How to Create a GIF from a Video Using VLC?

Author: Kevincy
Publish date
Jan 30, 2024
Convert Video to GIF VLC
  • DownloadDownload the all-in-one app on PC, and open "GIF Maker":
  • Step 1. Add a video file.
  • Step 2. Choose a highlight from the video.
  • Step 3. Configure GIF settings.
  • Step 4. Start creating an animated GIF.
Quick Navigation
Way 1 - Using VLC and an Image Editing App
Way 2 - Using VLC GIF Maker Extension
Still Confused? A Much Easier Solution Here!

As you know, VLC is a widely-used app that goes far beyond a simple media player, which also offers a range of bonus features, such as DVD/CD ripping, video and audio format conversion, video recording and download, etc.

So many people wonder whether the seemingly-versatile VLC can create an animated GIF from a video. Well, it's a bit complicated, but it can actually be done! Here are two ways to do it, along with detailed steps.

Way 1 - Using VLC and an Image Editing App

VLC itself cannot directly create an animated GIF from a video, the process involves two primary steps:

  • Using VLC's Scene filter to extract frames from your video.
  • Employing another application to compile these frames into an animated GIF.

This method might sound complex at first, but with our detailed walkthrough, you'll find it surprisingly straightforward.

Step 1. Install VLC Media Player

If you don't already have VLC installed on your computer, visit official website and download the latest version for your operating system.

Step 2. Designate a Record Location

Open VLC, go to "Tools" > "Preferences" > "Input / Codecs", specify a record directory and click "Save".

Designate a Record Location in VLC
Designate a Record Location in VLC

Step 3. Record a Video Segment for GIF Making

Go to "View" and enable "Advanced Controls".

Play a video and use the red Record button to save a segment.

Record a Segment in VLC
Record a Segment in VLC

Step 4. Enable Scene Video Filter

Go to "Tools" and select "Preferences". Under "Show settings", choose "All" to access the "Advanced Preferences".

Navigate to "Video" and then "Filters". Enable "Scene video filter" on the right side.

Enable Scene Video Filter
Enable Scene Video Filter

Step 5. Configure the Scene Filter

Expand "Filters" and choose "Scene Filter", then configure the "Image width", "Image height", "Filename prefix", "Recording ratio", and "Directory path".

Configure Scene Filter
Configure Scene Filter

Step 6. Extract Frames from Video Segment

Now, play your recorded video segment in VLC. The frames will be automatically extracted and saved in the specified folder.

In order not to affect future use, remember to go to "Tools" > "Preferences", then "Reset Preferences".

Extract Frames from Segment
Extract Frames from Segment

Step 7. Create a GIF with an Additional Image Editor

Open your preferred GIF-making application (e.g., Photoshop, Gimp, or Clipchamp). Well, let's look at Clipchamp.

  • Visit Clipchamp website and log into your account.
  • Create a new project, and import the extracted frames and arrange them in sequence.
  • Adjust the duration of each image.
  • Export the sequence as an animated GIF. Clipchamp allows exporting a GIF in 15 seconds or less.
Create a GIF with Chipchamp
Create a GIF with Chipchamp

Way 2 - Using VLC GIF Maker Extension

VLC-GIF-Maker is an extension that allows you to generate GIFs from video directly in VLC. However, it requires FFmpeg to be installed and you need to create a PATH environment variable for your FFmpeg files.

Refer to this INSTALLATION GUIDE depending on different platforms. Then follow the steps below.

Step 1. Download VLC-GIF-Maker Extension

Get the extension from VLC Addons Page or GitHub Page. Extract "vlc_gif_maker.lua" file from the downloaded package.

Step 2. Move the ".lua" File to the Right Directory

Based on your OS, put the "vlc_gif_maker.lua" file in the right path:

  • Windows (all users): %ProgramFiles%\VideoLAN\VLC\lua\extensions\
  • Windows (current user): %APPDATA%\VLC\lua\extensions\
  • Linux (all users): /usr/lib/vlc/lua/extensions/
  • Linux (current user): ~/.local/share/vlc/lua/extensions/
  • Mac OS X (all users): /Applications/
  • Mac OS X (current user): /Users/%your_name%/Library/Application Support/org.videolan.vlc/lua/extensions/
Install VLC-GIF-Maker
Install VLC-GIF-Maker

Step 3. Configure VLC GIF Maker

Open VLC, go to "View" > "VLC GIF Maker". On the pop-up GIF Maker, specify your preferred save location and file name for your GIF files.

Note: DO NOT put a slash at the end of the output path. Make sure there is no any special symbol like "[, ], +, -, _" in the filename, input, and output path of the video.

Configure VLC-GIF-Maker
Configure VLC-GIF-Maker

Step 4. Choose a Scene from the Video

Play a video in VLC, you can either input start and end time manually, or respectively click "Get" when it reaches the start and end point of the GIF.

Step 5. Create GIF from Video in VLC

When everything is ready, simply hit "Generate GIF". If your FFmpeg and GIF Maker extension have been configured properly, VLC will execute FFmpeg, make a GIF from video directly and save it to your specified folder.

Choose a Scene from the Video and Make a GIF with VLC
Choose a Scene from the Video and Make a GIF with VLC

Still Confused? A Much Easier Solution Here!

WonderFox HD Video Converter Factory Pro is a versatile video processing tool that comes with a "GIF Maker", allowing you to create a GIF from a video or image sequence. Here's how to use it:

Free download Download for Free
Free download Download for Free
  • Install and runInstall and run the software.
  • Hover your mouse over "GIF Maker" and choose "Convert Video to GIF".
  • Click "Add Video" button, or drag and drop a video into the window.
  • Move the two sliders or input the Start/End time to choose your favorite scene.
  • Customize GIF Width/Height, frame rate, quality, and time delay for each frame.
  • Choose a save directory, and hit "Create GIF".

That's it! The well-designed GUI makes the process fairly straightforward.

Easy Solution to VLC GIF Making
Easy Solution to VLC GIF Making


Q1: Can VLC convert videos directly to GIFs?

A: No, VLC can't directly convert videos to GIFs, but it can extract frames from a video which can be used to create a GIF.

Q2: Can I adjust the speed of my GIF?

A: Yes, when compiling the frames in photo editing software, you can adjust the timing to control the speed of the final GIF.

Q3: How do I reduce the file size of my GIF?

A: To reduce the GIF file size, you can lower the resolution of the extracted frames in VLC, reduce the frame rate, or use compression options in your GIF-making application. Be aware that reducing the file size might also reduce the quality of your GIF.

Q4: VLC GIF Maker says "GIF Created!" but my folder is empty, why?

A: Make sure you've installed FFmpeg and add it in Path environment. Also check your video filename, and the input or output path, remove the special symbols. If the problem persists, submit an issue on the developer’s repository.

Wrapping Up

See, creating a GIF from a video using VLC is not quite that simple as you might expect. Getting started comes with a substantial barrier to entry. After all, it's not the main duty of VLC.

Instead of putting yourself in an even more complicated case, choosing a dedicated video to GIF making tool is the most time-saving and effort-saving option. You agree?

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