With version seven of Cyberlink PowerDirector video editing and conversion software, things just get better and better.

Interfaces don't much get better looking than Cyberlink PowerDirector 7, nor do they get easier to use.

Although arranged into the standard media, preview, and timeline three-pane window, Cyberlink PowerDirector 7's icons are easier than most to understand.

Editing in Cyberlink PowerDirector 7 is done by splits rather than setting start and end points - a method which grows on you after a few uses - and you can import virtually any kind of media.

Cyberlink PowerDirector 7 walks you through most operations, it's fast and we've yet to view a transcoding that wasn't up to snuff. It also imports any video supported by a DirectShow codec though it only outputs using its own codecs (and FX), including MPEG-2 for DVDs, MP4 for iPods and the like, as well as older AVI and MPEG-1.

Cyberlink PowerDirector 7 comes in three basic flavours: the HE version packaged with the DVD Suite, which offers Blu-ray support; the Ultra version, which offers Blu-ray support, more video tracks, and more templates; and the Deluxe version, which forgoes support for AVCHD MP4 and Blu-ray. The trial demo version of Deluxe works for 30 days and limits iPod format encodings to a total of 50.

Cyberlink PowerDirector 7: Specs

  • Microsoft Windows Vista or XP (Windows XP Service Pack 2 is required for HDV capture)
  • 1024x768, 16-bit colour or above screen
  • AVI Capture/Production: Pentium 2 450 MHz or AMD Athlon 500 MHz, VCD Quality (MPEG-1) Profiles: Pentium 3 600 MHz or AMD Athlon 700 MHz, DVD Quality (MPEG-2) profiles: Pentium 4 2.2 GHz or AMD Athlon XP 2200+, High Quality MPEG-4 and WMV, QuickTime, RealVideo Profiles: Pentium 4 2.4 Ghz or AMD Athlon XP 2400+, AVCHD and MPEG-2 HD Profiles: Pentium Core 2 Duo E6400 or Athlon 64 X2 5000+
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5GB hard disk space
  • CD or DVD burner
  • Microsoft Windows Vista or XP (Windows XP Service Pack 2 is required for HDV capture)
  • 1024x768, 16-bit colour or above screen
  • AVI Capture/Production: Pentium 2 450 MHz or AMD Athlon 500 MHz, VCD Quality (MPEG-1) Profiles: Pentium 3 600 MHz or AMD Athlon 700 MHz, DVD Quality (MPEG-2) profiles: Pentium 4 2.2 GHz or AMD Athlon XP 2200+, High Quality MPEG-4 and WMV, QuickTime, RealVideo Profiles: Pentium 4 2.4 Ghz or AMD Athlon XP 2400+, AVCHD and MPEG-2 HD Profiles: Pentium Core 2 Duo E6400 or Athlon 64 X2 5000+
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5GB hard disk space
  • CD or DVD burner

OUR VERDICT

There are a number of nice video editors on the market, but few if any surpass Cyberlink PowerDirector 7 on any level. It's an especially good bargain as part of the DVD Suite.

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