The VLC media player offers a zoom option known as "Interactive Zoom." The feature allows users to select a portion of the frame to apply a zoom, and to change the zoom's distance. The option can easily go unnoticed as it does not appear on VLC's main controller, nor among the programs video options.
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VLC's zoom function is located in the program's extended controls. These can be found by clicking "Window" in the main tool bar at the top of the screen. This opens the extended controls panel. At the top of this panel is a drop-down menu with the option "Video Filter." Choosing this option displays a box labelled "Interactive Zoom." Click this box to enable the zoom function.
Interactive zoom displays a small window in the upper left-hand corner of the main window. The small window displays the video as far out as the zoom will go. Inside this window is a white box. The portion of the video that is in the box is the portion displayed in the main window.
The two aspects to the zoom controls are focus and distance. The location of the box in the smaller window determines where the zoom is focused. Moving the box changes which portion of the video is visible in the main window. You do this by clicking and dragging the box. Below the box is a triangle below the words, "Zoom Hide." Clicking and dragging the area inside the triangle changes the zoom distance. Dragging up zooms in, while dragging up zooms out. Clicking "Zoom Hide" hides the controls and displays the words "Zoom Show" in the upper left-hand corner. Clicking this displays the controls again.
When you click and drag to operate the zoom controls this can also move the entire video window. This makes the controls difficult to use. Entering fullscreen mode eliminates this issue. To do so choose "Fullscreen" from the options under the "Video" tab in VLC's main toolbar.