Boris Graffiti also acts as a plug-in with its own interface. But whereas VitaScene and Magic Bullet Looks provide different approaches to an overlapping range of appearances, Graffiti is a powerful titling app based on Boris FX's now famous compositing engine. Studio already has commendable titling abilities, which are based on Pinnacle's TitleDeko titler. However, although TitleDeko can create very attractive text, it's very static and two-dimensional, whereas Graffiti has motion and effects control to compete with the likes of Adobe After Effects. Unfortunately, in Advanced Mode it also has a similar level of complexity, which will scare the daylights out of the average Pinnacle Studio user. So most people will stick with the basic interface, which uses presets with a simple little box into which you type your text. It also offers 2D and 3D charts, but here you will need to go Advanced to customise them, which will entail extensive reading of the help files.
Output options haven't changed much since version 11. Blu-ray has sensibly been added to the disc burning selection now that HD-DVD, which Pinnacle previously backed, is pushing up the daisies. You can use MPEG-2 or AVC encoding, too, although not VC-1. Alternatively, if you want to upload your video to the Web, Yahoo! Video has been joined by YouTube - another sensible choice, considering the relative popularity of the two sites. There's a new audio-only output option, supporting MP3 and WAV formats, plus the ability to encode to 3GP and Flash Video.
When creating your output, Studio will pause export if the destination hard disk becomes full. This allows you to delete some files and carry on, rather than having to start all over again. You can also get Studio to play a noise or even shut down your PC when it has finished exporting, which is handy for those overnight encoding jobs.
As one of the most mature video editing apps around, Pinnacle Studio's interface and core abilities haven't changed much over the last few versions. The Montage tool is the most significant new feature in this release, with most improvements being minor ones allegedly requested by users. But Studio remains one of the easiest apps for new users to get to grips with, and the Plus and Ultimate versions have plenty of power under the hood for the more experienced. The continuing lack of more than one extra video track could be a drawback for some users, but otherwise Pinnacle Studio 12 is a comprehensive option for newcomers and seasoned Studio users alike.