The Best Instagram Video Format You Should Use

best instagram video format

Instagram started off as a photo app, but has evolved into a much more advanced platform and now includes video content in the form of Instagram stories, Instagram posts, Instagram ads, and long form video content on IGTV.

With the increase in video popularity on the platform, individuals and brands are quickly learning the ins and out of video and video optimization on Instagram to better their content and engagement. One common question we’ve seen asked is what Instagram video format is most ideal for the platform?

I’ve outlined the best Instagram video format that everyone should use, ways that you can increase video quality, and I showcase some examples of the best Instagram videos on the platform.

Bonus: Creating graphics for Instagram? Try our graphic design tool and access hundreds of free Instagram templates!

What Is the Best Instagram Video Format You Should Use?

The best Instagram video format is MP4. The MP4 video file format should include these technical specifications:

  • H.264 Codec
  • AAC Audio
  • 3 500 kbps bitrate for video
  • Frame rate of 30 fps (frames per second)
  • Maximum file size of 15 mb
  • Video must be a maximum of 60 seconds
  • Maximum video width is 1080 px (pixels) wide

The Best Instagram Video Dimensions and Size

The best Instagram video dimensions you should use are 864 pixels (width) by 1080 pixels (height) amount with an aspect ratio of 4:5.

These dimensions and aspect ratio help are optimized to give you more screen real estate for your followers. Wide screen videos might look great on YouTube or Facebook, but on Instagram where most users are on mobile. It makes sense to maximize the vertical dimensions of a phone.

How to Increase Video Quality on Instagram

Instagram video isn’t easy to work with. Instagram has made it known that if you are looking to achieve the highest quality of video on the platform, you will need to optimize the Instagram video perfectly before posting. Some things to consider when posting videos on Instagram:

  • Connect to WIFI when posting on Instagram
  • Make sure you are using the right video dimensions
  • Transfer your video file through Google Drive or Apple Airdrop
  • Record your videos with the best quality camera available
  • Edit your videos with the proper settings in mind

Some methods of file transfer actually compress video to help optimize the file move, but this ends up killing the quality of your video by the time it gets posted from your phone. To make sure that you are uploading the highest possible quality video on Instagram, you will need to:  use the best camera you have, upload on a solid internet connection, and use the right video settings.

Examples of the Best Instagram Videos

When you get the best Instagram video format with the right settings, you can upload flawless videos for your followers. I’ve compiled some of the best filmmakers on Instagram and display some of the best videos I’ve seen posted on Instagram in various video formats.

1. Sam Kolder

A post shared by Sam kølder (@sam_kolder) on

2. Matt Komo

A post shared by MATT KOMO (@mattjkomo) on


3. Sam Evans

A post shared by sam evans – 🇦🇺 content creator (@samevanslife) on


4. Andy To


Yes, some of these videos might have been taking from very expensive professional cameras, but the video from Andy To was actually taken from an iPhone and the video quality on Instagram was very comparable to the other videos I showcased. What you can see from these Instagram video creators is that they use the 4:5 aspect ratio because they are looking to get the most screen real estate possible.

About the author: Nick Le is the marketing manager at Snappa. He has published several articles relating to social media marketing.

  • OrbisTravelAssistance July 27, 2018, 12:22 pm

    Hi there, we the users need video templates, as there are in some other vendors. I am your client, but that future is really needed. I wrote to you guys about it long time ago, send some examples that rather not bring here out of respect for you, but got no answer. Are you planning to have it in the near future? thanks.

  • Adam Mathews September 14, 2018, 7:49 am

    Instagram is the most visual social media platform available as of now. Thanks for sharing the video format. They will be of great help for us fellow digital marketers.

  • Wilda Jones September 18, 2018, 6:00 am

    Thanks for sharing such a great informative post it really helpful and amazing so keep it up and all the best.

  • Alexandru Stefan November 6, 2018, 10:47 am

    I tried out the resolution suggested for videos (864×1080) and it still chopped the top and bottom of my video to make it a square format. Same deal with a 1920×1080 clip. Viewed on iPhone 7. ~Nov.6.2018

  • Emily Rock November 9, 2018, 9:19 am

    Interesting examples. Really good ones

  • Channa Kumara November 16, 2018, 10:10 am

    Really helpful …. thanks

  • Shaymaa Gaafar November 26, 2018, 4:55 pm

    This is very helpful. Thank you so much. I have my video in MP3 format.It has some animated text over a fixed background. When I posted it to the instagram stories, the text became less sharp than it was in the original video. Can you advise in this?

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:19 pm

    Hey Shaymaa,

    Is it just your text that isn;t sharp or is the background not sharp as well? It is possible that the uploaded text isn’t up to scale in resolution.

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:19 pm

    Glad it helped! Thanks for stopping by!

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:19 pm

    Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:21 pm

    Thanks for the kind words Wilda! Cheers!

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:21 pm

    I agree! Thanks for stopping by Adam!

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:23 pm

    How are you transferring the video to upload on your phone Alex? Some forms of file transfer can cause for the video to compress and lose quality. I would try airdropping the file via a Mac system and seeing if the problem persists.

  • Nick Le December 14, 2018, 1:24 pm

    Hi there,

    Thanks for writing to us and I agree, the future is definitely moving towards video. Right now we’re focused on bringing the best visual graphics and although we have no immediate plans, video templates cannot be ruled out for the future.

    Cheers!

  • Ty Sherrell February 15, 2019, 1:01 pm

    same happening to me and i airdropped the file to my phone

  • Fredjuel Francis April 9, 2019, 1:43 am

    The video after editing was very nice but while uploading it looses its quality.How to upload in maximum quality??

  • Nick Le April 23, 2019, 2:48 pm

    Hi there, how big of a file was your video when you tried uploading it? The key is to have a smaller file size while maintaining the proper dimensions so that Instagram isn’t compressing the video file down to it’s maximum 15mb file size.

  • 97krypton April 24, 2019, 12:36 am

    Hi, i upload video games “Fortnite” and when i post it the quality be to much low
    “i cant even read the text in the game “,
    i use adobe premiere pro but i dont know which sequence and export should i do, can you please help me

  • mothaway April 30, 2019, 3:49 pm

    Does a video HAVE to be a square? I’m trying to upload a video I took with my phone, but it won’t allow me to select it. At first I thought the filesize was too big, so I’ve subsequently reencoded it, but I’ve had no luck uploading that, either. I know many people seem to enjoy instagram, but I’ve only ever found it to be needlessly complicated in getting from point a to point b — especially since it’s all but impossible to upload from desktop.

    I’ve basically given up on trying to upload my file.

  • Nick Le May 6, 2019, 2:28 pm

    Hi there, your video doesn’t need to be a square. If you took a vertical video from your phone then you won’t be able to upload the 9:16 aspect ratio, but you can crop the top or bottom of the video for an aspect ratio of 4:5. The dimensions you should be using are 864 x 1080 pixels and from there you can upload it to use in Instagram.

  • Alan R. May 13, 2019, 7:43 am

    This is very useful info since Instagram user interface is so bad and not user friendly that children in kindergarten could design better one.

  • Alan R. May 13, 2019, 7:46 am

    No matter what you do, instagram will recompress your video anyway (Like Youtube). Just stick to the 864 pixels (width) by 1080 pixels (height) H264 High profile.

  • Philip Cavaco May 14, 2019, 6:33 pm

    Hi! How does this compare to 1080×1350? I have seen that dimension used quite often. It should be a higher resolution I would think?

  • Nick Le May 16, 2019, 4:19 pm

    Thanks Alan! Glad you’re finding the post useful! Hopefully Instagram optimizes the user interface in the near future.

  • J July 16, 2019, 9:36 am

    If I use Mail to transfer an edit to my phone does that ruin the quality?