Weird Aspect Ratios!
Instagram, like it or not, has turned into one of the biggest social media platforms out there. Almost everybody who is somebody is there and anybody who wants to become somebody is trying to grow there! But the thing about Instagram is that it is an oddball when it comes to standards!
As you already know Instagram is primarily a mobile platform that insists mostly on scrolling down. Since you generally scroll in the portrait mode, aspect ratios should change based on that. As a result, Instagram, while still supports 16:9, has made 1.91:1, 1:1 and 4:5 as its preferred aspect ratios.
That 1.91:1 is so close to being a 2:1, or as mobile manufacturers like to call it, 18:9, but no, they didn’t feel like giving us a number easy to remember or even pronounce! Add to that the fact that Instagram videos do not support 4k or 1080p! Not even 720p! The maximum supported resolution on Instagram videos is 640×640! So all this makes Instagram is one hell of a platform to export videos for! Let’s see how it works!
Creating a Sequence:
The first thing we have to do is creating a new sequence.
File ~> New ~> Sequence.
Now you should go to the settings tab and in editing mode, choose Custom. The timebase will be 23.976. For the resolution, I highly suggest using 1080×1350 which is a 4:5 aspect ratio. This aspect ratio not only will fill the phone screen as much as possible but will also give us more real estate to work with. Also, if you are trying to make content for your Instagram Stories, you can go for 1080×1920 which is a rotated Full HD video with the aspect ratio of 9:16.
You will see the aspect is automatically set to 4:5. You can now import a video into your timeline. If you are going to upload this video as a post on your Instagram page, then it can not be longer than 60 seconds.
You will see there are black bars on the top and bottom of the screen. One way to solve this is by going to the Effects Control panel and changing the scale to fill in the black parts. That can work for videos where there is not much important stuff in the margins of the video.
When that’s all done, you should export your video!
File ~> Export ~> Media.
The format is going to be H.264 and for preset choose Match Source – High Bitrate. Then all you need to change will be Bitrate Settings. A good bitrate for Instagram videos is around 2.5 up to 4. So choose CBR and set Target Bitrate to 2.5.
A thing to keep in mind is to keep an eye on Estimated File Size. The general consensus is that for a 60-sec video the size should be around 20MB. And the best option to tweak for reaching that number is Bitrate! Move it back and forth till you hit that 20 sweet spots. When you reach this point, all that’s left is to click on Use Maximum Render Quality and either hit Export or Queue.
If any of these exporting settings were confusing for you, you can check my video and blog which talks about all the exporting settings in full detail.
For now, thank you for sticking with me to the end! Be sure to leave your comments down in the comments section. Until the next time, best of luck and bye!