YouTube Remixer Launched/Reviewed

YouTube LogoAs reported by TechCrunch, YouTube has officially launched YouTube Remixer today, which is a new service that allows users to edit their videos from within YouTube itself. Join me as I take a look at this new service to see what it has to offer.

Powered by Adobe Premiere Express, the new service supports the insertion of graphics, text and audio as well as overlays and in-video transitions. While testing the new service my FireFox browser crashed which proves that this is not the ideal solution to use if you want to create a quality video which may take up quite a bit of your time, only to potentially have it wasted. Remixer should be popular to those who can not afford the Adobe Premiere Express desktop software, however, because you can only use your own media, users will be unable to create entertaining mashups which would have been a big hit.

 

The Beginning:

Remixer can be used by anyone who has registered a YouTube account. To begin using Remixer, click the following link http://www.youtube.com/ytremixer The first thing you should notice is that the familiar white background color of YouTube is gone. The bright color scheme that YouTube users have come to expect has been exchanged for a depressing grey color scheme. I can’t help but feel depressed while looking at the interface. At any rate, all of the videos that you have uploaded to your YouTube account will appear on the right by default. This area also houses the Graphics And Captions, Borders, Transition and Music features that can be added to the videos.

 

How To Use Remixer:

To begin using Remixer, drag one of your videos from the list on the right into the first box that appears in the time line. This will be the starting point of your video. It may take some time before the video loads into the time line but once it does, move the triangle located above the top of the red bar Playlist Time Line Indicator to the right to a point in the video where you would like a transition effect to occur. Once you drag the triangle to the appropriate spot, click on the SCISSORS icon to the left of the red bar. The Scissors icon will slice the video into two separate clips allowing you to place a transition in between them.

The transition effect, applied to the video

After the video is sliced into two separate sections, click on Transitions And Effects link. There are five different transitions to choose from, they are, Fade to Black, Fade to White, Fade Out, Circle Wipe, and Blur. Each one of these effects are self explanatory. To use one of the effects, drag the name of the effect into the smaller gray square that sits in between the two video clips. Preview the video with the included effects by clicking on the preview link in the bottom left corner of the Remixer Window. If you don’t like the result, you can either click on the UNDO button, or you can drag the effect from the time line back into the window on the right side of the page.

You can also add borders to your video, although I have yet to figure out how to place a border on one video clip rather than have it appear on every clip. The border feature allows you to add that extra spice to your piece. There are seventeen different borders to choose from including a television border, vintage photo border, and a plasma border which tries to provide the effect that your watching the video on a plasma television. If you manage to figure out how to place different borders on different video clips, let me know in the comments section.

Remixer also provides a way for you to provide different graphics and captions over your videos. The graphics are Vector based which means you can scale them to the size that you need and they will retain their quality. Some of the graphics include a baby bottle, sunglasses and the ever so cute ginger bread man. There are also three different types of captions that you can add to your video clips, stylish, plain and thought bubbles.

As for the ability to add music and photos to your videos, I have yet to figure that out. As far as I know, YouTube is used for videos, not for photos or for music. I tried dragging images from a separate browser window into the Remixer time line and that did not work. If you know how to add music and photos to your movies, please let me know so I can update this post.

Once you are finished remixing your video, click on the publish button. You will be asked to give the video a Title, Description and provide a list of tags for the video. Because of the launch of Remixer, YouTube has now added a new link in your My Videos area called My Remixed Videos. This is where all of the videos you Remix will be located once you publish them.

 

Conclusion:

The first remix video I published failed to save the transition effects that I applied. The second video did the same thing, so I am unable to provide a demo video showing the different transition effects that are available. I am not sure if this is a bug or not but I would think that the videos you publish from Remixer are suppose to contain the transitions you applied. The video looked exactly the way it was suppose to as I previewed it in the Remixer service, however, what I viewed is not how the actual video was published.

Remixer is no Adobe Desktop Solution, but it does provide a way for average YouTube users to compile their existing videos into something a bit more interesting. A major drawback for Remixer is the non ability to save a piece of work. This means that if your browser crashes during your Remixing session, you will have to start over from scratch and I doubt that very many users will actually start from scratch. As I noted earlier, this would have been truly Remixing if YouTube users had the ability to Remix any videos that are stored in the Remixer repository but I suppose this is asking too much. The service is actually pretty easy to use and I encourage you to look over your videos and see if you can’t improve their presentation using Remixer.

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