Basic video editing with Shotcut


Shotcut is an open-source, cross-platform, non-linear video editor written in Qt. For smaller jobs, it might be a good enough alternative to commercial applications like Corel VideoStudio Pro.


Rendering with the CLI (qmelt.exe)

qmelt.exe is the CLI application that takes care of rendering the file, so it's possible to use without Shotcut and free ~1GB of RAM:

  1. start an export
  2. right click the job and stop it
  3. right-click the job and view the XML
  4. save the XML
  5. close Shotcut
  6. Windows Start > Run : cmd
  7. set LC_ALL=C

    "C:\Program Files\Shotcut\qmelt.exe" -verbose -progress "xml:c:\path\to\your\saved-xml"


Keeping cursor at center while playing timeline?

How to trim video before adding it to Timeline?

Trim in player, and drag and drop.

How to display current cursor position in Timeline?

Add slides/pictures

  1. Add a video track
  2. Drag and drop a picture from Playlist into the new video track

How to resize/move an overlaid picture?

After adding a new video track and inserting the picture, play with the Crop Rotate and Scale filter.

Apply same filter to SHIFT/CTRL+clicked overlaid pictures?

How to speed up a multi-clip video in one go?

You can't. Speed is set through a clip's Properties, meaning you must either apply this to the original video in the timeline and before editing, or do this for each and every clip in the timeline.

Add transitions between segments

In the timeline, drag and drop the last segment over the previous segment.

How to add a transition with text + black background?

As of release 18.01.02, Shotcut requires using a third-party picture editor to create the background as a bitmap, and import it trough the Playlist into the Timeline between the two clips.

To add text, select this new item in the Timeline, click on the Filters button, select the Text feature, and change the text + location.

How to add text/titles over a clip?

  1. Right-click on the timeline where you wish the caption to be displayed, and choose “Split at Playhead”
  2. Do the same for when the caption should stop
  3. Select that new clip
  4. In the Filters window, choose Text.

How to replace audio with MP3?

Add audio track, add audio file

How to save changes made to the Export section?

Click on the + sign in the Export window on the left hand-side > Add Export Preset.

After stopping in the Player, O doesn't select the current position as Out position

Must click again on Source tab.

How to speed up export?

"When it comes to Export settings, the biggest factors are: Deinterlacer (if used), Interpolation, Parallel processing, and Video Codec." (source)

Try this (Export > H.264 High Profile > Other):


After adding multiple parts in the Playlist, how to export/encode only one of them?

Right-clicking displays no Export option, only Goto, Insert Cut, Open as Clip, Remove.

Select the item in the Playlist, click on Export, and set the From field to "Playlist".

What are the ways Shotcut can export a video?

After opening the Export section, it's set through the From field: Timeline, Playlist, Each Playlist Item, Theme.

How to cancel a selection in the player (source video)?

There's no way to cancel a selection: At best, you can drag the In and Out points to the very beginning and end of the clip in the Player.

How to move around footage in player?

Jump to specific time? Must type time in widget below video preview?

Next/Previous Frame: Right/Left arrow


How to move frame by frame, and keyframe to keyframe?

Shotcut seems unable to move frame by frame: The smallest increment is by 1/100th of a second.

Use the industry standard shortcuts: J, K, L

To move one bit left or right, hold down K, and use either J or L. You can also use the left and right arrow keys.

To move by one second, use the Page Up/Down keys, which can be complemented with either Shift (two seconds), Ctrl (5 seconds), or Shift+Ctrl (10 seconds).

What are the Seek Next/Previous Edit keyboard shortcuts?

Seek Next/Previous Edit: Alt+Left/Right

Those shortcurts are used to move the playhead to the previous or next cut point in the timeline.

How to select part of the source video?

Besides the mouse, you can use the I (input, ie. start) and O (output, ie. end) keyboard keys.

You can then add the sub-clip ("cut") into the Playlist ("bin") by clicking on the Playlist icon, and clicking on the green + sign. When you're done, clicking on Export will re-encode the list of clips in the Playlist into a single file, ie. there's no need to paste them into a timeline at the bottom of the application if you don't need extras like transitions or additional tracks.

How to turn off audio when navigating in the video?

Settings > Uncheck "Scrub Audio"

How to move between the source video and the timeline?

Click on the Source or the Project tab. Esc is the keyboard shortcut.

It's too dark!

Theme > System

How to slice without re-encoding?

Shotcut doesn't do support this. Use AviDemux.

How to display frame number in footage?

As of 18.01.02, it's not possible.

How to increase/reduce size of scrubber line?

As of 18.01.02, it's not possible.

How to blur part of the screen

The Mask filter was introduced in release 18.03.06.

  1. Create a new project
  2. Add a video to the timeline
  3. Select the video track
  4. Apply the Mask filter
  5. Select the video track, and click on the Composite button in the track to see where the mask is located
  6. Modify the Mask settings to move the mask to the right position: At this point, Shotcut doesn't support simply dragging the mask
  7. Add a video track to the timeline
  8. Copy the video and paste it into the new track
  9. Disable Composite on both tracks
  10. Select the original video track (at the bottom), and remove the Mask filter
  11. With the bottom track still selected, add the Blur filter, and increase its Width/Height to suit your needs
  12. Select the upper track, set Operation = Substract, and enable Composite on that track
  13. Play the video, and check that it works as planned.

In addition to the Blur filter, there is the Mosaic filter.

It's a good idea to the project every time you make a significant change.

What is keyframing?

No way to split multiple tracks in one go ? Must use S to split each track separately?

How to add transparent circle/square, easier way than adding PNG in second video track and move it?

  1. Add video and pictures to playlist
  2. Add video to timeline
  3. Create two video tracks in the timeline
  4. Add video to the second one
  5. Select the picture
  6. Filters > Size and position

How to freeze video for a few seconds before resuming?

How to limit CPU load and avoid BSOD?

BES Battle Encoder Shirase

How to select all items in PlayList and remove?

CTRL+A doesn't work, neither does selecting first/end + SHIFT. Must click "-" repeatedly.

How to add all items from Playlist to Timeline, without drag 'n dropping each?

How to apply same filter to all parts added to timeline?

Clip, track, playhead

Trim clip in (I) vs. Ripple trim clip in (Shift+I)?

What's the difference between "Add Video Track" and "Insert Track"?

Any way to put Windows to sleep after Shotcut is done exporting?

The left/right/home/end arrows don't work to navigate in the Timeline

L doesn't work to go forward in Player

J works for rewind, but L only plays the video in the player, ie. L = space


File : List most recent files

Export window: "Clear all" instead of having to remove each and every job individually.

Speed up whole video track in timeline.


Getting Started

Mulitrack Timeline Basics

Normalize and Stabilize Filters

Cross-fades and Transitions

Using HTML5

Track Filters

Mute and Detach Audio

Film Restoration

Recording a Voice Over


DONE 404


DONE $29.00