Video Editing Tools: An Introduction to Avid FreeDV

Welcome to an introduction to Avid FreeDV, which will outline its usefulness when it was available, as well as highlighting other video editing tools. Avid FreeDV was recently discontinued but is still available online through some websites as a free download. It was originally released in 2003 and was a free version of Avid's Express DV. It was discontinued in 2007. The motivation for Avid to release a free version of their Express DV software was that using it encouraged many users to upgrade to the better software, such as Express DV, Xpress pro, etc.

Released for both Windows XP and Macintosh OS X platforms, Avid FreeDV introduced users to the Avid family of products. It provided users with an introduction to a real, industry-standard tool set and interface. The tools that it presented free to the public were essentially the same as those used by provisional editors, doing real digital video editing in any number of professional environments. It was intended to offer a fun, free and relatively uncomplicated introduction to the industry standard technology as was being used to create real feature films, commercials and television shows.  

Who it Was Aimed at

Millions of DV camera owners, enthusiasts, amateur filmmakers and students benefited from this free software from Avid. From a commercial standpoint it worked as Avid had intended, as many users upgraded to their more advanced software. Avid has continued to release newer and better versions of their software.

What it Offered

Avid DV offered a pared version of existing software with the several useful features. It gave users the option of including four audio tracks and two video tracks. It offered them the chance to perform basic trimming and editing functions. It also allowed users to include real time effects in one or two streams.


For many, the most useful aspect of Avid DV was that it allowed them to get used to Avid's award winning video editing software on a general level. Getting used to the free tools provided on Avid FreeDV proved to be an excellent introduction to its more sophisticated and costlier software.

In Comparison

Avid freeDV was more technically demanding than some other home editing tools. Many users reported a preference for more basic programs such as Windows Movie Maker, or iMove for Mac, which they found easier to use.

What it Couldn't Do

Avid FreeDV was limited in that it allowed for only two audio and video tracks, when other software will allow for a great many more. These limitations meant there were a good many editing feats that could not be accomplished with Avid FreeDV.

In conclusion, the fact that Avid FreeDV is no longer available, outside some freeware websites, may come as a disappointment to some. It provided many users with an introduction to professional editing software which gave them a useful foundation when it came to progressing to more advanced tools.

The tutorials provided by Avid presented excellent free instruction and from a marketing perspective FreeDV was an excellent product in that it secured for Avid a good number of loyal, long term users.