This post will be giving you a concise review of LumaFusion, a powerful editing app, focusing on what it features, and at the same time help you decide whether it suits your editing needs. Stick with me as I take you on this brief journey into the creative world of LumaFusion.
Video has already been a crucial part of any marketing strategy nowadays. Statistics suggest, about 80% of marketers say that video helps them expand the market, increase the marketing activities and improve customer service; over a half of marketers have gone so far as to use paid media to promote videos on social media and increase sales. Users are more likely to engage in visual content, too. It’s proven by higher retention and click rate on visual ads than text ads. Now everyone is talking about how significant video is and trying to master some common video editing skills. But is it enough?
People often find themselves asking questions like, “what video editing software to choose if I want to be more professional in this industry”, and “what video editing software has more professional features when I’ve already known some basic editing tools”. Approach 10 reviews and odds are high to eight or nine will list LumaFusion.
What is it? Good news, you are about to know what it exactly is and how it can help you, no matter what reasons you need to make videos. Let’s go over some basics of it.
As LumaFusion is a professional-level tool, supporting multi-tracks and track-based editing similar to Adobe Premiere, used by mobile journalists and professional video content producers, the company behind it, LumaTouch, charges only $30 for it. (It raised the price from $20 for new customers after a major update in 2019 and it is often on sale). And users will receive all its future updates without extra payment. Compared to other iPad apps, $30 is relatively pricey but is still much cheaper than desktop video editing software since Final Cut Pro costs $300, and Adobe Premiere Pro costs $240 per year.
The company charges the up-front price and makes a sole subscription feature—an optional library of music and clips. One of its co-founders Morgan says, “LumaTouch hasn’t been tempted to adopt a subscription model as Apple encourages, though the subscription model will likely draw our users to the app to a large extent and provide us a more steady fund for our future development.” She believes that with one-time pricing, LumaTouch can be a sustainable business well into the future because not everyone uses a video editing app regularly. And its users believe in it, too. The app now has 930,000 users and Apple named LumaFusion its iPad App of the Year in early December.
LumaFusion aims to let anyone make edits at any point in any course of the creative process thus it has an intuitive interface that works exactly as the user expects it to, with editing features like preview monitor, search panel, source clip which helps you identify your edit on the fascinating multi-track timeline.
In the top right half is your playback window, where we will be able to preview and playback our video as we edit it. Down at the bottom is our timeline area where the editing happens. The media window is where to import all of our files and videos. And all the sections will work in both portrait mode and landscape. So if you are on a smaller device, then I would recommend you switch it to the landscape. If you have more screen real estate to play with, more control over your edit, choose the straight away.
The coolest thing is that the whole interface is customizable—you can work however you want. You can even change the workspace layout by selecting any of the six available workspace layouts on the screen. And it is one of the meaty updates this year.
From cutting a video to exporting directly to YouTube and Vimeo, LumaFusion offers a whole video editing experience that you can easily use anywhere. That’s good, but here we still want to introduce two of the most basic user-friendly features that support smooth editing.
The first one is Fast Loading. With LumaFusion, We haven’t had to wait for the timeline to load when opening the app after it has been closed for several hours or days. You can effortlessly scrub the timeline without so much as a hitch after minimizing or closing the app. And it works the same when you are editing 4K footage. While editing 4K footages will take up too much storage, here the second one we’d like to mention is that LumaFusion has the option to edit directly from an external SSD since version 3.0. That means you no more fill your iPad up with cached media from your LumaFusion projects and you can access external drives directly from the Files Library in LumaFusion on iPads with USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 ports.
LumaFusion enables you to stack 6 simultaneous video/audio tracks and 6 additional audio tracks in the enhanced magnetic timeline where you can cut, copy, paste. And you can display your preview of every edit on an external monitor. Effects like blurs, distort, styles, speed ramps, and green screens are there easy to use within a few clicks.
But what surprises us most is when we try to adjust the audio track we will get visual representations, showing us how loud our audio is. And we can make adjustments just by grabbing that slider to boost it up. With it, here comes the general rule—don’t have your audio up into the red areas. That means the audio is distorting and it is going to sound bad.
There are plenty of effects and filters that work well enough for your audio. However, it is often tedious to apply the different filters and effects. The feature of audio ducking saves this. It automatically adjusts sound levels, lowering music and other sounds when a subject speaks and returning to normal. So typically, you will have to manually adjust audio levels on other video software, but in LumaFusion, you only need to set the track with the speakers as the Master track and the music track as the Auto track. It will then automatically detect when subjects speak and adjust the levels.
Color correcting is in the Color Presets tab and there are several stylized presets to choose from. You can adjust any of them to your preference, though it is possible to tone down some of the more exaggerated ones. If you are not sensitive to color correcting, then just try raw footage first by selecting the original preset and moving the sliders until the color looks right. And, if you don’t like your correction, hit the trashcan to bin it and start over.
There are sliders for exposure, contrast, highlights, shadows, and midtones (Gamma), as well as for saturation and hue. Whereas color correcting fixes the color, it is kind of limited, too. Thankfully, LumaFusion is possible to apply LUTs. A LUT is a tool that lets filmmakers, editors, and colorists save particular color grades as a template that allows you readily turn to when working on a project.
Animating effects by adding keyframes sounds like an advanced technique, especially with more complicated effects. However, the keyframe feature itself on LumaFusion is quite easy to learn. Here I’d like to illustrate an instance to make you understand.
Imagine there is a picture on the screen and the duration of the picture is 3 seconds. If you place a keyframe at the beginning, zoom in, and place another keyframe at the end. When you play the clip back from the beginning, you will see the picture gradually zooms in on the screen. That is the basic rule of keyframe and it works the same on effects. Almost all of the effects on the app can be added with keyframes, which opens to the possibility for more creative edits. You can even save the effects you make previously to use on future projects.
LumaFusion does a decent job of making everything accessible with touch—you will need to learn what each icon means. Most of the icons are easily decipherable. There is also a ton of touch gestures. Keyboard and trackpad or mouse users can click on those same icons or use the keyboard shortcuts. Luckily, LumaFusion has a handy cheat sheet of sorts. And you can explore the full reference guide on their official website. Besides, external free support like online tutorials is available. They have curated a collection of third-party video tutorials from their amazing community of video producers showcasing how to best use LumaFusion to create videos.
LumaFusion is one of the most powerful iOS video editing apps, taking advanced features to the table. Far more than just arranging clips on a timeline, it allows you to edit smoothly and effectively. Its price is on the higher end of iOS apps, but it is more affordable than Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro. Quite evidently, if you are hoping to enjoy a budget-conscious but super creative experience on a minor project with lightnature relatively, then LumaFusion is a good option for you. However, if you are looking for a software or editing tool to handle a bulk project with more intricate effects or you are heading for the pro world seriously, this option may not be the best choice that you should spend time on.