Blender's Video Sequence Editor

Tutorials >
Blender can look quite confusing for the first time, especially as so many of its functions fulfil its main role of producing 3D animations. Its Sequence Editor has a slightly different approach to making movies than other editors and it's a good idea to look at the video tutorials first, so that things become obvious.

See my Netinstall Step2 page for how to install.


Blender Video Editing tutorial by Mikeycal Meyers

Blender manual

What's different

Main Keys

my keys are in blue

 Mouse scroll  travel up/down sequencer  RMB/Ctrl-RMB /Shift-Ctrl-RMB  Select strips
 Ctrl-scroll  zoom  B  Selection box
 MMB-drag  Pan sequencer  Ctrl-A   Select all (def. A)
 Ctrl-MMB-drag  Pan-zoom sequencer  1 Select left handle
 Shift-Z  Draw box to zoom to (def. Shift-B)  2 Select right handle
 A/Z  Zoom in/Zoom out  X  Soft cut (def. K)
 Q  Zoom to all strips (= Home)  K  Hard cut (def. Shift-K)
 V  View selected strip (def. Numpad .)  S   Snap strips (def. Shift-S)
 F  Jump to frame (def. Numpad 0)  R  Remove gaps (or Backspace)
 W  Jump to strip start  =  Insert gap (def. Shift=)
 E  Jump to next strip start  G Grab strips
 Spacebar  Play/pause (def. Alt-A)  T Extend strips (def. E)
 Left/Right  move to next frame  Ctrl-G Create Meta strip
 Up/Down Next/Prev keyframe  Shift-D Duplicate strip
 Shift-Up/Down Fwd/Bkwd 1/10 sec  Alt-Left/ Alt-Right Swap strip with adjacent strip
 M Add marker  N Strip properties
 Ctrl-M Rename marker  C Call menu for strip
 P Preview range  Shift-L Lock strips from frame adjustments
 Alt-P Close preview range  Shift-Alt-L Unlock strips
 Ctrl-Up/Ctrl-Down Toggle maximise area  

many shortcut keys can be modified/added by a right click on the menu item > Change shortcut/Add shortcut, or else in Preferences > Input tab

Set Spacebar to play/pause animation..

Set zoom controls

Set strip select

I find Ctrl-RMB (for selecting time-linked video/audio clips) very awkward on my brain, so I changed it to the mouse Button 4

It's probably too tricky to change it to LMB

You could add shortcuts for selecting a strip together with adjoining strips (check Linked Handle), or for selecting all strips to the left or right of the seek point or the mouse (set "Left/Rig None" to Left, Right or Mouse) - I use Ctrl-Left/Ctrl-Right (but need to uncheck two shortcuts in Screen)

If you create a new shortcut and paste "" you will get the options for Extend, Linked Time, Linked Handle.

The controls I'd really like would be shortcuts to snap the strip ends of the strip under the seek point to the seek point (without selecting the strip ends first), and a key to select the strip under the seek point which would be faster than using the mouse on every strip.

My Tips

Window arrangement


Adding video strips

Zooming in on the Sequencer

Setting the frame range

Using the Timeline


Preview Range

Selecting strips to move them about

you can't overlap strips, they will jump out to find space on the end.

Cutting strips

Delete strips

Snapping strips

S (def. Shift-S) snaps a selected strip to the seek point, or extends/shortens the end of a strip to the seek point
(I change it to S and make Trim Strips Shift-S)

moving the start/end frame to the seek point is the same as making a soft cut on the strip while removing the cut off part from the sequencer..

- if its the first strip in the sequence, and you remove some of the start frames, you will need to adjust the frame range start - move to the new start of the strip with PgUp (or my W) and use Timeline Frame > Set Start Frame (or hover Timeline below and press S)

if its a strip somewhere along the sequence the cut will make a gap - click LMB in the gap and use Backspace (or my R) to close the gap.

If you press Shift-S (Slip Strip, by default S) you can then drag the content of the strip that you cut within its new frame length, in case you wanted to adjust where the cut was made.

If you select the ends of a strip and press G to grab them you can extend them out, but if the strip then overlaps another strip and you place it with LMB, then the strip you extended will jump out to the end of the sequence to find enough space forewith that it might sit. It will not overlap or push out the strips it overlapped.

To get round that you need to insert gaps at the strip end with =, as much as you think you need to extend the strip ends - gaps will be inserted after the selected strip.

Fast work-flow

Cutting the ends of strips
  • Play the movie up to a cut point
  • Ctrl-RMB on the video clip
  • press 1 or 2 to select strip ends (start/end)
  • press S to snap strip ends to the cut point
  • press R to close the gap between the strip to the right
  • press W and R to close the gap between the strip to the left
Cutting strips midway
  • Play the movie up to a cut point
  • Ctrl-RMB on the video clip
  • press X to make a cut
  • play again until the next cut point
  • press X to make another cut
  • Ctrl-RMB on the cut part (if it doesn't stay selected)
  • press D to remove
  • press W and R to close the gap to the next strip (or leave the gaps until last)

Extend strips

Fade out/ fade in

You don't need to make a black colour strip and gamma cross effect (as the tutorials say).


You can use the above fade-out method pretty well to fade one strip and emerge another strip (the emerging strip should be placed under the fading strip) and this is more professional looking.

you can use an effect strip too..

Colour correction

Multi-threading the render process

Man! Blender will not render on all threads together, it switches threads, using only 25% cpu power - thus renders take much longer than they should do and modern processing speed is not utilised.

Here's the answer (for now).. Pulverize (only problem is when concatenating the different parts of video, the audio does not get concatenated with it)

copy these scripts made by Hunter Perrin, from


( is also there but it doesn't show progress)

put them in your scripts dir or symlink to them in /usr/bin

then install php with,

For best results (concatenating with ffmpeg) set the video to MPEG/MP4/H264 (i.e. File format {container}/output file {extension}/encoding codec)

set the output file to a dir, without file name, and save to a blender project file.

cd projects/blender/
pulverize.php <blender_project_file> [<number_of_processes>] [<options>]


if you state too many threads, or none, it will default to half of real no. threads.

In order for the script to run properly with the portable app version, (ie not installed with package manager) you need to symlink the app in /usr/bin

ln -s path/to/your/blenderdir/blender /usr/bin/blender

Let's further script this so that we get a file chooser pop up, in order to be able to run the script from anywhere, e.g. while browsing the video target dir..

using yad...

I call this script 'run-pulverize'

run like so..

't' is the cpu threads value, found out from the command line by grep
-k and -e are the keep files and error options (but I'm not sure they really work) - they can be given individually or joined, like -ke or -ek
the if command in the script checks if the flags are on the command line or not

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