How to Edit Quicktime Movies

By Andrew Schrader

A QuickTime movie, with an MOV file extension, stores and compress audio, effects, effects and text. MOVs were designed specifically for editing. Apple's QuickTime Player, free for download, not only allows you to convert and export video to and from a number of different formats, but it also comes equipped with basic editing tools to cut and paste sections of audio and video. QuickTime also enables you to combine separate tracks into one.

Selecting Part of a File

Step 1

Download and install QuickTime Player. You need to agree to its licensing agreement to complete the download. Open QuickTime by clicking on the product icon.

Step 2

Open your video file by clicking "File" at the top of the QuickTime toolbar. Select "Open File..." and find your movie in the finder window. Click "Open."

Step 3

Select the portion of the file you want to edit by dragging the In and Out markers to surround that section of the file. These markers appears as two half-arrow cursors on the timeline. Alternately, place your cursor on the timeline and press "I" or "O" on your keyboard for the In and Out marks.

Step 4

Delete all other portions of the file by selecting "Edit," and then "Trim to Selection" on the QuickTime toolbar. This will delete the sections of video outside of your In and Out marks.

Step 5

To remove the selected portion, choose "Edit," then "Delete."

Step 6

To simply snip out this section of the file, select "Edit," and then "Copy" or "Cut." Then open the second video file and use "Edit," then "Paste" to add the section into the file.

Step 7

Click "File" and "Save As" to rename your edited movie while retaining your old movie file.

Combining Separate QuickTime Movies

Step 1

Open both movies in their own player windows.

Step 2

Click "Window" to extract a track from your file and add it to another movie. Select "Show Movie Properties" to view the separate audio, video, effects and text tracks.

Step 3

Select the track you want to copy or delete from the clip, and then click "Extract." Hold the "Shift" key to select multiple tracks, such as audio and text titles. QuickTime creates a new movie file with the selected tracks. Add these into a new movie by selecting the file with the extracted tracks with "Edit," then "Select All." Copy the files by selecting "Edit," then "Copy." Open the file into which you want the tracks, place your cursor where you'd like the tracks to start, and select "Edit," then "Add to Movie."

Step 4

Click "File" and "Save As" to rename your edited movie while retaining your old movie file.

Tips & Warnings

  • QuickTime adds exactly the time you cut to a new file for video, text and effects. For example, 15 seconds of video add as 15 seconds of video to the new movie. However, QuickTime can stretch or compress the track. To do this, place the In and Out markers for the duration you'd like the track stretched or compressed in the new movie. Then select "Edit," and then "Add to Selection and Scale."