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IGTV - The Nitty Gritty Details

Hey! Welcome to the first ever Instagram Guru Blog post! I've been getting a lot of questions about IGTV and how to shoot videos for it, so I decided to break it down for you right here and right now!

IGTV Technical Specifications

First, we need to know the technical specs of IGTV before we can decide how to shoot and edit content for it. The video format has to be MP4 (you can't upload any other video format to Instagram). You have to shoot vertical a.k.a. portrait, but we will talk all about that in a second.

The length (currently) is 15 seconds - 10 minutes for smaller accounts and 15 seconds-1 hour for larger\verified accounts. Over time all accounts will be able to upload 1 hour videos (the time restriction is temporary as Instagram rolls out this feature and tests out all the bugs).

The size of the file has to be up to 650MB for any video that is shorter than 10 minutes and up to 3.6GB for any video up to an hour. You can set these file sizes in your post production editing software or just shoot directly on your phone (the size will usually remain within the limited file size).

How To Film Vertical\Portrait Clips For IGTV

There are 3 ways you can do this to get a vertical video that has an aspect ratio between 4:5 and 9:16 (which is what IGTV requires). The first one is the most difficult (and least recommended but some people just prefer it so I wanted to address it and explain why).

1) Shoot horizontal video and edit it to fit IGTV vertical specs- essentially, you shoot a horizontal video on your camera\phone and edit the aspect ratio afterward on iMovie or FinalCutPro. This is pretty difficult because you're essentially cropping out the left and right side of the video when you convert from horizontal to vertical and are left with only the center part of your film.

The only reason that this might be something to consider is because shooting horizontally and then cropping it to fit vertical footage may result in higher quality videos, particularly when you're filming on a 4K camera.

2) Film vertical videos on your phone: This is my prefered method because the majority of smartphones have a screen aspect ratio of 16:9 (currently) so it's easier to just film your IGTV video on your phone while holding it up vertically. That way you just record and upload!

3) Film vertical video on your camera- Turn your camera so it shoots vertical instead of horizontal. Simple enough. But keep in mind that most cameras use an aspect ratio of 3:2 so even if you film a vertical video, you may still have to edit the aspect ratio afterwards in FinalCutPro or iMovie.

Instagram spent millions of dollars developing IGTV and they want you to use it! It’s a great tool for giving your audience a behind the scenes peak of your life or showcasing important topics on your page.

Can’t wait to see your IGTV clips!


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