How to Fix Slow Motion Drone Footage

The DJI Mavic 2 Pro is a fantastic drone and a lot of fun to use! It offers the user a number of frame rates to shoot on, however when using the 120fps Slow Motion setting users have ran into trouble editing the file in native slow motion due to DJI’s file delivery in this setting. In this tutorial I’ll show you how to easily configure your slow motion drone footage to full flight speed for easy editing.

We hold our hands up that this is simply a minor inconvenience however when it comes to editing part of the battle is to be as efficient with your time as possible AND keep as creative as possible with your project’s ambition and it’s workflow. DJI have configured these files to playback at 30fps, meaning that from first review within your editing suite (in this case Adobe Premiere Pro) your playback option will be in slow motion or…slow motion.

This is such a simple fix however I believe it goes overlooked by beginners and arguably puts them off using the setting on the drone while in the field. What do we know…here’s the logic to the fix – the frame rate of a piece of video dictates the SPEED of which you can watch it, high FPS (frames per second) is necessary for slow motion; traditional “normal” playback is 24fps for the filmic look, so if you fit 120 frames into a second of playback there is now enough information in that duration for you to slow it down in post to achieve a pleasing visual outcome.

DJI configures 120fps footage to play at 30fps within the editing suite environment, this is the reason why playback is in native slow motion…the outcome you wanted to achieve by shooting at that frame rate, but the vast majority of editors will want to compose their own portions of slow motion with speed ramping for example, as part of a “full speed” clip on the timeline.

By right-clicking on the slow motion file that needs fixed in the Assembly tab, a menu will appear containing the option “Modify”, highlighting this will reveal a further menu including “Interpret Footage” – click it.

A separate window will appear confirming the file is playing back at 30fps, below it there will be a tab line which will allow a numerical input…the tab line reads “Assume this frame rate.” Select this tab and input 120 to the number box, this will be your selection in which Adobe Premiere Pro will interpret the footage…30fps is a lower reading of your footage and hence slows it down, 120 is equal to your footage capture and hence will allow “flight speed” playback, from here you can add the file to your timeline and get to work!

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