Video Wizardry

Video Wizardry

Article from Issue 206/2018
Author(s):

Linux has some excellent graphical video-editing tools, but sometimes working from the command line with FFmpeg is just better.

How much better? Well, it makes stuff easier to batch process, for starters. Say you have to change every instance of "Bill" in a 100-page text file to "Gary." Sure, you could use the search-and-replace feature in your text editor. That would work if you only had one file, but what would you do if you had a filesystem with hundreds of files scattered all over the place? You would never consider seriously trawling through every directory and subdirectory, opening each file in turn, and clicking through the search-and-replace process, would you? A Bash script using find and sed would be the way to go.

The same goes, believe or not, for video editing. You can do dozens, nay, scores of things with your videos, without ever having to open a graphical video-editing application. All you need is FFmpeg [1].

You've probably used FFmpeg before for converting video and audio files between formats. In its simplest form, that is what it does. The instruction

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