June 10, 2014

Lightworks, the World's Most Affordable Professional NLE, Is Now Available for Mac

Lightworks For MacFor the past few years, we've been patiently awaiting the long-rumored arrival of the Mac version of the legendary NLE Lightworks. A functioning version of the Mac software was shown as far back as NAB 2013, and at that time, many of us started to get excited. Nearly a year later, EditShare, the company which now owns Lightworks, announced that the public beta of the Mac version would become available in the middle of June. Well folks, the day has finally come where Mac users can head on over to the Lightworks website and download the software for themselves. Rejoice!

First and foremost, it's important to note that Lightworks for Mac is just in a public beta test right now, and it hasn't been officially released. As such, the full "Pro" version of the software is free for the time being. However, once the public beta expires, users will have to begin paying for the software if they want the additional features in the Pro Version. Or they can stick with the free version, which is still extremely powerful,  but lacking in several features like stereoscopic editing, support for third party I/O hardware, project sharing (for groups of editors), and many of the export options are limited. Otherwise, the free version will meet the needs of most editors.

The good news, however, is that Lightworks Pro is the most affordable professional NLE on the market, and it comes with a number of different licensing options for just about any price range. You can either subscribe to the software, much like Adobe's Creative Cloud, for an entire year for $80, or on a monthly basis for $8/month. If you're a fan of owning your software outright, you can also buy a lifetime license for $280, which is less expensive than FCPX. Additionally, like other software companies, students and teachers can take advantage of educational pricing

So with that out of the way, click here to download Lightworks for Mac.

Like all software, Lightworks comes with a bit of a learning curve. It's most similar to Avid Media Composer with its windowed interface and with the default 3-point editing controls. However, unlike Avid, Lightworks is designed to show you only what you need when you need it. Essentially it lets you organize your windows easily while keeping all major editing functions tucked away in a powerful little sidebar. The lack of clutter makes the Lightworks editing experience a pleasant one.

Here's the Lightworks for Mac quickstart video, which should show you how to get up and running with the software in no time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vRlO0qz2r4

For a more in-depth list of tutorials and a free demo project, head on over to the Lightworks Community. While you're there, you can read in-depth about the tremendous amount of features that have been packed into this piece of software. It has truly been re-designed from the ground up over the past couple of years to make it a fantastic solution for modern file-based workflows.

What do you guys think of Lightworks? Are you excited that it has finally made its way to the Mac? Let's hear your thoughts down in the comments!

Links:

[via RedShark]

Your Comment

34 Comments

i was exited for a second, because i remembered that after the release of the mac version the next step was to release the open-source, but then i visited their website and no sign of the old roadmap was found, my guess is that the open-source release was just a marketing *hit.

June 10, 2014 at 9:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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poto

They've got to honour their promise. At the time I purchased my licence it was promised to become open source in the future and that's why I bought it.

June 14, 2014 at 4:27AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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N

The open source version unfortunately was pure vapour ware.

August 10, 2014 at 4:11PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Y.

I am curious as to how this compares to Adobe premier pro. Sorry for my ignorance but how does this top premier?

June 10, 2014 at 10:35PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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gloveslapstick

Does the timeline move under the play head when you hit play? Or like Mac does it vanish off the right hand side of the monitor?

June 10, 2014 at 11:25PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Danny

Usually that's something that can be changed in the timeline settings of your NLE. I can't remember what exactly it's called, but it's usually something like "persistent timeline" or something along those lines. But in Lightworks, the timeline defaults to that behavior.

June 10, 2014 at 11:50PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Rob Hardy
Founder of Filmmaker Freedom
4517

Will it edit h264/DSLR footge?

June 11, 2014 at 12:33AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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earnestreply

Yup.

June 11, 2014 at 12:56AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Rob Hardy
Founder of Filmmaker Freedom
4517

Sorry, the World's Most Affordable Professional NLE, Available for Mac, Windows and Linux is DaVinci Resolve Lite.

June 11, 2014 at 5:01AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Tulio

Idiot. You might as well have said iMovie. Resolve is a colour suite and is not strictly a NLE.

June 11, 2014 at 8:15AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DLD

Have you seen Version 11 of resolve? Now it's a full editing software too. And I won't call you and idiot for not knowing.

June 11, 2014 at 8:36AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Robert

No have you? It's not even available yet. Idiot seems fine in that context and as an NLE even with the functions on offer davinci 11 would not be second, third or forth choice as an editor. I am pleased at its new functionality for finishing though.

June 11, 2014 at 3:42PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Keith

If you take a look at BM's web site you will see the new features that will be available (in about a month) in v11. Now, it may not be the best tool for some editors but it's still very powerful and good enough for many projects, especially short movies. The point was not to prove that Resolve is the best editing software, it's just to tell the readers that it can also be used to edit, as Tulio mentioned. As for Idiot, if you cannot have a discussion without insulting the other participant, I suggest that you don't comment on web sites. Or, create your own web site and feel free to insult anybody you want. http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve/edit

June 11, 2014 at 4:53PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Robert

If calling someone you don't know an idiot, in any context, is 'fine' by you, then that really says quite a lot about you, from your upbringing all the way to your attitude. Personally, I would not want to have ANYTHING to do with an insult spouting jerk. From your posts, it is obvious who is the idiot, both on technical and personal grounds. My condolences to your family, colleagues and friends (if you have any) for putting up with you.

June 12, 2014 at 3:13AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DUD

'Idiot'? Seems there's no moderation on this site, the comments are quickly descending into the gutters. Incidentally, Resolve is indeed an excellent editor. I was pleasantly surprised by how quick and powerful it was. Can't believe BlackMagic are giving it away for free. The Lite version anyway, which is more capable and less restricted then LightWorks..... so much for going 'open source', which it has not by the way.

June 11, 2014 at 8:54AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DUD

Thanks DUD, It seems that some newly arrived users have no idea about film making, etiquette or indeed life in general. A bit of moderation would allow this site to retain its composure and technical excellence.
As for me and thousands more professionals between editing in DaVinci Resolve or this 1990s revival, we know what makes more sense.
Ohh, DLD, do some research before making a fool of yourself.

June 11, 2014 at 2:49PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Tulio

No have you? It's not even available yet. Idiot seems fine in that context and as an NLE even with the functions on offer davinci 11 would not be second, third or forth choice as an editor. I am pleased at its new functionality for finishing though.

June 11, 2014 at 3:42PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Keith

That's wrong: There ain't no Linux version of Resolve Lite.

August 10, 2014 at 4:13PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Y

I'd like to see how this handles 4K. 4K is everything and they will not gain ground unless they can accommodate 4K.

June 11, 2014 at 5:51AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DLD

4K has no place in an editing software. Off-line editing exists for a reason

June 11, 2014 at 11:25AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Tom

Totally disagree. Editing 4k is easy as pie and I do it all the time.

June 11, 2014 at 7:14PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Paul Watt

Unfortunately the free version is way too limited. Export to 720 mpeg only and no edls etc.? That's not enough to start learning a new NLE.

June 11, 2014 at 7:14AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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...but it's good enough to make it available to the hobbyist YouTube/Vimeo Content Creator communities.

June 11, 2014 at 10:45AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Pat

This is great news, especially for institutions teaching students the principles of video editing. Students getting their hands on the free version of this is a great starting point!

June 11, 2014 at 7:38AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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My only complaint about Lightworks is that is seems to be fairly unoptimized -- it's a system hog. If you're looking for an editor to mess around with that will virtually import ANY format, then check out EDIUS Pro 7. I, personally, use After Effects, Premiere Pro, and Sony Vegas.

June 11, 2014 at 8:24AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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RidingtheDragon

Mehhhh

June 11, 2014 at 6:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Sam

I dove into lightworks recently as a way to offer a 'free' training option for teaching. Unfortunately the software is about as user friendly as a 1970's DOS application. Its underpowered, unintuitive and VERY restricted in what it offers - not to mention it crashes at the drop of a hat.

Resolve isnt ideal as an editor but for free - the upcoming v11 leaves this antiquated dinosaur in its dust. Ideally there is no substitute for learning one of the majors such as Premiere, Avid or FCPX. Hell even sonys budjet offerings would be preferable to struggling with lightworks.

June 12, 2014 at 4:46AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Peter

One of the things that I do like about Sony Vegas Pro is that I can handle my own data/ file structure. Once, I log my footage, I can simply import and drag the video to the timeline without having to create new sequences, etc. It's very intuitive, especially trimming, which involves simply sliding the edges of the clip around until you get the desired result. Need an FX? Simply right click the clip and add them from a list. This might be a good solution for your class. Vegas is powerful in the right hands.

June 15, 2014 at 8:46AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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RidingtheDragon

Seems very much like Avid workflow-wise, so it's probably great for traditional narrative/documentary work. Probably not so good for throwing things together for Youtube, where the less structured timelines of FCP & Premiere shine.

June 12, 2014 at 11:19AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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I have done a lot of short work (DSLR and the like) on Sony Movie Studio. I think it cost me £30. Obviously it's rubbish for anything where you need multiple effects (poor support and crashing problems) or complicated grading.

June 12, 2014 at 12:32PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Harry

Man, I just can't understand the negativity surrounding FCPX. Sure, it's $300 (cheap), but you can install it on multiple machines, it's 64bit, it reads pretty much any file, has tons of free plugins, and it's re-inventing what an editor can do. Premiere users are all just frustrated FCP7 users who can't move on. Resolve is awesome, but alas, it won't run on my 2012 Mac Mini, because of the graphics card (lame).

Now, another one.....that looks just....awful.

June 12, 2014 at 11:08PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Alan Veucasovic

Frustrated FCP7 users? I liked the Adobe product better than FCPX, and it made sense for my workflow, I use alot of After Effects lower thirds. It made sense. Not every one is a stereotype. :)

June 20, 2014 at 1:43PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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David

After watching the quick start video ... it gives me the perception that this way of working is over and done in the new era of modern NLE's especially like FPCx. Lightworks was a big name .. several years ago. I'm not a fan of Adobe Premiere Pro but that piece of software has a modern look and way of working that I don't see in Lightworks. Sorry folks .. I'm still a big believer in FCPx. And I don't doubt that Premiere Pro and other software will make progress towards the way of working of FCPx. When Apple makes work of its audio-editing in a professional way for videomakers ... than then they will have a huge advantage. And even now, FCPx, is already the tool for a new generation of editors. At the same time, nothing wrong with the more tradtional way of working like in Premiere Pro, Avid and now 'again' Lightworks. Have fun with editing .. at the end, it's not the tool that counts, but YOU as an editor.

June 13, 2014 at 3:36AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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FCPX - for the attention deficit generation. It was my first editor after an aborted attempt to use Avid. FCPX made editing effortless. I didn't have to learn anything to put together some basic short films. But a lifetime in the software industry has taught me that new and quick to learn implies exactly zilch when you want a power tool.

I can also see that the revolutionary magnetic timeline and skimmer, and pitch correction of FCPX could easily be implemented as minor add ons to any NLE. FCPX also bears all the hallmarks of an application designed by engineers. Instead of hand-editable EDL you've got programmer-friendly XML. And dismissing tracks as a relic of a bygone era instead of respecting what happens to be a powerful way to lay work out, the workspace is dumbed down to makes easy things super easy and then a programmer's object orientated solutions are used for anything more complex.

What is coming for video editing is Z. You know - Z! We've already got stereo, that's nothing really, and we've got 2D compositing and colour correction here already too. But what will suddenly burst in and change editing massively is the Z, or depth dimension. The editor will be able to change the focal point and the depth of field, will composite in 3D routinely, will change lighting - actually as if they were moving lights around, and out of all this will be evolve the 3D user interface. Perhaps Nuke will pioneers these things. Rather than only going forward and back on a timeline, the editor will also control these other visual parameters. This may well leave the Lighworks console concept in the dust. But then again, I can't be sure and I am going to stick with old school and see where it goes.

I am testing the Mac Beta with the console. I am intrigued by the way the application works. So far, I am not 'getting' why its so good but I am content to spend the time it takes to thoroughly understand how it works and how that relates to expert editing practices. The beta program has many defects and by no means are Editshare through the woods.

August 30, 2014 at 7:16AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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