I hope I can explain this in a way that makes sense:

Using a Nikon D70s I have taken photos with the camera held in the vertical (portrait) orientation -- think of taking a photo of a flagpole.

When the photo (jpg format) is transferred to my computer the image displays horizontal (think flag pole on its side) -- except in some programs, such as paint shop pro that can read the orientation data in the exif.

If I rotate the photo 90 degrees and save it -- it then displays fine (correct orientation -- the flag pole is vertical and looks fine) in all of the viewer programs I've tried.

However, when I transfer it to a digital frame (a nix if that matters) the photo does show in the correct orientation, but it looks as if the photo has been squashed -- or more to the point as if the horizontal and vertical size components are still reversed even though the image has been successfully rotated (and displays fine in viewers on the pc).

I've tried a variety of programs, on the pc and online, to rotate it, to try and erase erroneous exif data, etc., but I cannot get this behavior to go away.

Has anyone encountered this issue and/or know of a possible solution?


Thank you, gentlemen, I believe you're both on the right track. Some time after I wrote my question I stumbled on a solution that is pretty much exactly what you said.

The original images were 3000 wide by 2000 high. Rotating them to the proper orientation gave me 2000 wide by 3000 high. It seems that the frame can handle the 3000 in width, but not when it changes to height. I resized it down to 1000 in height and it displays properly -- since it really doesn't affect the image quality on that display I didn't spend time tracking down exactly what the cutoff was -- somewhere between 1000 and 2000 pixels. For fun when I'm back in my office with the frame I'll check for the suggestion on turning off the fit to frame feature and see if that helps with the original images (though with the reduced size one it doesn't seem to be trying to do that.) Other than that it really does seem to be a decent frame, esp. for the price. I had a piece of software (made web pages to display photos) that exhibited the same behavior. I almost wish I still had a PC running XP so I could see if resizing fixed the problems with it as well.

Thank you both for your helpful and well thought out answers, I greatly appreciate it. Brent

  • \$\begingroup\$ @jrista Actually think that would have been better left as an answer, as answers shouldn't be edited into questions. And although it is a thank you it does contain an answer. (But really no big deal either way.) \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Nov 26, 2012 at 22:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ It does sort of contain an answer. If it is "the" answer, I'd ask that Brent actually answer his own question officially, and appropriately (i.e. without the "thank you" and "I'll try it out" bits), and mark it as the accepted answer when he has the option. \$\endgroup\$
    – jrista
    Nov 26, 2012 at 23:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @jrista And then everyone wins. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Nov 27, 2012 at 1:14

2 Answers 2


I think the answer here is that your picture frame is stretching the image to fill the frame, regardless of aspect ratio. This is obviously terrible behavior and hopefully there is an option to turn it off.

It probably does this in order to prevent complaints about black bars on the sides of the image. One sees the same thing at bars — a fancy wide-screen TV is showing a program filmed in the older 4:3 format, and rather than showing it centered with bars, it's stretched to fill the screen — even though it makes everyone look freakish and squashed.

TVs always have an option to turn this off, and if your frame does not, you should get a new one. If that's not possible, a work around is to make the black frames yourself — generate versions of your images sized for the picture frame and shaped to its native format.


As a alternative to what Matt said, you can make a image just for that frame. This might get around some other problems, such as a less than stellar interpolation or anti-aliasing algorithm in the frame software. If you give it a image sized exactly for the pixels it has, you are pretty much forcing it to display exactly what you intend.

So find what the native resolution of this digital frame is, resize your picture to maximally fit but preserve the aspect ratio, then fill any remaining edges with black. This should display correctly regardless of settings.


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