear within the clip. Simply right-click on the effect and select Duration. Click on OK once you have the right duration. 

Please note that the video effect doesn't have to be the exact same length as the video clips. If the video clip is 1 minute long and you only want the effect to appear in the first 5 seconds, then set the duration to 5 seconds.

Another effect you can add to your video is text. Click on the Text button and choose the text option that you want. Select the text effect by clicking on it and dragging it down to the fourth line where the T is. Move it underneath the video slide where you want it to appear.

Like video effects, the duration of the text effect needs to be adjusted to appear in the right areas of the video clip. Right-click on the text effect and select Duration. Set the right duration and click on OKAY.

But unlike most of the other effects, you also need to edit the text that you want to appear. You can also adjust the postion of the text within your video clips. 

To edit the text, right-click on the text effect after you've added it to the timeline and click on Edit Text.

In this example I had to delete one of the text options they gave me. I only wanted the smaller voice bubble. To delete a text option simply right-click on the object that you want to remove and click on Remove Object. If the object includes both a graphic and text, you'll have to do this twice - once for the graphic and once for the text. Remember that the text and the graphic are two separate objects.

Now that you have the text objects removed that you don't want, click on the leftover objects and move them into position. In this case I moved the text into position and the voice bubble. Next, you need to edit the text. You do this by double-clicking on the text and entering your own message.Once that's done move to the right of the text and adjust the font type, size, color and alignment. Click on OK and you're done.

Adjusting Your Audio, Video Color, Stabilization and More

In some cases your audio will sound a little off, one of your video clips won't match up with the colors of the rest of your clips and another clip will be too shaky for people to view. While AVS Video Editor isn't a professional video editor, it does give you options to adjust these minor problems.

To adjust your audio, simply right-click on the audio clip on your timeline and select Audio

You should see several options including the ability to remove noise and equalize the sound of your audio. If your audio is too loud you can make it softer. The options for adjusting your audio are the same for both music and voice recordings.

If one of your video clips doesn't match up with the color of the rest of your video clips you can easily adjust this. Simply right-click on the video clip or image that you want to adjust and select Color from the menu.

You can adjust the brightness, temperature, contrast, saturation and more of that clip. This option can also be used to add creative effects to your video. For example, you can make your video black-and-white if you want or can add a yellow tint to produce a certain feeling.

One of the most useful features is the ability to automatically match up the colors of all of your slides. If a few of your video clips were shot in low lighting conditions you can get them to match up with those that were shot in good lighting conditions simply by clicking on the box at the top that says AUTO COLOR CORRECTION. I was watching a video tutorial for a video editor that costs over $500 and the guy who created that tutorial said that he would pay $500 just for the auto color correction feature on that software. 

If one of your video clips was filmed while you were moving you can remove most or all of shakiness in that clip with the stabilization option. Simply right-click on the video clip that has the shakiness and select STABILIZATION from the menu. You can go from Low to High depending on how shaky that video clip is.

Another cool option that I think is worth mentioning is the ability to change the speed of your video clips. The other day I was watching a tutorial of a guying reviewing his computer. Instead of boring you for 3 minutes while he hooks up his computer, he simply speeds up that part of the video until the computer is completely setup. This is both fun to watch and keeps your viewer tuned in until the end This is a great example of how this can be used.

To adjust the speed of your video right-click on the video clip that you want to speed up and click on Speed. The default setting is 1x. To make the video clip play faster simply bring that number up to 2x, 2.5x, 3x and more. Click on OK when you're done. You can also make your video clip slower by using .6x, .7x, .9x and less.

Branding Your Videos With An Intro, Outro and Watermark

Even if you're not a professional you can easily make your videos appear professional by adding your own custom intro, outro and watermark. An intro appears before the actual video plays. The outro appears at the end. And a watermark is your logo that usually appears in one of the lower corners. I prefer the lower right-hand corner.

AVS Video Editor doesn't provide you with the tools to create an intro, outro or watermark. For the watermark you'll probably want to hire a logo designer. I would suggest holding a logo contest on a website such as DP Forums. This allows you to only pay for a logo that you like. Make sure your logo is saved as a transparent GIF or PNG image. 

The cheapest way to create an intro or outro is to purchase a premade one. Websites such as FlixPress.com and IntroMaker.net allow you to create intros and outros for a few dollars. But if you're truly serious about creating your own brand on YouTube I would highly recommend you hire a professional graphics designer on a website such as Elance.com. Always put your money in escrow and don't pay the designer anything upfront until the project is finished. 

Once you have your intro, outro and watermark, adding them to your videos is pretty simple. To add your intro and outro, all you have to do is include the clips to the beginning and the end of your video.

To include the watermark to your video, you'll first need to import it and add it to the second line on the timeline. 

Once that's done you'll need to slide it over after the intro and stretch it out till before the outro. The reason why you want the watermark to appear between the intro and the outro is because it doesn't make much sense to have your watermark appear while these two clips are playing.

By default your watermark appears as a large image in the center of your video. You'll need to resize it and move it into one of the corners of your video. To do this right-click the watermark on the timeline and select EDIT OVERLAY.

To adjust the size of the watermark simply click on one of the corners and move your mouse to the center of the image. The closer you get to the center the smaller the image becomes. Once you have it to the right size, click on the image and move it to one of the lower corners. To the right of your logo you're given options to adjust the way it looks. The main option is its transparency. If you want your logo to appear more transparent slide the arrow closer to the right.

Now that you've added your watermark to your video it should appear all throughout your video with the exception of your intro and outro. If you want your logo to appear in the exact same spot in every video you make, simply save this file in an editable format. Leave the logo exactly where it is on the timeline. When you want to create a new video in the future, open the editable file and replace the old slides with your new slides. 

Playback Your Video Before You Save It

I'm sure you've already noticed that there's a place where you can playback your video in the top right-hand corner of AVS Video Editor. It has the word Project above it. This tool allows you to playback your video at various speeds to ensure that everything is perfect.

The default speed for playback is 1x which is the normal speed. Anything between 0 and 1 slows the video down. For example, you can play it at 0.25x to play the video back 25% of the normal speed. They also give you the option of playing your video back in reverse such as -8x. I'm not a professional so I don't know why anyone would want to do that. But I'm sure there are some professionals who can tell you the purpose of that option.

Saving Your Video In 1080p HD Format

When you're done piecing together and editing your video, it's now time to save your video. Saving your video is fairly simple.

The first thing you should do is click on the Produce button. Select the File option and click on Next. The default option should be to save your video as an AVI file. You should see the word Profile and a drop-down menu. Choose this option:

HD Video 1080p: H.264/AVC, 4200 kbps; Audio: MP3, 256 kbps

Click on Next and then Create.

If you have an "average" computer it shouldn't take more than 20 minutes to save or "render" the video. Really fast computers shouldn't take more than a minute or two. But this all depends on the size of the video file.

The reason why this takes so long is because you chose to save the file in HD. Lower-quality file options won't take as long but could produce a slightly distorted video. In my book HD is the only way to go and is well worth the wait.

Uploading Your Video To YouTube

The reason why I recommend you save your file as an AVI file in 1080p HD is because YouTube recognizes this format as do other video sites. 

Uploading your video to Youtube is VERY VERY EASY. The first thing you'll need to do is create an account. If you have a Gmail account you already have a YouTube account. Simply login using that information.

Right after you login you should see a button that says Upload right next to the search box at the top.

Click on that button and click on Select Files To Upload. Choose the video file that you saved in 1080p HD and it shouldn't take more than 5 or 10 minutes to upload. The time it takes to upload depends on the size of the file as well as the speed of your internet.

While the file uploads you should enter the title of the video, the description that should appear below the video and the tags (keywords) that people might type in to find your video. You should also choose the category that you want your video to appear in.

You're Done!

Saving Your Video In An Editable Format

Before you shut down your computer and give yourself a High Five I would recommend saving your video file in an editable format. You never know when you'll need to go back and edit your video for a problem that you overlooked.

To save you file in an editable format, click on Save Project As and save it as an AVS Video Editor project.

How To Optimize Your YouTube Videos

One of the reasons why so many YouTube videos don't get that much traffic is because the person who uploads the video fails to fill in the title, description and tag (keyword) areas with the keywords that people are typing in.

YouTube doesn't use psychic algorithms that can figure out what your video is about. They also don't send real people to your video to look it over and decide what the subject is. The only way YouTube will know what your video is about is if you tell them with the keywords you choose.

But if you choose relevant keywords that nobody is typing in, you're still not going to get that much traffic. So before you choose your keywords verify how many YouTube users on average are typing them in.

To get ideas for keywords that lots of people type in you can use the YouTube Keyword Tool

You can also get keyword ideas from other videos. Find the ones with the most traffic and use the keywords that they have in their title. I would also suggest using common sense. If you're creating a video that features you unboxing your new Xbox 360, you want to use the keyword "Xbox 360 Unboxing".

Make sure you add your chosen keywords in your title, description and tag (keyword) area for maximum optimization. This removes any doubt that your video is about that particular subject.

Another secret that I should mention about "YouTube Optimization" is that YouTube will actually give your videos higher rankings if you're more active in the YouTube community. So after you post your videos, get busy writing comments on other videos.

This will drive more visitors to your videos since your comments have a link to your profile (YouTube Channel) that people can click on. To get more clicks, use a username that suggests you post videos on YouTube. If you post comments on other videos with the username "CoolReviewVids", your profile link is more likely to get clicked on. If your username says "Joe619" far less people will click on it unless you leave some really useful comments.

Posting quality comments is a must if you want more people to click through to your profile. Too many people who are trying to promote their YouTube Channel post spammy comments that most people find annoying. If people sense that you're posting comments simply to drive traffic to your videos, they'll be far less responsive. Be really helpful and more people will want to watch your videos.

The more people watch your videos, the higher your videos will appear in the search results.

I would also suggest commenting on videos that are related to your own and that have lots of views. Commenting on videos that receive almost no traffic is a waste of time. Commenting on videos that are unrelated to your own could attract people who aren't interested in your videos.

I could be wrong but I believe that YouTube ranks your videos based on how many people watch them entirely. If you're attracting the wrong people who don't watch the entire video, this could bring down your video rankings. And if you're creating videos that aren't interesting, most people who are interested may not watch the entire video. I believe this is one method that YouTube uses to decide the winners and the losers.

So make sure you create interesting videos that people will actually watch all the way till the end!

The last optimization tip I have for you is to TELL your viewers to SUBSCRIBE to your YouTube Channel or LIKE your videos. You can do this verbally or can add a slide at the end of your videos with a message such as "Subscribe To My YouTube Channel Now!" or "Like My Video Now!". You can also add a message somewhere in the midde of your video or at the top of your description that says the same thing. Some people will take these actions naturally but others need to be reminded.

This simple action can mean the difference between success and failure. And from what I understand, the more subscribers your YouTube Channel has, the higher your videos rank in the search results.

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