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4:3 Ratio
3:2 Ratio
While it may not seem all that important what aspect ratio your camera produces, it can have an impact on your digital photo prints.
What happens when the aspect ratio of the photo produced by your digital camera does not match the aspect ratio of the print? What happens when you print an image that is 3:2 in the 8x10 print size? Your image gets cropped to fit the aspect ratio of the print.
That's quite a bit of the original image that gets lost! If you send off the original 3:2 photo to get printed, what you get back is the cropped version. That's a big surprise when you were expecting to see more of your original photograph in the print.
Original 3:2 Image
8x10 Print (with crop area)
When the aspect ratio of your camera does not match the ratio of the print, crop the image yourself before you send it to be printed. If you don't do this, it will be up to the printer to decide how much of the image to keep and how much to crop. When you pre-crop the image to the correct aspect ratio, you ensure that important parts of your photo don't get chopped off. When taken a picture leave room around the sides for croping.
Another way is to just order your prints to a 3:2 ratio, this is what I do. Instead of ordering an 8x10 or a 11x14, I order an 8x12 or a 12x18 print. Remember if you are going to frame the print you will have to buy a frame that is a 3:2 ratio also.











Understanding Aspect Ratios

Aspect ratio has a technical name, but it's really pretty straighforward. It can be tricky getting your photos set to the right aspect ratios to print properly, more on that later.
The aspect ratio of a digital photograph is the relationship between the width and height of the photograph. There are two common aspect ratios produced by digital cameras: 3:2 and 4:3.
The number before the colon represents the width of the image and the number after is the height. Both numbers represent a relationship, not a specific measurement.
Let's say that I have an image with a 3:2 aspect ratio. The actual size of this image in pixels can be 300 x 200, 600 x 400 or 1350 x 900. So long as the relationship between the width and the height is always 3 to 2, the aspect ratio does not change even though the size of the image does.
Now let's consider an image with a 4:3 aspect ratio. The horizontal and vertical size of this image in pixels can be 400 x 300, 800 x 600 or 1800 x 1350.