Changing Exporting New Aspect Ratio


Hoping you can help me. I have a video recording from my surveillance system, which for some reason saves important files as 944 to 1080 which makes the picture look too long from top to bottom. When I open this video in Shotcut, I then export it at the camera’s native format which is standard 1920 by 1080 (I adjust the resolution and aspect ratio under the advanced button in the export settings to do this), but Shotcut doesn’t expand the picture to these dimensions when exporting, but instead puts black bars on the side of the video to make up those dimensions. It does save the video as 1920 x 1080, but only by inserting black bars on the side. How can I change the video’s appearance to match the camera’s original aspect ratio please without the black bars?

Thank you in advance.

P.S We love Shotcut, very simple interface and ease of use.


What is the aspect ratio of your source files? Set the project Video Mode to match the aspect ratio. For example, maybe you want to set the project video mode to HD 1080P 30fps which has an aspect ratio of 16x9.

Thanks for your prompt response. The aspect ratio of the source file is what is mentioned above, 944 x 1080. However, this is not the camera’s aspect ratio. When I save the video file from my DVR, it saves the entire video (no edges are cut off), but it saves it in the incorrect aspect ratio. I want to reset it back to the correct camera aspect ratio so the video file looks normal again. I tried your solution but it doesn’t work, it just adds black bars on the side to compensate for the extra width. Basically I need to stretch out the video file back to the surveillance camera’s aspect ratio which is 1080 by 720. How do I do that please?



Does this help?

Thanks Elusien,

I tried you SlideDeck. Distort appeared to be the most commonsense approach for my problem, but when I change the width dimensions, Shotcut does not extend the background layer at the same time. Please see screenshot -

You have to set your Video Mode to the correct settings as Brian had explained. If you want your video to be 944x1080, then you’ll need to create a custom Video Mode for your project.

Settings → Video Mode → Custom → Add

Once the Video Mode is set, then open your media, and proceed editing. No need to enter into Export → Advanced.

944x1080 is not an aspect ratio. It is the resolution. The Aspect Ratio could be anything. My guess is that it is intended to be displayed as 16x9. It would be helpful if you can share a screenshot of the Properties panel in Shotcut after you have opened a clip. Maybe the clip is not signaling the correct aspect ratio.

If the clip is not signaling the correct aspect ratio, it can be corrected by changing the aspect ratio numbers in the properties panel.

Indeed, and initially I thought that was the problem.

And I thought, just set the video mode. But then the below had me questioning that:

If I understand correctly (I could well be wrong) @Ray1 has a surveillance camera that is recording correctly at 1920x1080 (or is supposed to be) but is exporting incorrectly. First question to @Ray1; how do you know that 1920x1080 is the camera’s native resolution? I agree with @brian about the aspect ratio probably being 16:9, since your preview looks something close to that, so you might be alright with the instructions below. As a side note, the numbers you have in your resolution are also probably wrong and should be 1280x720 (but that won’t fix the problem). Either way, I think you want to force it to 1920x1080 to fill the screen, right?

Here is what you can try:

  1. Start a new project
  2. Name it whatever you like but make sure you select the video mode dropdown option and choose HD 1080p 30fps as advised (if you know your frame rate is something else, like 24 or 25, then use that).
  3. Add your video track (don’t panic, it will look weird)
  4. Apply the “Size, position & rotate” filter to your video. Make sure you choose distort for size mode, and then set the size to 1920x1080 and position to 0, 0.

That should work, but the resulting quality is up for grabs.

The above is a workaround and not an ideal solution, and it would be much better if you can solve this at the hardware/software level, firstly by exploring the surveillance cameras options. I’m not saying it’s possible, but certainly it is worth changing some settings; like perhaps going down to 1280x720p to see if it saves in a weird resolution, or maybe changing the recording encoder, or the frame rate (if these are available, but there has to be something to explore).

Something else worth mentioning is that you can take your original squished video, open it in something like VLC media player, and then force a 16:9 aspect ratio which will allow full screen playback. If all you want to do is watch them, then that is the easiest solution. Good luck!

Of course I may have completely misunderstood your issue and I’ve been barking up the wrong tree this entire time. If so I apologise, but having re-read the OP I am still slightly unsure.

Thank you gentlemen. I opened the project and set the aspect ratio I wanted, then used the size filter and selected distort, set the size, moved the image to the centre, and voila.


Awesome, so my understanding was correct (perhaps you could mark it as the solution?).

But I did have a couple of questions that remain unanswered. What’s the quality like after stretching it back, and are there options in the camera for trying to prevent this in the future?

Quality is perfect, as by distorting it, put back to the original resolution.

You should set the video mode to some 1920x1080 16:9 and change Properties > Aspect Ratio of the video clip. It will be faster, less steps, and better looking than using the filter.

Editable properties are overrides.

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Awesome. I just learnt something else.

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