Pinnacle Studio: Understanding the Video Toolbox

In pinnacle Studio, the video toolbox is the fastest and simplest way to create and modify visual clip types. The eight tools in the video toolbox are clip properties, montage themes, titles, disc menus, frame grabber, SmartMovie, picture-in-picture and chroma-key, and video effects. This guideline will go over the basic functions of each tool.

Clip Properties

You will use the clip properties tool to change the start and end times of clips. You can also use the clip properties tool to change the default name of a clip. The name of a clip is only shown when you have the Movie Window open in Text mode.


Pinnacle Studio comes preloaded with theme templates. You can use the themes tool to customize your clips with the theme templates. The themes tool also allows you to import video and photos that can be used in the theme clip.


The purpose of the titles tool is to allow you to change the names and lengths of the titles in your project. By pressing the Edit Title button in Pinnacle Studio, you will access the Classic Title Editor and Motion Titler. Those title editors can be used to change the text and appearance of any title.

Disc Menus

As the name suggests, the disc menus tool is used to edit the on disc menus in your project. The disc menus tool allows you to edit the links that connect the buttons on your disc menu. You can also use the disc menus tool to change the appearance of any menu in your project.

Frame Grabber

The frame grabber is similar to a digital camera. You can use the frame grabber to take a shot of a single frame from your movie. You can then use that shot elsewhere within your movie, or you can save it to your computer for future use.


You can use the SmartMovie tool to create a music video. The SmartMovie tool allows you to select what footage and song you want included in the video. After you have selected those items, the SmartMovie tool will automatically combine the video and music to create a music video. Pinnacle Studio comes preloaded with various music video styles, as well.

Picture-in-Picture and Chroma Key

Although the picture-in-picture and chroma key tools have separate tabs within the video toolbox, they are considered to be the same tool by Pinnacle Studio. The PIP tool allows you to create a picture-in-picture effect in your movie. The chroma key tool gives you the option of customizing the foreground background of a shot.

Video Effects

Pinnacle Studio gives you access to many plug-in video effects. By using the video effects tool, you are able to apply those effects to your movie. The various video effects included with Pinnacle Studio can be applied to video clips, theme clips, and still images. In addition to the preloaded plug-in video effects, you can purchase additional effects from the Pinnacle Studio website. Many third party companies also create Pinnacle Studio video effects.

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