How to Edit Zoom Recordings (Without Any Editing Experience)

Peggy Pan
November 2021

How to Edit Zoom Recordings (Without Any Editing Experience)

The type of software you use to edit Zoom recordings depends on the kind of video editing you want to do. For example, you can:

  1. Use Zoom's built-in editor to do quick trimming or add captions to videos
  2. Pull video clips & trim recordings with Quicktime (or our Windows Media Player hack)
  3. Create engaging video stories & work with multiple recordings with Reduct.Video

In our post, we'll talk about these 3 different ways to edit Zoom recordings depending on the detail of the edits you need to make. At the end, we'll even cover some advanced options, like Adobe Premiere Pro & Apple Final Cut Pro X, for teams who want to learn more about sophisticated video editing. We'll also provide a few pointers for recording better-quality Zoom videos to improve video editing (and your final product).

Let's get started!

Reduct.Video is a high-quality transcription service and word-based video editing software that lets users edit Zoom cloud recordings by editing the transcript. Our platform is so easy to use that it requires no video editing background. To learn more about editing Zoom video recordings in Reduct, get started with a free 30-day trial.

1. Trim Recordings & Caption Videos: Zoom's Built-In Editor

The Most Basic Video Editing Option

If you just need to trim your Zoom meeting recording — say you want to cut out the "hellos" or the "goodbyes" at the beginning and end of the call, or you want to shorten the video into smaller clips — you can use Zoom's built-in video editor to modify your recording's playback range. It's pretty simple to use, but it's very basic in functionality.

Here's how it works:

  1. On Zoom.us, navigate to the Recordings tab on the left-side menu — Note: You can use Zoom's editor to edit both cloud and local recordings as long as the local video files are downloaded on the device you're using to edit.
  1. Choose the recorded meeting you want to edit.
  2. Click the play button on the video thumbnail to open the video playback screen.
  1. From the video preview, click the scissor icon in the bottom right corner.
  1. Click and drag the sliders to the desired start and endpoints on the timeline, then click "Save" when you're done trimming.

Beyond this simple trimming, you can use Zoom to caption your videos (if you enable Zoom's audio transcription option). To learn more about using Zoom's transcription to add closed captions to your videos, check out Zoom's video tutorial on this page.

2. Trim Recordings & Pull Video Clips: Quicktime & Windows Media Player

Other Simple Video Editing Options for Beginners

If you want to do more than just trim your video — for example, if you want to pull individual video clips, rearrange sections of video, or delete certain moments of your video recording — you can use Quicktime or Windows Media Player (WMP). It's easy to use and has more functionality than Zoom's built-in editor, but it only allows you to work on one recording at a time.

  • Quicktime is the default media player for Mac computers, and it has both video viewing and editing capabilities. It's automatically installed on Apple computers so you can use it upon unboxing.
  • Windows Media Player is the default media player for PCs, and it does not have video editing functionality. PC users can download Quicktime for Windows from the Apple store for free, or they can supplement WMP with the SolveigMM WMP Trimmer Plugin to do video editing within the media player. To learn how to use SolveignMM's editing plugin, check out their step-by-step guide here.

Let's explain how editing in Quicktime works for both Mac and Windows users:

  1. Upload the Zoom recording file you wish to edit — Note: You can't directly push Zoom cloud recordings from Zoom to Quicktime. Instead, you can download the recording to your computer and open the video with Quicktime.
  2. When viewing the video preview, click View from the Quicktime toolbar at the top of the screen.
  3. Select Show Clips from the dropdown menu.
  1. Once you can view the video's playback toolbar at the bottom of the screen, you can adjust the playhead (a.k.a. the red line on the far left side) to create clips throughout the recording.
  1. To create a clip, move the red line to the point where you want to make your first clip.
  2. Then, select Edit from the menu bar above, and Split Clip from the dropdown — This cuts your video into two clips. You can repeat this process for as many clips as you want to create.
  1. After you've split your video into clips, you can drag and drop clips to rearrange their order, or you can select and delete clips from the playback range. You can also download individual clips if you just want to pull quick video snippets.
  2. Once you're done, you can save your video project as a new file by clicking File → Save on the main menu bar.

You can also learn more about Quicktime player and its other video features in this guide.

Note: After "graduating" from Quicktime, many Mac users use iMovie to edit video recordings. While iMovie is nice because it's free for Mac users, it's not the easiest to use and requires some training. Unless you need to do advanced video editing, you can accomplish most of what iMovie lets you do (i.e., compile video clips into engaging video stories, add text slides or images to videos) in video editors that are easier to use, like our word-based video editor, Reduct.Video.

3. Create Shareable Highlight Reels & Manage Multiple Zoom Recordings: Reduct.Video

Manage Hundreds (or Thousands) of Zoom Recordings & Edit As Easily As Editing Text

If you want to put together engaging highlight reels or create video stories from multiple Zoom recordings, you can take video editing a step further with our online video editor, Reduct.

Instead of operating like a traditional timeline-based video editor (like iMovie), Reduct is a word-based video editing platform that transcribes Zoom recordings and lets users edit recordings by editing the transcript. It's so easy to use that anybody who's edited a text document can edit videos in Reduct.

edit-text-edit-video

Many teams that use Zoom like Reduct because it's entirely web-native and integrates with Zoom's platform, so users can push their Zoom recordings directly into our editor and store their recordings in the cloud. We allow free unlimited video storage, so our platform is especially beneficial for users with a large library of Zoom recordings to manage. Reduct also has collaborative tools so you can work with team members on reviews and edits in real-time.

Let's walk through the process of editing a Zoom recording in Reduct.

Uploading & Storing Zoom Recordings

First, upload your Zoom recordings to Reduct by clicking Import from Zoom on the top left-hand side of the page.

import-from-zoom

If it's your first time using Reduct (and our Import from Zoom feature) our platform will prompt you to sync your Zoom account and walk you through those steps.

Once you're connected, all of your Zoom cloud recordings are available to upload and push over to Reduct. Note: Reduct does not allow you to push local recordings into the platform. You can always upload those from your computer, but our one-click import only works for cloud recordings.

zoom-list

From that point on, any time you select the Import from Zoom option, you'll be directed to your Zoom recording library where you can choose the videos you want to upload. Remember, we offer unlimited free storage space so you can upload as many Zoom recordings as necessary without extra fees.

When uploading, you'll organize your Zoom recordings in Project-Based folders; this keeps your library clean, allows you to group related recordings together, and makes it easier to share multiple video files at once.

project-based-folder

Our Fast & Accurate Transcription Options

After your Zoom recording(s) is uploaded, our computer transcription software gets to work transcribing your video to text.

Computer transcripts are ready in about 15 minutes and on par with the industry average for accuracy (~85%) — we also make all of our transcripts editable in case you want to correct any inaccuracies. We recommend computer transcription when working with really clear audio, as even the best artificial intelligence can have trouble transcribing around background noise or distinguishing jargon words.

If you have unclear audio (i.e., audio with background noise, multiple speakers, speakers with strong accents, speakers who are hard to hear/understand), or have lots of industry-specific language or acronyms in your video, or you just want a really high-quality transcript you can trust, we also offer professional human transcription that's around ~99% accurate.

Although professional transcriptionists aren't miracle workers, they are much better at computers when audio isn't completely clear. They can make out jargon words, identify speakers, work around speakers who talk over one another, and more to deliver a high-quality transcript. (You can also provide "hints for transcription" when uploading Zoom recordings to help both our human transcribers and our computer software pick up on otherwise hard-to-transcribe words.)

Our human transcripts are delivered back to users within 24 hours — but often much sooner than that — and we offer the cheapest 24-hour human transcription service available, charging only $1.67 per minute of audio. We also deliver computer transcripts to all of our users who opt for human transcription so they have something to review in the meantime.

Review our other article to learn more about our video to text transcription services.

Editing Zoom Recordings by Editing the Transcript

Once you have your transcript in hand, you can begin video editing!

To start, we suggest reading down through your transcript (a.k.a. Doing an initial review) to pinpoint all of the most important moments in your Zoom recording. As you review, you can highlight the moments that stick out to you with your cursor.

Any time you make a highlight, our software automatically pulls that section of video as a clip — called a Highlight. You can tag your Highlights to categorize clips and pinpoint key themes, and you can review all of your Highlights by visiting the Highlights page on Reduct. From there, you can sort all your highlights by date, tags, tag frequency, or highlighted by.

sort-highlights

After you've gone through the transcript and made your Highlights, you can use those clips to build a longer video narrative — a Reel. This process is as easy as dragging and dropping your video clips into a sequence. You can compile Highlights from one recording, or use clips from multiple different recordings in one Reel.

Then, once you have all of your video clips arranged into order, you can start putting on the finishing touches. These include:

  • Editing out the sections of video you don't want — such as side chatter or tangents of unrelated dialogue, filler words, interviewer comments, etc. — by striking out text in the transcript (via our Strikethrough feature).
  • Adding text slides between video clips to provide viewers with additional information or insert images in your video presentation.
  • Adding captions to your video to improve its accessibility — Note: Our editor automatically captions your videos by pulling transcript text into your Reel. However, you can choose to disable captions.

Once you've made the final changes, you're ready to download your video or share it with others. More on sharing below.

Read More: How to Edit an Interview Video in 5 Simple Steps

Adding Other Team Members to Video Projects

To work on the same video projects, you can add other Reduct users to your Project-Based Folders (or individual recordings) and control exactly how they interact with your footage. The user roles are outlined below:

RoleAccessCreate projectUpload recordingTag, Edit and Share videoHighlight and Comment
Team EditorAll team projects
Guest EditorSpecific projects by invitation onlyX
Team CommenterAll team projectsXXX
Guest CommenterSpecific projects by invitation onlyXXX

When adding Editors to your video projects, Reduct allows you to work on video edits together with its Presence feature. Presence shows you what other users are doing in your video recordings in real-time, so users can comment back and forth with each other on edits, review and pull Highlights in unison, and put together Reels with teammates.

You can also learn more about Reduct's collaborative video editing features in our other guide.

Sharing Videos with Stakeholders

Once you've wrapped up edits, you can share highlight reels with external collaborators and stakeholders by sending them a share link.

Reduct assigns all edited highlight reels a unique share link that can be copied and pasted across email platforms, messengers, and workspace collaboration tools. These share links direct end-users to the Reduct platform where they can view your video alongside an interactive transcript. With the transcript, they can search for the content they're most interested in and jump ahead, read while they watch, or watch without sound. This makes your content more accessible and allows people to review it at their own discretion.

We allow free unlimited sharing to non-Reduct users too, so you can send your video projects around as much as you need without worrying about share limits.

Reduct is one of the best video editing software for non-video editors because it doesn't require any video editing experience: Simply upload your recordings, select the clips you're most interested in, and use your clips to create engaging stories. To try our platform for free, get started with a 30-day trial.

Advanced Video Editing Software Options: Adobe Premiere Pro & Apple Final Cut Pro

If the video editing options above don't offer everything you're looking for, then you probably need a more advanced video editor like Adobe's Premiere Pro or Apple's Final Cut Pro X. These editors let you do things like:

  • Multi-camera editing
  • Mix and modify audio
  • Edit out background noise
  • Blur out people or objects in your footage
  • Create GIFs or resize videos for social media
  • And so much more

However, be warned, these editors are a challenge to learn and use — universities teach whole courses on them, but many people can learn the software themselves with online tutorials. We could write a dozen posts on these software and how to use them, but to make everybody's lives easier, we found a link with 15 tutorials for Adobe Premiere Pro that cover the "advanced video editing basics" and a list of 11 tutorials for Apple Final Cut Pro X to get you started with the software.

You can also find resources on these video editors on Adobe and Apple's websites.

Pro Tip: Reduct integrates with these two advanced video editors, so you can use Reduct to do the bulk of your video editing and then push your video project to Adobe Premiere Pro or Apple Final Cut Pro X, re-link the footage and make your finishing touches. This is faster than doing all of your trimming and clipping in these complex platforms, and it also allows users with no video editing experience to assist with the rough cut.

How to Record Better Quality Zoom Videos for Easier Editing

You can only do so much with a so-so Zoom recording: No amount of (beginner) video editing can completely fix loud background noises or unclear speakers. If your goal is to create a polished, shareable video (without spending hours remastering the sound quality), follow the steps below to improve the quality of your Zoom recordings.

  • In your Zoom Account Settings, turn on: Record active speaker, gallery view and shared screen separately & Optimize the recording for 3rd party video editor features. This gives you multiple recording types to work with and ensures your video is the best quality for editing.
  • Do your best to eliminate background noise — Record in a quiet room, close the doors and windows, and use headphones
  • Ask all of your Zoom participants to use an external (high-quality, professional) microphone for super-clear audio
  • Eliminate cross-talk by asking speakers to not talk over one another
  • Ask all participants to speak loud and clear (a.k.a. Ask your participants to avoid mumbling)

For more tips on how to record and transcribe interviews, check out our other guide.

Try Reduct for Free for 30 Days

Reduct is a versatile video editing solution because it's so easy to learn: We have a variety of users, from research agencies to marketing teams to filmmakers, who use Reduct to manage all of their Zoom recordings and transcripts, collaborate with teams over the cloud, distill large volumes of video quickly, and create engaging video stories from their library of footage. Plus, our platform is perfect for doing quick and easy edits on Zoom recordings because they're heavy on dialogue and our platform is specifically a word-based video tool.

Want to see if Reduct is the best video editor to polish up your Zoom recordings? You can upload your Zoom recordings and test our video editing platform for free with a 30-day trial of Reduct.