A common feature of video editing applications is the ability to cut/trim videos. When editing a video, you might want to cut out some parts or you might want to stitch together different videos by cutting sections from different sources and concatenating them into a single video.
To cut a specific part of a video, you use the seeking option -ss to get to a specific part that you want to cut. -ss can be used in different ways, depending on how you want to cut the video. Let's take a look at some examples.
To specify time, you can use two different time unit formats: sexagesimal (HOURS:MM:SS.MILLISECONDS, e.g. 01:23:45.678), or in seconds. If using the former, you can leave out the milliseconds HOURS:MM:SS as we did in our example.
If you specify a time -to that is longer than the input video, e.g. -to 00:35:00 when the input video is 20 minutes long, the cut video will end where the input video ends. If you specify a -to that is smaller than -ss, then the command won't run. You'll get the following error: Error: -to value smaller than -ss; aborting.
When using seek, you might have noticed that sometimes the output files might not be the exact length you were expecting, they might be off by a few seconds. For most video formats, it's not possible to seek exactly. FFmpeg seeks to the closest seek point before the position that you specified. Accuracy can be improved by transcoding the video with -accurate_seek enabled. With this, the extra segment between the seek point and the position specified will be decoded and discarded. When -noaccurate_seek is used, it will be preserved.
The seeking command has another variant -sseof that you can use to cut the last N seconds from a video. It uses negative values to indicate positions relative to the EOF (end of file). Position 0 is at EOF.
When you leave out the -c copy option when trimming a video, FFmpeg will automatically re-encode the output video and audio according to the format you chose. The operation will take longer to complete compared to the previous commands that we've looked at but will give a more frame-accurate result.
While FFmpeg is very powerful it can also be verbose and cumbersome to work with, with a steep learning curve. An easier alternative is the Shotstack video editing API - A cloud based platform that can be used to generate videos at scale and automate video generation workflows.
By using the above command i want to cut the video from 00:00:03 to 00:00:08. But it is not cutting the video between those times instead of that it is cutting the video with first 11 seconds. can anyone help me how resolve this?
With the mp4 container it is possible to cut at a non-keyframe without re-encoding using an edit list. In other words, if the closest keyframe before 3s is at 0s then it will copy the video starting at 0s and use an edit list to tell the player to start playing 3 seconds in.
If you are using the latest ffmpeg from git master it will do this using an edit list when invoked using the command that you provided. If this is not working for you then you are probably either using an older version of ffmpeg, or your player does not support edit lists. Some players will ignore the edit list and always play all of the media in the file from beginning to end.
If you want to cut precisely starting at a non-keyframe and want it to play starting at the desired point on a player that does not support edit lists, or want to ensure that the cut portion is not actually in the output file (for example if it contains confidential information), then you can do that by re-encoding so that there will be a keyframe precisely at the desired start time. Re-encoding is the default if you do not specify copy. For example:
Also, the -t option specifies a duration, not an end time. The above command will encode 8s of video starting at 3s. To start at 3s and end at 8s use -t 5. If you are using a current version of ffmpeg you can also replace -t with -to in the above command to end at the specified time.
This, like the old answer, will produce a 15 second clip. This method is ideal even when clipping from deep within a large file because seeking isn't disabled, unlike the old answer. And yes, I've verified it's frame perfect.
This is because when -ss is given as an output option, the discarded time is still included in the total time read from the input, which -t uses to know when to stop. Whereas if -ss is given as an input option, the start time is seeked and not counted, which is where the confusion comes from.
It's slower than seeking since the omitted segment is still processed before being discarded, but this is the only way to do it as far as I know. If you're clipping from deep within a large file, it's more prudent to just do the math and use -ss for the input.
First, a video should be coded using ffvhuff encoder so that the video could be cut to exactly at the start and end time. Normally, with other commands given above, it may be possible that the video is not cut to the specific duration as not every frame is an intra coded frame.
and loop through the file, downloads the file that youtube-dl supports, calculating duration between start_time and end_time and passing it to ffmpeg, since -t is actually the duration, not the real end_time
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I'm trying to create a clip from an HLS stream. The HLS stream is 8 hours long and the clip can be hours into the video. At most the clip is going to be 1 minute. Most similar answers on here convert the entire video to an mp4 which will take a very long time. Here's what I have so far:
As other people mentioned, putting -ss before (much faster) or after (more accurate) the -i makes a big difference. The section "Fast And Accurate Seeking" on the ffmpeg seek page tells you how to get both, and I have used it, and it makes a big difference. Basically you put -ss before AND after the -i, just make sure to leave enough time before where you want to start cutting to have another key frame. Example:If you want to make a 1-minute clip, from 9min0sec to 10min 0sec in Video.mp4, you could do it both quickly and accurately using:
Also note this important point from that page: "If you use -ss with -c:v copy, the resulting bitstream might end up being choppy, not playable, or out of sync with the audio stream, since ffmpeg is forced to only use/split on i-frames."
This means you need to re-encode the video, even if you want to just copy it, or risk it being choppy and out of sync. You could try just -c copy first, but if the video sucks you'll need to re-do it.
I see not many mention this (I'm no expert so maybe there is a catch), but if your file has other streams like subtitles and other metadata like chapters and so on, it's possible to cut/trim and keep all streams with the following command
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This example will produce one image frame (out1.jpg) at the twenty-third minute from the beginning of the movie. The input will be parsed using keyframes, which is very fast. As of FFmpeg 2.1, when transcoding with ffmpeg (i.e. not stream copying), -ss is now also "frame-accurate" even when used as an input option. Previous behavior (seeking only to the nearest preceding keyframe, even if not precisely accurate) can be restored with the -noaccurate_seek option.
There is no general rule on how to correctly set both time points for -ss options, because those depend on the keyframe interval used when the input was encoded. To give some orientation, the x264 encoder by default uses a GOP size of 250 (which means 1 keyframe each 10 seconds if the input frame rate is 25 fps).
To extract only a small segment in the middle of a movie, it can be used in combination with -t which specifies the duration, like -ss 60 -t 10 to capture from second 60 to 70. Or you can use the -to option to specify an out point, like -ss 60 -to 70 to capture from second 60 to 70. -t and -to are mutually exclusive. If you use both, -t will be used. 041b061a72