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5 Best Free Slideshow Makers in 2022 [Windows, Mac]

Last Updated on Apr. 8, 2022 – by David Morgan
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Best Slideshow Maker Apps for all plateforms

Everyone loves sharing photos of special events with friends and family. An agile slideshow maker can help share the energy and excitement of special occasions, from wedding photos taken with a high-quality DSLR to videos captured with your phone on vacation.

A slideshow can also help you create an attention-grabbing presentation for work. Something that will get your colleagues excited in your next meeting or persuade potential clients you’re the right choice at your upcoming convention.

Unfortunately, making a customized slideshow can take a considerable amount of time if the app you use doesn’t provide an easy drag-and-drop capability, advanced formatting options, and effortless transitions. So we researched, found, and reviewed the best slideshow makers for Windows and Mac.

If you’re looking for the best free slideshow software, PowerDirector is our top overall choice. It enables you to produce high-quality videos and slideshows with ease. In addition, its intuitive interface and robust set of features make it ideal for all skill levels. 

Top 5 Free Slideshow Software for Windows & Mac

1. PowerDirector – Best Slideshow Software Overall

PowerDirector Essential Interface

Compatibility: Windows, Mac

Overall Rating: 10/10

Slideshow Creation: 10/10

Key Features:

PowerDirector's user-friendly interface for Windows and Mac makes it the top choice for creators who enjoy editing on a PC or laptop. Whether you want to apply advanced video effects to create a Hollywood-style movie or share a family slideshow, PowerDirector's comprehensive video editing suite can handle all your video creation needs. This is why it has been a PCMag Editor's Choice year after year.

If all you're interested in is making slideshows, you will love the specially designed Slideshow Creator in PowerDirector. You won't have to bother with timeline or storyboard editing and can jump right into creating from the launch screen. The whole creation process is streamlined within the plug-in, and it walks you through each step.

PowerDirector Essential - SlideShow Transition

The free slideshow maker comes equipped with hundreds of transitions, video effects, and themed slideshow templates from which to choose. Professionals may also use PowerDirector to create compelling corporate slideshows for meetings, professional showcases, and industry conventions instead of generic slides and boring text.

  • Limited free export formats

Download PowerDirector for free:

2. SmartSHOW 3D – Best for 3D Collages

SmartSHOW 3D Interface

Compatibility: Windows

Overall Rating: 9/10

Slideshow Creation: 9/10

Key Features:

  • Create slideshows with photos, videos, and music
  • Templates & effects
  • Music tracks
  • Convert and burn to DVD

SmartSHOW 3D provides a toolkit for creating quality photo and video slideshows with effects. You can put multiple layers on slides, apply animations to selected layers, and add keyframes for fine-tuning. Add image masks and various shapes or animated 3D text and graphic art.

There are many reasons and occasions for creating a slideshow - anniversaries, birthdays, weddings, traveling, etc. SmartSHOW 3D lets you mix your precious pics and favorite tunes into captivating slideshows great for sharing with friends and family.

You can add motion to your still images with no technical background. Or add transition effects, including fade-ins, wipes, gradients, and 3D transitions. With SmartSHOW 3D, you can produce professional slideshows even if you’re not tech-savvy.

  • Add voice comments, captions, and titles
  • 3D Collages
  • 3D effects for photos
  • Lacks video and photo editing tools
  • Only available on Windows

3. PhotoStage Slideshow Software – Best for Non-commercial Use

PhotoStage Slideshow Interface

Compatibility: Windows, Mac

Overall Rating: 8/10

Slideshow Creation: 9/10

Key Features:

  • Slideshow Wizard
  • Image editing tools
  • Transitions & effects
  • Burn to DVD, save as video, or optimize for the web and devices

PhotoStage is a slideshow creation software. You can make presentations with thousands of photos and video clips. Easily add text, effects, music, and voice-over. Edit your photos and videos' brightness, saturation, color, etc.

Use Quick Create to make a slideshow instantly and add pans, zooms, and fades. Then, burn your slideshow to a disc, upload online, or save it. 

This free app includes trial features available only for a limited time. At the end of the trial, you must purchase the full version to access all the features within the app.

It is essential to know that a free version of PhotoStage Slideshow Software is available for non-commercial use only. Therefore, if you are a professional or business owner creating non-commercial content, you must purchase the software.

  • Wide variety of transitions
  • Pan and zoom effects
  • Real time effect preview
  • Not for commercial use
  • Lacks video editing tools
  • Slight learning curve

4. Kizoa - Best Slideshow Maker Online

Kizoa Interface

Compatibility: Windows, Mac

Overall Rating: 8/10

Slideshow Creation: 9/10

Key Features:

  • Seven different aspect ratios
  • Play slideshow on TV
  • Variety of video formats

With Kizoa, you can adapt your slides to any screen with up to 7 different aspect ratios. This means you’ll have the right size slideshow for TVs, computers, smartphones, and tablets, no matter the brand. 

The intelligent cropping tool will give you the best choice for your photos based on the format you use to fill the screen as much as possible without cutting out essential parts.

Choose a template and add your photos and videos. Add effects, text, and GIFs to your slideshows. No previous editing experience is needed. All the tools you need are included to display your slideshow on a TV, projector, computer, or phone. Share your slideshow online, download it in multiple formats (MP4, AVI, MOV, MPEG2, GIF), or burn it onto a DVD.

The basic version of Kizoa will limit your slideshow to 1 minute. To make anything longer, you will need to subscribe.

  • Share slideshow online
  • Burn slideshow to DVD
  • Effects, text, and GIFs
  • Must subscribe for full access to features
  • Slideshow maker only

5. SlideLab – Best Slideshow Maker for Beginners

SlideLab Interface

Compatibility: Windows, Mac

Overall Rating: 8/10

Slideshow Creation: 8/10

Key Features:

  • Modern professional interactive presentations
  • Simple workflow and export
  • Share in one click

SlideLab’s high-quality transitions, filters, and music make it an excellent choice for beginners who love sharing their lives with friends. As a bonus, the app also features a built-in sharing platform that allows users to create and post videos on Instagram or YouTube with a tap of the finger.

SlideLab automatically adjusts the size of your images to fit its square format and allows for easy rearranging to suit your taste, taking the hassle out of slideshow creation. An excellent advantage to using SlideLab is that you can export your projects as PDF and PPTX files and open them in PowerPoint and KeyNote.

While you can add as many photos as you want, SlideLab limits photos to a three-second duration and reserves many of its customizable transitions and filters for premium subscribers.

  • Real-time cloud-sync
  • Media library with fast search
  • PDF and PPTX formats
  • Limited features
  • Slideshow maker only

How to Make a Slideshow on Windows and Mac

The easiest way to create a slideshow is with PowerDirector. Simply follow these steps.

  1. On the launch screen or in the Plugins menu, choose Slideshow Creator.
  2. Click Import your photos to import your images. Then click Next.
  3. PowerDirector - Next Slideshow
  4. Now, select a style and background music. The style can be selected from the list displayed on the interface. The background music can be imported from your computer or selected from the stock library.
  5. PowerDirector - Add Music
  6. Customize your style with Slideshow Preferences.
  7. PowerDirector - Slideshow Preferences
  8. Click Next and preview your slideshow.
  9. Click Next and choose Produce Video, Create Disc, or Advanced Editing.

Best Slideshow Maker Free Download

Whether you plan to feature your artistic photography or revisit a special event with friends and family, the best slideshow software provides you with the ability and flexibility to customize and personalize. Don’t let a slideshow maker limit your creative capacity. 

Only PowerDirector offers the limitless creativity, editing functionality, and exciting visual effects that you need to craft jaw-dropping slideshow videos. Though PowerDirector boasts an incredibly beginner-friendly layout, advanced users will also appreciate the creative editing tools that result in blockbuster-quality videos every time.

Whether you want to showcase your latest vacation, inspire your team at work, or share images from a wedding or special event, PowerDirector’s user-friendly interface and interactive slideshow creation have earned it a reputation as the best video editor.

Say goodbye to the constraints and limitations of other slideshow makers. Instead, start creating unique, customized slideshows today by downloading PowerDirector.

Slideshow Maker FAQ

1. What Is a Slideshow?

A slideshow is a presentation of a series of still images or videos in a prearranged sequence typically linked through a common theme, topic, or event.

2. What Features Should I Look For in a Slideshow Maker?

  1. Designated slideshow creation tool
  2. Transitions
  3. Titles
  4. Music
  5. Motion Graphics or Animated Stickers

All these features can be found in PowerDirector.

3. How Do I Make a Video Slideshow?

Making a video slideshow with a quality app should be the same as making a photo slideshow. We recommend checking out our slideshow creation article for an in-depth look at slideshow creation.

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