Change the Slow Motion Video Recording Speed on iPhone by Adjusting FPS

Jan 8, 2015 - 17 Comments

iPhone Slow Motion video recording speed

All new iPhone models can capture and record high quality slow-motion video by flipping to the ‘slo-mo’ setting in Camera app. Perhaps lesser known is that you can change the Frames Per Second (FPS) capture speed for slow motion video, which basically determines just how smooth and slow the video playback is, but also has a more practical benefit for casual users that reduces the movies file size, which we’ll discus momentarily.

How to Change Slow Motion Video Recording Speed to 240 FPS or 120 FPS on iPhone Camera

First, let’s show how to switch the FPS recording speed for Slow-Motion video capture in iOS, you can pick between either 240 FPS or 120 FPS:

  1. Open the Settings app and go to “Photos & Camera” settings
  2. Go to the Camera section and tap on “Record Slow-mo”
  3. Change the recording speed to 720p at 240fps, or 1080p at 120fps by tapping your choice

Change slow motion recording capture speed on iPhone camera

Return to the Camera app and you’ll find Slow Motion recording has changed to the setting you chose on the iPhone settings.

In some prior versions of iOS, slow motion recording speed was controlled within the Camera app itself as follows:

  1. Open Camera app and go to the “Slo-Mo” section as usual
  2. Tap on the “240 FPS” (or 120 FPS) text to toggle between 240 or 120 frames per second recording setting
  3. Record the slow-motion video as usual, whatever FPS number is shown will determine the recording speed of the video

Change Slow Motion FPS Recording Speed on iPhone slow-mo video

Many users aren’t aware that the FPS text shown in the corner is actually a button toggle, since there’s really not much of an indicator that it’s selectable. Then Apple changed the setting to be within Settings app rather than the Camera itself, it varies per iOS version. If you don’t find it in one location, it’s the other.

Generally speaking, the best slow motion videos are recorded at 240 FPS*, since it’s literally double the number of frames, and thus produces a slower and smoother movie. So why would you want to toggle the setting if 240 FPS is almost always better? Hardcore video editors will have a variety of reasons, but for most casual users the primary determining factor for using 240 or 120 FPS is simply a matter of storage requirements for the iPhone (or iPad), since the higher frame rate video recordings will take up considerably more storage space on an iOS device.

For simpler slow-motion recording and sharing, the lower FPS videos also will require less compression, so if you’re sharing them to social networks or uploading them directly from your iPhone to YouTube or Instagram, you’ll discover that the resulting video could have less artifacts due to the smaller file size too. Ultimately if you want the highest quality 240 FPS full HD video, you’ll need to transfer those video files to your computer manually and not rely on uploading them to any service directly from the iPhone or iPad.

* Do note that the ability to toggle between 240 FPS and 120 FPS vieo recording is limited to the newest iPhone models, earlier models are either set at the lower frame rate recording speed, or, for particularly old iPhones, don’t support slow motion video capture at all. Nonetheless, all iPhones can capture slow motion video either with the native Camera app or by using a third party app as described here.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPhone, Tips & Tricks

17 Comments

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  1. Icebox says:

    “Many users aren’t aware that the FPS text shown in the corner is actually a button toggle, since there’s really not much of an indicator that it’s selectable.”

    Yet another example of not knowing what is actually a button and what isn’t.

  2. Greg says:

    Just tried this on a 5s and no dice, is this a 6, 6+ feature???

  3. Nila says:

    If a video is recorded in slow motion how can we change that video back to normal mode

  4. Bray says:

    Im trying to change it on my 5s is it only a 6 6+ feature¿?

  5. Christine says:

    I’ve got a 5S and have successfully toggled to slo-mo. There is no indication that it is actually working. Play around with it. It can be done.

  6. Vicky says:

    Can I change a video accidentally recorded in slo mo to regular speed? Have an iPhone 6.

    • Paul says:

      Yes, just move the slo-motion sliders all the way to the right or left so they are together (these are the same sliders you use when adjusting the slow motion portion of the saved video), just move them together, and it will not use the slow-motion effect.

  7. Gregg says:

    iPod 5th gen, 8.3 iOS. Only get time lapse video. No slow motion video. Anything for the future ?

  8. Boukman says:

    I have an iPhone 6+; originally, I had the 240/120 fps but I soon as I updated to OS 9.1 I have lost the option.

  9. Mazliex says:

    Since i’m upgrade to ios ver 9.1 i can’t find 120fps or 240fps section. Whats wrong?

  10. fendi says:

    apple lost it in ios 9 . . .what happened ???. . . im with iphone 6 on ios 9.2 now.. . .sigh. . .

  11. Ste says:

    Where is it in 9.2?????????????

  12. terri says:

    can i fix video accidentally recorded in slo mo to regular speed? HAVE AN IPHONE 5S.

  13. Jim says:

    Such BS. I have the newest iPhone. There is no adjustment on slo mo speed.

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