Text illustrating audio


You are right. Just not sure I am up for the major time investment I am going to have to make. But I sure appreciate your time and interest.

How do I integrate Power Point into a shotcut video?

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Chroma key it. Another skill you might need to watch a bunch of videos on. There’s actually easier ways you can accomplish it within Shotcut, but they all need time investment to learn. The easiest way is the one @MusicalBox had already shown.

Stanley, Ben’s answer (“Chroma key it”) may be a good point of illustration for where I think you are in the process. For someone who has worked through some tutorials, this answer will click - “Aha! I may not be sure exactly how to do that, but I know what that is!”

But if you are right at the front end of video editing, and have not worked through some tutorials, that probably sounded like Greek to you. “I just want to do this one simple thing, and there doesn’t seem to be any simple way to do it!”

A key issue is that Shotcut and other NLV editors* are intended to allow you to accomplish any number of effects, not just on a single video clip, but especially in combining different video clips, creating transitions, overlaying, splicing in audio tracks, etc. I think I hear you asking for a screwdriver, but what you are getting is a 5-axis CNC milling machine.

It would be possible to write software to be a screwdriver - to accomplish the one thing you are wanting to do - and it would be simple to use, very user friendly. It wouldn’t be able to accomplish anything else that you might want to do later on; it would always just be a screwdriver - but sometimes all you need and want is a screwdriver. Unfortunately, I don’t know if anyone has written the particular screwdriver software you need. :frowning:

No blame to the 5-axis CNC machine for being what it is, and no blame for just needing a screwdriver … just know that one is not the other!

*NLV = non-linear video. A “linear video editor” can only splice one clip after another; in essence, it would only have one “track” to work with. An NLV editor can work with any number of tracks, providing enormous flexibility to layer and combine and transition and do all sorts of things with different video and audio tracks.


Did you look at the Presets available for the Text filters?

To add to @awake’s comments…

These effects are actually pretty simple to accomplish once you have some pre-requisite skills that concerns, not only Shotcut, but all of video editing software. Since this is a video editing software, you would need those skills to achieve these “simple effects.”

Many of us here are patient enough to help others, but it’s a two-way street. You have to be willing to invest the time to learn. If not, I’m afraid this is as far as most of us can go.

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Thank you very much for your comment. I think you have identified my problem. When software has such multiple abilities sometimes doing something simple can be very hard. Sounds like I either need to commit to study time or just hire someone on upwork to do it.

I understand! I have been on both sides of this situation. Once upon a time (a long time ago) I wrote software for a living, but I was writing custom software - so the customer got exactly what the customer wanted, or at least as close to it as we could get those early Apple II and IBM XT machines to do it. I would say that I always spent at least 90% of the effort on getting the interface right - the actual logic of the code to accomplish the task(s) was simple by comparison to anticipating exactly how someone would interact with the interface.

But I’ve also been on the user end, and one situation in particular involved a strong push “from above” to adopt software that was way, way, way overkill for what we really needed, so much so that it was going to take more time and effort to use the software than to do without. I seem to remember making the comparison that we were being asked to swat flies with a 20 lb. sledge hammer.

Of course, when you need a sledge hammer, a fly swatter will not do, and yes, you can swat flies with a sledgehammer if you really work at it. But wouldn’t it be better to have the right tool for the job?

All that to say - Shotcut may not be the right tool for the job you need doing, or as you say the right tool may be to hire someone to do it.

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OBS Studio is perfect for doing presentations like this. All you need to do is use some presentation software like Powerpoint or LibreOffice-Impress to create a slideshow. Here is a screenshot of my Impress slideshow comparing Arms to Legs:

There are 7 slides and each one adds a new “feature comparison”. Then I record the slideshow using OBS Studio. To see how check out this tutorial:

(at time 1:32 the presenter puts the fullscreen slideshow in the background. He omits to say how he does this. He does it by holding downAlt and using Tab to select the window running OBS)

Once you have created your video, you can use Shotcut to tidy it up and tailor it and maybe burn in some subtitles for the hearing-impaired.

Here is the final version (without a cameo video of me in the corner):

If you want to see some beginner’s tutorials on OBS see:

If you feel OBS Studio is too complicated for you then you can use other simpler screen recording software like Sharex:

I don’t want to put words in Stanley’s mouth, but as I thought about this overnight, I was imagining what a “screwdriver” approach might look like for his needs. As always, the difficulty would be defining the scope of the problem, so I may not even be close to what Stanley actually needs … but as a thought experiment, let’s say that someone has a regular need just to overlay text over a video at certain points. Nothing else - no splicing of video, no transitions, just the ability to control text overlay.

I could envision a program with a UI that asks for the base video and has a place to enter line(s) of text, along with when they should appear in the video, where they should appear, whether they should scroll in, wipe down, fade in, etc., and the same options for how and when the text will disappear. Then the program would generate a .mlt file to produce the effects and run it through the MLT library.

Voila! A screwdriver. Simple to use, precisely because it has a very limited problem domain - and thus it would not be able to stretch into other problem domains; if you needed a hammer, you’d have to get a different tool. But within its limited domain, it would be hard to get any simpler and easier.

Please note that I am not volunteering to write this bit of software. I don’t think it would be too hard … but those are the words that regularly lead to projects that take 10x longer than I was planning. I don’t have the time … and I don’t need a screwdriver. :slight_smile:

With the old Text:HTML filter and WebVfx interface this would not have been too difficult to do, but of course this no longer exists. Unfortunately the Text:Simple and Text:rich filters are really inadequate for anything other than simple text displays and using these as a basis for something as demanding as what you envision is not going to work.

I have recently written an HTML utility to display subtitles in a browser that are stored in a subrip (.srt) file. I also have a preliminary version that creates an MLT file with the subtitles displayed using the Text:Simple filter, so it can be used directly in Shotcut, rather than having to record the browser. This can be done because subtitles are fairly simple affairs (e.g. 1 or 2 lines of usually centred white text in a black box in the centre of the bottom of the video), anything more complicated than that is likely to fail at the design stage.

Shotcut really does not handle text very well. HTML/CSS, Word Processors and Slide Presentation software do. In my opinion we should really use the right tools for the job, rather than trying to shoehorn Shotcut into doing a job for which it is not designed to do and for which it is not fit for purpose.

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