How To Edit Videos In Mac Photos

MacOS Big Sur adds the ability for you to adjust, filter, crop, rotate and trim videos right in the Photos app, without needing to go to iMovie or Final Cut Pro. You can use the same editing techniques you use for photos, but applied to an entire video.

Comments: 14 Responses to “How To Edit Videos In Mac Photos”

    Alan Graham
    11 months ago

    Many thanks, Gary—excellent as usual.
    I’m having a problem with using Photos to edit recent videos taken with my new iPhone 12 Pro. The EDIT button in Photos is greyed out and I get this error message: “Unsupported Video Format: the full resolution video is unsupported”. Other “.MOV” videos taken with my previous iPhone are fine. I checked my camera settings in Settings and these are “1080p HD at 30 fps” and the HDR Video is checked. Do I need to reset something here?
    Thanks in anticipation.

    11 months ago

    Alan: Which model of Mac do you have? Perhaps your hardware is too old and won’t support editing the newer HEVC files created by your iPhone? You can always convert them first, or switch your iPhone’s format to the old one.

    Pshemek
    11 months ago

    Hi Gary, thank you, excellent explanation!
    Is there a way in Photos 6.0 to edit only a portion of the video and not apply to the whole clip? If not which is the next best app (free or amateur level prices) to achieve it?

    Alan Graham
    11 months ago

    Thanks Gary. My iMac is 2015 and I’m sure you’re right that it’s showing it’s age – a good excuse to upgrade to a silicon iMac when it becomes available! In the meantime I’ll keep filming with the HEVC setting on my iPhone. I’ve discovered that if I right-click the video in Photos I can use ‘Open In’ and use QuickTime Player for basic editing in the short term. Thanks again.

    11 months ago

    Pshemek: So like apply a filter to a portion of the video? You can’t do that in Photos. Use iMovie for things like that.

    Dean Sherer
    11 months ago

    Gary, what a helpful video. I too could not edit videos in Photos 6.0 on my 2015 mac that were shot using HEVC. After exporting them from Quicktime in H.264 I was able to edit them in Photos. I then changed the video format to H.264 on my iPhone so I wouldn’t have to constantly convert HVEC videos to edit them in Photos on the mac. I have been waiting a long time for the ability to straighten and crop videos for my iMovie projects. Glad Apple is now offering this feature!

    Fred Dolan
    11 months ago

    How to merge two QuickTime videos using Big Sur? I followed the instructions and dropped both clips into the QuickTime video player. Error message is “The file isn’t compatible with QuickTime Player”.

    11 months ago

    Fred: You can still use QuickTime Player to do this. But first figure out what is going on with those files. Try opening each one in QuickTime Player normally. Is it one or both that won’t open? If one, what type of file is it?

    matt
    9 months ago

    Hey I watched a video that has some of the images digitally covered so you could not see what they were doing, how do you remove it so you can see what they don’t want you to see?

    9 months ago

    Matt: Do you mean the area is blurred? If so, they aren’t “covered” at all — those are the pixels you are seeing in the image. There is no way to change those pixels back to what they were before the video was edited. All you have is those blurred pixels and no other information. You’ll need to go back to the source of the video.

    Ben
    9 months ago

    I seem to remember in older versions that a single frame from a video could be extracted as a JPEG. Was that feature removed?

    9 months ago

    Ben: The only way I know of to get a frame of a video like that is to choose Image, Edit With, then choose QuickTime Player, then go to the frame in QuickTime Player and Command+c to copy that frame of the video. Then paste it into an image editing app (Preview works if nothing else) to create a jpeg.

    Paul
    6 months ago

    Shorter: click and enlarge video, click edit, select a frame underneath the video. But my questions is where the “Make poster frame” goes after you make it…????

    6 months ago

    Paul: It doesn’t “go” anywhere. It assigns it as the poster frame to use. You are just choosing it. It is short for “Make THIS THE poster frame FOR THIS VIDEO.” Like if someone would show you 7 hats they wanted to wear and you said “Make it this one.”

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