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Comparing Apples to Apples (no pun intended)

Oh, did I also mention Movie Maker 2 is free? Yeah, that's a big plus when you compare it to iMovie, which first requires a Mac (and you better get a good Mac if you want to run high definition content) and then requires you to spend $79 on iLife '05, which you have to buy to get iMovie.

Movie Maker is the only tool that Microsoft supports for video editing. This says a lot, as Microsoft is heavily invested in the video market, from their Windows Media Player to broadcast tools, such as streaming video servers and the like. Movie Maker delivers what you need to produce video content. In contrast, whenever I work with iMovie I feel very aware that Apple has other, higher-end video editing products and that they may really be better than iMovie. Final Cut Pro, a $1,299 Apple product, is the real editing tool Apple wants you to use.

Another area that will drive you nuts with iMovie is hard drive space. It's a given that when you work with digital video you'll use a lot of hard drive space. You can expect to use at least 5 MB of space for each minute of DVD quality-video produced with Movie Maker 2. This may seem like a lot. But, check out iMovie. Apple notes on their web site that two minutes of HD movie will cost you 400 MB of hard drive space. Holy cow! That means you get less than five minutes of video for each gigabyte. At that rate, even DVD-ROM's don't look large enough to store or back-up your movies.

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