Trim videos using Handbrake

Can’t share, transfer or upload a video just because it is too long? You can use Handbrake, a free, cross-platform video transcoder program, to easily cut your video and reduce down its file size on PC or Mac. Check out details below.

Step 1. Find the start and end point

Use a media player on your computer to play the movie or video and find out the timing of the start and end point you want to keep. You can use Movies & TV, Windows Media Player, QuickTime Player, iTunes or any movie player you have. Writing down the time (hour:minute:second) of the beginning and ending of the section, such as starting at 00:30:45 and ending at 00:45:54.

Step 2. Trim videos with Handbrake

Trimming a video using Handbrake is not intuitive. Find the Range box. It defaults to the Chapters, so you can quickly select the range by chapters. You need to click on the Chapters to expand the drop-down menu and select Seconds. You can now enter the time of the beginning and ending point.

select range and trim video using Handbrake on PC
Handbrake to cut, split videos on windows PC

Note that unlike its Windows version, Handbrake for Mac uses only seconds notation. For example, if you enter 0 and 145 into the range selection box, it means you need to trim the first 2:25 duration of the video.

If like, you can tweak more settings and options, such as video codec, format, width, height, frame-rate, subtitles, etc.

Click Browse button in the bottom right corner to set the destination path for the output file.

Finally hit the Start Encode button to trim the video.

Similar tools to cut videos on computer

With Handbrake, you have to deal with the timing manually. It is not intuitive. You can try these alternatives to trim videos on Windows and Mac computers using more professional video editors with play bar you can drag to select the start and end frame with visual feedback in the built-in media player.

split, trim video filmora editor for windows

Moreover, you can use the frame by frame backward and forward button (the first two buttons from the left below the built-in media player window) to navigate to the exact frame you want to start and/or end.

Update Nov 2022: replaced the screenshot using HandBrake current version 1.5.1 for Windows.

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