Effects and transitions

Effects and transitions

Although you'll do most of your sophisticated visual effects work in composite shots, you can still do basic effects work in the editor.

The effects library

The Effects library lists all of the available effects and transitions available in HitFilm 3 Express.

Note that the number of available effects will vary depending on which packs you own. Even without packs there are still over 100 effects included with HitFilm 3 Express!

Effects panel

Effects marked with the [Layer only] tag can only be used in composite shots. All other effects can be used in the editor.

You cannot animate effects on the editor timeline. For keyframe animation see Compositing.

Searching for effectssearch@2x

If you are looking for a specific effect and know its name, you can type it into the Search bar. As you type the list will be instantly updated to display relevant results.

You can also filter the list to show specific types of effect using the Show All menu.

Controlling effects

Effects are added to clips by dragging them from the Effects panel onto the chosen clip.

You can then customize the effect in the Controls panel.

To make changes to an effect, first select the relevant clip on the timeline. Its properties will be displayed in the Controls panel, with all applied effects listed in the effects section.

You can expand the effects section and individual effects to reveal more controls and details.

Clicking once on a property lets you type in a new value. Dragging on a value increases or decreases it.


The Effects library also contains the editor transitions.

Transitions provide interesting ways to blend from one clip into the next and can only be used on the editor timeline.

You can drag transitions from the Effects panel onto the timeline. Transitions need to be applied to the start or end of a clip, or between two adjacent clips. A green indicator will show where the transition will be placed.

Once you have applied a transition it can then be selected on the timeline. The transition's properties can be adjusted in the Controls panel.

Click here for detailed information on the different transitions.