So, you have a camera that takes HD video in AVCHD format…now what do you do with it? I have a Canon HF-200 that takes pretty good HD footage for a $500 camera. We have a cinematographer for big projects, but we have the Canon to use for small projects.
I had trouble with this for months on my PC. Most readily available editing software packages do not support AVCHD. I ended up using Pinnacle Studio 12 on my PC. It does support this format, but editing was a pain as it took forever to render. It was very disappointing because it was a real pain in the butt to edit a simple video. I also understand that Adobe Premiere Elements works ok.
I didn’t worry too much about it because I knew I would be getting a Mac soon. I got the Mac and I have Final Cut Studio 3 installed. However, Final Cut doesn’t read the AVCHD either. Not on its own anyway – I’m sure there might be a plug-in or something you could buy. So, I knew iMovie was supposed to support it, but i couldn’t get it to import. Finally I read somewhere that it will import it directly from the camera. That worked! But, how annoying – it will not import footage previously saved to the server or the hard drive. But, it will if it’s on the camera and plugged in or from the SDHC card in a reader. So, now I can import the footage as it’s taken and have the files in .mov format and then I can edit using iMovie or Final Cut. (Please note that older versions of iMovie do not support AVCHD.)
How to Import AVCHD footage using iMovie ’09