Choppy/Laggy video after importing

olijarrett Posts: 2 Just Starting Out


I am completely new to video editing.

When I import my video into and play it in the trimmer so I can make some cuts the video plays back in a very choppy manner. When I play the video back on my documents it plays smoothly as it should. But when it's in the HitFilm trimmer it's very laggy/choppy

I have checked the frame rate and it's filmed at a constant 25fps and my PC should be powerful enough to edit it. I have i5 7400, 1060 3gb GPU, 8gb RAM, not amazing but solid imo.

Any suggestions on how to get rid of the lag would be appreciated.

Thanks 😊


  • EvilDaystar
    EvilDaystar Posts: 301 Enthusiast

    What resolution video?

    What format and encoding?

    Compressed formats require a fair bit of work on the pc to decode but offer smaller files sizes while uncompressed videos files are less cpu intensive but are massive.

    1- Lower playback quality.

    I'm on my phone so I can't get a screen grab but in the lower right corner of the trimmer or the viewer you can set replay quality.

    Don't lower it too much on the viewer or effects won't render.

    2- Transcode to a friendlier format.

    3- Use lower resolution proxies.

    Editing 4k? Export 720p. Use that for editing by telling the 720p to fill the frame. When you are done, relink the file to the 4k files and again force fill frame on all the clips.

    4- Use an ssd drive.

  • EvilDaystar
    EvilDaystar Posts: 301 Enthusiast

    Also ifntou can, add some RAM tonyour machine. 8gb on those specs is a bit on the low end.

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 1,995 Just Starting Out
    edited October 2020


    Welcome to HitFilm!

    Playing back video in a dedicated player, e.g VLC or WMP, is vastly different from a Non-Linear-Editor (NLE) such as HitFilm. It conforms, and has all kinds of processing all contributing to it being an apples vs oranges comparison.

    @EvilDaystar Some excellent advise there. However I'd like to add a thing or two to ensure efficient troubleshooting

    For cases where video playback is not smooth however user PC specs meet/exceed the listed minimum specs here:

    Then we want a Mediainfo report of the file the user is using so that we can quickly resolve any playback issues related to file or PC specs. As someone who is new to editing, or just not aware of all the different formats and specs of files it can be difficult to give answers which satisfy us, but also it may slow the whole troubleshooting process down.

    @olijarrett Download and install:

    In Mediainfo, open the file that's experiencing choppy playback, save as .txt and copy & paste the contents of that .txt with your next reply.

    This allows us to see the actual specs of the file you're working with, without having to dig in the file explorer or learn complex terms. In most scenarios it's just a matter of trying to playback a file that was encoded in variable framerate, for instance screen recorders and phones record exclusively in variable framerate due to the processing variances. Dedicated video cameras record in constant framerate, it's both more reliable and if it's regular AVC/H.264 (.mp4, .mov typically), then you should know that HitFilm now supports hardware decoding of AVC. Decoding (playback) your file provided it is no longer in variable framerate, using (in this case) your GTX 1060 graphics card, is going to give you a lower overhead decode than any intermediate codec out there, which in turn translates to it not being choppy or skipping when played back.

    File -> Options -> Render -> Use hardware decoding when available, should be ticked


    Encode -> Exporting/Rendering a file

    Decoding -> Playing back your video in the trimmer, editor timeline, composite timeline

    Transcoding -> Re-encoding, e.g variable framerate -> constant framerate

    Proxies -> Pre-render [renamed in later versions] (save file to drive cache to ensure guaranteed smooth playback, typically for heavy VFX shots or file formats requiring higher PC specs than what you already have) -> Cache resides on your hard drive / SSD, files are going to be enourmous, and take a long time to cache -> Making changes to a shot you've pre-rendered invalidates said pre-render

  • olijarrett
    olijarrett Posts: 2 Just Starting Out

    I think I've added the mediainfo stuff correctly

    Thanks for your feedback, I understand some of it! All I am wanting to do to my video is some basic cuts and add a few bits of text for a podcast.

    I'll try implementing some of advice now 😊

  • NormanPCN
    NormanPCN Posts: 4,134 Enthusiast PC should be powerful enough to edit it

    4K/UHD video editing wants a powerful computer. Yours is on the weak side.

    Make sure your GPU drivers are current. Make sure the Nvidia GPU is being used. Your only chance is if the hardware decode feature for AVC can function properly on your machine. the mediaInfo report shows that is within spec for HW decode to be able to function.