1 min read

Who even needs a GUI video editor when you have FFmpeg

Who even needs a GUI video editor when you have FFmpeg

So I've been messing around with FFmpeg a lot to see how much video editing I can do without using an actual GUI video editor, so far it turns out that the answer is quite a bit.

I go over three main common tasks I've needed to do recently with only FFmpeg:

Cutting out a section of a video into its own file

  • The main benefit of this is that this process does not cause a re-encode, which saves an amazing amount of time. When I did the same thing in Davinci Resolve, it took 15ish minutes to render out the clip. FFmpeg took a whole 20 seconds.

Cleaning up a video clip by removing "frozen frames", using the FFmpeg filter called mpdecimate (Frozen frames are sections of a video where there appears to be nothing happening, hence it looks frozen)

  • This is really useful for making time lapses of processes, as you remove all the dead frames and you get only 100% action going on.

Taking the decimated video and creating a time-lapse of any duration in seconds by calculating the value needed to adjust the presentation timestamps to get the desired duration.

  • This one has been really handy for making time lapses of my wife's design work. I've used it so far to make versions for Instagram and Tiktok.

Check out the video below for a visual demonstration and thank you for your time.


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