Tutorial Windows: Add Slow Motion Effect to Videos in Windows

Special effects used in movies count a lot to the overall score, and nowadays technology allows some neat tricks. A common one that’s used to emphasize certain activities is slow motion. However, special cameras need to be used for a proper effect.

Anyone can take a shot at becoming a movie director, given the right hardware and software components. Even videos you capture with your mobile phone can be greatly enhanced, and with enough skill, you might just even put together a masterpiece.

As mentioned above, to add slow motion to videos, you need a different type of camera. This is because normal recording captures a specific number of frames in a second, so that transition in normal playback is flawless. Slowing down a video would mean to add more frames to make transition smooth, which isn’t quite an easy task.

Luckily, someone thought it was a good idea to implement such features in some video editing programs. We’re going to enlist a few, and how to use them to slow down any video on your computer.

Adding slow motion effect to videos

1 ~ Using Microsoft’s Tools
If you’ve seen the evolution of Microsoft’s Movie Maker application over the years, you’re sure not as happy with the latest iteration as with the one before Vista. This is because a lot of features were either removed or heavily restricted. Don’t worry, the good old iteration of Windows Movie Maker is still up for grabs.

Step 1: Download, install, and run Windows Movie Maker.

Important Note: Yes, it’s the iteration of Windows Movie Maker before it got upgraded. This is the one you need. Don’t confuse it with Windows Live Movie Maker.

Step 2: Drag the target video over the main window to load it.

Step 3: Select the video and drop it over the Storyboard / Timeline. It’s the bottom area with a lot of boxes or audio/video layers.

Step 4: Right-click the video to apply Video Effects.

Step 5: Scroll all the way down on the list of Available Effects until you see Slow Down, Half.

Step 6: Select it and press the Add button.

Note: You can add it more times, but just remember that each time it’s added, the video is slowed down by half. This means it reaches a quarter speed if added two times.

Step 7: Go to the File menu and choose to Save Movie File. Follow the steps to export the video.

2 ~ The Third-Party Alternative
Maybe the tool Microsoft provides is not really your cup of tea, or you also want some advanced controls. Regardless of your reasons, you might want to know that there’s another application capable of slowing down videos. Here it is:

Step 1: Download, install, and run Wondershare Filmora.

Step 2: Load the target video by dragging it over the main window.

Step 3: Place it on the timeline, again by dragging it there.

Step 4: Double-click the video on the timeline to bring up properties.

Step 5: Adjust the Speed slider (last one on the list) so that the value is less than 1.

Step 6: Press OK to confirm changes. Now just Export your video with the quality settings you want.

3 ~ Directly on the Web
Most videos you edit end up online, and there are a lot of specialized places to upload them. YouTube made a pretty big name for itself, and if you didn’t already know it, you can edit videos you upload on your channel.

Note: This method requires a Google account in order to be able to upload videos on YouTube. So go create an account.

Step 1: Fire up your web browser and go on YouTube.

Step 2: Sign in and press the Upload button in the top right page.

Step 3: Access the Video Manager and locate your new video.

Step 4: Press the small Edit button.

Step 5: Switch to Enhancements from the upper toolbar.

Step 6: In the Slow Motion section, choose to reduce the speed either two, four, or eight times.

Step 7: Save your video either as a new one or replacing the original.

On an ending note

Slow motion can be used to either emphasize action in greater detail, or simply add a cool effect. Either way, you won’t get the same quality through editing as you would from shooting with a special camera. However, since money doesn’t grow on trees, it’s good to know there are computer solutions available to everyone.

Disclaimer: The following examples are only for Windows Movie Maker and Wondershare Filmora. Why, you ask? We’ve been trying for hours to upload a portion of the video to apply the effect, but we stumbled upon an known issue that causes processing to get stuck at 95%. Some luck, huh?

Normal Speed
Windows Movie Maker Slow Motion
Wondershare Filmora Slow Motion

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