How to use the Galaxy S5's slow (and fast) motion video features

Between high frame rate and high-resolution video, today's smartphones are proving to be quite capable video cameras. And the Galaxy S5 is no exception — it offers both UHD video and several different video shooting modes, including slow motion, to let you unleash your inner videographer. Toggling to the right video mode for each occasion is easy, but there are a few different choices that need to be made before you can simply point and shoot.

Let's take a quick dive into the Galaxy S5's slow and fast motion video modes, and see how you can unleash the power of your phone's video camera.

Although it may seem like a gimmick at times, well-done slow motion video is pretty awesome. When used in moderation in the right situations, slow motion can change the entire look of a video shot. As we show off in the video above, the Galaxy S5 sports three different slow motion speeds — 1/8, 1/4 and 1/2 speed — to fit the situation you're taking video of.

Switching between video modes is simple. Just launch the camera app, hit the settings gear and look for "Recording mode" in the settings. Tap that button, switch to "Slow motion" and then select your speed. You may want to start with 1/2 until you get the hang of things, as 1/8 speed produces dramatically longer videos (eight seconds of playback for every one second of recording) and therefore requires more editing. Once you select your slow motion speed, hitting the video record button will automatically start recording in slow motion.

Galaxy S5 Camera Interface

On the other end of the spectrum, the Galaxy S5 also offers a "fast motion" mode, which instead speeds up playback. While we're not sure this will be as popular as slow motion, you can find it in the same camera settings by tapping "Fast motion" then selecting again x2, x4 or x8 playback. If you want to quickly switch between modes, press and hold the video mode button in the settings, and drag it over to the bar on the left side — that way it's only a single tap away next time.

Slow and fast motion videos are saved the same way any other video is, and can be shared out to your favorite cloud storage provider, your computer or onto social networks with ease. Just keep in mind the file sizes and video lengths when you're recording — nobody really wants to see three minutes straight of 1/8 speed slow motion video. Video resolution in slow motion is limited to 1280 x 720 (fast motion is limited to 1920 x 1080), but that's plenty high for any online publishing you'll be doing and your internal storage space won't get eaten up, either.

With a little bit of practice and editing, you can work in quick slow motion clips into all of your videos, and the reaction is sure to be a positive one. Give slow and fast motion a try the next time you're shooting video with your Galaxy S5.

Andrew Martonik

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.