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Hands-on: Windows Camera with slow motion video

If you're running the Windows 10 Mobile Insider preview on a Lumia 930, 1520, or Icon, you can now try slow-motion video with the updated Windows Camera app. We've tested it on our Lumia 930 and we're mostly happy with it. Check out our hands-on video to see it in action.

To enable slow motion capture, go into video mode and tap the turtle icon. Tap the video icon or click the camera button to start recording. That's it! The video is captured at 720p (1280 x 720) at 120 frames per second. When played back, it's four times slower than normal speed.

Windows Camera

You can edit the slow motion video from the camera as well. During the preview, tap the Edit slow motion option. You'll be able to trim and change the speed on parts of the clip. While this is a great feature to have, we found that the video quality of our saved edited clips is noticeably worse than the original files.

Windows Camera

Another interesting thing we noticed is that even though the clips are shot at 120 fps, the files imported into our computer are 30 fps. This is great for most users because the clips are already slowed down, ready for sharing. Advanced editors would prefer to have the 120 fps files that give them more control when editing the videos.

Sample slow motion video

Overall, we're happy with the new feature. Sure, we would like to have slow motion on 1080p clips instead of 720p, but the current Lumias are probably not capable of that. We wouldn't be surprised if that's featured in the upcoming Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL.

Have you tried slow motion video on your Lumia 1520, 930, or Icon? Share your experiences so far in the comments!

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

186 Comments
  • we have slow motion but we can't pause videos :D
  • THIS!
  • Lol
  • Just so people know this also works on one m8
  • I don't see any use of pause except if you want to make a disappear effect
  • @bijak shhh.. Dont talk with sense.. These people will eat you whole..
  • Whats wrong with having an option?
  • Every small feaure you add costs money. It needs to be designed, developed, tested, etc. If a feature makes no sense, will just confuse most people and doesn't exist on other similar apps, why spend the resources on it?
  • Because even free apps have the pause feature?
  • I know. Don't these people understand there is only one programmer at Microsoft signed to Lumia. Ughh some people...
  • @NIST:
    If this one developer would in fact spend his (whole) time on Lumia, I'd be happy.
    But since Microsoft is a "mobile first, Windows last"-company, 75% of his work time is assigned to iOS...
  • That's the reason I bought my first iPhone last week. I got tired of all the time waiting for this feature and that feature to come to windows phone. Also Microsoft's policy of "US only" etc. bothered me. iPhone is overpriced and I like windows phone's UI more, but at least all the users get the same features and updates at the same time.
  • @NIST @WindowsPhoenix Ja that prg. is me. I've been spending all my time working on that damn Win Translate 10 (out o Bata). I'll get to your damn slomo button when I integrate the Blink app so both captures happen. Plus, been wasting time on TRM CRLs so you guys will shut -up about run and stby time on your overloaded hardware upgrades to 10. Now. Next? See how long it took me to reply this.
  • And if they added it as an option you would be complaining that they are bloating the software and wasting time on that option while not working on some other feature you want.
  • It's nice to do a bunch of short movies in a single file rather than have to edit them together later. Not only that I'm sure someone more creative than me will do something cool with a pause button. It's all about giving people options.
  • Pause would be handy filming our high school wrestling matches.  Three two-minute periods are currently recorded in three files and then reassembled later.  We could just pause between periods instead and stop when the match is over.  I hope it gets added.  I am sure it will eventually.
  • @jonnob:
    How can you be so positive?! ;-(
    Please, get out of here...
  • They should change the name of this site from windows central to windows complaint depot because no matter what Microsoft does, people here will complain.
  • That is unfair. People are on here complaining a lot because MS has done little beyond release half baked products that lack basic functionality and are often worse than the product they already had (see Windows 10's Skype, and OneDrive and email apps for examples).
    When MS starts consistently delivering UPGRADES, instead of just new things, people will respond favorably.
    Right now they are regressing across product after product. It's sad, really.
  • And I think you just reinforced his point.
  • THIS!
  • I love the complaining...I just want people to tell each other to fuck off more...
  • This 100%!! I need pause feature so bad!
  • Lol, and why do you need a pause feature so bad.
  • Pause would have been handy for me at my step son's graduation.  I don't need to see everyone's diploma on film!
  • I suggest you ask MS to develop a camera app labelled "my son's graduation" which automatically detects your son and cuts out any unknown persons.
  • XD
  • There are more situations where pause is needed than can be listed here. It would be enormously helpful to have.
  • I don't see he need for pause at all. I press stop when i'm done and I press start when I want to record. It's the same number of operations and I don't have to cut my video into parts to be able to share sequences.
  • Don't say that, I know you miss it, and you hate to miss it. You just blinded of being a fan. But there is more than useful feature, sometimes you want to share the video of sequence without editing it first in PC or phone. It's hard job for some people, even video editor on WP can even barely merge 2 video, if you just have a Stop button. And not everyone can edit video.
  • Some people like to share full event videos. Like birthday parties and such, without having to stitch videos together on a full PC. You need to hit pause between setting up for different games, like Pin the Tail, Pinadas, etc.
  • sure you are right, anyway, its my first time have seen a video/sound recorder/player without a pause! these MS shortcomings spoils the new good features they introduce, and we have small minded fans would not see beyond or only think of themselves - i remember someone saying FM radio is no longer necessary as users would stream but what this individual didn't think of other countries where bandwidth is expensive, and local radios not being on internet. and in cause of national disasters where one cannot access internet, radio becomes important. right now on contacts the labels cannot be edited, its either Mobile 1 or 2, work 1 etc. yet one would want to change them to something that would make you remember like wife, secretary, direct line, security etc for someone with several numbers under one contact name. Again there is no call duration on call history, they have removed PIN request on OneDrive, i wonder who makes these decisions to have these features removed!!!
  • Exactly......MS always introduces some great gimmiks absent mindedly. They show things off and then get that the baics are wrong. Lets see what continnum, universal OS, cortana do in future. They all gona rely on heavy use wifi/3g which is sparse and damn costly in most of the countries. But no one seems to be bothered. We can not even set custom ringtones for anything and we talk about all the shit. We dont have expandable storage, USB OTG either in high end Lumias and we want 1080p video recording (yah, we have 'cloud', I forgot). People really are blind or they just dont want to understand. Gets basics right first. And dont make every shit depend on internet. Or else you'll be constipated most of the time.
  • The 1520 had expandable storage, so does the 950 as well as the 950XL - The 930 is the only one of the last 4 most expensive nokia/Microsoft phones not to have expandable storage
  • They implemented it after realizing the need. It was much needed in L1020 to make most of it's best camera, but was not there. They should have thought before, after failing to introduce it W7x. And OTG is just one example of many things where competition is far ahead.
  • Money shots...
  • I film racing events and have to stop the video every time the field is under caution.  Then go back and merge all of the clips together - post race.  A pause button would be something I'd use every weekend.
  • Because she always says: Don't stop, but never said: Don't pause?
  • What do you think this is? Instagram???
  • Lol! Yeah! Honestly I'm missing this basic functionality, it's weird that Windows Camera still don't have one. Pause functionality is still very useful.
  • People will always find SOMETHING to complain about! Just in case you haven't noticed, this article is written to draw attention to something we RECEIVED, not something we don't have. It's November! Be thankful!
  • Seems slower.
  • @PeadarWagon:
    Oh no, you did not...
    Well, in fact, it seems, you did.
  • I was waiting for this someone to comment. :P
  • My 1520 doesn't support any format video. Help please.
  • Same here, video mode has no turtle icon Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Are you running Windows 10?
  • Yes.
  • Make sure you're using the Camera app, and not the Lumia Camera app.
  • Use camera, not Lumia camera....wtf man.
  • Geez. Why is it going back to Lumina Camera after new WM10 Build.  Thought something was wrong cause I could not find this function. Thanks.    
  • Try it on Windows 10 mobile instead. Posted from Windows 10 Mobile.    
  • Have you gone to the store and clicked "search for updates" installed all, and then restarted? (PS, make sure you're on video mode and not photo mode XDDD)
  • The big issue is that my 1520 with win10 doesn't play any format videos When I'm on Photos gallery or in the camera app.
  • If you can't find the turtle, look for the snail. Its motion is even slower.
  • Unable to install any app from store since latest preview build... Is there a solution
  • Hard reset
  • Delete your phone
  • alas we don't have any support now even for a stable win10.
    a sad 512MB user.
  • Don't be silly .. This are preview builds not final ones!!
  • It is also sad that ms were making so many 512mb phones when they took over. Now their windows 10 mobile approach to the 512mb ram devices seems to be going downhill. We like the new lower and midrange phones but u cannot sacrifice what u released since taking over. We deserve better phone capabilities on lower end phone. On par or even better than android and IOS.
  • Do you mean support for Slow Motion? I wouldn't hold out on lower end devices getting it at all (anything 1020 / 920 and slower I'd consider lower end now by modern standards) It's the same with iPhone 5c. It's a lower end device and doesn't have slow motion in the default app, can't record video above 60fps. There's a tweak for jailbroken devices that let's you make slow motion videos but you can only slow it to 50% speed sue to the 60FPS restriction
  • So, as wp10 firmware is not out, we could had slomo in our icon/930 phones two years ago, before apple ?????????
  • since sd800 came out yes, even S4 can do 60fps I think the htc one x did 720p at 60fps using the exact same chip, we just have the worlds biggest software company backing us up so we get it later than everyone else /s
  • @EspHack:
    Well, you know. That is their mission, since Nadella turned them into a "mobile first, Windows last"-company.
  • Wow now that you mention it that's so true lol
  • I didn't know anyone wanted Slo-Mo back then. I think people only thought that this would be a useful phone camera feature after Apple included it and advertised it into accepted thought.
  • I wanted this for a long time. It is esential for my job. It's very useful in sport!!!
  • This.  And the reason why Apple was able to make it so popular is becasue of the design of their camera app + the quality of their slow motion trumps the competition.  You just swiped over, and there it was.  The Gallery App also has a nice thing where you can adjust where the Slow Motion is in the player. That being said, no one wiht an iPhone 6S/6S Plus is going to be using the 720p on iPhones for Sports now that they have 120FPS Full-HD Slow Motion Recording.  Everyone will switch to that, unless they have a very weak computer (anything with an i5 and at least Iris Pro iGPU should be able to handle that).  The 720p Slow Mo is upscaled from very low resolutions (480p or 580p or something like that, depending on the FPS of the video)., which is why the quality gets worse the higher you go in FPS.  The 1080p is going to look a lot better as it will likely be much sharper even if they use some upscaling. Also, you need a ton of light for 240FPS recording.  If the lighting is not amazing, then you end up with a lot of softness in the video image, and image noise.
  • Yeah that's true apple made it "cool" but I'm just surprised the lumia 930 only need a software update to get it so its had the hardware capabilities all along MS should have updated the camera app sooner IMO for Lumia 930 users
  • Everyone knew the Lumia Icon/930 could do it, because the Galaxy Note 3 used a SD800 SoC and had everyting:  4K, 1080p 60FPS, 120FPS Slow Motion. The issue was always the software, because camera sensors and the ISPs used in phones have been able to process this with those tier of SoCs for a year or more even before the Note 3 and G2 came to market.  Honestly, even a SD600 device like the HTC One M7, Galaxy S4, and others should be able to do Slow Mo Recording.  They'd just need a software update. The phones basically record a high framerate 480p 120 FPS video and then use software to upscale it to 720p.  In fact, if you pull the Slo Mo videos directly off the iPhone, they come off in the original resolution or when playing it back, not the upscaled resolution (likely only upscaled when sharing it off the device, as this would save battery life and maintain peak performance when recording).
  • Not correct. Samsung had this feature back in the day on their Note 2! Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I remember when my LG Viewty had slow mo video. Back before Apple ever considered it.
  • Movie creator app
  • Movie Maker...
  • It's works on my Lumia 1520, but it has very low brightness
  • The more frames per second, the less light captured per frame. Think about it.
  • This! The virtual shutter is open for half as long, so half as much light hits the sensor.
  • Is there even a shutter opening and closing, virtually or otherwise? I thought for video recording it just stayed open the whole time?
  • If it stayed open the whole time you'd get nothing but a bright blotch of light. Kind of like the static noise you could see on old antenna TV sets when you removed the antenna.
  • Shoot outdoors where it's bright for slow-motion videos
  • How does it handle sound? 
  • It doesn't
  • And that's boring :(
  • Can you use an existing video and apply the slow motion effect or must it be a new video recorded with the new app?
  • It has to be recorded with the app. It can't "make up" frames that aren't there
  • You can use an existing video and apply the slo mo effect with a video editor (basically slowing down the video, it's not the exact same thing but you will get similar results). That's what I did with my nephew's kick boxing match with my 920.
  • Yeah. You just insert duplicate frames in-between each frame or something, I suppose?
  • Would love the option to record video @ 60fps so that it's played back as 60fps
  • Not available on my 930, but that option is available on the Lumia 950 XL for sure when I tested at Microsoft Store in NY
  • Yeah since it can do 4k at 30fps it should be able to manage 1080p at 60fps. Would love that option. Personally I'd love 4k at 120fps playing at 120fps but I guess it's just not possible yet.
  • Snapdragon 830 would supposedly support 4k at 120 fps.  Snapdragon 820 supports 4k at 60fps.
  • But what's the point of 4k, if the codec used in the 950xl is x264 instead of x265 (HEVC) that was purpose built for 4k and 8k. It would take GB's of space for a mere 1 minute of 4k video. It's a fail. And at 120FPS it's an even bigger fail
  • Don't know if it's changed since then, but when the iPhone 5s introduced slow motion I'm pretty sure it was at 120fps and not 240fps. What's wrong with 120fps? Don't you end up with much worse video quality @ 240fps, unless the lighting is very good?
  • @mbrdev:
    I would actually prefer 16K @ 480 fps. But you know, physics...
  • Why is it referred to as turtle icon? Surely a Tortoise is more linked to being slow. Looks more like a tortoise too.
  • Very good point. Also, looking at the legs, it looks more like a tortoise than a turtle. Interestingly, a similar icon used in electric cars is also referred to as a turtle, but would also better be described as a tortoise, both in form and function (where you never want to see it, because turtle mode engages when you literally have just enough battery to slowly move the car to the side of the road before you run out of power entirely).
  • It's probably because there's no such thing as a teenage mutant ninja tortoise. Turtles are cooler!
  • Turtles are way faster than tortoises, and in the water they're well swift.
  • And here we have the winner of the whinyest complaint of the day - They call it a turtle when it looks more like a tortoise.   BTW, Tortoise is a specific type of turtle. Much like all Surface Pros are computers, but not all computers are Surface pros. All Tortoises are turtles, but not all turtles are tortoises.
  • 'the whinyest complaint'?
    I don't know how you use them, but generally when I use a Question Mark it is to signify a question.
    I know, pretty far out thinking but that's just how I roll.
  • Looks more like a tortoise too.   <--- Looks like it ends with a f-ing period to me.
  • Awesome! ;)
  • In the US we call them all turtles, unless you're a zoologist or being oddly specific. Most people here just say turtle.
  • Thanks for explaining. Here in the UK we call them by their names, you don't have to be a Zoologist.
    Tortoise slow moving and lives on land. (Tortoise and the Hare being a prime example of their slowness)
    Turtle mainly lives in and around water (can be trained as a ninja and loves pizza)
    A tortoise also has a rounder shell, just like the icon.
    But thanks for actually taking the time to explain rather than being a douche.
  • Actually, in America, they are considered speed bumps. :-)
  • I've got it on the HTC One M8 with WM10, so it's not a Lumia only thing. Did a quick test and seemed to work. I'll have to play around with it more later.
  • 1080p/120fps on my HTC M8 which replaced my L1020. Assurion no longer had it.
  • It's pretty sweet on my icon. Result is a little dark but not bad if you have good lighting. Editor was odd to figure out at first bit simple now. Haven't saved any edits so can't comment on quality being worse. Planning to have my 3 year old slosh his face back and forth when I get home for some nice cheek action.
  • Tried it. Worked great! WIll likely never use again. :)
  • Haha so true
  • just tried it on my Icon....awesome!!!!!
  • off topic, but have you guys done much testing of the new pen tips for the sp4? I'd be cool to see what you think of these.
  • wish it did 240fps like the iPhone 6 but better than nothing
  • 950 series might end up with those options since they have newer chips. We're still running old hardware even if it is currently the best you can buy for Windows Phone.
  • The iPhone 6S and 6S+ now do 1080p @ 120 FPS.  The goalpost is always moving...
  • The 930 and 1520 are closer to the iPhone 5s than the 6s specs wise, what can the 5s do?
  • 5s closer to the 930/1520, 950 should be able to do the same as the 6s I'd imagine
  • Works well on my 930! :)
    Still have no sound when filming though (when not in slow motion).
  • Are you supposed to have sound with slo-mo? It seems like that should be recorded to me.
  • Without slomo there should be sound, but with slomo there is no point in recording the sound since there might be an error when playing(it might not know how to play the sound in slow mo as well)
  • ummm. what? of course there should be sound in slo-mo!
  • You mean you want sound being played back in slow-motion? Doesn't make sense to me. You don't want to hear voices being played back 4 times slower, do you?
  • What cave do you live in? Have you ever seen a slow-mo video?
     
  • The sound should be there in case you want to export the video at full frame resolution and play it back that way, with the option to slow it down on demand.  Great use case is recording sports training video that you may want to export to a PC at 120FPS at 1:1 speed and load into Dartfish software. The way smartphones make guesses as to where to slow the video down, automatically, how to export the video, etc. is what causes them to be a workflow nightmare for professionals in those fields. So instead they go with iOS devices (iPads, iPhones, and iPod Touch) as iOS has APIs that allow 3rd party apps to directly record the different framerates and resolutions themselves without having to manually deal with export/import/resolution/framerate issues when pulling stuff off the device (Coach's Eye, Dartfish Express, Hudl Technique). I don't think Android has APIs for third parties to use in that manner, which is why I went to iOS myself.  Windows Phone doesn't.  Going from Camera to Gallery and Exporting (or App and Importing) wastes a lot of time when every minute you spend doing nothing costs you non-trivial amounts of money.
  • Movie creator app has sound for my Lumia 640 XL
  • I got that problem last weekend (no sound in regular video) and was gutted. It's only happened once
  • I like turtles.
  • I have it but cannot edit the videos.  After removing Lumia Moments as was suggested, I got a propt to go to the store to download Microsoft Photo plug-in ... which then told me it was already installed.  but it isn't, and I cannot find any way to get the plug-in to install :/
  • In testing this the quality is pretty disappointing especially indoors. Didn't bother with any editing yet and probably won't since the quality gets even worse. However I'm happy with the feature in general and the new cameras on the 950 series should give better quality results so won't be long before I see myself doing one of these every now and then. Really want sound to be recorded though seems a bit of a waste to not have it.
  • quality is poor because less light is getting in to the lens when shooting at higher frame-rates (this is also why the video is darker). iPhone is the same.
  • This actually looks really impressive from your videos and the samples, thanks for those! Can't wait to get my 930 back from phone hospital (don't ask!) to give it a go. Way better effect and quality than I was expecting and have seen on other phones so far... Especially as all the supported devices are over a year old... Very promising indeed.
  • I want that turtle.
  • I'm right there with you. I'm surprised it took so long for someone to comment on the mini turtle in the photo. Nice touch for the article.
  • Installed in my L930.. .. This is awesome..
  • Seems slower
  • Ha!
  • Brilliant!
  • Cool. I'd capture some cool bloopers. Would be good to capture a whole/complete scene and selectively reduce the speeds of parts of it. Would the original file get too big, maybe?
  • @marcosbabu:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCzyp4DyyFQ
  • I've found video recording to be pretty crap on my 930 to be honest. For example, last night I took a video of my wife and daughter sitting across the table from me and even when holding the camera steady there is a massive warble or wobble happening on the left and right on the image. It's incredibly distracting and compromised nearly every video I take. My daughters iPhone 6 has silky smooth playback when I substitute that in. Has anyone else noticed this or do most people put their ms-blinders on and ignore it?
  • Digital stabilization does that. That jello effect. Posted via the Note 4/Nexus 7 (2013)/Lumia 1020/Lumia 2520
  • The iPhone 6 has Digital Stabilization as well.  Only the iPhone 6S+ does OIS for Video.  The 6, 6+, and 6S all use DIS.
  • Did the 1020 do OIS for videos? That's the best phone I've used for video quality so far, better than the 930 I now use, but still good enough for me
  • I thought the 6+ had OIS Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Lumia 950 and 950 XL were just released last month they had a lot of time to put this feature on their lastest flagships,however, that feature is not available on the 950 and 950 XL how serious is the imaging team?
  • They're not out yet