How to Edit Two Clips Together Directly Inside QuickTime

In this Pro Tip lesson, I’m going to show you how you can edit two clips together DIRECTLY inside of QuickTime.

(Video Source: How to EDIT MERGE Clips Together in QuickTime – PRO TIP)

Preliminary Overview

In this particular case, the first question that might pop up in your mind would be like: “Jon, WHY would I consider editing two clips together inside of QuickTime, when I can just use a real video editor like iMovie or Final Cut Pro and do the same thing using one of these?”

The answer to this question is that it’s conventional thinking. So I understand where you’re coming from.

But let me invite you on a quick adventure and challenge conventional wisdom by accepting the idea that simple video edits like this, can actually be done on the fly.

The Actual Process

So, what the process of editing two clips together look like inside of iMovie? Here it is:

Import your clip > create a new Timeline or Project > Make your edits > Render, Export, Rename your new video

Now this process is like 10 steps and 30 minutes of your life, right?

What does this process look like in QuickTime?
Open File clip 1 > Add File Clip 2 > Save.

MUCH easier, right?
So, let me show you how to do it…

Lets move on…

First, we’ll open Bob’s interview video clip, right here in Finder.
And, if you remember our previous pro tip – I told you how to trim off any video clip using QuickTime.
(If you haven’t seen that lesson yet, I highly encourage you to go back and check it out FIRST. It’ll make this NEW shortcut much more valuable)

Now, in this scenario, Bob’s interview is over and what I’ll do now is add in Susan’s interview clip RIGHT AFTER Bob.

Lets assume that I’ve already cleaned up Susan’s interview; I synchronized her audio with the DSLR footage using Sync Replace. Following this, I trimmed up her interview’s in and out points. So, now I want to add these two clips together. How do I do it?

That’s fairly simple. As I already have Bob’s interview clip open, what I’ll have to do now is just DRAG Susan’s interview clip directly on top of Bob’s interview inside of QuickTime.

As I drag Susan’s interview clip into the QuickTime Player, look what happens to the player window:

I’m suddenly getting a TIMELINE view and Bob’s entire clip has MOVED OVER to the left, and to the RIGHT of his interview clip, we see the name of SUSAN’s video clip.

If I let go of my mouse now at this position, Susan’s clip will be added up right there.

Now this means that right after Bob’s INTERVIEW, Susan’s interview will begin to play.
Pretty cool & easy, right?

Once we’re happy with these results, all we have to do is click the DONE button over here on the right.

And from there, I’ll need to give this clip a new name, because as we know QuickTime is NOT making changes to Bob’s original Clip or Susan’s clip. Instead, it has created a brand new versions of both clips.

In other words, the original files of Bob’s solo interview and Susan’s solo interview clips are left untouched.
And this REMIX that we’ve just created, is a brand new clip that we’ll need to save by giving it a new name.

This is what the industry professionals call: Non-Destructive Video Editing.

You’re cutting, trimming, and putting clips together without destroying the original copies.

Quick Recap

Here’s a rapid recap of what actually we did in above explained process:

  1. We opened one video clip inside of QuickTime
  2. Then we dragged a second video clip inside the program.
  3. We’ve SUCCESSFULLY merged two interview clips into one SOLID and COHESIVE interview.

What to do now?

You might be wondering about this point you would be asking:

“Alright hotshot! that’s pretty cool. But, WHAT IF I change my mind later on and want to put Susan’s interview BEFORE Bob’s interview?
And what if I suddenly decided… you know what… I want Bob’s interview to be shorter! How do I do THAT?”

Well that’s an excellent question, I appreciate that.

In our next lesson, I’m going to show you how to do this. But for now, here’s your action step:

Next time you find yourself wanting to put two clips together on the fly. DON’T open iMovie or Final Cut Pro. Instead, merge them together using QuickTime.

If you need to EDIT them, use the Trimming Pro Tip I gave you before this one.

And then, watch the next lesson and I’ll show you how to modify this video remix we just created using only QuickTime.

Let us know what you think

That’s it for now. I hope this helped you out.

If you have any questions regarding this method of editing two video clips together, please leave a comment below.

We’re always here to help.


Check out the Content Creators Lounge FREE “Flipped Classroom Screencast Creation Course
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