Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust quality


All modern iPhones have a colossal number of functions that users sometimes do not even know about, and this is a technological and rather expensive device. Today we will talk about such a wonderful function as the slow motion mode: on which devices it is present, how to use it all, and what settings can be tweaked.

Starting with iPhone 5s, all models of Apple smartphones can record video at 120 frames per second, but the latest versions (starting with iPhone 8) can record Slo-Mo video in Full HD resolution (1920 × 1080 pixels) at 240 frames /with.

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Comparison of time-lapse quality on different iPhone models

By default, iOS devices record Full HD video at 120 fps, but the settings can be changed if desired. We repeat that the ability to shoot Full HD video at 240 fps has been present since the iPhone 8, earlier models only support video recording at 720p (1,280 × 720 pixels).

IPhone 12 camera

  • iPhone 5s – 720p (1,280 x 720 pixels) @ 120fps
  • iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus – 720p @ 240fps
  • iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, and iPhone 7 Plus – 1080p @ 120fps or 720p @ 240fps
  • iPhone 8/8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XR, iPhone XS / XS Max, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro / 11 Pro Max, iPhone SE 2, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro / iPhone 12 Pro Max – 1080p at 120 or 240 frames per second.

1080p / 240fps video recording requires the H.265 (High Efficiency Video Coding) codec, which is supported by the Apple A11 Bionic and newer.

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Which devices can view slow-motion video captured on an iPhone

Full HD video recorded at 240 fps can be viewed on any device that is compatible with iOS 11 or macOS High Sierra 10.13 or later, although a modern iPhone or Mac (iPhone 6 or later) may be required for quality playback , iPad Air 2, Mac models released since Mid 2015).

Slow motion video can be viewed on iPhone just like any other. All iPhone models from the 4s have a 60Hz display, so any high frame rate video plays without any loss of quality. For high-quality playback of the recording on desktop computers (based on macOS or Windows), devices equipped with a 6th generation Intel Core processor or lower are required.

However, it is best to watch videos on iPad Pro. All Apple professional tablets since 2017 support Apple ProMotion technology, which provides picture refresh rates up to 120 Hz. When playing video at 1080p / 240fps on an iPad Pro that supports this technology, the screen refresh rate will automatically increase to 120Hz for smoother, clearer playback.

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How much space does a slow-motion video take?

Due to the efficiency of the H.265 video codec (HEVC), 1 minute of Slo-Mo recording at 1080p / 120 fps takes about 350 MB of memory, 720p / 240 fps – 300 MB, 1080p / 240 fps – 480 MB …

How to Record Slow Motion Video on iPhone (1080p / 240fps)

1. Open the app “Settings” on your smartphone.

2. Tap the option “Camera”

3. Select a subsection “Slow motion recording. video”

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

4. Select a time-lapse quality.

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

Advice. To display the hidden option to record 720p video at 240 fps on modern devices, switch from Highly efficient on the Most Compatible at “Settings”“Camera”“Format”… The camera format menu does not appear on unsupported devices.

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

5. Close “Settings” and run the app “Camera”

6. Select an option “Slowly” at the bottom of the interface.

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

Advice. iOS can remember the last used mode, for example, “Video” or “Photo”. To do this, open “Settings”“Camera”“Save settings” and toggle the option toggle switch “Camera mode” into position “On”

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

7. Click the button “Record” or the volume key to start or stop recording.

The recorded video will be saved in the app “Photo” as a file with the extension .MOV.

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How to transfer videos to Mac or PC

In chapter “Settings”“Photo”“Transfer to Mac or PC” select the preferred format for transferring the file. There are two options available – Automatically and Transfer originals

Slow motion video on iPhone: how to shoot and adjust the quality

When you select the latter, the file format will be saved in its original form, and in the Automatically When transferring video from phone to computer, it will be encoded with H.265 encoder, increasing compatibility by resizing the file. Use this setting if your computer does not support the H.265 video codec.

When transferring videos using AirDrop or the Share menu, iOS always transfers the converted H.264 version for better compatibility.

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Examples of slow motion video captured on iPhone

An example of shooting in Slo-Mo mode on iPhone 5s:

An example of shooting in Slo-Mo mode on iPhone 6:

An example of shooting in Slo-Mo mode on iPhone X:

What if I have an old iPhone that doesn’t have slow motion?

Owners of older iPhone and iPad models should not worry, because there are programs in the App Store that allow you to add this feature even to iPhone 4s and iPad 2. You can read about one of them in this article.

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