Microsoft Movie Maker 2

Although the improvements to Movie Maker 2 with regard to transitions, effects and general usability are significant, the single new feature that transforms Movie Maker from an interesting utility in version 1 into a valuable video editing tool in version 2 is its ability to export a movie to video tape.

Movie Maker 2 has 60 transitions that can make your scene do everything from twirl to the left or right, or explode into the next scene. The effects area of Movie Maker 2 allows you to transform your video by simply dragging an effect onto your video clip. Footage can be sped up or slowed down to create a dramatic appearance for a scene. Introduction titles and end credits can be added by choosing a simple template. If you are truly lazy, the AutoMovie option provides a few templates — three clicks, and you’ve got a movie (see here for a screenshot).

Movie Maker 2 allows you to import all the common audio files such as .wav, .aiff, .wma as well as the popular MP3 format.

Output options for your movie are impressive and range from dialup access quality through to Pocket PC, as well as Video CD quality. The highest quality avail­able is lossless DV, which means that the video you import exhibits exactly the same quality when exported back to DV tape. Movie Maker 2 is only available for Win­dows XP and can be selected by following the Windows Automatic Update process, or by visiting the Movie Maker site.

In brief: Microsoft Movie Maker 2
Microsoft gets it right second time around with a strong collection of effects and output back to tape. Price: Free [download]
Distributor: Microsoft
Phone: 13 2058
URL: www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/moviemaker

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