Watching a movie or other clip with classic 16: 9 or old-school 4: 3 aspect ratio is a snap on the VLC player. But the rise of smartphones has come with an unfortunate side effect of shooting videos horizontally (or vertically) and then rotating the camera after recording begins.
This means that when you open the culprit video in a video player like VLC, you have to rotate it to make it properly watchable. Here we show you not only how to rotate video in VLC, but how to save it after it is rotated.
Rotate your VLC video
First, open your video in VLC and take a moment to appreciate how fake it looks. Now to solve this problem you need to go to “Tools -> Effects and Filters”.
Next, click on the Video Effects tab, then on the Geometry tab, and check the “Transform” box. The drop-down menu below should no longer be grayed out and you should be able to rotate your video as you see fit.
Typically, if your video was horizontal and you want to make it vertical or vice versa, select the option to rotate it 90 degrees or 270 degrees. You can also “flip” it to make it a mirror image of itself or transpose it, which flips it and fits it on the screen.
Record your rotated video
Once you have made the desired rotation adjustments, click Save. Note that recording at this point does not save the video in its rotated form, but rather the settings of VLC as a whole, meaning that every subsequent video you watch will start in your rotated format (not practical at all) . We’ll show you how to reset this later.
If you’re happy with your video and want to save it, click Tools in the ribbon at the top, then click Preferences.
At the bottom left of the Preferences window, click “All” under “Show settings,” then click “Video” and “Filters” in the left pane.
On the right side, check the “Video Transform Filter” box and click “Save.”
Next, click on “Media” in the ribbon at the top of your VLC window, then click on “Convert / Save”.
In the new window, click “Add”, then navigate to your video and select it. Click “Convert / Save” with it selected.
In the next window, click on the Profile drop-down menu and select a video format profile that suits you – the first one, H.264 + MP3 (MP4), is fine in most cases.
Next, click on the wrench icon next to the Profile drop-down list, then click on the “Video Codec” tab. (You can select the video format you want to record in beforehand if you want – we’re happy to keep MPEG-TS as the default.)
Under the “Video Codec” tab, check the “Video” box, the Filters tab, then scroll down and check the “Video Transform Filter” box, then click “Save.”
Back to the “Convert” window, the last thing you need to do is select the destination where you want to save your rotated file (at the bottom of the window) and give it a new file name. Make the name distinct, as we had issues using a variation of the original name. Do this and then click “Start” to begin the conversion process.
Your newly rotated video should now appear in the destination you saved it to. All you need to do now is reset your VLC settings to default. To do this, simply go to “Tools -> Preferences” and then click on “Reset preferences” at the bottom of the window.
The above should be all you need to know to rotate video in VLC and save it. Please note, however, that some users have reported issues in some versions of VLC. It worked well for us in the latest version of VLC Media Player. If you are having issues, you may need to make sure that you are using the latest version of VLC player.
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