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How to Stabilize Video in Final Cut Pro

How to Stabilize Video in Final Cut Pro

There are times when you capture great footage, but there's a problem – the video is shaky. This is one mishap that can make even the most amazing looking footage look like a low-budget amateur video. Maybe you didn't have a tripod with you and you had to rely on a handheld method. Perhaps you captured draw-dropping aerial views with your drone camera and the video wasn't as smooth as you like. Whatever the case, you want your project to have that wow factor without the distraction from a shaky camera. If this is an issue for you, it's easy to resolve. Keep reading to learn how to use the Final Cut Pro stabilize video feature.

Stabilize Your Project

Import your video if you haven't done so already. Place it in your timeline and then select it. Go to Video Properties and scroll down to stabilization. Click inside the checkbox to activate the tool. When you do this, Final Cut Pro automatically stabilizes your footage. Generally, this is all you need to do to eliminate the shakiness but if you're still not getting the look you desire, the video editing software has other features you can use.

Make Adjustments to the Slider

You may run into a situation where the basic stabilization doesn't do a good enough job. If you still see some shakiness on playback, use the slider in the Video Properties. This tool allows you to adjust the smoothness even more. Go ahead and click the slider. Now, move the slider to the far right. In some cases, this works. In other instances, you may not notice any improvement. If this is the situation, there's a hack that enables you to work around this limitation in Final Cut Pro Stabilize video.

Hack the Slider

Next, to the slider, there's a box with a number in it. This gives you the ability to customize how much you want to stabilize the video. Increase the number to 100 and see if that smooths out your clip. Does the video blackout? If so, the number is too high. You can alternate between lowering the number and running video playback until you get the result you want. 

That's pretty much it. There's nothing super complicated about transforming a shaky video that makes you dizzy into a stabilized clip that's easy on the eyes. Final Cut Pro stabilize video feature works just fine for any footage whether it's captured by a hand-held camera, a drone or anything in between. 
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