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     " We, in typical Monkey fashion, fiddled and screwed around and figured it out long before we ever had to crack the encyclopedia of a manual "

   Title: Vegas Video by Sonic Foundry

   Format: PC Video Editing Utility

   Reviewing Monkey: Dungapult

   The Hype: Edit your own videos on your PC. Compile your home vids into blackmail material, cut shorts of your neighbor vacuuming in the nude, etc., etc. Yeah, weíve heard it all before. So, the real question is- how does Vegas stand up? Read on, my Monkey FaithfulsÖ

      What This Monkey Thought...

   Usefulness: So youíve got your new high feed video input card, youíve got your camcorder, and now you want to bring it all together. Well, Iíve worked with no less than a dozen video editing programs for my stunt team and I can honestly say that Iíve never seen anything with as wide of range as Vegas. It has, of course, all of the standards- clip editing, transitions, capture, special effects, etc. But you get those with the stupid $5 program that came with your card. Now, what really starts setting Vegas above and beyond is the huge number of options that come on top of those! Conversions to virtually any video format, drag and drop editing, modulate and contrast resolutions and sizes, dynamic color and channel support, metadata imbedding (putting web links, etc., into your video), multi-track video, net and Direct-X Plug In support, and much, much, more! This bad ass little Monkey machine has it all. And though it falls into the "Professional" category the interface is laid back enough that even little sub-monkeys who want to give it a shot will be able to figure it out. Totally Primate-Riffic! (Did I just say "Primate-Riffic?" What the hell is wrong with meÖ) 5 out of 5

   Compatibility: We ran it on two different computers and through three different video capture methods (two camcorders and one camera) and it performed just fine across the board. Frankly, it seems solid enough that I canít imagine it will have much in the way of problems. Hell, even if you have some whacked out knock off "Made in Craponia" camera, Vegas has enough built in control devices that Iím sure you can make it work. 5 out of 5

   Performance: In a word, "SCHWEEEEEET!" There has, in the past, always been this weird trade off in the video editing software between "ease of use" and "capability." Too often if you wanted a program that a non-professional could use you had to give up way too much of the features you wanted. Well, for the first time that Iíve ever really seen, Vegas has a killer combo of both simplicity and capability. The "drag and drop" editing is so simple even we Monkeys could use it proficiently, the menus and options are laid out so that you can actually find the shit you want when you want it, it has all of the effects and options you want, and- most importantly- it ALL WORKS! Yes, thatís right my little Monkeys, it all does what itís supposed to! How rare is that? 5 out of 5

   Installation and Real System Requirements: Well, the sys requirements are pretty high (P2-400, 128mg RAM) but itís all worth it. On the down side, those requirements are stiff, but on the plus side thatís Actually what you need (another rarityÖSys Requirements that actually are the Sys Requirements)! 3 out of 5

   Instructions and Learning Curve: Well, the instructions are 450 pages- and that should tell you something right there. It weighs so frickiní much the first thing I did with them is pound Cornelius into a soft pink stain. The nice part, though, is that: 1) Theyíre pretty well laid out and they do actually teach you what you need to know. 2) You donít actually need to read them if youíre just doing basic stuff. We, in typical Monkey fashion, fiddled and screwed around and figured it out long before we ever had to crack the encyclopedia of a manual. All in all, though, it sorts out pretty well. I just wish there was a shorter "Quick Guide." 4 out of 5

   The Verdict:

       When you get right down to it, Vegas is the best video editing software this Monkey has ever gotten to play with. Fast, easy, capable, and supportive, it let me do everything! Not something anyone is prying out of my long furry fingers any time soon.

   The Good: Capabilities, Ease of Use, InterfaceÖJust about everything!

   The Bad: High System Requirements and a manual the size of Gideonís Bible.

   The Overall Ugly: If you want to be editing, you need to be using this program!

   What it's Worth: Market

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