Edit GoPro HD videos Free and Easy

Unlike the standard GoPro that recorded in .wma, the GoPro HD are encoded in mpeg4 h.264 format. Now although this format has been around for quite some time, a lot of video editors will not import the MP4 format.
Like many others I was unpleasantly surprised by this, and I did not have a clue where to start, so in all cases like this, I got my help from Google.
What I did know, is what I did NOT want.

  1. To spend a lot of money on a professional video editor
  2. A massive resource hog running on my computer
  3. To have to spend 6 years of intensive training to be able to use the editor.

My first break came when I stumbled on the excellent and very helpful Highball Blog and especially the posts about the GoPro HD.

Kudos to Constantin for the excellent very well detailed posts on his site… have a look for yourself www.highballblog.com you’ll be sure to learn something.

After a lot of further research and a lot of trials and errors I have come up with the following method to edit my GoPro HD videos, and the best of all, it is 100% FREE and very Easy.

Now I am not saying that the way I do it is ideal, or better than any other way, all I’m saying is that it gets the job done and it’s free and it’s easy.

Here are the steps and programs I use :

GoPro MP4 convert chart


Step 1 : Converting to Avi

Convert the GoPro HD MP4 to .AVI files using the excellent Free MPEG Streamclip, download at www.squared5.com [ remember Quicktime is needed to run MPEG Streamclip]


mpeg streamclip


MPEG Streamclip

Convert to .AVI


MPEG Streanclip

Experiment with these settings


Mpeg Streamclip

Streamclip is now Converting the file to .avi



Step 2 : Editing the .Avi Video with Windows Movie Maker

Now your video has been converted to .avi, you can add it to Windows Movie Maker to add some titles, comments and credits.


Windows Movie Maker

Create a movie with your now .avi videos


windows movie maker

Publish movie to your computer


windows movie maker

Publish your movie


Step 3 : Convert back to MP4

Now that your video has been published, you will notice how sharp it looks, however you will also notice the huge size it has become. To be able to publish this video online, we will have to reduce the size, we can do this without losing noticeable quality by converting the video back to MP4 format.

There are probably tons of programs that do this, but I found that the Leawo MP4 Converter did an excellent job, and is lightweight, very easy to use, fast and stable, in fact I was so impressed by the Free version I actually upgraded it, costing me a whopping $19,- giving me a few handy extras.. But the Free version does the job nicely



Open up Leawo to convert the avi to MP4



Add video and Edit your prefered settings


I do not add audio to my videos (yet), I use the Audio Swap option at YouTube, so I set my “Video Quality” to High, and my Audio quality to Low.



extra editing options available with the Leawo MP4 Converter Pro $19.95


That’s it, very easy and very cheap, and the end result looks like this


Buy GoPro HERO Camera at GoPro.com


FREE Software downloads:

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  1. Thanks for the tips and explanation. This was a big help to me getting started. Cool video too! Did you shoot it in 720 x 30fps or 720 x 60 fps?

  2. Robert Trivanovic says:

    Hey I have a gopro and I can edit in Windows live movie maker no problem without doing this. So what is the point of doing it?

    • Dude, why are you looking for ( and I quote) “free gopro compatible editing systems for pc”.. just use your windows Live Movie Maker.. Ride Safe..

    • This is for people who run any kind of editing software that doesn’t allow importing MP4. Usually, PC people with Windows XP which run the old version of Movie Maker.

  3. thank you so much…first one that actually worked.

  4. perfect! thx

  5. Yes!!!!!! Finally!!!! This works perfect! Thank you Thank You Thank You

  6. I tried this with 60 fps video, and when i put it into WMM, it just plays as a black screen…any suggestions?

  7. Well, so far I cannot find anything to just cut and mute sections out of a video. Just started looking for a solution and this is the third solution I have looked at that does not give me what I want. Does anyone know of a simple video editor that is easy to cut out sections of video and/or audio? Anyone making videos know that there are sections you just want to take out. So there has to be a simple way to do this.

  8. ImNawtTellinUMaName says:

    or you can use cineform studios, which is free on the gopro website. it is optimized for the gopro and works pretty damn well for me. you can edit and convert on it. only thing is if ur computer is crappy like mine, it might get bogged down a little bit when converting 1080p vids.
    heres the link
    tell me what you think and tips on how use it, cuz i suck at editing

  9. Hey just out of curiosity do you know what the name of this song is? Sounds close to radiohead but not sure..

  10. Confused says:

    I’ve tried uploading the raw gopro clips (still in .mp4) and it won’t accept it. Does Leawo put it in a differnt codec when it is converted back to .mp4?

  11. Gregr46uk says:

    Thanks so much for this info BUT am scratchin my head over one thing , why , do I/we need the Leawo MP4 file convertor , is there nothing I can use in the already got Mpeg Streamline ? …. or will I loose quality …. advise please pity GoPro did’nt have this all sorted before selling their great kit {or have they ?} …. am now running a Mac to speed things up as my old PC cant hack the HD , also bought Adobe Premier Elements and would like advise on best settings too … all best Greg

    • Hi Greg.
      You can use just MPEG StreamClip [I don’t know Mpeg Streamline] to convert the file, and if you are not interested in “Editing” the movie you are done. Also this tut is pretty old, you can actually import the GoPro into the New Windows Live Movie Maker, and yes GoPro has released a free editor CineForm, that can be found on their site or here http://gopro.com/3d-cineform-studio-software-download/
      Good Luck

  12. Hey RIP3D,

    Good Tut. , just got my first shots taken. Do you know if you can do PIP(picture in picture)?

    I have 2 cameras which I shot with and want to capture both on the same screen.


  13. cool thanks,finally editied a clip,shewwww

  14. Just seeing if anyone may have an anwer to an issue I am having difficulty resolving. I have a GoPro Hero 3 Silver edition which when using CineForm, the videos come out rediculously clear. As soon as I put a video in MovieMaker (either from a saved CineForm clip or the original file) the quality of the video dramatically reduces even when saved in the highest format. Will saving the video to an AVI file help preserve the quality if using MovieMaker or should I look into using other software like Adobe Premier, Magix 2013 (recommended by a friend) or some other software to maintain the video quality? I am new to video editing and appreciate the simplicity of MovieMaker, but am willing to take the learning curve on other software if the end product is much better.
    I really wish that CineForm had additional editing options to complete a full video with combining clips, adding music etc…It would make life a little more simple for all of the newer GoPro users.
    I appreciate any help/advice offered.

  15. I L.O.V.E. you!! Thanks so much. Just videoed me and my 2 German Shorthair Pointers bike joring and couldn’t figure this out :)

  16. So far so good. Been frustrated not knowing how to do any of htis. You made it easy…. upload (fast) to youtube right now!



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