How to Zoom in and out of a Video in VLC Player

The versatile VLC media player also allows you to zoom into a part of the video. Here's how you can do that.
Warp Terminal

Did you know that VLC can zoom into parts of a video? Yes, zooming into parts of a video can be helpful if you want to look at something closely.

Let's take a look at some tricks for effectively zooming into any part of a video playing in the VLC media player.

Method 1: Use the interactive zoom feature

VLC media player has an interactive zooming feature. But you should use it only when needed.

First, start playing a video in VLC. Now, look for the β€œShow extended settings” button on the bottom control bar.

From the bottom control menu buttons, select "Show extended settings" button.
Show extended settings

You can also get to this setting by going to Tools β‡Ύ Effects and Filters, or by pressing CTRL + E.

From the Tools option on the main menu, select "Effects and Filters".
Select Effects and Filters

In the new window, go to the Video Effects tab and then select the Geometry sub-tab. Here, you will find a checkbox to enable Interactive Zoom. Enable it and click the Close button.

Enable the interactive zoom for the current video session.
Enable interactive zoom
If you use the Save button, the changes will persist for all future sessions until you turn it off and save.

You will now see a rectangle and an adjacent slider on your video. Also, your video appears to be zoomed in a bit.

A zoom slider rectangle and a zoom adjust slider appears on the top left corner of the video.
Zoom slider in video

The zoom adjust slider is tiny, so you may need to look closely for it. To zoom around the video, just drag the rectangle inside the small area.


Zoom around the video using the zoom rectangle

If you zoom more into an area, drag the slider up. The size of the rectangle is reduced, and you can fine-control the zoom area.

Slide the zoom adjust slider to maximum in order to increase the zoom depth.
Adjust zoom depth

Method 2: Zoom in window mode

While you are watching videos in windowed mode in VLC, you can quickly switch the resolution to:

  • A quarter of the original
  • Half of the original
  • Original
  • Double the original

To do this, select Video from the top menu (or right-click on top of a video area). Then, hover over the Zoom option to get the resolutions.

Switch between the available zoom resolutions.
Various zoom resolutions available

You can also use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + Z or Shift + Z to switch between the modes. Yes, VLC has plenty of useful keyboard shortcuts.

This does not have any effect if the video is in full screen. Moreover, it won't help if what you want to zoom into a part of the video.

Wrapping Up

There are some other workaround methods, where you will get a zoom-like effect. One of them is to use the VLC video cropping feature, where you can select a particular video cropping preset, and the rest area will be cropped.

Since the interactive zoom properly covers most of the needs of a user, there seems to be less need for a workaround.

Want more VLC tips? Here is a quick tutorial on increasing and decreasing the playback speed in the VLC player.

Increase or Decrease Video Playback Speed in VLC
Quick VLC tip to help you speed up or slow down the video playback speed.

VLC not adjusting with the system dark mode? Take a look at these simple solutions!

Get Dark Mode in VLC on Ubuntu and Other Linux
Go dark with your favorite media player with these tweaks.

Enjoy using VLC player as much as I do it πŸ˜„

About the author


Linux tinkerer by day, Lord of the Rings fanatic by night. When I'm not busy conquering the command line, you can find me kicking back and watching some football while quoting JRR Tolkien

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