How to Make Your Video Slow-Motion

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Whether you make videos for your own enjoyment or share them on sites like Facebook and YouTube, what happens if you want to make your video in slow-motion? In this article, we’ll explain what slow-motion video is and how to shoot slow-motion video on your smartphone – then we’ll take you through some of the best slow-motion video editors and apps around. We’ll even answer your most frequently asked questions about the topic, so keep reading.

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What is slow-motion video?

Slow-motion video is one of the coolest video effects where time appears to slow down. You might use a slow-motion video to emphasize a specific scene or slow down an action you wouldn’t normally see in detail, like a flower opening its petals or a balloon bursting.

In order to understand what it is and how to slow-motion a video, you need to know about frame rate (fps), which is the number of still images making up one second of the video. With slow-motion video, moving images are displayed at a rate that appears slower than in real-time. In order to achieve this, you must capture frames at a higher rate than the intended display speed. For example, capturing a video at 60fps (frames per second) means when you watch the video, you’ll observe 60 frames per one second of the video. By putting this video onto a timeline set to playback at a lower fps rate – such as 20fps – the one-second video will now take two seconds to play.

Slow-motion video is normally recorded at the highest frame rate possible, and many cameras offer rates as high as 1540fps. It’s possible to shoot slow-motion videos on your smartphone, though and 60fps, 120fps, and 240fps are more common.

How to shoot slow motion on your smartphone

As we mentioned above, you can shoot slow-motion videos on your smartphone, whether your device runs Android or iOS. Most flagship smartphones incorporate the ability to record slow-motion videos into the camera. If you don’t own a flagship phone and are wondering how to make your video slow-motion, there are slow-motion video editors and apps that can help you slow down a video.

If you’re wondering how to shoot slow-motion videos on your phone, here are some tips and tricks to help:

  • On flagship Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy S20, S20+, S20 Ultra, or the new S21 range, there’s a feature called Super Slow-mo, which shoots action at 960fps. When played back at 30fps, it’s 32x slower, creating great slow-motion videos. Just open the camera app, tap Super Slow-mo, and start recording.

  • The iPhone 11 or 12 records videos as normal in Slow-mo mode, but you’ll see the Slow Motion effects on playback. You can also edit your video to start and stop the Slow-Mo effect when you choose. Just open the camera app, choose the Slow-mo mode, and start recording.

  • For the best results, your shutter speed should be double that of your frame rate (e.g., 1/125 when shooting 60fps). Most smartphone cameras have Pro settings where you can adjust the shutter speed.

  • Bear in mind that a higher shutter speed and frame rate calls for more light. If you’re shooting a slow-motion video indoors or in poor light conditions, you might need to add studio lighting for the best results.

If in doubt, why not try out one of the best slow-motion video editors and apps below? Many will do the hard work for you and are designed for beginners with little to no experience.

Best slow-motion video editors and apps

OS: Android

Slow motion Video FX is a free Android video slow-motion converter app that allows you to create slow-motion videos from normal videos you’ve already recorded. It’s a post-processing editor that not only lets you perform a video slow-motion edit it also lets you create fast-motion videos too.

Main features:

  • Simple process slows the whole video down

  • Advanced process lets you select stop and start points on the timeline

  • Video filters

  • Add sound and music

  • Built-in player

Pros

  • Can process HD videos

  • Can upload videos straight to YouTube or Instagram

Cons

  • App interface needs improvement according to user reviews

OS: iOS

Slow Fast Motion Video Editor is a free slow-motion video editor for iOS (with in-app purchases) that allows you to make your video slow-motion as well as creating fast-motion videos. It’s a post-processing editor that offers various speed settings from -8x to +8x.

Main features:

  • Preview mode for easier editing

  • Trim videos into multiple parts and set different speeds for each

  • Speed settings from -8x to +8x

Pros

  • Library of ready-to-use background music tracks

  • Quick upload straight to Facebook or YouTube

Cons

  • Speeds higher than 2x are paywalled

Videoshop: Android, iOS

OS: Android and iOS

Videoshop is a slow-motion editor app for Android and iOS. The app is free to download and lets you speed up or slow down the pre-recorded video. It’s also packed with additional editing features, and it’s easy to use.

Main features:

  • Slow or fast-motion video effects

  • Merger to combine multiple clips

  • Brightness and saturation control

  • Stop motion

  • Add music and sound effects

Pros

  • Offers an incredible array of tools apart from the Slow Motion effect

  • Can make GIFs out of your videos

  • Easy sharing to YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat

Cons

  • Users complain of random technical errors

Movavi Clips: Android, iOS

OS: Android and iOS

Movavi Clips is a free slow-motion editor for iOS and Android. Its user-friendly interface and intuitive controls make it easy even for beginners to use, and it is packed with features to allow you to edit videos, adjust audio, slow down a video, and share your videos to YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and other social networking sites.

Main features:

  • Slow Motion video effect

  • Handy timeline for editing

  • Duplicate video segments

  • Split and combine videos

  • Adjust brightness and saturation

  • Rotate videos

Pros

  • Can mute the original sound track

  • Offers ready-to-use background music tracks

  • Allows to add voiceover

  • Can duplicate video segments

  • Offers easy sharing on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram

Cons

  • Adds a watermark to your clip

OS: Android

PowerDirector is a free Android video editor app with a Premium version that removes ads and gives you access to exclusive content. It’s intuitive and easy to use and boasts an in-built stock library of music, photos, and sound effects. The speed adjustments let you quickly slow down a video or speed it up and share it to YouTube, Facebook, or other social sites.

Main features:

  • Control brightness, color, and saturation

  • Multi-timeline

  • Chroma Key

  • Keyframe controls

  • Edit and export in 4K

Pros

  • Quick video rendering

  • Customizable templates

  • Sharing to YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and Snapchat

Cons

  • Users complain of issues connected to sound synchronization

OS: Windows and Mac (cloud-based software)

Adobe® After Effects® is post-processing software for Windows and Mac that’s used by artists and post-production professionals to create advanced visual effects. You’ll need to pay to purchase the software, and it is packed with features to help you create videos.

Main features:

  • Time Stretch for slow-motion videos

  • Hundreds of effects

  • 3D Transform Gizmo

  • Keyframe and Expressions for animations

Pros

  • Animation presets made by motion designers

  • Can set any element (text, graphics) in motion

  • Offers step-by-step tutorials

Cons

  • The free trial is only available for seven days

OS: iOS

SloMo Video Editor for iOS is a free app that allows you to perform video editing slow-motion on pre-recorded videos as well as adding time-lapse and stop-motion effects. This slow-motion maker app is simple to use, and there’s an optional premium subscription that gives you access to premium filters and over 170 background music tracks.

Main features:

  • Edit video speed up to 240fps

  • Select specific frames for speed adjustment

  • High-resolution output

  • Record slow-motion video in the app

  • Add music

Pros

  • Can set different speeds for each scene

  • Allows to add voiceover and background music from the library

  • Can share your videos on Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer a lot of editing tools apart from Slow Motion

OS: iOS

SloPro is a free iOS video slow-motion converter app that allows you to shoot video in slow motion or perform a video slow-motion edit on pre-recorded videos. The app is easy to use and provides the option to shoot in super slow-mo up to 1000fps.

Main features:

  • Renderless editing

  • Exposure lock

  • Slow effects like frame blending, optical flow, and ghosting

  • Super Slow Motion

  • Apply Slow Motion while shooting

  • Fast-motion effects

Pros

  • Three kinds of Slow Motion effects available (optical flow, frame blending, ghosting)

  • 500 FPS and 1000 FPS simulation via optical flow

Cons

  • Adds a watermark to the output video

Movavi Video Editor: Windows, Mac

OS: Windows and Mac

Movavi Video Editor for Windows and Mac is video editing software that’s simple to use and packed with features. Its simple interface and intuitive control make it easy for beginners to use, and it’s fun to create a video using this software.

Main features:

  • Slow Motion effect for pre-recorded videos

  • Keyframe animation

  • Chroma Key

  • Special effects

  • Picture-in-picture

  • Stabilization

Pros

  • Easily tweakable Slow Motion effect

  • Can keep the original tone

  • Can mute the original audio track

  • Offers a library of background music and sounds

Cons

  • Free trial only only lasts seven days

OS: Windows and Mac

MotionPerfect is a free, cross-platform video-editing tool that’s ideal for beginners, as it offers a step-by-step guide to help you slow down a video. It only works with AVI files, and there’s a premium version available to buy that offers additional features.

Main features:

  • Extreme Slow Motion with smooth movement

  • Change video run time

  • Adjust speed and frame-rate

  • Built-in media player

  • Drag-and-drop functionality

Pros

  • Step-by-step process of adding the effect

  • Can squeeze your video into a specific time range

  • Expert mode allows you to specify the total number of frames, average frame rate, number and ratio of the captured frames, etc.

Cons

  • Only supports the AVI video format

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* The free version of Movavi Video Editor has the following restrictions: a 7-day trial period, a watermark on the output videos, and, if you’re saving a project as an audio file, an ability to save only half the audio length.

How to make your video in slow motion: The FAQ

Can you edit a video to slow motion?

If you’ve recorded a video in real-time, then the good news is that it’s easy to edit it and add Slow Motion effects. Here’s how to make a slow-motion video using Movavi Video Editor:

  1. Install and launch Movavi Video Editor.
    Version for Windows
    Version for Mac

  2. Import your video and drag it onto the timeline.

  3. Open the More Tools menu.

  4. Select the Slow Motion effect.

  5. Move the slider to the left to slow down your video.

  6. Once you’re happy with the results, click Export to save your video to your computer. You can select the video format, quality, and where you’d like to save the file to. Then click Start to export.

What app makes your videos slow-motion?

There are a number of different apps you can use to create slow-motion videos. Some are for iOS or Android, while others are designed to be used on Mac or Windows computers. You’ll find free and paid apps and those that allow you to edit pre-recorded videos, as well as those that allow you to record videos in slow-motion. Here are our top 10 (you can read more details about each app in the list above):

  1. Slow motion video FX

  2. Slow Fast Motion Video Editor

  3. Videoshop

  4. Movavi Clips

  5. PowerDirector

  6. SloMo Video Editor

  7. SloPro

  8. Slow Motion Video Maker

  9. Slow Motion Camera

  10. Video Speed

How do you change a video to slow-motion on iMovie?

To add slow-motion effects to a video in iMovie, just follow the below steps:

  1. Open your video, then tap the video clip in the timeline.

  2. In the inspector (at the bottom of your screen), tap the Speed button.

  3. You should see a yellow bar at the bottom of your clip with yellow range handles at each end.

  4. To adjust ranges drag either yellow range handle. You can also tap Add to create a new range.

  5. Then, drag the slider left to decrease the video speed.

  6. When dragging the slider, the speed is displayed below your clip (i.e., 1/2x means half the normal speed, etc.).

  7. If you make a mistake, you can reset the entire clip’s speed by tapping Reset.

  8. When you have finished, tap anywhere outside the inspector to dismiss it.

How do you play a video in slow motion on Android?

It’s really easy to play a video in slow motion on Android. These are the simple steps you need to follow:

  1. Navigate to your video.

  2. Tap the video, then tap More (which looks like three little dots stacked vertically).

  3. Tap Playback Speed.

  4. Choose the speed you’d like to play the video at.

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