Aspect Ratio for Print

print aspect ratio

One of the big challenges of digital imaging is aspect ratio & cropping. Not only are there thousands of ways to take a photo, but all hardware is not created equal. You may not even know what aspect ratio your camera is shooting in? 3:2 or 4:3?

What is the aspect ratio of a 4×6 print?

  • The aspect ratio of a 4×6 print is 3:2
  • The aspect ratio of a 5×7 print is 7:5
  • The aspect ratio of an 8×10 print is 5:4

3:2 is the aspect ratio of 35mm film cameras, and that has carried over to most DSLRs. Compact digital cameras and smartphones use the 4:3 aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio is expressed as two numbers separated by a colon (x:y). A common misunderstanding is that x and y represent actual length and height. This is false; they actually represent the relation between width and height.

Here, we provide a quick cheat sheet of common print sizes, the pixels needed for a sharp print and the aspect ratio for a full frame print.
If your photo was taken at a 3:2 ratio, you won’t need to crop a 4×6 print.

Aspect Ratio Cheat Sheet

Aspect ratio & cropping can change the entire composition of a photo and more importantly the print. If you’re unsure of your final print size, we always recommend to shoot “wide” leaving plenty of empty space around the subject giving you more options to crop to the print size needed.

Don’t panic! Upload your photos as they are, choose your print size and our Persnickety Prints software will help you crop to fit.

Pressed on time? Choose the “auto” crop feature and let us do the cropping for you. Certified lab techs look at every single image before and after it is printed to ensure heads and toes stay in the photo. If the aspect ratio is impossible to fit the full frame image, we can add white on 2 sides. We’ll always contact you if we feel necessary.

Read more about Aspect Ratio on our website:

Aspect Ratio on iPhone



iPhone (iOS 12) does not offer an option to change the aspect ratio when taking a photo. The ratio is set at the standard 4:3 ratio.



Your camera aspect ratio might be set to 9:16, this is great for wide format video … not standard prints. You may find a large amount of cropping when shooting with the 9:16 wide angle or “full” setting. Keep it at 4:3 ratio.