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How to trim videos on macOS with QuickTime

Trimming videos is a basic video editing function. You don’t necessarily have to be working on a large project to need to trim a video. You can use iMovie to trim videos on macOS but it’s a complex app to have to figure out for something so simple. QuickTime, while not very popular as a media player, but it has some useful features and it offers a far more intuitive way to trim videos on macOS.

Trim videos on macOS

Open the video you want to trim in QuickTime. You can right-click it and select QuickTime from the Open With sub-menu, or you can open QuickTime and open the file from the File menu on the menu bar.

Once the file is open, go to the Edit item on the menu bar, and you’ll see a Trim option. Select it.

Once you’re in Trim mode, you’ll see a timeline of the video appear over the player. You’ll see draggable edges that you can can use to select the area you want to trim. The parts of the video that are outside of the frame will be removed, and the bit inside it will be kept. Click ‘Trim’ when you’re done.

Once you’re done, you can save the changes as a new file, or you can export it. It goes without saying that there will be no watermark on the video and unless you choose to export the video, it will have the same quality as the original one.

If you need to stitch videos together, you can do that with QuickTime too but there are limitations. The Edit item on the menu bar has an ‘Add clip to end’ option which allows you to add any video to the very end of the current one. You can then save or export it, and the two will be stitched together. If you want to stitch multiple videos together, you can do so with QuickTime but you’ll need to think ahead as to the order the videos will be stitched together in since you can only add a video to the end of the current one.

If you’re looking for an easier way to stitch videos together but you still want a free tool for the job, try iMovie. It’s free for most macOS users and while it is a complex app, it’s still an Apple product which means it’s been developed so that it’s easy to use.

If you’re looking for something even more basic than QuickTime, you can always try using Quick Look on macOS.


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