Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10

Movie Studio HD Platinum 10 is full of video editing goodness and is the latest application from Sony's Vegas Movie Studio line

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Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10 Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10 is packed with features but there is a steep learning curve
By  Jason Saundalkar Published  November 4, 2010

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Key Specs

HD space: 200MB
Memory: 2GB
Number of users: 1
OS: Microsoft Windows
Price: $81

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If you're in the market for video-editing apps there are a number of options to consider such as Adobe's recently released Premiere Pro CS5, Core VideoStudio X3 and, more recently Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10.

The software is easy-to-install and fairly quick though it, annoyingly, will only function once you've registered it online. This process is painless but we still feel that forcing users to register software after they've entered an original serial number is unnecessary.

Firing up Movie Studio HD long time Vegas users will feel at home since the interface hasn't changed very much compared to its predecessor. This is a good thing for long time users considering that one of Vegas' strengths has always been its simple and streamlined interface; whereas other video editing apps would force you to jump through hoops to perform a wide range of tasks, Vegas allows you to do almost everything directly on the timeline itself. Because of this you can get busy editing complex, multi-layer videos as quickly and as easily as if you were simply cropping basic video clips. Unfortunately if you've just recently made the jump over to Vegas after having worked on other editing software the basic interface might be off-putting and complicated to learn, at least at first.

One of the strengths of Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10 is that it features an efficient and effective preview system. The engine allows you to preview your edited content as soon as you've made changes such as adding or removing special effects. However, because HD content is taxing and can result in dropped frames (depending on the system configuration) Vegas allows you to tweak the preview so you can opt for resolution over smoothness or vice versa. Thanks to this you can preview in high resolution when a scene is fairly basic and effect free or, when there are many effects in play, dial down the resolution. Very useful.

We tested Movie Studio Platinum on a PC with a 2.67GHz quad-core Core i7 920 processor, 6GB of Kingston HyperX DDR3 memory, a Radeon HD 5870 graphics card and a 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor hard drive. On this rig the preview engine was able to run four AVCHD streams simultaneously. Had the software packed a native 64-bit rendering engine we reckon it would have been able to run six streams simultaneously. Adobe's Premiere Pro CS5 managed ten streams on this same PC though that features a fully-fledged 64-bit preview engine.

Movie Studio HD Platinum 10 also scores high marks for its built-in tools. If you've got unsteady hands or you've got footage with a lot of shaking the application's stabilisation effect will prove extremely useful. It was able to sort out shaky video without
mistaking intentional movement for unwanted shakes.

For: Interface is quick-to-use if you know what you’re doing, competent preview engine, well priced.
Against: Steep learning curve, effects library is limited.
Verdict: While Vegas can be difficult to work with if you’re a new user, you’ll find its interface is very quick to work with once you’ve grown used to it.

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