CyberLink PowerDirectory 3 test and review

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CyberLink PowerDirector 3

The last time we saw CyberLink's PowerDirector budget video editing program, it failed to impress. A Mk3 version has just been launched, but is it strong enough to make an impact in an already well-served market?

DV editing at the entry-level is finally growing up. Gone are the days when software would sell itself on the strength of effects and novelty, and we're heading for a more mature approach to home video making, with a solid focus on storytelling and communication. Part of this change may be down to a better understanding of home editors as DV establishes itself in the mainstream, but a lot of credit must also go to Pinnacle for raising the bar so high with its Studio software. Pinnacle's competitors are still struggling to keep up, and CyberLink has a lot of ground to cover if it really plans to compete.
CyberLink is probably best known for its DVD playback software, PowerDVD, which has become a staple part of the OEM marketplace, being installed on most off-the-shelf Windows PCs and laptops, as well as accompanying a good number of DVD-ROM drives and burners. It's an excellent program, too. But content creation is more demanding than playback, and getting the right balance of features and functionality is essential at the entry-level. Making a program easy to use isn't enough any more. It has to be useful, too.

In taking its lead from Pinnacle's Studio rather than Roxio's VideoWave, CyberLink's PowerDirector is hugely improved. Unfortunately, despite the more user-friendly interface, the company has still chosen to concentrate on wacky effects rather than fundamental cutting tools, so PowerDirector is bound to take a back seat to the newly-launched V9 of Pinnacle Studio with regard to usability and editing tools. As it stands, the program is impressive, but overpriced and provides little room for growth.

Read the full review in April 2004's Computer Video magazine.


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CyberLink PowerDirector 3
Boris Red 3GL

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