Capturing a frame from a .MOV file

I copy a frame to the clipboard, and paste it as a new image in Photoshop. I then save the image as a BMP, but when I click on it to view it, it’s just a black square with no image. What do I have to do to actually capture a frame properly?

You’re doing everything right, assuming you can see the frame once you paste it into Photoshop. Maybe a reinstall of Photoshop is in order.

I’ve had this. I think it’s a protection in Windows Media Player (or whatever you’re playing the video with).

A screencap won’t get you a shot of the video that was playing when you took it (even if the video was paused.)

You need actual video-capture software.

You’ve discovered another wonderful benefit to DRM. Whether you own the file or it is distributed freely, your windows software has decided you should not be allowed to capture a frame. It’s built into the OS, so it will not be just Mediaplayer that is affected, although there are players that will allow you to capture a frame. I know that Tmpeg Enc will usually work. In order to get it to open a .mov file you will need a plug in.

Thanks guys. It’s not important enough to spend any more time on it than I have already… Guess I’ll just forget about it.

You could probably use something like Snagit ( ). This is free software used to capture whatever is showing on your screen at a given moment (I should say partly free as, IIRC, they slap a ‘Snagit’ label on every capture unless you pay for the software…I could be wrong though…been awhile since I used it).

Anyway the software is easy to use and has a variety of selections for taking snapshots of what is on your screen (full screen, window, drag-box, etc.). Just pause your movie where you want it, engage Snagit and you’ll have an exact snapshot of what you saw on the screen. You can save the picture in a variety of formats.

Snagit started to work. I managed to capture and open a screen in photoshop. It still had the player frame around it, so when I cut it out, and made a new image without the player in the frame, it became a black frame again…

I give up.

Thanks though.

If you happen to have access to a Mac, you can use MacOffice.

Launch Word, XL or PPT, Insert | Movie | From File, and insert the movie. Play it, then pause it at the desired frame and click “Set poster frame” on the movie toolbar. From there you can Edit | Copy the frame and Edit | Paste Special | Picture.

Well, I do not know what OS and other software you guys are using but I am using WIN98SE and Windows Media Player 2 and I have no problem capturing frames by just capturing the screen.

If your player does not allow this type of capture it may not be a protection measure at all and maybe it is just that the program is allowed to write direct to the screen bypassing Windows (and using Direct X, I believe). That’s what happens with my TV tuner card: I cannot capture the frame by capturing the screen as in the capture the frame appears blank.

Sailor, it would all depend upon whether the file in question was protected. The exact same player can work for one file and not another, although it would certainly be worthwhile for the OP to try another piece of software.

I got initiated into the whole DRM thing when I found that some movies would not play on my HTPC (home theater PC). Images can be selectively blocked from certain actions, software, and outputs. It’s a bit maddening to find your own software working against you and passing judgement how you can, and cannot, view the movies you own. Thankfully, I ‘turned off’ DRM and haven’t had a problem since.

About being unable to capture frames directly from Windows Media Player: The following usually works for me. First pause the video on the frame you want. Then, minimize all windows. Bring Media Player back up, and then click on your desktop area so that Media Player is no longer “active”. Then, hit Print Screen to capture the entire screen. Paste that into Photoshop and it should show the entire screen including the frame you want - then, just crop it down to the frame only. This process has taken a few tries for me on occasion.

I use Windows Media Player 6.4, and haven’t tried this on other versions, so YMMV.

Along the lines of ** Whack-a-Mole’s** suggestion, I use a free program called PrintKey. It allows you to box in an area of the screen, saving you from any future cropping. Just box it and save it.

I had the same problem. There are several advanced screen capture things out there, but the best are demoware/payware.


Any Capture Screen - freeware, but didn’t work that well
Capture Professional v5 - demoware, but works excellently

I actually did a bit of weird trick where I captured using the second program (it captures fine, but when you save the image it has watermark-lines all across it, unless you pay) then screencaptured that program’s “grab” with the freeware first programme, then exported that. However this was a considerable hassle and it makes far better sense - morally and practically - to pay for the software.

Camtasia is excellent for this. Not only does it allow you to make still captures but you can also capture copy protected video as well.