2023 Best Special Effect Video Editors for Beginners, Professionals, and 3D Modeling [7 Picks]

Can you imagine that one day you can be a master to create Hollywood level videos with fantasy special effects and visual effects on your own? Top 7 best special effect video editors in 2021 for beginners/amateurs, professionals, and 3D modeling are available here to help. Pick up any vide editor introduced here to start creating your masterpiece now.

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Jane Zhou

Updated on May 24, 2024

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Have you ever imagined that one day you can create special effects videos and even movies at Hollywood level on your own? You can now be a master in special effects even without Hollywood technicians with the help of the top 7 best special effects video editors on this page.

All beginners, amateurs, professionals can all pick up the most suitable video editor here to create a masterpiece with ease.

As we know, that most great Hollywood 3D movies, VFX movies, and some DIY videos with marvelous special effects are all created by professional special effect artists, visual & sound artists, etc., with powerful tools. Now, you can be one of them who can create great videos with special effects by using the recommended video editors below.

Part1. Best and Easiest Special Effect Video Editor for Beginners/Amateurs

EaseUS Video Editor

For beginners or amateurs who know very little or even nothing about special effect editing, what they expect the most is an all-in-one special effect video editor or software that can help them both creating videos and adding special effects.

If you search "special effect video editor" or "VFX video software" online, you may get confused by the overwhelmed result. Here, a tested & efficient free video editor without watermark - EaseUS Video Editor is capable of helping. All beginners and amateurs who have no visual effects or special effects experience can all create a giant artwork on their own by using this software. You can download this software by clicking the follow the link.

And here is a video, after watching it, you will learn more about the EaseUS Video Editor.


1. 300+ built-in free special effects & visual effects

EaseUS Video Editor contains over 300+ special effects which are classified into Text, Filters, Overlays, Transitions, Elements, and Music. The biggest advantage is that these effects are all free. You can simply download the beloved effects and add them to your video with ease.

2. Fully featured like a professional video editor

Being it a special effective video editor, EaseUS Video Editor is also fully featured with video editing features, including:

  • Basic video editing - corp, trim, combine, cut, zoom, mosaic, etc.
  • Advanced video editing - export audio from video, convert video formats, speech & text conversion, freeze frame, PIP, etc.
  • Add photos, music, audio, text & titles, filters, motion graphics, overlays, transitions, etc.
  • Support multiple special effects, like natural transitions, sound effects, earthquake effects, flower blooming effects, wind blowing effects, bubble effects, etc.

3. Brief interface, easy for all levels of users

EaseUS Video Editor is designed with a minimalism style UI interface. Unlike the traditional complex video editing software, EaseUS Video Editor designer game this software a brief guiding words and icons. All levels of users, including beginners, can easily apply this software to create a video.


  • Doesn't support 3D

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10/8/7 (64bit and 32bit)

Tutorial: How to Add Special Effect to Video for Free

If you are interested in how to add special effects to your videos, download EaseUS Video Editor and follow this tutorial to create your own artwork with ease now:

Step 1. Import Media Files

First, select the desired aspect ratio while launching EaseUS Video Editor. Then click "File" > "Import" > "Import file"/"Import folder", click "Import" or drag the target videos, photos, audio files, etc., to the "Media" area.

Import media

Step 2. Add project to timeline for editing

Once all the files were loaded, right-click those items and select "Add to Project" in EaseUS Video Editor. All selected items will be added to video, audio, and even picture tracks automatically. You can now perform some basic video editing functions on those tracks so to crop the video.

Add media to project

Step 3. Add Special Effects

- Add Text and Filters

Text and Filters are two basic visual and special effects available on most video editor software. So they are to EaseUS Video Editor.

  1. 1. Select the video or photo project, move the time frame to the exact point where you want to add a text or a filter.
  2. 2. Click "Text" > Select "Title" or "Subtitle" > Choose and download a desired effect > Right-click and select "Add to Project".
  3. 3. Click "Filters" > Select a favored filter and download it > Right-click the downloaded filter and select "Add to Project".
  4. You can drag the end or the beginning panel of the effect to extend or shrink its duration.
Add filters to video

- Add Overlays

Overlays can beautify your video and add some awesome effects at the beginning or end of your video:

  1. 1. Select the target project, move the time frame to the point where you want to add a text or a filter.
  2. 2. Click "Overlay" > Choose and download an amazing overlay > Right-click the overlay and select "Add to Project".
  3. You can drag the end or the beginning panel of the effect to extend or shrink its duration.
Add overlays

- Add Transitions

Adding natural transitions between two videos or photos is also important.

  1. 1. Select the target project, move the time frame to the point where you want to add a text or a filter.
  2. 2. Click "Transition" > Select and download a wonderful transition effect > Right-click to "Add to Project".
  3. You may double-click the transition effect to set its duration.
Add transitions

- Add Elements, Special Effects

Here comes to your favorite part - adding special effects to your video:

  1. 1. Set the time frame to the exact point where you want to add the special effect.
  2. 2. Click "Elements" > Download a fantastic special effect > Right-click to "Add to Project".
  3. 3. You may double-click the effect part to adjust the effect size, position, etc., features.
Add special effect

- Add Music

Yes, a great video editor also supports to add some unique sound effects or background music to your video.

  1. 1. Move the time frame to the point where you want to add the sound effect.
  2. 2. Click "Music" > "Sound Effect" and download one > Right-click the downloaded effect and select "Add to Project".
  3. You may also double-click the sound effect to adjust its settings, like duration, volume, etc.
Add music

Step 4. Save and export video with added special effects

When you have finished adding visual and special effects to your video, you can now save all the changes:

"Export" > "Video" > Select a desired format, like MP4 > Name your video, change output settings (including quality and resolution) > "OK" > "Export".

Export video after adding special effects

Part2. Best 3 Special Effective & VFX Video Editors in Compositing for Professionals

As for most professional editors who specialize in compositing may don't need EaseUS Video Editor as it's indeed too basic for users.

If you prefer to add some advanced special effects to your videos or movies, you'll need a professional one. That's why we covered the top 3 special effects and VFX video editors here.
You may pick up any one of them to upgrade and enhance your project now:

1. Nuke

Special Effect Video Editor - Nuke

Nuke is being widely used by many companies like Blizzard Entertainment, DreamWorks Animation, Walt Disney Animation, etc., for compositing 2D and 3D movies, animation movies, animated cartoons, etc.


1). 2D compositing and visual effects:

Nuke Nodal toolset includes 200+ modes for digital compositings, such as industry keyers, rotoscope, color correction, etc. The Deep Image compositing tool lets you create and work with images that contain multiple opacity, color, and camera-relative depth samples per pixel.

2). 3D compositing and visual effects:

3D camera tracker allows you to composite 2D/3D elements accurately. 3D workspace lets you create and render complex scenes composed of 2D footage, 3D models, cards, basic geometry, cameras, lights, and meshes.

3). Collaboration:

Nuke's user presets enable you to set and save tailored node parameters for effects across multiple projects. Versioning allows you to bring new versions of shots into Nuke Studio's timeline or Nuke's nodegraph and swap between them quickly and easily.

4). Editorial:

SDI broadcast monitor supports you accurately check color space and aspect ratios on broadcast content during the review process. You can stack unlimited tracks containing as many clips as you need and blend tracks to create overlays easily.

5). Performance and Pipeline:

It supports full pipeline integration and automating common tasks and procedures. Users can set up a single profile to provide consistent colors across all compatible applications to simplifying the color management process.


  • Advanced special effects for movies, videos.
  • Applicable for professionals.


  • Huge expense for home users
  • Not for beginners

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10 (64bit), macOS Catalina, Mojave.

2. After Effect

Special Video Editor - After Effects

After Effect has owned big fame among professionals for its decades' experience in rendering videos, adding special effects to already edited footage.

Specializing in creating and adding special effects to videos, After Effects is a second to none choice for most companies and experienced individual users. Unlike Nuke, After Effect support layer operation that enables users to save the previous work before moving on the next step.


  • Create stunning professional special effects:After Effects is a perfect complement for users to add professional special effects and retouches to videos
  • Support animations and motion graphics: Users can add animations to texts, titles, and even create motion graphics with data files
  • Support VR video: Users can use Create a VR Environment to create VR video, adding dynamic transitions, effects, titles to video without distortion
  • Expression: Support to speed up animations, access mask, and shape points
  • Cinema 4D: Support real 3D object in scenes preview


  • Fast & comfortable UI
  • Team Project
  • Integrated with other packages in CC suite


  • Monthly subscription
  • Steep learning curve

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10 (64bit) 1703 and later versions, macOS 10.13 and later.

3. HitFilm Pro

Sepcial Video Editor - HitFilm Pro

Unlike Nuke and After Effect, HitFilm Pro is more like a video editor with some built-in special effects. Being as not professional as the previous feature, it also a handy one for many home users.


  • Support 180+ visual effects
  • Support the VFX tool with keying for green screen effects
  • Support 3D model import
  • Advanced compositing feature with amination tools for video editing


  • Support free version - HitFilm Express with basic features


  • Steep learning curve

Qualified Operating Systems: macOS 10.15, 10.14, 10.13, Windows 10 (64bit)/Windows 8 (64bit)

Part3. Best 3 Special Effective Video Editors in 3D Modeling

You may have known that 3D modeling software is widely used in creating 3D animated movies, games, and other projects. Here are three best special effects video editors for 3D modeling and compositing on the market.

1. Cinema 4D

Special Effect Video Editor - Cinema 4D

Cinema 4D is designed for all 3D artists who want to achieve breathtaking results fast and hassle-free. Beginners and professionals can also take advantage of Cinema 4D with its wide range of tools and features to quickly achieve stunning results. Its legendary reliability also makes it a perfect application for demanding, fast-paced 3D production.


  • Polygon Modeling: Polygons are the building blocks of 3D. It supports to craft everything from cars to creatures
  • Parametric Modeling: Cinema 4D offers a wide range of parametric modeling options that make it possible for artists to make just about any last-minute change a customer may need
  •  Sculpting: Sculpt system in Cinema 4D supports increasing the level of detail, transforming your mesh into digital clay, create complex sculpts and surface details
  • Character Animation: Character animation tools and features enable you to create life-like characters and make character animation that much easier
  • 3D Printing: It supports you to paint highly detailed textures directly on your 3D objects. It also allows you to turn a simple object into a detailed work of art


  • Integrate with Adobe After Effect, Adobe Illustrator, CAD


  • Cost is too much

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10 (64bit), macOS 10.12, and later.

2. 3Ds Max

Special Effect Video Editor - 3Ds Max

3ds Max is renowned for its powerful rendering and 3D modeling tools in creating 3D animations, models, and virtual reality videos. It's an efficient and flexible toolset that allows you to create better 3D content in less time.


  • 3D modeling, texturing and effects: Support multiple 3D modeling tools, including Spline workflows, Open Shading Language, Blended Box Map, Chamfer Modifier, Hair and Fur modifier, Data Channel Modifier, Shape Boolean, Mesh and surface modeling, etc.
  • 3D animation and dynamics: Contains a wide range of amination tools, like 3ds Max Fluids, Motion Paths, Character animation, and rigging tools, General animation tools, Max Creation Graph controllers, Particle Flow effects, etc.
  • 3D rendering: Professional modes for 3D renderings, such as Improved Viewport quality, Arnold for 3ds Max, Physical Camera, Activeshade Viewport, Scene layout in VR, etc.


  • Fully featured 3D modeling tool


  • Month subscription

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10/8.1/8/7

3. Blender

Blender - Special Effect Video Editor

Blender is an open-source 3D video editing software which provides all 3D pipelines - modeling, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing and motion traction, etc., for free. Users may apply this software to create a 3D animated video for free.

It's an optimal choice for users who like to beautify their videos with special effects by using Blender.


  • Support 3D modeling, drawing 2D in 3D
  • Support rigging, animation
  • Support rendering, compositing
  • Support VFX - auto and manual tracking


  • 100% free & fully-featured 3D special effect video editor


  • It requires to install Microsoft Visual C++, VC2008, VC2020, and VC2013 on Windows OS

Qualified Operating Systems: Windows 10/8/7; macOS 10.12 and later; Linux


According to the top 7 recommended special effect video editors in 2021, it's undoubted that many professional tools are complex to use. If you have no clear clue about which one to pick, take tips here:

  • As for beginners who need to add simple, special effects to beautify their videos, EaseUS Video Editor is worth to try on Windows 10/8/7.
  • For a mature compositing application with powerful features to create professional special effects in movies, Adobe After Effect should be your smartest pick.
  • For fully-featured 3D modeling, 3Ds Max works perfectly, and you shall give it a try.

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