How to Trim a Movie with Quicktime Player 10

How to Trim a Movie with Quicktime Player 10
Mac Tip #407, 21 October 2009

Many people use cellphones or other small devices to take quick, casual movies. Quicktime Player can quickly trim away rubbish shots. Here’s how.

This Tip was written with Mac OS X 10.6.1 and Quicktime Player 10. Older versions of the software will work differently or not allow you to Trim at all.

Watch the video


Please visit the video on YouTube too and leave comments and rate it. That helps spread the word about the MacTips.

Quicktime Player 10 is part of Snow Leopard, Mac OS X 10.6. These days many people shoot quick videos of the dogs or kids or random things they see. Often they upload those clips to YouTube. It’s handy to be able to clean the movie up a bit before sharing it, so Quicktime Player 10 makes trimming junk away from either end very easy.

Flip mino.

Flip mino.

Open the movie clip in Quicktime Player 10

Locate your video clip in the Finder and open it with Quicktime Player 10.

I used a Flip mino (Amazon affiliate link) to make this tiny movie of my dogs running in Wellington’s Town Belt, then dragged the movie straight from the video camera to my Demo folder.

How you get a movie from your cellphone or other camera depends on the device and software available to you.

Trim the clip

When you Trim a video clip you remove parts from the beginning and or the end of the clip. You select one portion that you’ll keep and when you Trim, the rest is removed.

Trim the video.

Trim the video.

  1. Choose Trim from the Edit menu in Quicktime Player 10. A heads-up display appears at the bottom of the video. A yellow box outlines the whole video in a section of thumbnails in the heads-up display.
  2. To trim away the beginning of the video drag the left end of the yellow selection box towards the right. Place it where you want your video to begin.
  3. To trim away the end of the video drag the right end of the yellow selection box towards the leftt. Place it where you want your video to end.
  4. Click the yellow Trim button in the heads-up display. Anything that is not selected is trimmed away.

Now you can save the video, perhaps share it on YouTube, or just keep it for personal viewing.

My very brief video of my dogs running was filmed in Wellington’s Town Belt. This was only a few metres away from where Peter Jackson filmed one scene in Lord of the Rings. It was the scene where Frodo and friends hid from the horsemen. Of course, his video cost millions and looks a whole lot better than mine. :-)

Do you have any comments on this Tip? Add them below.

Related posts

[wpzon keywords="pressure cooker" sindex="PCHardware" snode="1232597011" sort="salesrank" listing="8"]


  1. Ben Soto said:

    How to delete movies on Quicktime Player 10?

  2. Miraz said:

    Kris I guess you’d start with your source file and first trim to leave 10 mins at the start then Save as Movie Part 1.

    then open the source file again, trim to leave from minute 10 to minute 20 and Save as Movie Part 2, etc.

    Repeat until finished.

  3. Kris said:

    What if you are trimming a long video, and need to trim into 10 min parts each.. how do u do that?

  4. Miraz said:

    Good questions, Mark and Josh. I don’t see any way to do that. I guess you’d have to import it into iMovie and work from there…

  5. Mark said:

    Is there any way to “cut” the unwanted portion in the middle of the movie with QuickTime 10? I was able to do that with QuickTime 7 easyly by selecting the portion I want to delete, then Cmd+X (cut). But I was unable to do that with Quick Time 10.

    • josh said:

      Also want to know what happened to “cut.” It’s just a grayed-out option for the clips I open…. Any answers or solutions?

  6. Pingback: How to Trim a Movie with Quicktime Player 10 — Mac Tips | Mac Affinity

Comments are closed.