Top 5 Tips for Editing on Your Smartphone

Posted July 23, 2018
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by Kelly Korzan

I’m often amazed when I watch a video that’s really very good and afterward I discover that the entire project was filmed and edited on a smartphone. This technology has come a really long way in a very short space of time and for many filmmakers, it’s become their preferred way of working. They don’t want to drag around lots of equipment that they don’t need and they love the idea of editing on their phone or tablet and literally being able to work almost anywhere. The video quality you can achieve with your smartphone now rivals or surpasses many stand-alone video cameras, and the editing apps have become incredibly sophisticated. To help you with the process of editing on your mobile device I've put together my top 5 tips to keep in mind.

1. Which App? 

Download a good mobile editing app that works for you. iMovie, LumaFusion, and Kinemaster are the three big players in this space. LumaFusion and Kinemaster work on both iOS and Android, and iMovie works only on iOS devices. iMovie is great for simple projects and LumaFusion offers more advanced features like video and audio keyframing. Kinemaster is a subscription-based app. You can edit on the free version but access to music and effects as well as the ability to export your video without a watermark on it will require a subscription. All three are pretty inexpensive, so if you try one and don’t like it, it’s not that big of a deal to try another.

2. Space on the Interface. 

Give yourself lots of space on the editing interface by working in landscape view. If your editing app allows for simplifying the interface, then by all means, do that. The more space the better. Find a dark spot to work in to reduce screen glare, and make sure that your smartphone screen is turned up to the brightest setting.

3. Battery Life

If you can plug in your Smartphone while you’re editing, of course, that’s best, but if you’re on-the-go, invest in a good supplemental battery. Editing apps take a lot of processing power, so you’ll run through your internal battery pretty quickly. Closing any other applications that are running in the background will give your smartphone its best performance.

4. Monitoring Audio

Wear headphones and set the monitor volume at a comfortable level before you start to work and don’t change it. The speakers on smartphones are pretty good, but you’ll be able to create your best audio mix by wearing headphones.

5. Backing Up Your Project

Make sure you have a backup system in place to ensure your project is saved somewhere other than your device. You can plug your smartphone into your computer to back it up using iTunes, or you can back your phone up to a could-based server without connecting it to your computer. Whichever method you choose, be sure to do it frequently.

I definitely enjoy the ease and simplicity of editing on my iPhone and I hope these tips will help you do the same. 


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