Cheaper Alternatives to Final Cut Pro - Raindance

Listen up, editors.

Keep your money in your wallet for a second, and check out these programs that could save you more.



Lightworks is the fastest, most accessible and focused NLE in the industry, because it is based on the simple idea that the editor, not the computer industry, knows what’s best. The latest release of Lightworks is based on the cumulative knowledge from twenty years of top-flight editing.” – EditShare Lightworks

Lightworks is exciting. Although mostly unheard of, the program has been around for a while now, making it’s mark last April (2013) with the full release of 11.5 for Linux and Windows and an alpha version of 11.1 having been demonstrated running on OS X. The capabilities of Lightworks, both Free and Pro versions are both impressive and efficient, proving a useful tool from editors of all levels from the amateur to the connoisseur.

As of yet, there isn’t a version available for Mac OS, however, it won’t be long – I feel it in my bones.

You can buy Lightworks Pro for £179.99 in one go, or £49.99 yearly, or £4.99 monthly – yes that’s right. It costs LESS than a Netflix subscription.

As well as that, you can get a free version Lightworks, that will do the job just fine. You can see comparisons between the Free and Pro versions here.

Download Lightworks for Windows here.

2. Wondershare Video Editor


“The most user-friendly home video editing software, featuring smart and intuitive editing tools that let you create Hollywood-themed movies within minutes.”

Wondershare is wonderfully simple and something of a joy to work with.

Incredibly user-friendly, but not to the extent that the technique and art of video editing is lost.

Wondershare is available for both Windows and Mac OS for $39.99/£24.00 and as well as that there is a free version available to download before hand to “try-before-you-buy”.

3. Pinnacle Studio


“The right Studio for every movie-maker.”

With many versions out, prices range from £20 for older versions, to £99 for their most up-to-date Studio 16 Ultimate, Pinnacle is a mature editing program for a fraction of the price you would have to spend on an Avid or FCP studio set.

The key features of the latest Pinnacle Studios include unlimited editing tracks, wide range of file support, comprehensive video effects and transitions, red giant plug-ins and green screen.

Unfortunately for Mac OS users, Pinnacle is only for Windows users for now.

Check out the different packages on offer here.

4. AVS Video Editor


“Edit your video recordings and make your own movie with a few simple drag-and-drops. Enhance your videos with effects, menus and audio, so that they have a professional look.” –

Easy-to-use audio & video editing and DVD authoring software, AVS Video Editor is like the EasyJet of this list. Cheap, no-frills and simple. Nothing fancy here, but does what it says on the tin. For what it is AVS provides an impressive list of features and compatibilities.

AVS works with all key video formats such as AVI, VOB, MP4, DVD, WMV, 3GP, MOV, MKV, H.263/H.264 codecs and more.

Again, AVS is currently only available for Windows. Download/Subscribe to ALL AVS Software for $39 for the entire year here.

5. HyperEngine-AV


“A true multimedia editor that lets you combine seamlessly video, photos, sounds and text to create slide shows, family movies, business presentations, or your own feature films quickly and easily, with full DV quality.” 

The cheapest one on the list, costing exactly nothing, this is the program that iMovie should’ve been. Simple. Easy. Efficient.

Not as complex or heavy-duty as the others on the list, but if you’re looking for a no-frills editing software for shorter projects, or even home videos, then this is the one for you.

Download HyperEngine for Mac OS and try it out yourself here.

Any editors out there know of any other software that saves your pocket? Leave a comment below!

And for some more completely FREE options, check out this nifty article from