Apple won't allow you to shoot crisp 4k videos at silky-smooth 60 frames per second (FPS) until you own devices with A11 Bionic chip or newer. Unlike 4k videos at regular 30 fps that produce a heavy amount of motion blur and loose grained resolution detail, the 60fps in 4k greatly eliminates the motion blur and makes 4k crisp and full of detail. If you are still new to the format, follow the post here to learn how 4k 60fps differs from 4k 30fps, how much space does 4K 60fps take up on iPhone and how to give rid of the tricky errors with the 4k video recording at 60fps when it's uploaded or played on other platforms.
Which iPhone supports 4k 60fps mode: iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPHone XR, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max
• Hardware codec support (HEVC) that's built into A11 Bionic chip and up is required for shooting videos in higher frame rate, including 4k 60fps & 1080p 240fps.
• 4k at 60fps setting is disabled by default, and the feature is not obvious. You can turn it on for high-quality video recording but this will result in a larger file size with higher bitrate. Since 60fps 4k is a space hog, please make sure to have enough storage space to store the 4K clips at 60 fps on iPhone.
4k@60fps specifically refers to an image with a resolution of 3840x2160 pixels that is displayed 60 times per second. It is 4 times the pixels of 1080p footage and twice as many frames per seconds as compared to 30fps. This means more video data and produces larger file size, despite of the use of efficient HEVC codec. So how much storage space a 1 minute 4k video at 60fps will take on iPhone?
According to Apple, a one minute of HEVC encoded 4k/60fps video takes around 400 MB of storage on iPhone, which is 2.4 times as large as 4k 30fps video with the same codec and 50mb larger than the same mode encoded with H.264 codec. Check the list of iPhone video size.
Recording mode on iPhone
File size of HEVC video
File size of H.264 video
Slo-mo 1080p 240fps
Slo-mo 1080p 120fps
Unlike Galaxy S9 or OnePlus 6 that limits the recording length within 5 minutes maximally, Apple allows users of iPhone 8 or newer to shoot 4K videos at 60fps without any restrictions. But this format still poses many problems and users are bogged down to various errors as below.
Many users of iPhone 8 or newer notice that footage recorded in 4k at 60fps tends to be super shaky. But the recording is smooth as butter when it is switched to 1080p@60fps or 30fps. Why?
Reason: No EIS.
4k footages lacks EIS at the 60fps option, so it has a tendency to be on the shaky side. Although OIS, short for Optical Image Stabilization, continues to work when shooting 4k 60fps with iPhone, it is nowhere near as effective as electronic stabilization that makes recording even more stabilized. To eradicates the shaky issue, you can either choose to record 1080p 60fps that is the optical choice as it is the most stabilized mode at the frame rate. If you insist on recording the higher resolution mode at 60fps, you can do post production with a video processing tool such as VideoProc to fix the issue.
It is constantly blamed the iPhone 4k 60fps videos won't play in Photos, even when the Macbook is updated to High Sierra. Some userr cannot be airdrop to Macbook without converting to H.264. Why?
Reason: HEVC compatibility
HEVC is a must for 4k 60fps video shooting on iPhone. But there are still many devices won't work with the high efficiency format. Despite playback of HEVC video is enabled on iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra or later, older phones such as iPhone 6/5S still go stuttering or freezing when playing HEVC video at higher resolution and frame rate, e.g. the 4k 60fps. iCloud Photo Library shows alert message or exclamation mark in the upper-right corner of the video, as well. The mid-2015 Mac models and older won't be able to play HEVC video more than 1080p/240fps. So 4k 60fps and 30fps videos won't be played in this case. Plus, older windows and other gadgets won't work with the new format as well, due to the poor hardware required for playing the format.
If you've ever faced with one of such errors playing HEVC 4k 60fps video on iPhone, Mac, Windows, Android or other platforms, why not converting HEVC to H.264 first for broader compatibility with these gadgets.
A kindly remind for you is to choose an HEVC encoder with hardware acceleration enabled, since transcoding HEVC video will consume much more responses than H.264 and lead to computer overheating or software crash occasionally. VideoProc is a nice choice. It is skilled at video converting, editing, resizing and more swiftly, due to the support of unique full GPU acceleration powered by Intel QSV, Nvidia and AMD.
iPhone users have a hard time sending or uploading 4k 60fps video in various occasions. For example, when you try to upload 4k at 60fps to YouTube from iPhone, it doesn't publishes at the same quality and rate and ends up 720p 60fps, and even crashes whenever you attempt to do this. Or Airdrop keeps failing to send the 4K video at 60fps. Why does this happen?
Reason: Huge file size
As it is mentioned above, 4k video at 60fps is generally massive in size, which uses a bitrate of around 55mbps. Around 1 hour video at this mode will run out of iPhone's 64GB space. In addition, many social media sites and mailing servers impose strict restriction on the file size and length. For example, you cannot send larger than 16MB file on Whatsapp, and Gmail, Outbook and Yahoo Mail only let you send file up to 20-25MB in total size. The 4k footages at 60 frames per second will easily go beyond these file size limits. Despite YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and other social sites are tolerable about the size, uploading 4k 60fps video from iPhone is still problematic, inclusive of lengthy sharing, a colossal amount of bandwidth required for sharing, quality degradation due to heavy compression. In addition, video length and codec also have impact on the video sharing.
To fix the issue, the first thing you will need to do is to reduce or resize iPhone video to the file size that your media site or mailing service accepts and therefore make more room for your iPhone.
You may also be interested in: What to do when Instagram reduces iPhone video quality >>
Reason: No export option
Some users suggest when they create a new project in iMovie, the final result is 4k30fps instead of 4k60fps. This is the truth. Within iMovie at the export screen, there are just 540p 60, 720p 60 and 4k. There is no option to export in 4k 60fps even when you do any edits of 4k 60fps footage. And so far, Apple hasn't made any plan encoding in 4k/60fps in HEVC in iMovie on either the Mac or iOS. If you insist on editing and exporting the video without changing the frame rate, you can try some other professional yet easy 4k video editors with the option to encode 4k 60fps video. Besides, the huge amount of data makes it stuttering and lags in editing the 4K 60fps video.
iPhone 4k 60fps video delivers a huge file size that eats up iPhone storage space quickly. The bad compatibility with HEVC, higher frame rate and resolution make it difficult to play on Mac, iPhone, Windows, or share on Instagram, Whatsapp, YouTube, let along editing in iMovie. But you can easily solve the errors as long as you have a video transcoder, file size reducer and video editing software. Fortunately, Videoproc is here for you, which is skilled in iPhone video processing.
• Reduce 4k 60fps video size by lowering resolution, bit rate, frame rate and others.
• Convert iPhone 4k HEVC to/from H.264, MP4, AVI, WMV, MKV, etc with high quality.
• Stabilize shaky iPhone video, cut, trim, rotate, speed up/slow down iPhone video, etc.
• Edit, resize and transcode iPhone 4k 60fps video at fast speed, courtesy of Full GPU Acceleration.
Prior to the steps, please make sure to transfer the 4k 60fps video from iPhone to your computer. Then free download VideoProc on your Mac (macOS Catalina) and Windows (Windows 10 included.)
Step 1: Click Video on the main interface to fire off the video processing feature, then tap +Video button to load the iPhone 4k 60fps video.
Step 2: Choose the output format.
• For a better compatibility with your mobiles, computers, TVs, social services, or so you can choose MP4 H.264 as the target format.
• For a better quality and smaller size, please choose MP4 HEVC. But make sure your device supports this format first.
Step 3: Adjust the parameter. Click the Option at the right side of the video information.
• To reduce the file size, you can lower video resolution, e.g. 4k to 1080p, frame rate, bitrate, or change codec to realize your needs.
• If you are unaware of the settings and stress on quality, just move the slider to High Quality. But the whole conversion process will be relatively longer.
Step 4: Do some quick edits. VideoProc offers both basic edits and professional edits to suit to your diversified needs. You can cut, crop, merge, split, rotate video, add effects and subtitles, deshake and stabilize video, and so on. Each feature is clearly marked on the interface. So just choose the one you need.
Step 5: Click RUN to begin processing iPhone 4k 60fps video.
To enable the 4k video recording at 60fps on iPhone, youc an go to Settings / Camera / Formats and turn on High Efficiency mode, which will switch the encoding from H.264 to HEVC. Then you can tap back button at the top left corner, click Record Video, and choose 4k at 60 fps mode. That's it. Then you can record the 4k video at 60fps. It will be encoded in HEVC and saved in MOV in Photos app.
Eric Pascal previously held a senior editor role at Digiarty, covering almost any technology to do with Apple, from reviews, complex troubleshooting tips, to software related. Eric's quite adept with photographing & post production subjects. His journey into the world began somewhere in 2012, aiming to help photographer get out of sticky situations. He's also a keen musician and sportsman.
Aiming to be the leading digital media company, Digiarty Software, Inc. is dedicated to providing professional and innovative multimedia software for all Windows and Mac users.