Best Programs for Video Editing on a Mac

Although fewer video editing programs are made for Macs than for PCs, the available offerings are powerful, and programs are available for beginners and professionals alike. Mac video editing is fun and easy if you have the right software and know how to use it. Each of these software titles offers online tutorials for new users.

iMovie icon
Apple Inc.

Apple iMovie is easy to use—you just choose your clips, add music, effects, and titles. It supports 4K-resolution video for beautiful movies. The beginner-friendly software is equipped with dozens of styles to add animated credits and titles to movies. Filters include monochrome, vintage western and futuristic cool blue, among others. Built-in sound effects, music and voiceover recording add a professional touch.

Users with advanced video editing experience may want to take advantage of features that allow changing the speed of a video, the addition of split-screen effects and picture-in-picture capability.

Apple iMovie video editing software is free for all recent model Mac computers and low-cost for older Macs. Find it at the Mac App Store.

An iMovie app is available for Apple's other devices, so you can share the movie you make on your Mac with your iPad, iPhone, and Apple TV. More »

Apple's Final Cut Pro is advanced video editing software for the Mac. The software's Magnetic Timeline 2 feature eliminates unwanted gaps in the timeline and syncing problems. Professionals and advanced users alike appreciate the media organization features that use automatic metadata and keywords to locate clips.

The multichannel audio editing controls are extensive in Final Cut Pro and include suppression of complete channels and adjustments to timing and volume.

Other features include:

  • Advanced chroma keying
  • Customizable share interface
  • Color grading and masks
  • 3D titles
  • Compound clips
  • Ecosystem of third-party products available
  • Tight integration with Apple's Compressor software

A free trial of Final Cut Pro is available from the Apple website. More »

Adobe Premiere Pro software offers a start-to-finish video production solution for Macs and PCs. Use Adobe Premiere Pro with virtually any video format. With this fast and efficient professional-level video editor, you can work with anything from virtual reality to 8K footage in native format. Make quick and advanced color adjustments to your video from the Lumetri Color panel. Other features of interest include:

  • Automatically detects VR video type and applies appropriate settings.
  • Integrates closely with After Effects and other Adobe video and audio tools
  • Color workflows
  • Multicam editing
  • Synced settings and training through Adobe Creative Cloud

A free trial of Adobe Premiere Pro CC is available at the Adobe website.​ More »

Avid Media Composer is a professional-level tool for creative editorial. HD and high-res editing is fast and productive. Use it to navigate your clips, preview and import media using the Source Browser. Advanced audio features include audio dupe detection, audio ducking, groups and nested AudioSuite clip effects. 

Avid Media Composer works with 2K to Ultra HD to 8K source files with speed and ease, and it supports cutting edge codecs. Avid's resolution independence lets you work with footage from a 4K camera, an iPhone, and an old SD archive—all in the same project.

A free trial of Avid Media Composer is available from the Avid website. More »

Several websites feature online video editing applications that allow you to edit videos online. These online video editing applications are not as feature-rich as editing software that you install on your computer, but they allow you to do simple video editing online. It doesn't matter if you're using a Mac or a PC as long as you can access the internet.

These sites include:

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