Advice for Using Shotcut to Create YouTube Videos?

At the moment I am in the ‘research’ phase of preparing several YouTube channels.

I am re-familiarizing myself with various equipment and software that I will be using (in addition to Shotcut), and - having discovered and having decided to use Shotcut as my video editor - am doing test videos and uploads.

Obviously, there are various people here on the forum who use Shotcut to make their videos (e.g., Joe Cullen), so I wanted to pick people’s brains, and am hoping for responses to the following questions.

  1. What suggestions and advice would you give about using Shotcut as a video editor for YouTube?

  2. Are there any settings to pay particular attention to, or which you would suggest using or avoiding?

  3. In terms of methodology, in preparing a video, do you find particular layouts or ways of working with Shotcut’s GUI to be more optimal than others? If so, how, and which ones?

  4. What, if anything, about YouTube’s algorithm which is advantageous to know?

  5. Are there any advantages and/or drawbacks about using Shotcut to produce videos to be uploaded to YouTube, in comparison to other video editors?

Thanks for any replies.

What resolution will be used for these projects’ Video Mode? 1080p, 1440p, 2160p, etc? There are specific tips based on resolution.

1 Like

Hi Austin,
Thanks for the reply.

For one of my YT channels, the individual video clips I use from sites like Pexels will determine the resolution - some are 1080p, while others are 2160p.

Another channel will probably be 1080p, because my Canon deliberately disabled the Autofocus on the M50 mirrorless I have, and I need AF because I will be on camera, and therefore moving a bit. HOWEVER, I might upscale the footage to 4K, for various reasons, with some of the videos, initially.

I think that Shotcut is great for making Youtube videos.

For advice I would just say to practice and keep editing because you only get better over time.

For export settings(Advanced), I would(In order):

  1. Choose the ‘H.264 High Profile’ preset in Export > Video
    Screenshot 2022-07-18 010225

  2. Choose a resolution of 1440p or higher(For some reason Youtube uses more efficient encoding)
    Screenshot 2022-07-18 010401

  3. Youtube uses the limited color space (If you don’t use this it may make colors look weird)
    Screenshot 2022-07-18 010511

  4. Set the bitrate to as high as you can(If you have hard drive space).

  5. In Export > Video > Codec Set the rate control to either Constant Bitrate or Average Bitrate. (others have given me mixed results)

  6. Youtube prefers a GOP of half the framerate (60fps = 30gop, 30fps = 15gop, 24fps = 12gop, etc.)
    2 B-frames and a fixed GOP
    Screenshot 2022-07-18 011702

  7. Audio should have a sample rate of 48000 hz at 384kbps

The only drawbacks I can think of are:

Limited special effects(good motion blur, 3d stuff, etc.) and
Compatibility with other programs and services.
Hope this helped you a little bit.


Hi Patientboi,
Many, many thanks for taking the time and going to the effort of capturing the screenshots and giving me these suggestions.

I have little idea of the function of some of the settings you mention, so this is very helpful.

You mentioned that the ‘YouTube’ colour space makes colours look weird, and I have been trying to get a simple sunset to export (using the ‘YouTube’ profile) with the same red vividness that it has in my video clip, but even pushing the ‘Colour Grading’ filter well into the red on my screen, still results in a lacklustre export when uploaded to YouTube.

So, I think you have identified my problem, and I will use the settings you suggest for export, rather than the ‘YouTube’ profile.

When you say that compatibility with other programs and services is one of the drawbacks of Shotcut, what do you mean exactly?

Thanks again for such a helpful reply.

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