The Original video resolution is 720:1280 and I want to:

  1. copy the original video, scale to 1080:1080 and blur.
  2. again copy the original video and scale to 608:1080.
  3. Finally move blurred to 1080:1080 box and move second(608:1080) scaled copy above the blurred copy.


  Blurred(Original -> 1080:1080 -> Blur)
  Scaled(Original -> 608:1080)

ffmpeg command:

ffmpeg -i tmpVideo.mp4 -vf -filter_complex \
"split[main][copy]; \
[main]scale=1080:1080[container]; \
[copy]scale=-1:1080,split[content, copy1]; \
[copy1]gblur=sigma=20[blurred]; \
[container][blurred]overlay=0:0[mix]; \
[mix][content]overlay=W/2:0" \

The error I'm getting:

Unable to find a suitable output format for 'split[main][copy]; [main]scale=1080:1080[container]; [copy]scale=-1:1080,split[content, copy1]; [copy1]gblur=sigma=20[blurred]; [container][blurred]overlay=0:0[mix]; [mix][content]overlay=W/2:0'
split[main][copy]; [main]scale=1080:1080[container]; [copy]scale=-1:1080,split[content, copy1]; [copy1]gblur=sigma=20[blurred]; [container][blurred]overlay=0:0[mix]; [mix][content]overlay=W/2:0: Invalid argument

How should I proceed?

  • An edit and an upvote! ;-)
    – Fabby
    May 27 '19 at 9:19

You're missing the input to the filtergraph, for example 0:v. There are other issues though, so this is what works for me:

ffmpeg -i VID_20190619_205627.mp4 -filter_complex \
"[0:v]scale=1080:1080,setdar=1:1,gblur=sigma=20[bg]; \
[0:v]scale=-1:1080[ov]; \
[bg][ov]overlay=(W-w)/2:0[mix]" \
-map [mix] -r 25 out.mp4 -y
  • the first chain of the filtergraph scales the input video to 1080 x 1080, forces the display aspect ratio to 1:1 and blurs the video. This is the background (bg)
  • the second chain takes the input video again and scales it to ? x 1080. This is the video that will be overlaid (ov)
  • the last chain overlays the scaled video (ov) on the blurred background (bg), and produced the output (mix), which is then chosen as the output with -map.

Note that the blurred background is stretched in this way.

Depending on the type of input, you might want to force the frame rate with -r 25 or similar, and to copy the audio track with -map 0:a -c:a copy.


Solved with 5 separated commands:

ffmpeg -i tmpVideo.mp4 scale=1080:1080 container.mp4
ffmpeg -i container.mp4 gblur=sigma=20 blurred.mp4
ffmpeg -i tmpVideo.mp4 scale=-1:1080 content.mp4
ffmpeg -i container.mp4 -i blurred.mp4 -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]overlay=0:0" mix.mp4
ffmpeg -i mix.mp4 -i content.mp4 -filter_complex "[0:v][1:v]overlay=(W-w)/2:0" output.mp4
  • 1
    Are you sure that your first 3 commands are correct without something as -vf?
    – MarianD
    Jun 8 '19 at 5:56

Accepted answer works perfectly, I only needed to change the overlay a bit into overlay=(W-w)/2:(H-h)/2[mix] because the blurry effect appeared at the bottom of the video all the time

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