Nero 12 Platinum Multimedia Software

5/18/2013 9:17:13 AM

Is Nero still the Emperor of pyrotechnics?

I've used Nero for burning media for some years now, although I'm less keen on the multimedia side of the suite. Nero 12 Platinum bucks the trend of increasingly bloated software models by actually stripping a few things out from version 11.

SoundTrax, Wave Editor, and Cover Designer are all removed, though you can still download these tools for free from the Nero website, if you must have them.

Nero 12 Platinum

What is included is given a general technology overhaul that's been spread evenly around the suite. Video playback now offers AVCHD 2.0 video stabilisation, and you can back up greater than 2.2TB volumes, and rip non-commercial Blu-ray discs (because we've all got those!), among other things.

Blu-ray is the big winner in this update, because the Nero 12 supports the playback of commercial discs, providing an alternative to CyberLink PowerDVD and its ilk. The playback app is simple yet effective, and anything that avoids the massive update installations that come with using Power DVD is a welcome option.

One player for all your videos and music

One player for all your videos and music

I'll be using it because this one is happy to let me watch a movie in peace, rather than bugging me to tweet about it or jump through some other social media hoops.

As for the rest of the suite, it's much as before, with subtle yet useful tweaks in many of the familiar tools.

You've got Nero Express to do mundane disc generating tasks, Nero Burning ROM for more complex jobs, and then a slew of other utilities for capturing, re-encoding, editing and organizing sourced video. That last task is allocated to Kwik Media, which is also available as a free application. What's nice about this tool is that it takes the grind out of tagging media in general. For example, given some instruction as to the identity of a person in a single picture, it can then scan a photo collection and identify all their images. It's a nod to the sheer amount of media that most people collect these days and to the effort needed to organize them efficiently.

Use the latest high-quality video formats to convert, edit and burn your movies

Use the latest high-quality video formats to convert, edit and burn your movies

The other strong point is certainly the transcoding capabilities, which allow you to take video from one format and generate content that will work nicely on a phone or a tablet system relatively painlessly.

This isn't Nero's fault, but if only doing this for commercial content was both legal and better supported it might get used more, I suggest.

Overall, the justification for Nero 12 Platinum are less compelling if you use version 11 than if you're using an older release. While it's generally faster and neater in many places, the addition of Blu-ray playback isn't a killer feature, as most drives capable of reading the media come with a software tool to do this.

Overall, the justification for Nero 12 Platinum are less compelling if you use version 11 than if you're using an older release

One complaint I do have is that the installation routine tries by default to install the Ask toolbar. When people pay for commercial applications, they don't expect the vendor to attempt to leverage that sale with the same piggyback actions you expect with free software. Nero might disagree, but that's not an acceptable practice with retail software for this reviewer.

That annoyance aside, Nero 12 Platinum does little else to damage the reputation of this as being the premier suite for disc creation, and plenty to enhance it.


§  Price: $107 (discounted from $137 or $30 as an upgrade from a previous version)

§  Manufacturer: Nero

§  Website:

§  Required spec: 2GHz CPU, 5GB HDD space, 1GB RAM, Windows XP or later, DVD-RW and/or Blu-ray drive


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