Video production is all time high thanks to the craze of video blogging (Vlogging) and high-end cameras present in smartphones nowadays. During the process of this mass video documentation by people, somehow the smartphones are not so smart when it comes to intelligently orienting the videos that are being recorded. They use accelerometer to rotate and adjust screen angles which in turn also effects the video recording.

Normal vs rotated vlc


As the screens of most people’s phones are set to auto-rotate, the video turns out vertically flipped or squared when played back on the phone or PC. Weirdly, in some cases, if you hold the phone horizontally the video turns out vertical which can be frustrating at times.

In this mini-tutorial, we’ll show you how to rotate the playing videos in Windows 10.

Step 1: Download and Install VLC Media Player

VLC is the crowned king of multimedia files playback. It’s the most versatile media player can play almost any audio or video file extension that exists. Not only it can play, but it can also convert/stream/save videos played from Internet or Local network.

VLC Media Player Installer

Head over to the official website and click “Download VLC“, save the file and run the installer. Click next couple of times and wait for it to show finish button.

Installing VLC Player

Step 2: Play the Video File using VLC

VLC video mp4 iconVLC Player by design associates itself to the common media file types as such as .mp4, .mp3, mkv, .flv. You will see a small traffic cone (vlc icon) on the right bottom corner of your video thumbnails indicating it. Open the video file and VLC will play it right away. If the video is still running from Photos app, type “Default apps” in Start Menu and add VLC to the Video player by clicking the “Choose a default” square button.

Step 3: Rotate the Video File using VLC Tools

After playing the video file, pause the video and right-click anywhere in the video. Go to Tools > Effects and Filters. Or just simply press CTRL+E combination. This will open “Adjustments and Effects” panel.

VLC Effects and Filters

Now go to Video Effects > Geometry  and click the ‘Transform‘ checkbox. The moment you click it, the video will rotate by 90 degrees.

VLC Video Transform Rotate

The transform filter in VLC supports the following settings:

  • Rotate by 90 Degrees, 180 degrees and 270 degrees
  • Flip Vertically
  • Flip Horizontally
  • Transpose
  • Anti-transpose

Usually, you only need to rotate the video by 90 degrees and you’re done.

Note: The above settings you perform will only work temporarily. The file on your present on your hard-drive will not be changed. To permanently change the video orientation, you must re-render/convert after applying the rotation to the video which can also be done using VLC.

Step 4: How to Permanently Rotate and Convert Video using VLC [Advanced]

The rotation we performed in Step #3 will hold temporarily and is not a permanent solution. If you want to share videos to other people, it is wise to convert (Transcode) the video using VLC so rotation properties are hard-coded into the media file.

How to convert video and maintain the video rotation in VLC

• Play the video file and apply rotation to video. Go to [Tools > Effects and Filters > Video Settings > Geometry >  Transform ✓]  – Refer to Step #3

VLC Preferences

• Open Tools > Preferences > Show Settings (ALL) 

VLC All Settings

• Type ‘Transcode’ in search bar. Or you can select it manually from left list [Stream Output > Sout Stream > Transcode]

VLC Video Transformation Filter

• In Transcode config page, check Video Transformation Filter and click Save to close the preferences.

• From Menu bar, Go to Media > Convert / Save or press CTRL+R

VLC Convert Save

• On Select the Video File you want to rotate/convert using +Add button.

VLC Convert Video

• Click Convert / Save

• On Convert Dialog Box, select the output file destination by clicking Browse. Enter the location and type any file name.

VLC Convert Destination File

Tip: On convert window, you can select different video codecs. If you want a lower filesize after conversion, select Video – H.265 + MP3 (MP4) profile.

• Finally, click Start on the Convert dialog box and then click Play button on video player. Wait for the VLC to complete process. Don’t close the Window. VLC player will show a blue progress bar. The process will take time depending on the video length and how powerful your PC is.

VLC Converting File Process

• Once the process is complete, open the output file you saved in previous step. Congrats! your video is rotated permanently.



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