At a Glance
This lightweight video authoring utility automatically creates finished movies from styles.
Muvee Pixie is little sibling to, or subset of, Muvee’s full Reveal video
authoring utility. Reveal’s claim to fame is its ability to
automatically create professional-looking movie projects using
prefab styles. Pixie does the same thing, but is less expensive and
somewhat limited–though not to the point that it can’t be
Muvee Pixie requires that Windows Media Player be installed
(European XP N users take note), and also installs the Microsoft
Visual C++ 2005 redistributables if they aren’t already on your PC.
The only reason I mention this is that the program is touted as
netbook-friendly, and some netbooks are light on the hard drive
space. Memory usage was about 75MB for Muvee Pixie, plus what you
need for each picture and video added to a project. On my Atom
N270-based netbook, it seemed perky enough, and certainly more so
than with larger authoring apps such as CyberLink’s PowerProducer.
Pixie is social network-friendly. It includes dedicated Facebook
and YouTube upload functions, as well as uploading to Muvee’s own
Shwup.com community. You may also save your creation to the hard
drive in Windows Media format, and in MP4 format for the iPhone
family or Android devices.
The cynic in me expected Muvee Pixie to be a dead end
creatively, and in some aspects it is. With only four styles on
board, and three free ones Muvee offers online at the time of this
writing (10/10/2010) there’s not an huge variety of FX and
transitions. However, the included styles are attractive and for
the average user, the ability to tweak them by altering the title
and credits, photo captions, background graphics and animation
should easily be enough. Pixie does not allows you to load user
styles as Reveal does, so you’re limited to the included styles,
plus the free online styles–and of course, the style
packs Muvee will sell you for $15 a pop, which can add up in a
My only, and exceedingly minor, complaint about Pixie is that it
didn’t want to remember the last window size and position: It
always opens in full screen mode. Other than that, I found the
program a quick and inexpensive way to create professional-looking
video productions, though they only go a bit beyond what you can do
with Windows Movie Maker or its replacement, Windows Live Movie
Maker, and their Automovie function.
Note: Movie Maker was stripped from Windows 7,
but Movie Maker version 2.6 remains available and
will install on Windows 7.
–Jon L. Jacobi