HD Writer AE version 2.1 software shipped with Panasonic camcorders is for AVCHD importing and basic editing. The software is essentially the same as its previous incarnations, but this new version does allow for importing 1080/60p footage. If you want to edit the footage you shot using the HDC-TM700's 1080/60p setting, there is an option on the software that allows you to convert the footage to regular AVCHD. Unfortunately, every time we tried performing this action the software crashed after about 15 minutes into the conversion process.
Having this feature is an absolute necessity as quite limited commercially available programs seem to be able to handle the 1080/60p footage shot with the HDC-TM700. Today featured third party software for comparison with HD Writer AE 2.1 is Aunsoft Final Mate which stands out as an alternative solution for many HD camcorder users to import and editing their AVCHD(MTS/M2TS), TOD and MOD recordings. The highlighted feature of Final Mate is its accurate AVCHD splitting/dividing/cutting/editing and merging mts/m2ts files without re-encoding/transcoding capability.
The table below shows the similarities shared by both programs and their differences:
Screenshot of HD Writer AE 2.1
Screenshot of Aunsoft Final Mate
Overall Verdict of Panasonic HD Writer AE 2.1 & Aunsoft Final Mate
As a free and relatively easy to use software program, Panasonic HD Writer AE 2.1 help inexperienced users to the world of simple cuts and online sharing of movies on YouTube, though its interface seems a little dull and un-engaging. For AVCHD importing, basic editing and playback on PCs, HD Writer AE 2.1 should put more strength on its performance, especially on its stability when users try to import/process over 5 files at one time. AE 2.1's poor performance has sacrificed the patience of Panasonic users and turn them to commercial alternative product which have more stable performance and powerful features such as Aunsoft Final Mate.
On the other hand, Aunsoft Final Mate has gain its popularity and approval among HD camcorder users for its world first frame by frame splitting/dividing/cutting competence and lossless output function which allow users to merge/join AVCHD Mts/m2ts clips into one single file without conversion. Not to mention other features this software offer, the two highlights alone have won the hearts who always pursue original high definition AVCHD quality.