Sony Vegas

Having been an Editor for 30 years now I have worked on many different systems, all with their advantages and disadvantages.
The software that I use most often now is Sony Vegas Pro, a PC based package.

The Vegas 11 interface


Why Sony Vegas?

Put simply the reason I like Sony Vegas more than Avid or Premiere or Final Cut is flexibility. Many of the projects I work on are not for broadcast, they are for an event or for the internet and as such they are not made at a standard resolution. Vegas lets me work at any resolution (up to 4k) any frame rate and any aspect ratio. It also lets me bring in material from multiple sources and work with them immediately in my project without transcoding. Basically if my PC can play it I can use it.

Vegas also has much more powerful audio tools than most other video editing packages and the user interface is customisable to match what I am doing at the time. I can save screen layouts for editing, grading or mixing and recall them at the press of a button. It works beautifully with multi screen setups.

The built in effects options give me 90% of what I need and then there are many plugins available for those extra effects. Vegas has recently adopted the OFX plugin format which means we are seeing many more plugins compatible with Vegas.

Vegas has a 64bit version (and has done for the last two years) but I can have the 32bit version installed at the same time. In fact I can open multiple instances of Vegas on the same computer and switch between them at will.
I can nest Vegas projects onto the timeline in another Vegas project and double clicking will open the nested project without closing the master project.

Vegas is hardware agnostic, it will use CUDA or Open CL acceleration if the hardware supports it, but it doesn't need it. So it is equally at home on my laptop as on a workstation. Which brings me to something I wish all software companies would do. The license for Sony Vegas allows me to install it on multiple computers, provided I only use it on one at a time. There is a one off activation the first time I install Vegas on a new computer and that's it. Hmmm.. Yes I'm looking at you Adobe. No activation/de-activation nightmares.

Version 10 introduced the ability to edit in stereoscopic 3D and a very quick and easy to use image stabilization tool. The recently announced (free) update to 10d will add 3D Blu-ray burning and support for MVC and MPO file formats.

There's plenty more but the last thing I will mention is the user forum. It has to be the most friendly and professional forum I have ever come across and I am regularly amazed at the level of knowledge and the lengths that other users will go to in helping someone out.
I contribute when I can but am frequently beaten to it. :-)

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