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Linux Video Programs

Editing: Cinelerra, MainActor, AVIDemux, VirtualDub (under Windows emulator), Kino, LiVES, MJPEG Tools, Broadcast2000, Jahshaka
Compositing : Cinelerra, Jahshaka, effectv, VeeJay
DVD Ripping: mplayer/mencoder, transcode
Video/DVD/VCD/SVCD/streaming Playing: mplayer, xine, vlc, gtv, mtv, mpeg_play, xanim, xmovie, ffserver, ffplay, and many others.
Video Conversion/Encoding: ffmpeg, mplayer/mencoder, transcode, mjpeg tools, HelixProducer/RealProducer, AVIDemux, VirtualDub, mpeg2movie, and others.
Video Capture DV/Analog: ffmpeg, mplayer/mencoder, transcode, mjpeg tools, MainActor, Cinelerra, Broadcast2000
3D rendering for video: Blender, Maya, Jahshaka, and others

For editing and compositing Cinelerra is totally awesome. It has advanced capabilities and can support several colormodels. It does editing and video and audio and it has features like: ChromaKey, Masks, multiple tracks, 6 channel audio output and mixing (unlimited audio tracks), IEEE-1394 (Firewire) video and audio input/output, analog video capture support, supports SD and HD (HDTV)editing (even at high frame rates), multiple frame rates (1,3,5,15,etc....24p, 29.97p, 30p, 59.94i, 60i, AND 60p!!), many effects (including perspective, telecine, and others), LADSPA plugin support, titling, supports Quicktime, DV, AVI, MPEG 1/2/4, Component Video, Rawvideo, YUV, etc.
Broadcast2000 is the predecessor of Cinelerra and it lacks many of Cinelerra's features, but it is a little simpler to use. I still use it for audio editing and some basic video stuff. It doesn't do much compositing though, just editing and capture. For audio, unless you need the 6 channel output and LADSPA plugins like Cinelerra offers, Broadcast2000 is THE program. It is non-destructive, meaning that when you do an edit, you will not have to wait for it to wirite to a "backup file" so that you can undo it. Its edits are instant and do not take effect until you are done and you tell it to render. It pretty much will do the same stuff as Soundforge for Windows or CoolEdit for Windows, but they use destructive editing. I used to use Soundforge some and it was a pain to wait for the backup files. Especially when I was working on a 500MB-1GB audio file. And when I got done editing, it had filled up my TEMP directory with several GB of backup files. With Broadcast2000 , you have unlimited undo steps and unlimited edits and you will only have to wait for it once, at the end when you render. It has features for audio that rival some commercial console-based sound editors.
Kino is an excellent program for capturing DV video from a digital camcorder or other DV video source. It works very well except for a tendency to crash sometimes, and does very good simple editing and basic special effects (cuts, titling, etc.). Newer versions of Kino have a DV pipe feature that you can use to encode to DVD,VCD,MPEG-4 or other formats from your DV video.
Jahshaka is a program that is still in the works and not fully completed yet. When it is done, there will be versions for Linux, Windows, and MacOS X. When it is finished, it will do editing, compositing, 3d titling, graphics compositing, and a bunch of other stuff. When it is done, if it goes the way they say it will, it will be better than just about any programs on the market that are under $2000. Right now it looks awesome and does some graphics stuff, but it doesn't yet do much with video yet.
MPlayer: It it THE video player for Linux. You can also run it on MacOS X and Ipaq and Sharp Zaurus PDAs. You can play DVDs, VCDs, XVCDs, SVCDs, XSVCDs, network streams, digital satellite streams, slideshows of pictures, and anything else you can think of that has moving pictures or audio in almost any fomat and codec that was ever created, period. Some companies are even using mplayer in their DVD set-top-boxes for decoding the DVDs instead of using hardware. These make awesome DVD players (they have MPEG-4 support).
Xine is similar to MPlayer, except that it doesn't play quite as many formats but it plays DVDs a little better and has DVD menu support.
VLC is similar to MPlayer and Xine except it will do a couple of things that Xine won't and it also plays DVDs well. On the other hand, Xine plays some files better. VLC will also play from Digital Satellite Receiver Cards or interfaces and will stream video over a network or the internet. It is available for Linux (primary), MacOS X, Windows, Ipaq handhelds running Linux, Zaurus PDAs, FreeBSD, BeOS, and others.
Xmovie is made by the Cinelerra people and it does best playing files made by Cinelerra, including uncompressed and component video files and files in 60p format (That's 60 frames-per-second PROGRESSIVE!).
Mencoder is a program that goes along with MPlayer and it will pretty much encode from ANYTHING to AVI files with video in RAWRGB, MPEG4 and other codecs. And it is fast. It does perfect DVD rips.
FFmpeg is THE encoding program for Linux. You can pretty much encode from anything to anything with blazing speeds. Also it will capture from a digital (DV) or analog video source and encode it in real time to just about any format with just about any codec.
Transcode is the linux video "Swiss Army Knife" and is similar to mencoder and ffmpeg but with more features. It is absolutely a zero on the user friendly scale, but is worth the effort to learn at least how to do basic functions with it. It can use MPlayer to decode video and then encode with ffmpeg, mpeg2enc, or other encoders.
HelixProducer lets you encode to RealAudio/RealVideo formats for web streaming. It does a good job of making RealMedia files, especially audio.
LiVES (Linux Video Editing System) is a good program for simple editing. It has some nice effects. It converts your video to a series of JPEG images, performs the requested operations, and then converts the video to the requested output format.
Effectv and VeeJay don't really do compositing, but they add cool effects to an analog video source.
Blender is an awesome program for 3d work. It is murder to learn to use, but once you learn, you can create 3d titles, 3d games, and whole 3d movies if you want. Its features are similar to big-bucks programs like 3dsMAX.
MainActor is at the bottom of the list because unlike the other programs listed, you have to pay for it. The download version is about $80 and does about everything related to video editing. It's features are comparable to Adobe Premier. It has many effects and scene transitions. It also has a built-in 3D title-maker, and simple analog and DV capture capabilities.

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