Camtasia recording comes out looking like 4:3 instead of 16:9 slides and editing in 16:9

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Problem with dimensions - I set my Powerpoint slides to 16:9 and I set editing  at 16:9 and yet the Camtasia recording comes out looking like it's 4:3 - why is that? Can anyone help solve this problem?  Is there any way to have the slide fill the whole screen without the black around it?  I'm doing online courses and the reviewers are complaining that they see my videos as 4:3 yet, when I check, everything was done in 16:9.  They say it's because of the black border that Camtasia records - how can I get rid of that black border and have the slides consume the screen?
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Posted 5 years ago

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Josh Holnagel, Employee

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Hello,

In your courses, are the black bars above and below your slides, or to the left and right? If they are above and below, it could be that the player in your course is set to 4:3. Or, if you're embedding the video, that the embed code is setting the player to 4:3.

Are you hosting your videos on YouTube, Screencast.com, or a similar site? Or are you uploading the video file directly to your course? 

Hopefully we can get this figured out.  
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Hi, Josh,

Thanks for your reply.  I'm posting on Udemy and the reviewers there complain they are seeing my Camtasia videos in 4:3 but everything I use is 16:9 - Powerpoint and edit in Camtasia.  The black is all around so my powerpoint comes out looking small compared to the Udemy screen.  Other instructors' screen fill up the middle of the Udemy screen - mine is sitting there like someone shrunk it. 

I don't know what to do - I'd like the best for the people who take my courses but I have no idea how to make my Camtasia recording come out right.
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Josh Holnagel, Employee

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I'm not too familiar with uploading and hosting videos on Udemy, but I did notice their site recommends posting videos that are 1280 x 720 (aka 720p). Do you know your exact video dimensions? My next guess would be that maybe your video is too small?

If your editing dimensions are indeed 1280 x 720, the next step would be to make sure your slide recording fills the entire canvas. See this screenshot:

(Click the thumbnail to enlarge.)

If all of this is old news to you, then I apologize. There may be something happening either at production or during recording that is causing the odd behavior.

-Josh 
(Edited)
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Thanks, again, Josh - maybe you've just given me the answer.  I did use those editing dimensions but I didn't use the sizing handle on the recording and drag it out to the corners of the canvas - I didn't know to do that so maybe that's why I'm getting all the black around my Powerpoint presentation as your picture shows here.  That's what I get in Camtasia and that's what appears in Udemy too.  Details, details, details - I had no idea I was supposed to extend the recording edges. 

I'm glad you are on Techsmith helping people out.  What does an Instructional designer do?  I hope you don't mind me asking - I'm curious -
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I just did a test, Josh but I don't have any "sizing handles" to grab on to and resize.  Is there another trick to get the sizing handles to show up?
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Josh Holnagel, Employee

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So sorry for the delayed reply! Not sure if you figured this out yet, but clicking on the actual recording (either in the canvas or on the timeline) should bring up the re-sizing handles.

This video tutorial (4:05) may help you become more familiar with working on the canvas:
http://www.techsmith.com/tutorial-camtasia-8-canvas-in-depth.html

Coincidentally, instructional designers at TechSmith spend a lot of their time creating and maintaining the videos tutorials on our website. (And we try and help our users in forums like this when we can.)

If you're not familiar, there are quite a few Camtasia Studio tutorials here:
http://www.techsmith.com/tutorial-camtasia-8.html

I hope that helps.
-Josh

 


 
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Thanks, Josh.  I've been all over the internet including these videos by Techsmith but haven't been able to find an answer to finding the resizing handles.

I played around with it today.  I couldn't get the re-sizing handles to come up no matter what I did so I did something else.

I changed recording dimensions to more pixels for the editing - 1280 x 1024.  From the Techsmith recordings, I changed video to bitrate from quality and set it at 1664.  When I produced the video, I set the video dimensions to what Udemy wanted 1280x720 and when I rendered the video, it worked. 

I know because I uploaded one to my course to see how it looked and sounded.  There was a little distortion at first but that disappeared when I had reset to bitrate.  My problem is that I have no idea what all this stuff means so the things I do are really "wild stabs" at fixing my problems.

Without the ability to find the handles on the editing canvas, I suppose this is okay.  There's still a little distortion in the very small print but not enough to detract from the quality. 

I'll use this until I can find a better solution.

Thanks for all your help today.  You've been really great! 
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healingtoolbox

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Hmm, I have this problem too and handles are not the answer.  In Josh's screen shot, the Camtasia canvas shape is clearly 16x9.  On my Cam 2 for mac, when screensize is set at any 16x9 ratio THE SCREEN SIZE REMAINS 4X3.  See screenshot.  If others are having this problem, this may be why the black bars and screen size question gets asked 1000 times endlessly.  Please address:  WHEN YOUR CAMTASIA SCREEN IS SET TO 16X9 BUT DISPLAYS AS 4X3.  See screenshot.  Thanks for all teh great customer support.
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Josh Holnagel, Employee

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Hello.

I am pretty sure that you're just zoomed in so far on your canvas that you're not seeing the rest of the gray area.

After you make your canvas 1920x1080, can you then try clicking on this menu...



...and changing the zoom percentage to 50% or maybe even 25%? Then, I'm guessing you'll see a light grey canvas surrounding your slides.

-Josh   
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healingtoolbox

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Yes, this is correct, Josh.  My recall is this crucial piece of info is not in the video tutorials and may be causing a large fraction of ongoing confusion about black bars and unexpected ratio results.  Keep up teh wonderful work.
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healingtoolbox

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In above you can see numbers are 16x9 but gray screen area remains 4x3 or something else. Color slide is 16x9
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healingtoolbox

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healingtoolbox

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This result was obtained by scaling the screen of every image on Cam for mac 2 to a known good 16x9 ratio slide.  Like I say, for people still confused on this, the staff has yet to address why on some systems at least, the numbers are 16x9 ratio but the screen shape does not display a 16x9 shape, not even close, not even any idea of the shape.  I look forward to upgrading my Cam for Mac in next couple months.