There’s a ton of choice when it comes to free GoPro editing software. If you’re struggling to find the best free GoPro editing software, you’ve come to the right place.
The challenge isn’t finding something to download; it’s finding GoPro editing software that actually works. This article will run through some of the best free options for both content creators and casual users.
We’ve considered these options based on performance, feature sets, and accessibility.
Here’s a quick rundown of the best free GoPro editing software:
- DaVinci Resolve 17
- GoPro Studio
- Windows Movie Maker
- OpenShot Video Editor
Free GoPro Editing Software That’s Worth Using
Not all GoPro editing software are alike. What you use your GoPro for, and what you expect from your video editing software will determine which option works best for you. Keep your needs in mind when checking out the list below.
Lightworks is a powerful piece of video editing software that comes with both a free version and a paid option. The limitations placed on the free software relate to your available export formats; otherwise, the functionality is the same.
This is one of the best GoPro editing software options around in our opinion. While the limitations placed on the free version are frustrating, you get a lot of pro-grade features thrown into the mix. If you can stretch and pay for the full version, it might be worth it in the long run.
Lightworks is built to make pro-grade features accessible to everyone. Whether you’re a complete novice or a professional video editor, this software should serve you well. There’s a lot to love above Lightworks.
Everything from the simple UI, to the low-res proxy workflows for editing 4K shots is remarkably well put together. If you need free GoPro editing software now but wouldn’t mind investing in a more premium option down the line, definitely consider this one.
- Excellent, pro-grade video editing features
- Efficient 4K video considerations
- Access royalty-free audio files for your footage
- Tons of format options in the paid version
- Your export options are limited in the free version
2. Davinci Resolve 17
When you use Davinci Resolve, you’re rubbing shoulders with Hollywood video editors. The color correction capabilities of this video editing suite makes it a firm favorite of professional filmmakers and cinematographers.
As with Lightworks, Davinci Resolve comes with both a free software option and a paid version. While the free software is predictably less powerful than the full version, there’s still plenty to sink your teeth into. It might be overkill for some, but software like this can really take your action shots to the next level.
Both colors and distortion are handled very well by Davinci Resolve. A slew of options are available to tweak your videos and photos to your heart’s content. Special effects, automatic “smart” features and laser-accurate trim functions are among the other tools you’ll have at your disposal.
Keep in mind that as Davinci Resolve is designed with professionals in mind, the system requirements are a touch above average; you’ll need a decent computer to take advantage of this video editor.
- Phenomenal tools for color grading and distortion
- Handy “smart” features
- Full featured UI built for professional work
- The free version is still very powerful
- The system requirements are pretty high
- Comes with a steeper learning curve
3. GoPro Studio/ Quik
GoPro Studio is editing software developed by GoPro themselves. It’s designed to make it easy to edit GoPro footage and create “professional quality” videos. As far as GoPro editing software goes, it works very well and covers quite a few bases.
One of our favorite features of this free GoPro editing software is the ability to play and work with your timelapse content as though they were videos. This gives users some welcome flexibility when working with their shots.
Another useful consideration is the export function that makes it trivial to export a still from a video in full-resolution. This takes a considerable amount of pressure off content creators desperate to get the perfect shot; if it’s hidden in a video, you can always perfect the shot later with the editing software.
If your GoPro camera uses the “Dual HERO System”, you’ll be able to create stunning 3D videos with this editing software. Features like this demonstrate how far the GoPro format has matured over the past few years. This is one of the best free video editing options that compliments the format remarkably well.
It’s worth noting that the longevity of this video editor is up for debate. GoPro might not support it forever. That said, it remains as one of our favourite GoPro video editing programs and is completely free!
- Great video editing software features that are easy to use
- Takes advantage of the GoPro “Dual HERO System” for awesome 3D videos
- Custom-made to work with GoPro cameras
- Capture full-resolution stills from your videos
- Legacy support appears limited. Check out Quik for GoPro as an alternative.
Blender is a piece of editing software that makes you wonder how on earth it’s free. While there are plenty of features here that suit GoPro editing very well, there’s tons more to sink your teeth into too. If you’re looking for something with a broader scope, Blender is worth considering.
As a video editor, Blender offers quick splicing features with audio mixing, syncing, scrubbing and waveform visualization. Speed control, filters and keyframe options are available too. While there aren’t any GoPro-specific features on offer, Blender does a great job of working with your video footage.
The overall video editing capabilities are best defined as simple but effective. This program doesn’t do everything, but what it does do, it does very well. If you need to rejig your GoPro videos quickly, you won’t encounter any problems using Blender.
While not specific to GoPro users, the rendering and sculpting features of this software are pretty impressive. If you also need to render 3d models as well as edit GoPro videos, go with this option.
- A fully customizable UI
- Simple, effective video editor
- Completely free
- Runs efficiently and smoothly
- Extra rendering and sculpting features
- Relatively limited functions for GoPro users
5. Windows Movie Maker and Alternatives
Another piece of free software worth considering is the Windows Movie Maker. You’re not going to get the pro-grade features of, say, Adobe Premiere, but you will get free GoPro editing software that gets the job done.
For quick, efficient splicing of clips and stills, this video editing software is no slouch. It’s worth noting, that while Movie Maker was part of the Windows 2012 “essentials” package and is therefore still available on many PCs, it’s discontinued for newer desktops.
Don’t worry though, the built-in Windows Photos app works great in a pinch. GoPro editing software doesn’t always have to be super-powerful. If your needs are relatively straightforward, this option won’t let you down.
If you’re wondering how to import your footage from your GoPro to your PC, check out our guide here.
- No-nonsense, simple controls
- Built into older Windows PCs free of charge
- Has a very small footprint
- Exports in a variety of formats
- Not supported on newer PCs. The Windows Photos app works well as an alternative, though.
iMovie for Mac Users
This one’s limited to Mac users, but it’s a surprisingly powerful tool if you have access to it. Many Mac users don’t realize they already have free GoPro editing software built into their computers. While iMovie is comparatively bare-bones compared to something like Davinci Resolve, it’s no slouch either.
The usual Apple polish can be found throughout the available effects and editing features. As a general rule, Mac software is designed with usability in mind and this GoPro video editor is no exception. Expect slick animations and a video editing process that’s refreshingly intuitive.
A killer feature of iMovie is its connectivity features with iOS. If you collect action shots with both a GoPro and your iPhone, this easy-to-use software makes it simple to access the footage you’ve captured when on the go. Your iPhone files can sync seamlessly with iMovie on your Mac.
It’s a shame that Windows users have to sit this one out, but iMove is one of the best software options for editing GoPro footage for free.
- Familiar Apple simplicity
- Slick effects and user friendly UI
- Killer iOS connectivity
- Edit your videos on a Mac, iPhone or iPad
- Share direct to social media
- Not available on Windows
- Lacks a few advanced features like color grading and color correction
OpenShot Video Editor
This is one of the best GoPro video editors that doesn’t cost a penny. OpenShot is an award-winning solution that makes it easy to edit your videos from a GoPro quickly. The UI is wonderfully easy to use and comes with a number of more powerful, professional level features thrown in for good measure.
One of our favourite things about OpenShot is that there’s no limit on the number of tracks you can use. This makes layering up things like watermarks and multiple shots a trivial process.
The video effects, keyframe options and cross-platform functionality of OpenShot makes it one of our favourite video editing apps. It’s available for Linux, Windows and Mac users and hasn’t let us down to date.
If you’re a bit of a tech-head, you might be pleased to learn that this software is also completely open source. In many contexts, this gives users some added peace of mind, as the internal code of the editor can be viewed by anyone with the knowhow to understand it.
- Award-winning free software
- Available for Linux, Windows and Mac
- The best GoPro video editor for Linux users
- Open source
- While the UI is very user friendly, it’s not the best-looking thing in the world
Last, but certainly not least, is the VSDC video editor. Throw your video clips together effortlessly with VSDC’s versatile, easy-to-use UI. This app supports a broad range of formats and video codecs, making it a great option for both GoPro and other camera shots.
As a non-linear editor, VSDC is designed to make it easy to compile multiple stills or clips into a single composition. If you need a GoPro video editor that can create picture-in-picture or split screen effects, VSDC is a good option.
While we’re on the subject of video editing, it’s worth mentioning that VSDC also offers convertor software for audio and video files. If you regularly need to change the formats of your more obscure clips, solutions like this can save you a fair bit of headache.
If you use both a GoPro and other cameras for your action shots, they may well capture content in different formats that don’t necessarily work well together. Using software that can convert your work into the same format might be a worthwhile approach.
- Non-linear design for easy compiling
- Easy to use
- Completely free GoPro editing software
- Options for converting audio and video files
- Lacking some pro-grade tools
We hope this article has demonstrated that when it comes to free GoPro editing software, you don’t have to compromise as much as you might think. While there are some idiosyncrasies that come with using a GoPro, GoPro video editing isn’t an entirely unique process.
The main thing to worry about is how easy your chosen program is to use and whether a free app will have the feature set you need for your videos. If your main concern is splicing some clips together, a free option will be more than enough.
If you need professional color correction or other more in-depth tools, either Lightworks or Davinci Resolve is probably the way to go.
The free versions for both of these apps are surprisingly fully fledged. It’s worth noting, though, that it’s worth investing in a paid option if your requirements are a little more complex. The intentional convenience limitations like fewer export formats can prove frustrating if you use the software all the time.
Consider your personal requirements closely and choose an option from this page that you think works best. Whichever option you go with, we hope it serves you well!