Support from FASE's Education Technology Office

Set your presentation slide size to a widescreen (16:9) aspect ratio

Updated Jun 05, 2019

In order to create optimal video content, you need to consider how it will be watched after production. Typically, projectors operate at a 4:3 ratio (though this is changing), so the default slide size reflects this ratio. However, most video playback devices are now in a widescreen format, which is a 16:9 ratio. In general, we recommend using the 16:9 ratio for video production.

In this guide:

  1. Examples of different content production ratios on different devices
  2. 4:3 Ratio vs 16:9 Ratio in Powerpoint
  3. How to change your slide ratio

Examples of different content production ratios on different devices

4:3 Ratio vs 16:9 Ratio in Powerpoint

Powerpoint Tip: Set your ratio

How to Change your Display Ratio

You can make Powerpoint work for you, instead of against you. The default ratio for a Powerpoint presentation is 4:3. However, the default ratio of widescreen video is 16:9. (You can see how the outline is shaped more like a square in the 4:3 example versus the more rectangle in the 16:9 ratio example.

Change your slide size at the beginning - you can do it at any time, but changing it once content has been created and designed can be finicky and time consuming.

Powerpoint: How to Change your Display Ratio
  1. Make sure you are on the Design tab.
  2. Select on the "Page Set Up" button.
  3. Use the drop down "Slides sized for:" to change your ratio from the default (4:3) to widescreen (16:9).
  4. Scroll for the 16:9 option.
  5. Select on okay.

Your slide should change sizes based on your selection.

You can easily switch back and forth depending on what your task and goals are - however, this bears some testing as templates and images can stretch unexpectedly.

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