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Full user review
"A BAD unnatractive follower to ShowBiz DVD 2"
Is capable of working with more file formats than DVD2 without crashing.
Black depressing background, practically all functions are invisible.
Crashes too easily [just click on the arcsoft logo and die].
Refuses to work with projects made with DVD2 !!!!!
Timeline is too 'diffuse', definition of 'objects' is poor.
Frame cropping merely adds a black border, the 'new' frame does not fill the window.
Altogether a step backward from DVD2. Whilst DVD2 may not be the most versatile home movie editor, it does a very good job considering it's price and relative simplicity. DVD2 has certain disadvantages, such as it's tendency to get indigestion if you try and manipulate too many of the wrong file types [AVI mp4 MOV] at the same time, so long all files are WMV then you can string together as many as you want, and you can use DVD2 to convert the files [one at a time] to WMV so that you can the string them together. Further to this if you add effects to the time line before you are finished adding all the clips and fotos then things get out of sync.
In upgrading to version 5 one would expect these problems to have been adressed. Well as far as I can tell the file acceptance has been improved but further to this the product has been so badly revamped to the extent of unfriendliness that it's hard to know if other improvements have been made.
To start with it just looks bad, an almost black featurless background practically devoid of indications where to find [or go to look for] any of the usual tools.
After probing about [pressing the Arcsoft logo is a disastrous move] some recognisable features begin to appear, and things seem to be working, still against the uninspiring blackness. The timeline has been 'simplyfied' so that an effect 'object' is integrated into the clip body as it were, but then only into one clip [or foto] a fade for instance is at the end of one clip and does not extend into the beginning of the next, as one expects it to. This may all have solved the sync problem one can have with DVD2 but it's been done in such an unclear fashion as to make it unuseable, it simply lacks definition and clarity.
The added feature of frame cropping, which would seem to be a real good feature for solving thos situations where you want to get the subject 'closer in', is a joke. It is really a non starter. It works all right, one can crop the frame to contain just that what one wants, but what happens next is quiet laughable! The result is the same size, you've just added a black border!!!
This product may have 3D support on board but if Arcsoft thinks that the kind of home movie customer using this kind of product is going to need this yet then it has not done it's homework. Before the product is attractive in it's normal features no one is going to consider making the move to 3D!
The fact that one can not work with projects made previously with DVD2 is another example of the lack of attention to detail apparent in the whole of the product. As if Arcsoft hired in a team of young teenagers who knew nothing about previous products and [as usual] did no research before producing this monstrosity.
It is just not worth the price of the update. I wish now I had gone for the trial first and not just bought outright expecting the same quality as ShowBiz DVD2.
Waisted $20!! Waisted a lot of time !!
Now just using DVD2, quite contentedly thank you.
Do not waste your money, certainly if you are thinking of purchasing for the first time for the full price!