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Pinnacle Studio 10 for Windows : Visual QuickStart Guide

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Pinnacle Studio 10 is the latest version of the industry leading home video editing tool aimed at the Windows consumer market. In Pinnacle Studio 10 for Windows: Visual QuickStart Guide, veteran journalist and teacher Jan Ozer tackles Pinnacle Studio version 10 in classic and popular QuickStart style--with step-by-step instructions, plenty of illustrations, and straightforward language. Jan provides the skinny on all popular Studio 10 features like built-in DVD authoring with motion menus and custom navigation; Pan and Zoom, enabling users to quickly create engaging video slideshows from digital photos; SmartMovie II, a tool that let's you create home movies in minutes; dual monitor display; key framing special effects in real-time; and the Instant DVD Recorder. He also covers key Pinnacle Studio Plus 10 features including picture in picture (PIP); Chroma Key effects (green screen); and full HD editing, particularly creating HD slide shows from digital photos.

If you're a chef at a fine white linen restaurant, I'm sure that when you have friends over for dinner, burgers on the grill just won't do. You have to impress, amuse and delight.

Well, I can't cook worth a hoot, but as a writer and reviewer in the digital video space, I feel a similar pressure to perform when it comes to home movies. The video has too look great, the editing must be crisp, the titles and effects amusing and enhancing and the background music just like they have on 60 Minutes or The Fantastic Four. I have to make my little girlies laugh, the grandparent smile, friends remain awake, and most of all, please my wife so she doesn't mind the football sized camera I drag around on vacation and other family events.

We're talking pressure.

And the reason I like Pinnacle Studio so much is that it helps me deliver. Over the last three revisions, the program has evolved from a reasonably well featured, easy to use editor to an effects powerhouse with outstanding DVD authoring capabilities.

When I say effects, I don't really mean Star Wars-like effects, I mean color correction that can fix mistakes like the improper white balancing when I videotaped the kids at the Atlanta Zoo back in '03. Or bad lighting at the high school reunion dinner in '04 (and I'm not telling which one). Or stabilizing the parade and concert videos shot in '05. We're talking a pre-eminent ability to clean up your videos so they look like you knew what you were doing when you shot it. Hey, even cooks make occasional mistakes.

Of course, Studio excels when you actually start to edit your video, with multiple trimming options, great precision, an excellent titling tool, an amusing set of thematic transitions and an expanding base of Star Wars like effects when I decide I want to use them. Plus the ability to automatically generate background music and mix the background music with other audio tracks quickly and easily. The new Overlay track added in Studio 9 Plus gives me chromakey and picture-in-picture capabilities while pan and zoom features let's me use the images shot with that lovely Canon Digital Rebel that showed up last holiday season.

When it's time to build my DVD, Studio offers the most flexible authoring tool this side of $300 standalone authoring programs, with completely customizable menus.

I personally adore Studio because it helps me produce home videos that meet the expectations of my wife and kids, other family, and most importantly, me. And I'm sure it will help you do so, as well.

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