Make Vertical Videos in DaVinci Resolve (For Social Media)

In this post, you’ll learn exactly how to make vertical videos in DaVinci Resolve.

You’ll learn how to do the 4 following things:

Let’s get to it.

Make Horizontal Video Vertical in DaVinci Resolve

Quick Version:

  1. Open the “Edit” page.
  2. Press the keyboard shortcut “Shift + 9.
  3. Enable “Use vertical resolution.”
  4. Click on “Save.”
  5. Open the “Inspector” > “Retime and Scaling.”
  6. Set the “Scaling” against “Fill.”
  7. Voilà!

Here are some tutorials you might find interesting:

Detailed Version: (with images)

Head over to the “Edit” page inside Resolve:

open edit page

If you have clips in your timeline, you should be able to see “Timeline 1” inside the “Media Pool,” like in the image below. 

  • You can’t see “Timeline 1” if there are no clips in the timeline yet.

Right-click “Timeline 1” and select “Create New Timeline Using Selected Clips.”

  • If you don’t have “Timeline 1,” right-click the gray area inside the “Media Pool” instead and select “Timelines” > “Create New Timeline.”
    • Then the next step is the same.
create new timeline with selected clips

Then, in the window that pops up:

  1. Give the timeline a name.
  2. Uncheck the “Project Settings.
  3. Open the “Format” tab.
  4. Check off the box next to “Use vertical resolution.”
  5. Set “Mismatched Resolution” against “Scale full frame with crop.”
  6. Click on “Create.”
new timeline settings for vertical video

If the new timeline is not open, you can open it in the “Media Pool.”

Now, all the clips in the timeline will be nested. To fix this, right-click on the “clip” and then click on “Decompose in Place” > “Using Clips Only.” 


  • If you are in the second group, add your clips to the timeline instead!
right-click new timeline clip, and select decompose in place

Since you have made a horizontal video vertical, the clips may not be positioned how you would like them.

To fix this, select a clip in the timeline, open the “Inspector” tab (top right-hand corner), and then under “Transform,” adjust the X-axis next to “Position.”

Watch the GIF illustration below on how to do this:

position to make horizontal video fit vertical aspect ratio

How to Edit a Vertical Video in DaVinci Resolve

Editing a vertical video is no different from editing a horizontal video as long as you have made the video fit the vertical frame, as I showed you here.

However, if you are going to upload it to any social media, you must follow the platform’s guidelines regarding format, length, etc.

Plus, the video should be much more engaging and fast phased than it usually would.

I’ve written guides on how to do this for the following platforms:

Click on the links to check them out.

Export Vertical Videos in DaVinci Resolve (Social Media Settings)

Head over to the “Deliver” page:

go to the deliver page to export vertical video

Then in the “Render Settings” tab, choose “Custom Export.”

Next, give the video you will export a “File Name” and set its location in your file system.

Also, make sure that “Single Clip” is selected; if not, you’ll end up exporting all the clips in the timeline as individual videos…

export settings 1

In the “Video” tab set:

  • Set “Format” against “QuickTime” or “MP4” (I use QuickTime).
  • Set “Codec” against “H.265” (You can choose H.264 if you prefer).
    • H.265 seems to give a higher quality on YouTube and TikTok (probably Instagram too.)
  • Check off the box next to “Use vertical resolution.”
export vertical video

Regarding the bitrate and uploading to social media, I recommend setting it higher than you need.

Higher bitrates seem to have a better quality after being compressed by social media platforms; click here to read more about that.

Since vertical videos are usually pretty short, you won’t face issues with large file sizes, etc.

I recommend setting the bitrate to 60.000 Kb/s if your frame rate is 30, and 120.000 Kb/s if your frame rate is 60, etc.

Then, click on “Add to Render Queue.”

bitrate for social media

Now, you’ll find the export in the “Render Queue” tab, appearing as a “Job,” from here, click on “Render All.”

ready to render

Then wait until it’s finished, right-click the “Job,” and click on “Open File Location” to find your exported vertical video in the file system.

rendering complete

How to Blur Sides of Vertical Video in DaVinci Resolve

Here is what a blurred background/sides of a vertical video will look like:

Blur sides of video

Here is a short version of how to do it:

On the “Edit” page, open “Effects” > “Open FX,” drag the “Blanking Fill” effect to the timeline, and drop it on top of your vertical clip. The black bars on the sides of the vertical video should be blurred. To adjust it, select the clip, and open “Inspector” > “Effects” > “Open FX.”

And here is the detailed explanation with images 😉

To do this, head over to the “Edit” page:

open the edit page in Resolve

Then in the top left-hand corner, click on “Effects” > “OpenFX,” scroll down and find the “Blanking Fill.”

Drag the “Blanking Fill” to the timeline, and drop it on top of the vertical video.

add blanking fill to clip

We must adjust the blur because it cuts out part of the sides by default.

So, select the clip in the timeline, and open the “Inspector” (top right-hand corner) > “Effects” > “Open FX.” 

Under “Source,” set the “Crop Left” and the “Crop Right” to 0.0.

To adjust the intensity of the blur, change the “Blur Background” value in the “Fill Appearance” section:

blur sides settings

That’s it!

If you are new to DaVinci Resolve, I’ve written a complete editing guide for beginners here.

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