Top Video Editing Effects

What is the best effect for editing?

Video Editor Works with Footage and Sound on computer

 gorodenkoff / Getty Images

The best video editing effects, some would say, are those that go unnoticed. Color-correction can subtly enhance the emotional effect of a scene. A split-screen offers a modern perspective for telling a story. Superimposed shots provide an opportunity for reflection and contemplation.

These video editing effects are the classics you'll find yourself using over and over again. 

of 10


Anytime you have a cut that looks or sounds abrupt, try adding a dissolve to smooth the transition. This effect blends the two video clips so that audiences barely notice the change.

There will be different names for this effect on various platforms, but it is commonly called a Cross Dissolve or Fade.

of 10

Old Movie

The Old Movie effect adds noise, shake and dust to your video, making it look as if it's playing on an old projector. This effect adds a nostalgic feel, but it can also cover up mistakes made during filming (such as camera shakiness or a dirty lens).

Use this effect in conjunction with a bit of speeding up to recreate the look of older footage.

of 10

Black and White

Making your footage black and white can add drama or nostalgia to your movie. This effect is also handy to use if the color of your footage is off.

of 10

Split Screen

This effect lets you show two videos at once. It's a creative way to tell a story by showing multiple viewpoints.

of 10


Black bars at the top and bottom of the screen give your movie a Hollywood style widescreen look. Many cameras shoot in 16x9, but even if yours is 4x3, you can letterbox the video to get a widescreen effect. Make sure, though, that you don't cut off anyone's head in the process.

of 10

Fast Motion

Fast motion is a creative way to indicate the passage of time. Accelerated clouds, city traffic, or crowds of people are all good candidates for this effect.

Fast motion is also excellent for displaying the progression of a project. Keep your video camera fixed on an object as it is being constructed or assembled, then speed it up to show the entire process in a matter of minutes or seconds.

of 10

Slow Motion

Slowing down a video can enhance emotional and dramatic moments. Try it in wedding videos or flashback scenes. Don't forget comedy — funny moments are often even more hilarious when seen in slow-mo.

of 10

Fade In and Fade Out

You'll notice that most professional videos begin and end with a black screen. Give your projects this same professional look adding Fade In at the start of the video and Fade Out at the end.

of 10


Superimposing one video image on top of another can be a little bit tricky, but it is a powerful tool if used properly. Be careful where you apply it; if the scenes are too busy, it won't work well. Montages or transitions from one stage to another tend to be good candidates for this effect.

of 10


This effect creates a circular frame around your video. Use it to give your movie an old-fashioned feel, focus viewers' attention on important scenic elements, or cut out anything unwanted at the edge of the frame.

Think of it in terms of the human eye. Your immediate area of focus is sharp, but everything else in the periphery will be softer and blurry. This effect can be used with great impact.