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A few tips with FFMPEG

🕒 4 min read

Category: Linux

Tags: ffmpeg, linux, video

-acodec is an alias for -c:a which is an alias for -codec:a (audio stream).
-vcodec is an alias for -c:v which is an alias for -codec:v (video stream).

-af is an alias for -filter:a (audio stream).
-vf is an alias for -filter:v (video stream).

Cross fade a video for seamless loops

curl -o ./video-crossfade -O https://raw.githubusercontent.com/joeyhoer/video-crossfade/master/video-crossfade.sh
chmod +x ./video-crossfade
./video-crossfade.sh -f 2 -o output.mp4 input.mp4 # 2 second crossfade

Scale a 2.7K (2704x1520) video down to 1080p

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vf "scale=1920:1080,setsar=1" -acodec copy output.mp4

Convert a video framerate to NTSC (29.97002997)

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -r ntsc -acodec copy output.mp4

Split a video in several chunks of same duration

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -c copy -map 0 -segment_time 00:00:30 -f segment -reset_timestamps 1 output%03d.mp4

Add embedded subtitles

sudo apt install subtitlecomposer

In subtitlecomposer, import the video, add subtitles, and export the file as filename.ass. Edit the exported text file, change the font from 16px to 22. Then:

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vf ass=filename.ass output.mp4

Create a video out of several images

ffmpeg -r 24 -f image2 -s 1440x1080 -i image%04d.jpg -vcodec libx264 -crf 25 -pix_fmt yuv420p output.mp4 # image0001.jpg, image0002.jpg, etc

Create a GIF



ffmpeg -v warning -i input.mp4 -vf "$filters,palettegen" -y $palette
ffmpeg -v warning -i input.mp4 -i $palette -lavfi \
    "$filters [x]; [x][1:v] paletteuse" -y output.gif

Crop an OGV video

ffmpeg -i input.ogv -vcodec libtheora -vf crop=700:400:0:0 -f ogg output.ogv

Merge an audio track (delayed) with a video, and cut the final video according to the shortest stream

ffmpeg -itsoffset 00:00:15 -i input.mp4 -i audio.mp3 -acodec copy -vcodec copy \
    -map 0:0 -map 1:0 -shortest output.mp4

Cut a video (set the starting time and the duration)

Two options mostly.

  1. Process all the input and then precisely cut the re-encoded output at the requested time, the rest of the input that came out before is discarded. It is very slow because it has to process the beginning of the input even though it is discarded.

    ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -ss 00:00:13 -t 00:09:00 output.mp4
  2. Seek in input (fast but imprecise, can only cut at key frames) and do not re-encode to preserve quality:

    ffmpeg -ss 00:00:13 -i input.mp4 -t 00:09:00 -c copy -avoid_negative_ts make_zero output.mp4

More information.

Extract EVERY image from a video

ffmpeg -i foo.avi -r 1 -s WxH -f image2 foo-%03d.jpeg

Create a 24fps video from many images

ffmpeg -framerate 1 -i foo-%02d.jpg -c:v libx264 -r 24 -pix_fmt yuv420p foo.mp4

Accelerate a video by 2

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -filter:v "setpts=0.5*PTS" output.mp4

Flip by 180° a video and fix the metadata

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vf "transpose=2,transpose=2" -metadata:s:v:0 rotate=0 output.mp4

Remove the audio stream

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -an -vcodec copy output.mp4

Convert from .mov to .mp4

ffmpeg -i input.mov -c:v libx264 -c:a copy output.mp4

Concatenate several MP4 files

find . -type f -iname "*.MP4" -exec ffmpeg -i '{}' -c copy -bsf:v h264_mp4toannexb -f mpegts '{}.ts' \;
ffmpeg -i "concat:$(ls *.ts | tr '\n' '|' | head -c -1)" -c copy -bsf:a aac_adtstoasc output.mp4

Fade out last 2 seconds of audio track

ffmpeg -i output-with-sound.mp4 -c:v copy -filter_complex "areverse, afade=d=2, areverse" output-with-sound-fadeout.mp4

Merge two videos placed side by side with audio from first video

ffmpeg -i left.mp4 -i right.mp4 \
  -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]hstack=inputs=2[myvideo]" \
  -map "[myvideo]" -map "0:a" wide.mp4

You might want to scale it down and add black padding at the top and bottom:

ffmpeg -i left.mp4 -i right.mp4 \
  -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]hstack=inputs=2[myvideo];[myvideo]scale=1920:-1,pad=1920:1080:0:270[myvideo]" \
  -map "[myvideo]" -map "0:a" wide.mp4

Alternatively, you can crop the initial two inputs and directly produce a 1920x1080 video:

ffmpeg -i left.mp4 -i right.mp4 \
  -filter_complex "[0:v]crop=960:1080:480:0[left];[1:v]crop=960:1080:480:0[right];[left][right]hstack=inputs=2[myvideo]" \
  -map "[myvideo]" -map "0:a" 16-9-video.mp4

If one of the two videos is not correctly synced with the other one, you can delay an input. Add -ss 00:00:0x before the -i input that needs adjustment.

Put one video on top of another one (overlay), alternate between the two, and use audio from first video

ffmpeg -i initial.mp4 -i ontop.mp4 -filter_complex \
  "[0:0][1:0]overlay=enable='between(t\,19,28)'[myvideo];[myvideo][1:0]overlay=enable='between(t\,37,45)'[myvideo]" \
  -map "[myvideo]" -map "0:a" -shortest output.mp4

Replace the audio track with another

ffmpeg -i output.mp4 -i yo.mp3 -map 0:0 -map 1 -vcodec copy -acodec copy output2.mp4

(Down) Scaling a video from 1080p to 720p

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vf scale=1280:-1 -acodec copy output.mp4

Concat MTS files to MP4

ffmpeg -i "concat:$(ls *.MTS | tr '\n' '|' | head -c -1)" -vcodec copy -acodec aac -ab 512k -cutoff 22050 -sn output.mp4

Reduce the size of a video

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vcodec libx265 -crf 24 -r 25 output.mp4
# OR if libx265 is not supported
ffmpeg -i input.mp4 -vcodec libx264 -crf 24 -r 25 output.mp4