Corel VideoStudio Pro X2
A great video editor for those with underpowered PCs.
- Good for underpowered PCs
- Playback issues
Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 has a slightly better range of features than Adobe's Premiere Elements 7, and VideoStudio's tools are easier to see than Elements'. Elements still has a few unique features that we like — for example, better timeline features. We'd say VideoStudio X2 is the better choice if you have an underpowered PC, and Elements gets the nod for those with fast PCs.
Price$ 249.95 (AUD)
Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 is a great video editor for those with underpowered PCs. And our review shows it's a pretty good choice for those with fast systems, too.
Video is moving to high definition faster than a dog to a doughnut. So which do you buy first: a new HD camcorder, or a powerful new computer on which to edit its footage? If you choose the camcorder, Corel's VideoStudio Pro X2 video editing application may be able to help you stave off the PC purchase for a while.
Corel VideoStudio Pro X2's new trick? Its updated Smart Proxy editing feature lets you create a lower-resolution version of a project that you can use to make edits, apply effects, and create menus, and when you're satisfied with how it looks, you tell the application to pull in the high-resolution source files to create the finished movie. Of course, when you do that with an underpowered PC, you'll have to take a walk while the PC struggles to process the huge files, but it's still a nice compromise.
While the image quality isn't great in Smart Proxy mode, you can see well enough to apply effects; in addition, you can scrub back and forth in the timeline with no lag, and files play quickly and smoothly. In other words, you can use Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 just as easily as you could with standard-definition video (and perhaps even more easily, because the proxy-mode footage is at a lower resolution than most standard-resolution footage). Even in the middle of a project, you can easily enable and disable the Smart Proxy mode by clicking a button on the timeline.
Corel says that it increased the Smart Proxy feature's speed by 300 percent over the preceding VideoStudio 11.5. Furthermore, Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 is supposed to be optimised for quad-core CPUs and to take advantage of newer Intel CPUs that recognise SSE4 instructions, thereby providing a big performance boost on systems using them.
However, on our test system — a Dell XPS M1730 laptop with a 2.8GHz Intel Core 2 Extreme X9000 CPU with 2GB of RAM and a 400GB RAID array — high-resolution AVCHD clips played back very slowly, at perhaps just one or two frames per second, and they looked jaggy even with Smart Proxy disabled. On a more powerful system, a workstation with dual quad-core Intel Xeon processors, the performance improved markedly in both Smart Proxy and default modes. Corel says that it is working to ensure smooth high-definition playback in future updates to the application.
In spite of these playback issues, finished projects looked fine. Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 imports HDV, AVCHD, BDMV (files from Blu-ray camcorders, but such devices haven't yet arrived in this country), and it exports to BDAV, BDMV, and AVCHD formats. For comparison, Adobe's Premiere Elements 7 outputs only to BDAV and BDMV. (Corel says that 25 percent of its customers already import and output to AVCHD.)
It's also now easier to upload directly to YouTube; the feature was in VideoStudio 11.5, but Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 requires fewer steps. You can create iPod- and mobile phone-friendly files too, although you have to take care of getting them onto those devices yourself.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Vivo X60 Pro (2021) smartphone review: A capable photographer’s companion
- 2 MSI Summit E15 (2021) review: A productivity workhorse with a gaming pedigree
- 3 Oppo Find X3 Pro review: An all around performer with a touch of class
- 4 MSI GS66 Stealth (2021) review: A gaming powerhouse with 300Hz display
- 5 Jackery Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station review: Good for venturing off the grid
Latest News Articles
- How to erase your iPhone, iPad, or Mac remotely after a theft
- How to set a custom scale for each website in macOS Safari
- Apple lets users roll back some Safari tweaks in Monterey in rare mea culpa
- Untangling the Terminal: How to master the macOS command line interface
- How to use the macOS command line to compare two folders’ contents in Terminal
PCW Evaluation Team
Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.
This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.
It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.
As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.
The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.
This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.
- Smartphone Notches Explained
- AirPods: Buy now or wait?
- Why the iPhone 12 doesn't have an in-display fingerprint sensor
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?