Andrew Weaver

I am an Archivist/Librarian

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Demystifying Ffmpeg

Demystifying FFmpeg

This is a quick and dirty adaption of my ‘Demystifying FFmpeg’ talk! Includes an embedded version as well as useful links and cut/paste versions of some of the commands used in the slides.



Commands used in Slides

Most commands are written using macOS file paths unless otherwise specified. For windows users, substitute ~power.gif for your output file.**

Slide 5

FFmpeg macOS Homebrew Install:

Install Homebrew by opening Terminal and following homebrew install instructions from

Then run:

brew install ffmpeg --with-sdl2

Alternately Download from here (OSX and Windows)

Slide 10

Caveat for following slides:

FFmpeg must be installed with freetype and openssl for the following slides. If already installed, run:

brew reinstall ffmpeg --with-freetype --with-openssl


OSX Command:

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc=500x500 -i -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]overlay=-30:55,drawtext=fontfile=/Library/Fonts/Andale Mono.ttf:text='I have the power':fontcolor=white:fontsize=40:box=1:boxcolor=black" -r 10 -t 5 ~/desktop/power.gif

Windows Command:

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc=500x500 -i -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]overlay=-30:55,drawtext=fontfile=/Windows/Fonts/lucon.ttf:text='I have the power':fontcolor=white:fontsize=40:box=1:boxcolor=black" -r 10 -t 5 ~power.gif

Slide 12

ffmpeg -i ~/desktop/power.gif

Slide 13

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc ~/desktop/power.gif

Slide 14

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc -r 10 -t 5 ~/desktop/power.gif

Slide 15

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc -vf vflip -r 10 -t 5 ~/desktop/power.gif

Slide 16

ffmpeg -f lavfi -i testsrc=500x500 -i -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]overlay=-30:55" -r 10 -t 5 ~/desktop/power.gif