MacMost Now 641: Capturing Video Still Frames With QuickTime Player

You can use QuickTime Player in Lion to capture a single frame of video and save it to an image file. By using the Edit, Copy command you can grab the current frame, and then paste it into Photoshop or Preview. You can also use this technique to quickly grab a still image when using iMovie.

Comments: 13 Responses to “MacMost Now 641: Capturing Video Still Frames With QuickTime Player”

    Brian
    8 years ago

    Gary,

    Thanks for the tip! Good stuff!

    Peter Emery
    8 years ago

    Even better news, QuickTime Pro 7 in Leopard can also do this trick, but I don’t know about QT 7 (non-pro).

      Peter Emery
      8 years ago

      Tested with 10-year-old G4 Powermac running 10.5.8, with 2 GB RAM & dual 1.25 GHz processors.

    Peter Emery
    8 years ago

    Further testing by Mac User Group members shows that prior to Lion, QuickTime 7 Pro is required to copy still images from movies. The ordinary QuickTime Player app does not offer this feature.

      8 years ago

      Exactly. You could do this in QuickTime 7 Pro, but not the QuickTime 7 Player. You could NOT do this in the Snow Leopard QuickTime Player (AKA QuickTime X). You CAN do this in QuickTime Player in Lion. So this is the first time you could do it in the QuickTime Player that comes with your Mac.

    Paul Rashotte
    8 years ago

    Got the still photo from iMovie but now have a .png file on my desktop which I can’t delete.
    Please advise how to delete. Thanks.

      8 years ago

      What is preventing you from deleting it? Is there an error message when you drag it to the trash? What is the message?

        Paul Rashotte
        8 years ago

        Message reads: The item “Untitled.png” can’t be moved to Trash because it can’t be deleted.

          8 years ago

          Try logging out and back in, or restarting. Then try it again.

    Paul Rashotte
    8 years ago

    Gary: restarted and the file was in Trash (should have tried this before bothering you). Thanks. Love MacMost and your recently issued App in iTunes.

    Michael Mikhail
    8 years ago

    I got this message ‘The current video frame could not be copied into the pasteboard’? Any ideas how I can sort this out? Thank you …

      8 years ago

      Does that happen with any and all videos? If there something special about that video (what is the source — is it the same source as others that you have tried). What is the exact error message? Try searching for that exact message to see what others have found (nothing comes up when I tried the one you typed, so I’m not sure if that is the exact wording of the message).

    Darryl Jensen
    7 years ago

    Thanks Gary. Very helpful. I like the ability to move forward or back frame by frame! Cheers.

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