Filmmaking

6 simple tricks to edit video FASTER!

  • April 10, 2022

In this video I will be sharing 6 simple tricks to help you edit video FASTER. 

Edit on SSDs

Edit on SSDs and not regular mechanical hard drives. Hard drives are great for storing your projects, but always transfer your project to a separate SSD to speed things up. If you want to make things run even faster, then use another SSD just for your project or production files.


There are affiliate links in the description below to the SSDs that I would recommend to you for video editing. You can also make your own, which I will share soon in a future video.

Use Proxies

This is by far the tip that will increase your editing workflow the fastest. If you are not already editing with proxies, then learn how to setup and create ingest and export proxies.

Once you have your proxies settings setup, the first thing you should be doing before you start with any project or production is to create proxies for all your video files. This will speed up your editing process and allow you to scrub through your footage exceedingly fast. It normally doesn’t take too long to make proxies and I don’t know what I would do without adding this step to my editing workflow. 

An example of a Proxy with the word “PROXY written in capital letters to make it easy to know if you are watching the Proxy version of the video or the Original.

Use a timer:

Use a timer. I personally use Toggl, which is a simple timer that you can run in the background while you are editing. When you start to get tired, bored or distracted, you know that you are on the timer, and have to continue editing no matter how you feel at the time. You might be a bit tired and then realize, “hey, I’ve only been editing for 38 minutes. I know I can get a lot more done before I take a break.” 

This has really helped me to speed up my video editing and get more done in a shorter period of time. If I know I need to finish a video today, then I will put the timer on and work as hard as I possibly can until it is completed. And in the end, you have a reference as to how long it took you to edit that particular video, which will give you a realistic idea of how much time you will need to allocate to yourself for your next similar project. Likewise, you are able to record how many hours per day you are allocating to certain tasks. Really basic stuff I know, but I’m always surprised how many people just don’t have a record of the work they are doing on a daily basis, which is an easy way to hold yourself accountable. 

Create a System

Create a system to work on large projects by breaking them down into small bite-sized chunks. If you know you have 20 videos to edit then don’t try to smash one video at a time. Break each video down into processes or tasks that are small and manageable, and then mark each process as don every step of the way. 

This will give you the confidence to continue without getting despondent, as you will know exactly where you are in which video, and exactly what needs to be done next. Be realistic about how much time each task will take you, and if you don’t get it done by the date you were aiming for, just carry on pushing and do the best you can. 

Be realistic about your deadlines and know that it’s normal to encounter a lot of challenges and obstacles during the edit. Every video editor experiences a dip towards the end of a long project, but it’s important to carry on marching through the hardest parts and not give up. 

Use a pair of Studio Headphones

Use a pair of Studio Headphones to silence the world around you and block out unwanted noise and distractions. A pair of Studio Headphones is my secret weapon to get a lot of video editing done. You can’t just get up and go grab something to eat or drink without having to take them off. This will make you question if what you are about to get up to do is really more important than the video you are editing.

Most often than not, you will decide to stay and continue editing as you know deep down in your heart that you really don’t need to get up right now, and it’s better to just carry on working towards your goal. Having a pair of headphones on your head is also a strong signal to others that you are in the zone and do not wish to be disturbed while you are editing. So they can work both ways, helping you to edit faster and stay focused.

Pick the best time of the day to work and make a habit of it. 

We all know when we work our hardest and this really all depends on your personal life. You might find yourself unable to concentrate during the day, and you prefer to edit at night, or you might notice that you get a lot more editing done in the first 4 hours of your day. 

The objective is to find the time where you are able to work your hardest and then focus on getting as much done during that period everyday, and dedicate the rest of the day for other tasks that are not as demanding. 

It’s far better to work hard when you are at your best, and then rest a bit and then hit another hard editing session later that day, than it is to sit behind your computer for the whole day and work slowly. 

Make a point to be fully concentrated and pumped up while you are editing, and if you are not, stop, take a break, go for a 5 minute walk and come back and get as creative and focused as possible. 

Summary:

I know a lot of this is incredibly simple, but I thought I would share this with you to help you if you are busy editing a video or battling to find the energy or time to edit. I have just finished a 2 month long editing project that was more than 30 hours of raw footage that I had to work though, and I am about to start another big project, and it can be really overwhelming to get everything done. 

Create a system and time of the day that works for you, and work hard to stick to it! This could be completely different to the way everyone else you know does it. That doesn’t matter, what is important is that it works for you. 

Let me know in the comments what are your tips and tricks to edit video faster. I’m always learning and it would be awesome to hear what tips and tricks you have to share!

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