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Moviefactory 5

Score: 97%
ESRB: Not Rated
Publisher: Intervideo/Ulead
Developer: Intervideo/Ulead
Media: Download/1
Players: N/A
Genre: Editor/ Miscellaneous

Graphics & Sound:

No, Moviefactory 5 is not a game, but it is for the PC... and it allows you to edit video clips from a variety of sources. You could, for example, use Moviefactory 5 to do some post-production work on movies you've created in The Movies. Or, you could capture some gameplay video from your favorite game and do voice overs and some fancy editing to make your own movie or "machinima" piece. Or, you could take a few of the video game movies utterly destroyed by Uwe Boll and try to edit together something decent.

The look of the user interface in Moviefactory 5 is very slick and somewhat iMac-ish -- especially the quick-access media tray called "QuickDrop". It allows you to simply drag and drop media resources over it and they are all added into a list to be burned to disc. You can even drag pictures in. Doing so results in a slide show with default timing; this timing default can be adjusted in the QuickDrop's preferences menu.

For more in-depth editing, you'll want to actually open up Moviefactory 5 proper. You first select whether you want to start a new project or continue an old one, then (if creating a new one) get to choose what type. You can choose from Blu-Ray, DVD, HD-DVD, VCD and SVCD. You could also choose to capture from video straight to disc.

Once you've started your project, you can select media to add to your production, mixing various format movie clips and still images - with the ability to add music and even to time the slide show so that the images play for the same length of time and all add up to fit the length of the background music.

If you have video capture on your PC, you can capture broadcast content straight into your project, and then you can even edit out the commercials auto-magically using Moviefactory 5's Ad-Zapper feature. This feature intelligently cuts a video clip into separate sections and identifies the commercials with a "C", allowing you to select them and delete them before continuing with your production. I played around with this feature a bit and found it to work very well. With the sensitivity turned up, it correctly separated and identified what was show content and what was commercial - and even correctly separated the commercials from each other. Impressive.

Speaking of impressive, the DVD menus you can make for your projects are both easy to create and very professional in appearance. Moviefactory 5 comes with several templates that you can use to produce your very own animated DVD menu screen. One that I made even had a small video preview screen that showed the first bit of the clip (scene) that was to be selected. You can also add text with various style settings, such as fonts, size, drop shadow and alignment. These sorts of text effects are also available for creating labels - either for the disc itself or various types DVD and CD cases. You can also add images to these, as well as some logos for different types of media (such as DVD+RW, etc.) which are provided with Moviefactory 5. Even a beginner should be able to play around with Moviefactory 5 for a little bit and produce a fairly professional looking result. Well, the special effects and menus will look professional, even if their use doesn't.


While Moviefactory 5 is not a game, it does play well with others. Specifically, Windows Media Center, which disallows a lot of video capture software from accessing video sources, seems to coexist with Moviefactory 5 just fine. I cannot stress this enough. I have actually seen posts on forums where Media Center owners have contemplated purchasing an additional video capture device that doesn't support Media Center so that they can use the new capture device with other software.

When editing video in Moviefactory 5, I was surprised at the accuracy of the cuts that I could make as well as the ease of separating video into different scenes and joining scenes into one clip.

One cool feature of Moviefactory 5 was that you can quickly and easily create animated slide shows from your images that include pans, zooms and various wipes, and these are added to your production as a scene. Additionally, you can edit the still shots to correct for lighting and other quality issues to quickly clean the shots up before burning them to disc. A handy "Split View" allows you to see your pictures with and without a selected filter - in the same picture; One side of a sliding divider has the before version and the other has the after version. You can slide the bar back and forth to see how the current filter would affect the picture. Pretty cool.


Moviefactory 5 is very intuitive, easy to use and provides great results. You will find that the interface makes it easy to see the results of your edits as soon as you make them. With just a little bit of playing around with it, you'll find that you're able to mix various movie clip formats with slide shows of still images, video capture from a camera or TV signal (if you have a tuner card installed in your PC) and even video from other DVDs to create your own disc - whether a DVD format, a CD format or even HD DVD and Blu-Ray!

Another feature that Moviefactory 5 makes easy to use is the ability to capture video (such as from recorded VCR tapes) straight to disc; you don't even have to use any hard-drive space.

I was very impressed with the ease of editing in the video editor tool and still image editor tool. You can see instantly what your change will look like and the controls simply make sense. You can easily select how long each image in a slide show should appear and choose wipe effects, fades, pans and zooms from a selection of presets that have identifying animations on their buttons - they don't try to name the effect, they show it to you. The video editing tool allows you to select what clips to use, allowing you to split video into smaller clips, combine clips to form a large clip, cut out commercials with the click of a button, choose the specific frame to cut in and cut out in a scene and even add sounds to be played over the clips (such as a musical score, for example.)

Game Mechanics:

I had one occasion while using Moviefactory 5 that the program froze on me. I cannot blame this on the software, as I could not reproduce the problem. It is possible that some other process caused the issue. However, this is software for editing video. The PC I was testing it with has only one hard-drive. That means that all programs on my system are using the same hard-drive that the video capture is recording to. For better performance, it is advised that video captures be saved to a different hard-drive to prevent resource conflicts.

All in all, I found Moviefactory 5 to be very easy to use and good at bringing together different media types and creating a compilation or single presentation from a wide variety of video and image formats. If you're looking to move your favorite vacation videos or other home videos to DVD or to make a DVD of cool web movie downloads (Star Wars Kid on demand, perhaps?) and even add your own musical score or voice over, you can do it with Moviefactory 5. If you're looking to do more involved editing you'll need other tools, but Moviefactory 5 might still be a good starting point - it can quickly and easily handle your rough editing, leaving only your more detailed or flashy editing to other tools.

-Geck0, GameVortex Communications
AKA Robert Perkins

Minimum System Requirements:

Intel® Pentium® III, AMD Athlon™, 256 MB RAM, Microsoft® Windows® 2000, XP SP2, MCE, XP64, 900 MB hard disk free space for program installation, DirectX® 9.0, Windows Media Format 9, Macromedia, Flash Player 7,Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or above, Windows® compatible sound card, Windows® compatible display with 1024 x 768 resolution or above, Windows® compatible AGP or PCI graphics card (overlay support is recommended)
Recommended system: Intel® Pentium® 4 Dual Core 3.0 GHz or AMD Athlon 64™, Dual-Core. 3800+ MHz, 1 GB RAM+, 50 GB hard disk free space for program capturing and authoring, PCI-Express Graphics Card Optional Requirements, USB1.0/2.0 or PCI capture device compliant to WDM, standards and PC cameras, IEEE1394 (FireWire) I/O device compliant with OHCI, standards for use with HDV/DV/D8 camcorders, PCI, TV tuner, or USB capture device for analog capture (WDM support), Windows® compatible Blu-ray, HD DVD, DVD-R/RW, DVD+R/RW, DVD-RAM, or CD-R/RW drive, 10 GB of available hard drive space or higher for 2 hours of DVD video authoring and burning, 50 GB of available hard drive space or higher for 2 hours of high definition DVD video authoring and burning

Test System:

Sony VAIO VGC-R820G: Intel Pentium 4E, 3.2 GHz (Intel Grantsdale i915), 1 GB RAM, AMI BIOS, Radeon X300 Series (128 MB), Realtek HD Audio, Floppy disk drive, 200 GB 7200 RPM, Serial-ATA/150 Maxtor HD (24760 MB free), DVD-ROM, Pioneer DVD-RW DVR-108, Sony SDM-HS73 Monitor, Cable Modem

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Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated