Epson Projector Aspect Ratio Locked? Here’s How to Change It!

aspect ratio settings on an epson projector is grayed out

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What To Know

  • If an Epson projector’s aspect ratio settings are grayed out, it’s likely because no input device is connected or the projector is in 3D mode.
  • To change the aspect ratio on an Epson projector: Confirm the best aspect ratio for your content > Connect the input device > Press the Menu button > Signal tab >  Aspect > Select the desired aspect ratio.
  • Epson projectors offer various aspect ratios, including Auto, Native, Normal, 4:3, 16:9, Zoom, Full, Anamorphic Wide, and Horiz. Squeeze.

Having trouble with a locked aspect ratio on your Epson projector?

Wondering why you can’t switch between different screen shapes, like the standard 16:9 or the widescreen 21:9? Fear not!

This guide is crafted to unlock the mystery, offering simple methods on how to adjust your projector’s aspect ratio with ease.

Why Do I Need to Change the Aspect Ratio on My Projector?

An image’s aspect ratio is represented by two values: x:y. Here, “x” refers to the width, while “y” refers to the image’s height. Rather than representing a unit of measurement, together, these values represent your screen’s width-to-height ratio. 

So, if your screen’s width is twice its height, then its aspect ratio would be 2:1. If the width and height are the same length, then the aspect ratio would be 1:1. 

While many people may think the aspect ratio determines the screen’s size, it actually determines the screen’s shape instead. 

Most modern content (e.g., movies, TV series, etc.) is filmed and displayed in 16:9. Hence, this is most projectors’ default aspect ratio. 

That said, a lot of popular movies were filmed in the 21:9 aspect ratio, including titles like The Matrix and Blade Runner. Check out IMDB’s list of popular 21:9 movies.

If your movie isn’t fitting the screen properly, the first step to fixing it is confirming its native aspect ratio before adjusting your projector accordingly.

a fire tv stick is being projected by an epson projector with aspect ratio of 4-3

If you’re connecting an external device with a fixed aspect ratio to your projector, change your projector’s aspect ratio to the device’s. For instance, MacBooks have an aspect ratio of 16:10, so you should change your projector’s aspect ratio to 16:10 as well.

However, if your movie has a different aspect ratio than your input device (e.g., laptop) and projector, you should change your projector’s aspect ratio to match the movie. For instance, if your laptop and projector are both set to 16:9, but you want to play a 21:9 movie, change your projector to 21:9. 

Bear in mind that some Epson projectors may not support all aspect ratios, therefore limiting their capacity to adequately display certain movies. Only select models, like those in the Epson PowerLite L Series, can display the 16:10 or 21:9 aspect ratios, while all standard models can only display basic aspect ratios, like 16:9. 

Why Can’t I Change the Aspect Ratio on My Epson Projector?

You commonly won’t be able to change your Epson projector’s aspect ratio because you haven’t connected an input device to it or you’re in 3D mode (page 70 of this manual).

This doesn’t only apply to the aspect ratio settings, as you’ll be unable to change other image settings if your projector doesn’t detect an input source. Since the projector can’t find a source, it has nothing to adjust and will thus gray out any related settings. 

Below are two screenshots from my projector. In the first image, no input device is connected to my projector while the second is after I plugged my Roku Express 4K+ into it.

aspect ratio option before and after plugging a roku player into an epson projector

As you can see, connecting an input device to it “unlocked” the aspect ratio and image settings, allowing me to adjust them. 

This Reddit user was unable to access their Epson projector’s Aspect Ratio settings. However, they found that these settings are greyed out when the unit is in 3D mode. So, exiting from 3D mode will allow you to adjust your projector’s aspect ratio. 

How to Change the Aspect Ratio on My Epson Projector?

Once you’ve correctly connected your input device to your projector, follow the steps below to change its aspect ratio. 

Step 1: Confirm which aspect ratio is best for your input device (e.g., laptop, streaming device, game console) or content (e.g., movie, screen mirroring documents, video game). 

Step 2: Plug your input device into your projector, and if the input doesn’t change automatically, adjust it manually by pressing the Source Search button until it appears on-screen.

source search buttons are highlighted on an epson projector panel and its remote

Step 3: Hit your Epson projector’s Menu button on its control panel or remote. Then, head to the Signal tab. 

Step 4: Go to Aspect, and find and click your desired aspect ratio.

signal menu on an epson projector with a roku plugged into

Note: If you’re having trouble connecting a source device, ensure the cables and ports are working, that all devices are sufficiently powered, and that you’ve selected the correct input/source. 

Epson Projector’s Aspect Ratio Options, Explained

aspect menu on an epson projector

Now that you know how to change your Epson projector’s aspect ratio, let’s learn about what each of these aspect ratios means. 

Auto – Automatically sets your projector’s aspect ratio to match your input source. 

Native – Does not change the aspect ratio or resolution, and shows the original, unaltered image. 

Normal – Uses the source device’s aspect ratio to display the images. 

4:3 – Shows images in the 4:3 aspect ratio. 

16:9 – Shows images in the 16:9 aspect ratio.

Zoom – Enlarges the image to fit the entire projector screen width without adjusting the aspect ratio. If certain areas of the image do not fit the screen, they will simply be cut off. 

Full – Adjusts the aspect ratio to fill the entire screen with the image. 

Anamorphic Wide – Shows images in native 2.40:1 aspect ratio when Overscan setting is turned Off and projector has an anamorphic lens. 

Horiz. Squeeze – Enlarges images to fill the entire projector screen width when the unit has an anamorphic lens.

Wrapping Things Up

Epson projectors support a variety of aspect ratios, depending on their model. A projector’s aspect ratio refers to the screen’s width and height, which determines the image’s shape. 

Usually, changing your projector’s aspect ratio should only take a few moments, but if the unit doesn’t detect an input source or is in the 3D mode, these settings will be grayed out. So, make sure your input source is properly powered and connected to your projector before trying to change these settings again. 

It’s also a good idea to confirm the content’s aspect ratio before adjusting your projector to match it. 

What’s your experience changing an Epson projector’s aspect ratio? Which aspect ratio do you usually use on your projector?

Let us know in the comments below!

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