Recently Hitfilm released their Express 3 version for free (available here) and around the same time Resolve 12 (available here) came out with the new emphasis on editing. Both offer multitrack editing something that only a couple of years ago would have been reserved for only top end editing suites costing upwards of $1000. Both suites have a significant edge over the competition but which is the best?
One of the biggest benefits of Hitfilm is that it's based around visual effects. It leverages it's composition tools by allowing you to easily switch between editing and vfx without changing programs or projects.
Hitfilm is also fairly simple and easy to learn. So if your just starting out with editing this might be easier to learn than the slightly more professionally inclined Resolve.
So the first thing that I noticed was that Hitfilm doesn't have videos scopes. This is fairly huge for me given that I shoot on a Blackmagic Camera and always shoot in Log. They do however have a baked in histogram on the "Levels Histogram" however it is not effected by any changes you make to the image, only the values of the source image.
Another thing that Hitfilm Express lacks is a Audio Sync feature. Now this use to be a special feature but now with Resolve featuring it, it would suck to have to line up the audio manually. A big win again for Resolve.
Although both programs offer a premium version. It feels more apparent in Hitfilm. Hitfilm offers packages such as "3D model import" (which is awesome!) which can be bought to add on to Express.
Hitfilm is also lacking several other professional features such as XML support that Resolve has which will make cross-program editing for things such as color correction that Hitfilm is kind of lacking in very difficult/impossible.
Resolve started as the standard for color correction and since Resolve 11, they have been trying to sneak editing features. Luckily as an industry standard already it offers lots of professional features such as XML, Scopes, ect. and Resolve 12 continues to add great features to the list.
One of the best parts of Resolve 12 is the new multicam tools. These tools puts Resolve above the rest and up to the realm of Final Cut and Premiere. Why? Because doing audio syncs using software can save you upwards of 30 minutes on larger projects.
Blackmagic also added a cool feature of Optical Flow. This is essentially Twixtor. I have not done tests but I assume that it's approximately the same but not quite. But still awesome considering not even Premiere offers this feature.
So my suggestion. Download both. They're both free. Resolve offers better color correction but currently Hitfilm is better at visual effects. So which is better at editing? Overall I think Resolve 12 is by far the better option. Not only does it offer audio sync for clips but also offers professional features like XMLs and Optical Flow.
Now I say Successful very ironically because I wouldn't say my Youtube Channel is all that successful. However after recently reaching 1,000+ subscribers and 100K+ views, I'd have to say that some of my work is paying off. So how do you get to that point and what have I learned?
"Older Youtube Videos do Better"
This may seem kind of obvious. Obviously the longer a video is up the more views it will have. But most people see the initial spike after they share the video with some friends and see the video die to like 1 view per day and they assume that's all the views the video will ever have. This is very wrong.
You see videos often gain a second steam. I can't really tell you when it will be for your video. It might be a couple months or 2 years. But at some time your video will get a second steam.
Here's an example. Here's one of my most viewed short films that I made 2 years ago. As you can see it had like a 100 view spike when I posted it to Facebook and all of my friends saw it but nearly 2 years later it picked up steam and got to over 1,000 views. So don't give up on your videos.
"Instructional Videos Get More Views"
Instructional videos get more views than short films. Why is that? The value of them is more obvious. It's not like I'm a world renown entertainer who's content is know to make you entertained. So my shorts are fairly big risk for some one to watch. While learning based content has a more apparent value to it. Hey I'll get at least some more basic knowledge from this video. But if they look at my short film. They don't know if they'll get anything out of it. The value is harder for people to see. Less than 16% of my views go to my short films despite the fact that I have 36 of them.
"Subscribers don't = Views"
This is something you should know by now. If your subscribers sub from a motion graphic video, they aren't going to likely watch a lens review. Of course those audiences can overlap but they usually don't. So pick one audience unlike me, or you'll end up with lots of subscribers who don't watch your videos because you don't make ones like the one they subscribed on.
"Natural Shares = Mad Views"
Every time some one shares your video you reach a new audience and that leads to a massive lift in views for your video and possible conversion to your other videos. So make videos that are good enough that everyone would want to share it with their friends. I think thats the moral of what I've learned.
"Make good videos that reaches a marketable audience and do that for long enough and you'll get some eyeballs."
Zachary Will is an Award-Winning Filmmaker creating short films and content for the Internet as the owner of Riverside Studios. He has a Bachelor's in Film from Full Sail University. He has worked on productions for companies like Webmd, Sears, Home Depot, Six Flags and more!
"the trick is to never give up... I think the secret of success is not how little you get knocked down but how often you get back up." - Gareth Edwards