I own a point-and-shoot digital camera which also shoots movies. As a novice photographer, I struggle in taking indoor evening pictures. Finally, I resort to first making a movie with the camera, followed by capturing still frames from the movie file. This post is part 1 of a 2-part series to explain the latter.
To extract a single still frame from a video file:
- Open VLC and play the video file.
- Optionally, click the Pause button to freeze the playback at the frame of which you want to take a snapshot.
You don't have to pause the playback to capture the frame. However, by doing so, you know exactly what is being captured.
- Take a snapshot by pressing the Hotkey combination Shift-S.
By default, the video snapshot is saved to a time-stamped PNG file in your Home Pictures directory, for instance, /home/peter/Pictures/vlcsnap-2014-05-19-19h42m22s243.png.
You can customize the name, the location, and the image format of the picture file.
- Select the Preferences option in the Tools menu.
- Click Video to bring up the Video snapshots settings.
- Change the Video snapshots settings.
Specify the directory for holding the output picture files.
Specify the prefix which is the first part of the output file name.
$T is a special variable that you can insert into the prefix, e.g., "vlcsnap-$T-". To generate the file name, VLC replaces $T with the elapsed timestamp of when the snapshot was taken relative to the start of the video. For instance, the file name vlcsnap-00_05_37-2014-05-19-19h42m22s243.png indicates that the snapshot was taken at 0 hour 5 minutes 37 seconds into the video.
- Sequential numbering
By default, Sequential Numbering is disabled. VLC appends the file creation timestamp to the prefix. For instance, the file vlcsnap-00_05_37-2014-05-19-19h42m22s243.png was created at 7:42 pm on May 19, 2014.
If Sequential Numbering is enabled, the creation timestamp is replaced by a sequential numbering scheme, starting at 1 (vlcsnap-00_05_37-00001.png).
Choose either PNG or JPG.
- Restart the VLC application.