The quest for sustainable free/libre non-linear video editors

(Pat David) #21

I’m trying to be a sexier Ton. It’s a hard bar to meet.
I may be failing…

@darix on the other hand. He’s your man. :wink:

(Boris Hajdukovic) #22

No! On the contrary! You have already surpassed him in this function :smile:

Despite the fact that Ton is very committed to support free software in lot of areas, he mainly takes care of Blender.

You have taken on the challenge to bring the whole free software photo community up to the top!
A gigantic task! With a fantastic result! And not only by creating this outstanding platform PIXLS.US but by actively supporting many projects and not least through your blogs.

I can remember a scene two years ago when I demonstrated working with GIMP to some pedagogical staff from different schools who had no money left to comply with Adobe’s new licensing policy and were forced to look for alternatives.

They have of course already tried GIMP but couldn’t work much with it because they could only find very sparse documentation at a very rudimentary level, and I was asked to do a short training course for them.

When I demonstrated what I learned about GIMP from your blogs, you should have seen their stunned faces.
After two days of intensive course, everyone was able to do with GIMP all the tasks they had done before with Photoshop.

When I asked them about it later, they all said that they are now using GIMP in school, but sometimes they still use an old version of Photoshop that they have on some of the computers because GIMP doesn’t have a CYMK support yet, which is sometimes needed for printing in the print shop.

So thanks to you, darix and many others, free photo software community has a nice future :wink:

(Patrick Wauters) #23

@beachbum thank you for sharing. I very much agree with your point of view and I will be using a ‘software budget’ to donate to a number of OSS projects / solutions. Thanks again!

(Damon Lynch) #24

Yes please!

(Simon Frei) #25

Wow, someone’s having a good overview of the state of development of quite a few projects :wink:

I am not disputing your point, but I still feel like the following update is in order: Maik Qualmann should get recognition here: He is a very active contributor since a few years. I am not disputing that Gilles is the main contributor (e.g. all the portability (but not only) is his work), but Maik is almost catching up to him.

(Alex Prokoudine) #26

Fair enough! Thanks for correcting me on that.

(Pat Cunn) #27

Ok, to be honest, there are some really great FOSS programs, that should be installed on all creatives’ computers, such as Inkscape, Blender, Rawtherapee, and VLC, but on a pragmatic level, one should be open to whatever works for the workflow and is realistically obtainable.

I use Reaper, which is as close to a FOSS mentality as you can get with a paid proprietary software, and it is really affordable. Serif programs like Affinity Photo are great and affordable, and I have found it to be a great rock solid and high performing piece of software, as I have had too many stability issues with the latest Gimp versions that support 16 bit (a hard requirement for the kind of photo editing I do), and Affinity Photo rescues me in stitching certain panoramas that Hugin seems to want to botch.

I get the frustration with Adobe and Premiere, but it is a false dichotomy between using Premiere and having to go through the trouble of using a FOSS video editor that might be very unstable, or abandoned. For instance Blackmagic Davinci Resolve/ Fusion 15 has a free version that is very capable and powerful, and serves 95% of amateurs, and to upgrade to the full one is $300 with free/cheap upgrades. Considering the Adobe alternative is Premiere for just video editing, and having no strong compositing capabilities of the included Fusion in the Blackmagic software package, in only 15 months, 8 months if you need After Effects as well. Plus, you get the full version free with most Blackmagic video cameras.

(Pat Cunn) #28

That being said, I do hope that a FOSS video editor someday emerges and can go toe to toe with the proprietary versions, like Rawtherapee can with Lightroom, and Blender can with Maya, but in the mean time, I recommend sticking with whatever is most functional, proprietary or FOSS. Given the immense complexity of creating a video editor, I think that the nonprofit model Blender uses might be necessary, with dedicated non-profit fundraising tactics to raise money to hire talented salaried developers.


Could you elaborate on this on a separate thread? Or if a thread already exists, please link it. That would help us see what we can do to improve GIMP and Hugin.

(Pat Cunn) #30

Hard to say with Gimp, as it is just so far behind in general performance and stability compared to Affinity Photo and Photoshop (didn’t buy or pirate Photoshop, just speaking from experience using it on school computers) and have used adjustment layers too extensively to give it up for ideological reasons. I can help out with Hugin and will post a thread on some of the issues I have encountered.

That said Rawtherapee is very powerful, and I always plug it from genuinely being impressed whenever I get the chance to. Especially with the new Shadows, Highlights tool in RT 5.5. Holy &*(#, that is on par with the Lightroom secret sauce shadows and Highlights tool, and the wavelets are superior over LR clarity, giving user control of each detail frequency level.

(Alex Prokoudine) #31

The article specifically says:

“Of course, there’s the easy way too: just pay for either DaVinci Resolve or Lightworks for Linux and be done with free/libre NLEs on a free/libre platform.”

What false dichotomy?

(Isaac Ullah) #32

Very interesting read in the OP, and follow up conversation. I would say that I have used pretty much all of those NLE’s over years. Mainly just editing up for my YouTube channel. For sometime I was in the “Blender is best” category, but it really was a pain to configure Blender for mainly video editing. You also are ignoring like 80% of the rest of the software and settings, which got annoying. I have recently gone back to KdenLive, and I have to admit that It really serves most of my needs. Funny thing, is no matter which NLE I use, I still go back to avidemux or even command-line avconv/ffmepg for some basic tasks (cutting clips, extracting audio, changing time codes). Would be great to have that kind of precise control of clips from within one of those NLE’s.

(Pat Cunn) #33

Sorry, didn’t read the article. My bad.

I do hope that someday, there will be a strong FOSS NLE, and if I see something that does work well, I’d jump ship and promote it like I do Rawtherapee (Every photo I post online I add in the description that it was raw processed in Rawtherapee, and have tried to recruit programmers to volunteer). But in the mean time, the free version of Davinci Resolve does virtually everything except for 3d video, resolutions higher than 4k and noise reduction, and the full version is only $300, and can be had through buying a Blackmagic camera as an add-on. I have observed significant improvements in the past few years by developers, and good stability on Windows 10, can’t speak to Linux.

(Alex Prokoudine) #34

To be frank, I also wouldn’t use a full NLE to extract audio, when dumping to wav via ffmpeg is just one silly CLI command away :slight_smile:

It’s a bit of pain to run on Linux. I never got past the intro tour.