speed-up youtube videos with openshot (step-by-step)

Recently I wanted to speed up some of my youtube videos. Youtube has a built-in editor, so why do you have to speed-up youtube videos with openshot?

youtube editor & limitations

Youtube video player lets you playback any video at faster or slower speeds

Screenshot from 2015-02-05 20:19:02

But what if I want the default to be a faster speed? Turns out you can use  youtube’s sweet in-browser video editor to do just about everything…

Just got to youtube.com/my_videos and click “Edit” on any of your videos and you’ll see this:

(Simple Mode) here with color and saturation changes

Screenshot from 2015-02-05 20:27:02

(Advanced Mode) here with some weird filter & showing compositing existing youtube videos/music, and some text overlay

Screenshot from 2015-02-05 20:29:18

BUT! In youtube’s editor, you can slow down your video, but you can’t speed up your video :/ (what? you can do it on-the-fly in playback but not in the video editor? why is this?)

step-by-step in 2 minutes

My simple solution, on Ubuntu 14.04, is to use the open-source tool OpenShot (no windows / mac installers yet, it appears).

1. Install

$ sudo apt-get install openshot

2. Download your youtube video

$ sudo apt-get install youtube-dl
$ youtube-dl [your video url, for instance:]
$ youtube-dl https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNV2ttK6UxA

Pro-Tip: If your recording was hand-held, use youtube’s video editor to “Stabilize” your video first, or else it will be very uncomfortable  to watch it sped up. Then download it after the changes have been applied. You can see the “stabilize” button in the image for “Simple Mode” above.

3. Start OpenShot.

  • Drag-and-drop your video into editor (near “Thumb” at the top).
  • Then drag it to the timeline (here “track 2” near the bottom).
  • Right-click > “Properties” > Choose a speed (here “5x”).
  • Click “Apply”.
  • Click “Advanced” if you want a speed that isn’t listed.

Screenshot from 2015-02-05 20:20:59

4.  Hit the green “play” button to see if the speed looks okay.

5. File > Export Video > Choose the “youtube” profile.

Screenshot from 2015-02-05 20:50:19

6. Upload to youtube.

7. Profit!

Pro-tip: If you only want to speed up part of your video, first set everything to normal speed, break the clip up into chunks with the scissors tools, and then change the clip properties of individual clips to speed up whichever ones you want.

OpenShot seems to do weird things if you first speed up the video, cut it up, and try to return sections to “normal” speed.

Actually, even the former method seems to clip off ends of the video, so double-check it’s all there before you export.


Here’s the microwave at work, which has a mind of it’s own: