Kdenlive uses two monitor widgets to display and play back your videos, images, titles, animations or audio files:

The monitor widgets can be switched on or off by checking Menu ‣ View ‣ Clip Monitor and Project Monitor, repectively. Once activated, they can be selected by clicking the corresponding tab which appears at the bottom of the monitor window.

Kdenlive supports an external monitor display using Blackmagicdesign DeckLink cards.

The Clip Monitor plays the clip selected in the Project Bin. The Project Monitor plays the timeline of the project starting at the position of the playhead.

Controls and Elements


Monitor controls (see this table for more details)


Monitor areas and elements (see this table for more details)

Monitor Display Toolbar


Monitor Display Toolbar and overlay options

The monitor display toolbar appears when you hover over the defined hotspot. By default this is the top right-hand side of the monitor area. Click on transform-move-horizontal to move the monitor display toolbar to the left-hand side or back. You can switch it off altogether by right-click in the monitor area, and selecting Current Monitor Overlay ‣ Monitor Info Overlay.

The toolbar has the following options:




Switch full screen


Change overlay. Click through the different available patterns.


Zoom in It’s always for the entire clip. Cut it if needed and apply motion tracking only to the resulting pieces where needed.


Zoom Out


Add guide


Remove guide


Move Toolbar. Click through to move the toolbar from the right (default) to the left and back.


Changing the color of the monitor overlay

The color of the guide overlay can be changed in Menu ‣ Settings ‣ Configure Kdenlive ‣ Colors and Guides.

Resizing the Monitor


Resizing the monitor widget

You can resize the monitors by dragging the widget’s edges. Make sure the mouse pointer changes to the sizing shape.

Monitor Zoom Bar


Monitor zoom bar (audio file example)

The timeline rulers of the monitors have zoom bars. To activate, hover over the timeline ruler and use Ctrl+Mouse wheel. A zoom bar will appear with a scrollbar that has handles on the left and the right. At the same time, the timeline ruler scaling marks will change according to the zoom factor. This is helpful when trying to make frame-accurate cuts or setting zones.

Preview Resolution


Preview resolutions

Changing the Preview Resolution speeds up the editing experience by scaling the video resolution of the monitors. It can be used instead of proxies or with proxies. Speed improvement depends on your source files.

Playback speed depends on several factors: source material, use of proxies, type and number of effects, and the CPU capabilities. There is limited to no GPU support for video playback. Preview Rendering is highly recommended if playback speed is lacking.

Multitrack View

You enable the multitrack view via Menu ‣ Monitor ‣ Multitrack view or via right-click in the Project Monitor area and selecting Multitrack View or by pressing F12.


The multitrack view interface allows you to select a track in the timeline by clicking on the project monitor. See the section about multicam editing for using it during Editing.

Clip and Project Monitor in Separate Windows

If you want to have the Clip and/or the Project Monitor in their own individual windows click on the respective tab and drag the monitor widget out into its own window. This undocks the widgets from their space. From there you can move them even to other monitors you may have connected.


Moving Clip and Project Monitor to their own independent windows (undocking)

To put the monitors back into the tabbed view click on the monitor’s title bar (enable it via Menu ‣ View ‣ Show Titlebars) and drag the window on top of another widget. See the Customizing the Interface chapter for more details.


There is low risk that the monitor widget has no title bar (intermittent defect). In this case you will need to reset the Kdenlive settings by deleting ~/.config/kdenliverc (Linux) or C:\Users\<user_name>\AppData\Roaming\kdenlive\kdenlivestaterc (Windows).