Controlling Playback Speed in VLC Media Player

With VLC, you will be easily able to control the playback speed. Playback speed relates to the speed at which the video is played. You can speed up the video or slow it down according to your wish. Speeding up will allow you to watch the video faster. Speeding up will also allow you to skim through the video while viewing all the parts. This will enable you to reach the part of the video where you previously left off. You will also be able to watch documentaries quickly which saves time while allowing you to take full benefit of the video.

On the contrary, slowing down the video speed will allow you to watch the video in real detail. You will be playing in such slow speeds that the video will be moving from one frame to another, really slow. Using this feature, you can reach your favorite frame of the  video or watch your favorite scene in slow motion for example.

There are several uses of slowing down or speeding up a video. It is left up to your imagination and use. VLC allows us to control the speed of the video in two ways. One is by using shortcut keys or hotkeys and the other way is by using menu and buttons. Both ways are good, but the shortcut option is simpler and quicker.

To control speed of a video in VLC using shortcuts:

Speed up: ] Key in keyboard
Speed down: [ Key in keyboard
Normal speed: = Key in keyboard

When you click on the speed up or speed down button, the confirmation is displayed on the top right of the video. Speed is displayed such as 1.50x or 0.80x depending upon how much you change it. You will also be able to change the shortcut keys if you prefer.


To control speed of a video in VLC using menu and buttons:

From the VLC Menu Bar go to Playback > Speed and select a speed from options: Faster, Faster (fine), Normal, Slower (fine) and Slower.


The same options can also be accessed from the right click menu Playback > Speed.


Clicking on those buttons buttons will increase or decrease the speed of the video by certain amount. Speed will be added or reduced to the current playback speed. For example: click on faster will add the speed by 0.50x.

Fine Tuning Audio/Video Speed

You can adjust the audio/video playback speed in VLC to the tiniest details. That means you can speed up your audio/video 1.06x times or 1.43 times. You’ll have to use the playback speed slider present in the bottom-right corner of the player, below the volume slider. It displays the current playback speed.

  • Make sure an audio or video is playing; you can pause the content if you want.
  • Click on the speed indicator and a slider will open.
  • You can drag the slider towards the left to slow down and towards the right to speed up.
    Playback Speed Slider
    This slider allows you to configure the playback speed up to 1/10th fractional units.

Setting the Default Playback Speed

To set a default playback speed for all your videos, you will have to do it from the advanced VLC configurations accessible from Tools > Preferences [CTRL + P] and then selecting All radio box for Show settings option. This will display the Advanced Preferences for the player.

  • Click on Input / Codecs found once you open Advanced Preferences.
  • Under Playback control you will find Playback speed. Input a value up to two decimal places.
    Advanced Speed Settings Preferences of VLC
    This new value will be your default playback speed. You will have to stop and play a file again or you can restart your player to ensure that this new settings is in effect. You’ll have to visit this advanced preference again to reset it back to 1.00x.
  • Click Save at the end.



  1. Student
    May 12, 2014 - 9:14 am Reply

    Thank you!!! It was annoying right clicking and changing the speed.

  2. TIago Ferreira
    August 19, 2014 - 10:40 pm Reply

    Is it possible to change speed to, for example, 1.70x or 1.20x. I’m not seeing those on the playback speed options…

    • ashish
      August 20, 2014 - 7:30 am Reply

      Yes it is possible. You don’t see it in the playback options. Just use the short cut keys [ and ] for your desired speed.

  3. Med
    October 28, 2014 - 5:22 pm Reply

    What is the best video format to play speeded up? I noticed that when I upload my video to youtube and speed up there the sound is much better. I would like to get the same sound in VLC.

    • ashish
      December 22, 2014 - 1:45 pm Reply

      Well I think that it is more dependent upon your computer to be able to process a speed up video with clear sound.

  4. Gabriel
    February 22, 2015 - 9:10 pm Reply

    How to set it to 1.03 or 1.06 as it was long time before? I don’t want to set it on 1.10, it’s too much and unpleasure to watch.

    • ashish
      February 23, 2015 - 8:48 pm Reply

      Use the playback speed indicator/slider present below the volume slider. Read the newly added “Fine Tuning Audio/Video Speed” in the article above to view the details.

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