Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate interface
Today, Pinnacle announced the release of Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate, the latest version of the flagship consumer editing software. The new update brings spherical video editing capabilities, new tracking features, stop motion camera support and HEVC support to the Pinnacle toolset while also improving and expanding on existing features and offerings.
“Users choose Pinnacle Studio Ultimate because they’re looking for a level of power and control that they simply cannot find in any other consumer video editor. With Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate, we commit to bringing you as close to pro results as possible without the complexity or expense of professional video editing software,” said Michel Yavercovski, Senior Director of Product Management for Pinnacle. [image:blog_post:61659]
Pinnacle’s new 360 Video Controls allow you to preview and edit spherical video. A titling tool allows you to add titles and position them within the spherical space. You can also use keyframes to define a viewing path to convert the spherical video into traditional video for easy viewing on a TV or other non-interactive screen. With the abundance of spherical video cameras coming to market, this is good news for those looking for a low cost option for experimenting with this new format.
[image:blog_post:61660][image:blog_post:61661]Also new to Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate are tools for motion tracking with mosaic blur and an Easy Track Transparency tool, which allows you to adjust the opacity of tracks on the timeline to create an overlay effect.
Along with these new tracking tools, Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate now offers stop motion camera support for popular Nikon and Canon DSLRs, including a helpful overlay designed to assist animators in judging incremental movement between frames.
Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate also adds HEVC (H.265) support for users with compatible hardware. This relatively new format offers a higher compression rate, better quality and a smaller file size.
Other improvements include enhanced picture-in-picture and pan and zoom tools.
Pinnacle Studio 20 is available in three versions: the basic Pinnacle Studio 20, Pinnacle Studio 20 Plus and the top-of-the-line Pinnacle Studio 20 Ultimate. All three are available now for $60, $100 and $130, respectively. For more information, visit Read our review of Pinnacle Studio 19 Ultimate here.

Nicole LaJeunesse is a professional writer and a curious person who loves to unpack stories on anything from music, to movies, to gaming and beyond.


  1. I have used Pinnacle Studio since version 3 when Avid owned it. SInce Corel purchased it I have bought Studio 17, 18 and 19 and have them on three different computers. I would love to have the features available in Studio 20 but I can’t help but wonder if it will work. There are always so many issues w/ Pinnacle Studio now… every version… and some issues are never fixed. Do users of other pro-sumer software have as many problems as Pinnacle users? When it works it is wonderful stuff but sooooo many times I’ve had to do a re-do of a project or part of it and have actually had to use Windows Moviemaker to burn a disc from a file made on PS. Any other thoughts from other PS users before I drop the bucks to buy it?

  2. I have resisted buying or updating to Studio 20 because, :-1. Initially the Display Monitor Window in 19.5 Ultimate did not work. Cost me £30 to fix, – something to do with Direct X problem. Then 2. After paying extra to get the Add On to burn a Blu-ray Disc, it did not work and I spent Two hours on the Computer with a Remote Link to Corel before it worked. Only to find 3. It work not progress beyond the Burn Disc strange. So I had to call on the Services of Nero Burning Software to eventually burn a Blu-ray disc. That cost me another £40 to pay my Computer Expert. Hence my reluctance to progresss further to upgrade to Studio 20. The question is, -‘Was I right’?

  3. First, Avid bought Pinnacle 2005 around the time when Studio 10 and Edition were available. Avid eventually killed Liquid (a direct Media Composer editor originally from FAST) and started development on Avid Studio, a replacement for Liquid. Liquid users (I was one) were disappointed in it because it lacked a lot of the features that made Liquid a compelling choice in editing. Avid was hurting financially and sold off Pinnacle to Corel in 2012, who owned VideoStudio Pro, which Pinnacle Studio was a direct competitor. They killed legacy Studio, kept Avid Studio which they renamed PS16. It was really Avid Studio V2. PS17 initially had tremendous issues which were fixed with several patches. PS18 was their first fully 64bit version. PS19 built on it although several issues arose with people who owned Nvidia cards and with the last patch, which introduced issues with Speed control. PS20 has introduced some compelling features (as posted in the post topic) along with enhancements that really aid in editing.
    Motion Tracking is a “version 1”, just as Multicam was with PS19. Track Transparency, new Audio Keyframing. The new Picture in Picture and Cropping Tool are a “about time” feature. Then there are all the NewBlue FX plugins, zillions of Pinnacle transitions, and all the keyframing flexibility to the hundreds of Effects makes this a compelling piece of software. In addition, the Smartsound plugin with SonicFire Pro V6 is the best out there for a consumer editor.
    Editing where an “overlay” is just that, like titles, etc. placed over the video is how it should be. Not upside down as with other consumer editors.
    This brings me to the stability and other issues people have posted above. Do they exist? Yes. Go to any editing software forum (and I mean any) and see people with problems. You will mainly hear from them, not the ones editing happily.
    IF someone has a problem, my suggestion is to go to the Pinnacle User Forum FIRST for help. A lot of the ideas put forth there make their way into Tech Support. So, before thinking of paying, come there first. A friendly EXTREMELY experienced group of Moderators and users willing to do their best to help, and are NOT on Pinnacle’s payroll (although they should be for all the problem solving they do).
    Forums dot Pinnaclesys dot Com.
    BTW, I do not work for Pinnacle or Corel, but have been using Pinnacle since 2000 starting with the DV500 w/Premiere 6, and have used every version (except Pro One) since then. Yes, lots of “downs”, but plenty of “ups”.
    Oh, did I mention that it is the FASTEST rendering consumer editor out there according to PC Mag?

  4. I’ve been using Pinnacle Studio since v6 and moved on to Liquid Edition (I totally miss Liquid!) and while I’d never say it has been totally issue-free, to say Studio always has so many issues is rather baffling. I won’t get all defensive now, I’ll just say that for a product that does all Studio does at this price, it’s amazing it works as well as it does. Maybe I’m just lucky, but Studio has never had “so many issues” for me.

  5. First off I wait a couple or months or more before upgrading. (Let someone else find initial problems.) But the stability, for the features and using PhotoShop elements 13 and MS Word to check my bad spelling all running on a three year old laptop that I reluctantly upgraded to Windows 10, it is SOP for Pinnacle to crash, but with all its features and slowness, I find it well worth its cost. With all the different software we have running on our PC, Pinnacle does freeze a lot for me. I find that bringing up the “Task Manager” and “End Task” helps instead of rebooting, that I still have to do. Look for “NGStudio” either under “Apps,” but at times if you cannot restart it, scroll down under “Background processes.” I did have problems, it may not be Pinnacle as such, but having a lot of layers, like we had to do in prior versions, create a file of the bottom layer, then build up from there.

    Using Sonicfire Pro V6, if you lose connection, use the Pinnacle Studio icon on the desktop, right click and run as administrator, I assume most of us have. This seems to resolve the interface problem between the two programs.

    The bottom line for Stability in Pinnacle Studio XX, Studio itself, MS Windows (MS users), other apps running, not enough free resources, and even us.

  6. I agree… it’s best to wait when new software comes out to see what problems you might have. With the time frame for releasing software yearly, stuff happens. I would wait even longer than a couple of months unless there is something that you just have to have. I’ve used TaskManager myself a few times to end NGStudio. But a lot of disc accessing is going on when this happens and NGStudio’s memory usage is not idle. So something must be going on in the background. I do think Corel’s rush to always add something new is not necessarily a good idea. Stability should be it. But sadly, putting “Stability” on the box doesn’t sell many copies. Putting more stuff that most people don’t need or will use (like thousands of transitions and effects) on the box is what sells…. It’s still my “go to” editor, and I have several on my computer.

  7. I have been on Pinnacle Studio since 8.0 and as usual I waited to upgrade from 19.5 to 20. I was hoping that the various issues were resolved. Well, I was wrong. I still have importing file issues from different capture programs. Audio syncing problems during export. Crashing during editing.

    I just downloaded the Corel Visual Studio X9 and started to test it. It doesn’t have all the features of Pinnacle Studio Ultimate, but most everything I need is there. My first test in creating a high resolution file resulted in a perfect output file that I successfully uploaded to YouTube as a test. I’m thinking I will use Pinnacle for certain things but use Corel Visual Studio for the final output. After I test some more features, I’ll make my decision. After all, Corel Visual Studio is very cheap right now.

    If anyone has some pros or cons with Corel Visual Studio X9, I would like to get their comments to help me decide.

  8. I’ve had zero problems importing files that Pinnacle will accept. I do it all the time. I use Quick Import, drag and drop, import, and also use Watchfolders. PS20 is not the same program as S8. Totally different.
    As for capture programs, depends on what they are. I use Raptr for game capture and it imports just fine. FRAPS is problematic. No audio issues unless you are using a variable frame rate phone, etc… Not sure of Shadowplay. Pinnacle and VideoStudio both come with screen recorders that import directly into the program.
    I also have X9Ultimate. Nice program, but edits upside down and doesn’t have the timeline editing capabilities of Pinnacle.

  9. I know that 20 is significantly different than 8, but I’ve upgraded to each version in between and each time there have been major glitches. The 19.5 patch actually made matters worse for audio syncing. Many users in the Pinnacle forums have complained and no fix yet I was hoping that 20 would be better. As far as importing capture files, all of them import but since PS 16, the mp4 files have been terrible to edit. I know that mp4 isn’t the best format because in PS It doesn’t show previews correctly and the sync has been horrible. But so far VS X9 has flawlessly import the exact same capture files without any problems showing them in the editor timeline.

    Thanks for the heads up on the editing. I will check it in more detail during the trial version of X9. I’ll know more when I cut up a long video and insert some titles, fades and voiceovers.

  10. I have worked with MP4 files, including Panasonic 4K. For “me” on my computer (8core overclocked 4.2GHz 16gigs RAM), they display like any other file imported (AVCHD, etc..). Just curious as to the source of these MP4 problematic files. What created them.
    Using the Multicam Editor, it’s easy for me (mixing AVCHD from Canon, MOV from Canon and AVCHD from JVC) where everything syncs up fine.
    Where Pinnacle has problems is with variable FRAME RATE video, like from cellphones. Even FCP has trouble with iPhone video if not recorded in best environment.
    Pinnacle is a more “demanding” program of your hardware than VideoStudio. It just does more so requires more. VS, PD, MEP (I have all of them), restrict you in what can be on a timeline track. Music only “here”. Titles only “here”, and they edit “upside down”. Overlays (like titles) are “under” the video. Timeline editing in Pinnacle is far superior to this, editing like how the pro editors work.
    With PS19.5, I’ve done long form (event) videos and never lost sync.
    But use what works for you to get the job done.

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