Change the Default Aspect Ratio in PowerPoint 2013

PowerPoint 2013 was introduced with a new default Aspect Ratio 16:9 compared with the previous versions of MS PowerPoint. It was not new the ability to change aspect ratio in PowerPoint, you can do this from the Design -> Page Setup menu option or Slide Size in the new version. However, in PowerPoint 2013 the aspect ratio is set by default to 16:9 widescreen format instead of the normal 4:3 aspect ratio.

Even if the blank presentation starts with the widescreen 16:9 format, you can always change back to 4:3 or any other desired page format. But if you normally create presentations in 4:3 then you may be interested to setup the old 4:3 aspect ratio by default when the new blank presentation is created.

Set 4:3 aspect ratio as the default size for your PowerPoint slides

In order to use the 4:3 aspect ratio you can change it following the steps below:

  1. Go to Design tab and then Slide Size. Here click 4:3 aspect ratio. You can Maximize or Ensure Fit. Maximize will try to keep the size of your content but will cut the left and right borders. While Ensure Fit will make sure that everything in the slide is shown.
  2. Once you have changed the size from widescreen to standard, then go to Design -> Themes and click on the popup. Then choose Save Current Theme. You will see the Theme saved in the themes gallery, but now right click over the saved theme and choose Set as Default.
  3. This will make the selected theme to appears as default when you open a new PowerPoint presentation, keeping the standard size instead of the new default size.

You can also learn more about this in the Microsoft Office help, here, or check some of our other articles explaining how to change slide size or slide orientation in PowerPoint 2013, which may be useful if you want to create infographics for Pinterest using PowerPoint.

Also you should be aware that modern presentations and projectors support widescreen formats and Microsoft have studied this using user testing and many other UI approaches before launching Microsoft PowerPoint 2013 and make this sensitive change that may affect thousands of users. Nowadays, most templates in new modern websites that offers PowerPoint presentation templates  let you download PowerPoint templates in widescreen format, like this PowerPoint timeline template from – Even at FPPT we have free widescreen PowerPoint templates and widescreen slide designs that you can use in your own presentations.

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