Comparison: Windows Movie Maker vs iMovie

Last updated on March 16, 2018 by Roland Zonai

windows movie maker vs imovieVideo editor software serve a wide audience today as people naturally have the desire to give their clips a prettier look and add some cool effects before uploading to one of the popular video sharing sites. With managing the way a video clip is cut or with the use of effects uploaders may give their audience a fuller experience. There are two basic video editors, Windows Movie Maker and Mac iMovie in the market that can be considered the most widespread programs in their category. They may have limited features compared to their “big brothers” but both editors wish to keep usability and effectiveness their leading traits.

iMovie vs Windows Movie Maker Pros and Cons

Windows movie maker is a perfect choice if you are a general user wishing to spice up your trailers, home movies or educational material. Windows movie maker is originally included in Windows with the desire to provide a simple, easy-to use movie maker. It is for combining clips into digital movies and add effects like titles, music and choose from a variety of effects. It promotes simplicity and usability with tools like zoom control, clip trimmer and splitter and clips can be re-inserted anywhere by a simple drag-and-drop method. Basic operations for video editing can be reached through the tabs in the top of the screen. Another great advantage of Windows Movie Maker is that the app tries to make the whole editing process faster by letting you use a lower-resolution shadow copy of the footage. Importing videos does not cause any trouble and starting a new project is simple from the home tab.

As for iMovie the first thing that crosses the eye is the exceptionally elegant interface-look. An easy-to-navigate panel provides the basic features one may look for in a basic video editor. It is not hard to create impressive video clips by turning your footage into classy films and include super-cool effects like adjusting the time to make a section faster or slower. There are three main tabs at the top center of the interface: theater, media and projects. Similarly to Windows Movie Maker you can easily start a new project by choosing from the options the big plus sign button gives us next to the projects window.

iMovie has come up with a simple way of cutting and merging videos. Insert clips anywhere to the timeline by dragging them there. The neighboring videos will be joined and marked by a line. You do not have to worry that the colors will not match because with the “Color match” option it is possible to unify the color and the atmosphere of the videos shot at different places.

With iMovie importing and sharing videos more convenient than ever as most Apple devices can be synced. This applies for editing as well as it can be continued at another device any time. For example having started in iOS you may finish the project on your desktop.

Both programs have their advantages but the best way to point out the differences is comparing what each of the two software might be lacking. But how to decide which one to choose, iMovie or Movie Maker?

If we compare availability of Windows Movie Maker to iMovie there are some interesting results. First of all it is not so easy to get Windows Movie Maker if we do not want a bunch of other programs installed on our computer. Windows Movie Maker is included within the „Essentials bundle” Windows had released. These are a set of basic apps that are available for Windows 7 and 8. There is no option however to get only Movie Maker because all the different programs like Windows Live Family Safety and Windows Live Mail are available through one single installer which does not provide an option to choose from them. iMovie vs Movie Maker is easily available at the app store for free. But can you download iMovie on Windows? I have bad news regarding this question as it is only available for Apple devices.

Regarding editing options Apple’s iMovie provides a lot more features, effects and tools. Windows Movie Maker versus iMovie is long way behind with its few Instagram-like filters. In Movie Maker you get only seven themes while in iMovie there is quite an extensive library to choose from.

If we compare windows movie maker imovie is just as a simple but useful video editor. With Movie Maker long thumbnails” represent clips and the thumbnail currently not in uses gets faded which is a difference from iMovie. But is iMovie easy to use? In iMovie editing tools are placed in the same tumbnail regardless of their category and the useful popup windows that can be found in Movie Maker are missing.

In lighting control the two programs differ a lot because iMovie’s extensive set of lighting effects cannot be compared to the few options we get in Movie Maker. It would be nice to have at least a contrast and saturation editing panel.

One more negative factor with iMovie is that except the three-pane interface for video editing nothing else is standard with iMovie when we come to studio work. Instead of track divisions we have to drag clips to the timeline where they would extend and show their running time. With iMovie only two video tracks available and the standard number for this is 100-plus and this is what we get from most PC video editors out in the market.


Windows Movie MakeriMovie
Where to find?Included in Windows Essentials but you have to install the whole packageIt’s available for free from the Mac Apple Store
Unique FeaturesVoiceover recording, anti-shakeiMovie has most elements, filters and effects available of the consumer editor programs available in the market
HighlightsSimple interface with tabsBuilt-in color matching for unified looks, powerful audio-editing tools
WeaknessesNot enough effects and filters, history window not available, poor lightning control, there is no new windows movie makerOnly two video tracks available, tools are not organized as well as in Movie Maker, no multi-cam or motion tracking
NotificationsMore integrated, the iOS 11 lock screen, as well as the notification center turn into one.Two steps, need to hold unread notification icon at application to open content
DevelopmentThey have stopped developing Movie MakeriMovie is up-to-date with 4K compatibility
CompatibilityAvailable for WindowsAvailable for Mac

The table above shows some more differences in the two programs. It might be good to start examining one’s needs before choosing a certain software because the features that are offered in the market are quiet extensive and all video editor softwares give us a certain handful of these editing options. Media Player is still the best movie maker app for Windows but since Microsoft has stopped developing it iMovie has been becoming more and more up-to-date compared to it. Having included 4K video support and with its marvelous sharing options it is among the best movie making programs in its category. If you have Apple devices is difficult to find a better and more simple video editing tool for novices but iMovie alternative for Windows is no option.

That’s it for the comparison! Both of these tools are awesome video editors, but in case you are interested in having the best solution for yourself, you can also have a look at AceThinker’s Video Master solution that is among the best tools available on the market and it will sure to give you some even more advantages than these two solutions could to help you!

Roland Zonai

Roland is an experienced content creator for screencast recorders, video converters, music and video downloaders, and professional video editor tools. He has an analytical mind and writes his articles with a need for perfection. You can develop a great overview and a good knowledge to choose the best solution for your needs through his reviews. Last updated on March 16, 2018

Leave a Comment

Please input your name!
Please input review content!

Comment (0)

Back to top