Getting rid of black bars/borders

Do you have black bars in your video? Perhaps you have a huge solid black border, with your original video being super small in the center, and have tried your best to correct the situation. This tutorial may not solve all situations.

You have this wonderful photo of a motorcycle. And you are going to make a video about it. You open it in Shotcut, and this happens.

Shotcut preview

People often try to fix this by entering into Export → Advanced to fix it, and then you get this possibly after hours of exporting.

Shotcut exported video after entering in Advanced and changing the resolution. Wrong!
It is also possible to have used one or multiple filters to arrive at this same result.

We need to fix this by starting over. With Shotcut the Video Mode setting is so vital to the success of an exported video. Think of the Video Mode as a panting’s canvas.

Now a decision

Are you after a Vertical video? Resolution: 1080x1920

  • If you already have a saved project: File → Save As and give this a new project name.
  • Settings → Video Mode → Non-Broadcast → Vertical HD 30FPS
    • Shotcut preview after setting the Vertical video mode. No black bars.*
      If you have already applied filters, after changing Video Mode, you may have to adjust a lot of filter settings.

Are you after a Landscape video? Resolution: 1920x1080

Based upon that this is a vertical picture, people usually do a blur to fill the left and right sides, or use a crop filter, or the Size, Position & Rotate filter to fill in the remaining space.

  • If you already have a saved project: File → Save Asand give this a new project name.
  • Set the Video Mode to HD 1080p 30FPS (1920x1080)

Blur: Pad filter

Crop: Source filter

The photo I had cropped and resized.

I hope this helps. I know every video is different than the next. If this doesn’t quite fit your scenario, feel free to post a new post asking for help. When exporting, there is no need to enter in Advanced.

Original Source photo:


Excellent. We still keep getting queries about “how to get rid of black bars”. Now we can just refer them to this topic.

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Excellent indeed!
Good one @Hudson555x

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