Update 1: added a new section of How to set Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes after Android Lollipop update? If you are looking for smooth motion mode, slow motion mode, fast motion mode and limited for MMS mode after Android Lollipop update for Galaxy Note 4, please check this section.
This guide shows you how to use and when to use different Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes: Normal mode, Smooth motion mode, Slow motion mode, Fast motion mode, and Limited for MMS mode.
If you want to change video size (resolution), please check this page.
Although this guide was written for Galaxy Note 4, it also applicable for Galaxy S5.
Why you may try different Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes?
Galaxy Note 4 has one of the best smartphone cameras (in 2014). The 16M camera with optical image stabilization (OIS) can not only take high quality photos, but also shoot nice videos.
But you may not know, in addition to the Normal model (default), Galaxy Note 4 also gives you 4 other video recording modes so that you can record impressive videos.
For example, you can use the slow motion mode to capture the important moments in detail with higher frame rate. You can shoot a video that can easily be shared through MMS with very small file size using the limited for MMS mode.
How to set Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes?
By default, the Normal mode is used. You can change Galaxy Note 4 video recording mode by following these steps.
Step 1: Start Camera app in your Note 4.
Step 2: Tap Settings –More (…) as shown below.
Step 3: Tap Recording mode as shown below.
Step 4: Select one of the recording mode for Galaxy Note 4 as shown below.
Step 5: Save the settings for Galaxy Note 4 video recording mode.
Tap anywhere on the screen to save the settings and return to camera interface.
The video recording mode will be always used untill you manually change it again.
How to use Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes, and when?
In Galaxy Note 4, you are provided with 5 different video recording modes:
- Limited for MMS
- Slow motion
- Fast motion
- Smooth motion
Each of them is good for specific scenarios. Now, I will explain to you the usage of each video recording mode.
1. Normal mode
Normal mode is the default option. In this mode, you can use all features of the camera, e.g., video stabilization, dual camera, ISO, white balance setting, all video sizes from VGA to UHD (for video size and photo size, please check this guide).
One limitation of the normal mode is that you can only record videos in a fixed frame rate at 30fps (frames per second).
The video usually is in good quality and can be used for all scenarios.
2. Limited for MMS mode
If you just record the video for sharing through MMS (not for a full HD TV), you can choose this mode.
When this video recording mode is selected, Galaxy Note 4 will record the video in QCIF format (Quarter Common Intermediate Format).
The advantage of this format is small file size and therefore, it is easy to share the video through MMS. Remember your phone company always has a stingy size limit for MMS.
Of course, the video resolution corresponding to the Limited for MMS mode is only 176 × 144. So, it is definitely not good for TV or a computer monitor. But usually it is ok if you watch it on the smartphones.
You will notice once you choose Galaxy Note 4 video recording mode to Limited for MMS, you cannot set the video size, and you cannot enable video stabilization (usually not necessary for such a resolution) as shown below.
3. Slow motion mode
Slow motion mode allows you to record the video in a higher frame rate, but play the video in the normal frame rate (30fps). So, you can watch the 10-sec action in 20, 40 or 80 seconds.
The slow motion mode is perfect for recording videos for sports and fast moving objects.
When you select slow motion, you are prompted to select the speed scale. In Galaxy Note 4, you can choose 3 different speeds: 1/2x, 1/4x and 1/8x as shown below.
When in slow motion mode, Galaxy Note 4 need record more frames and therefore, it cannot record in full resolution of the camera. It is limited to HD (720p) actually.
This means all videos recorded in Galaxy Note 4 with slow motion mode are in 720p (1280×720, 30 fps) only. You have no option to change the resolution.
When you choose 1/8 speed in slow motion mode, the recording frame rate is 30*8=240fps. With this frame rate, Galaxy Note 4 camera actually struggles to get the 720p resolution. So, in this scenario, the video resolution is scaled up to 720p from a lower resolution. When you watch the video, the slow motion works as expected, but the resolution may be not comparable to a normal 720p video.
Therefore, it is recommended to use 1/2x or 1/4x speed in the slow motion mode.
4. Fast motion mode
Fast motion mode is opposite to slow motion mode. When fast motion mode is selected for video recording, the play time will be shorter than the actual time. This is achieved through recording at lower frame rate.
Sometimes, it is fun to record videos in fast motion mode. It may also reduce file size of the video.
Similar to slow motion mode, Galaxy Note 4 allows you select the speed for fast motion. You can choose 3 speeds; 2x, 4x and 8x as shown below.
When fast motion mode is selected, the video resolution is limited to full HD (1080p, 30fps). You have no option to change the resolution.
5. Smooth motion mode
Smooth motion mode allows you to record video in 60fps in full HD (1080p) resolution. The video quality can be significantly improved if you watch it on a UHD TV.
Although you can record 4k UHD video with Galaxy Note 4 in the Normal mode, the frame rate is limited to 30 fps. When you compare the UHD video (recorded with normal mode in Galaxy Note 4) and the smooth motion FHD video (recorded with smooth motion mode), you very likely will feel the smooth motion video better.
Of course, compared to FHD video in normal mode, the final video size will be almost doubled. This is the drawback of smooth motion mode.
Another popular usage of smooth motion mode videos is to convert these videos to slow motion video. In slow motion mode, the video resolution is limited to 720p, which is not good for a 4K TV.
But with a smooth motion video, you can convert it to FHD slow motion video (1/2 speed).
How to set Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes after Android Lollipop update?
Android Lollipop update for Galaxy Note 4 brought a new camera and simplified app.
Video recording mode settings were removed.
To set set Galaxy Note 4 video recording modes after Android Lollipop update, please follow this:
- Fast motion is now under Galaxy Note 4 camera modes settings. Tap Modes to activate fast motion if you need this recording mode.
- Slow motion is also under Modes.
- Smooth motion is now under video size settings. You can choose FHD/60P 1920×1080 (16:9) to get smooth motion mode as shown below. Thanks to John Davies for pointing this out.
- Limited for MMS mode is also under video size settings. You can choose QCIF limit for MMS in video size settings.
Do you know how to use and when to use different Galaxy Note 4 videos recording modes?
If you have any problems or questions on how to use and when to use different Galaxy Note 4 videos recording modes, please post them in the comment box below.
We will try to help you find a solution.
More how-to guides , tips and tricks for using Samsung Galaxy Note 4 are available at Galaxy Note 4 how-to guides page.