7. Slide Layouts for Embedded Video

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To embed video on a slide layout, we use media placeholders. However, the placeholder dimensions will have to conform to the video recording dimensions for this to work correctly.

Lesson Notes

How to use media placeholders

- Media placeholders allow you to embed video files in your presentation
- For this to work correctly, the dimensions of the placeholder must match those of the video
- For a video to fill the slide, the video file must match the dimensions of the slide

Slide, placeholder and video dimensions

- Videos are typically shot in 4:3 or 16:9 (incl. YouTube)
- PowerPoint slide dimensions are typically 4:3
- As a result, it's difficult to show most videos on a full screen slide layout


Media placeholders allow you to insert video and audio files in your presentation, with video being the more common use case, for obvious reasons.

Playing video on a PowerPoint slide all depends on the dimensions of your slide and the dimensions of your video file.

I think video looks best when it takes up the entire slide.

In this new template that I've called Large Video Layout, I'll insert a media placeholder, and I'll make sure it takes up the whole slide.

The presence of the banner is a little confusing, so I'll also fill the placeholder a different color.

That looks much better.

Now I'll close the Master View and test out this placeholder in my presentation.

So I'll create a new slide using the Large Video Layout.

As I mentioned before, inserting video depends on the dimensions of your slide and the dimensions of your video.

To check the dimensions of my slide, I go to the Design tab in the ribbon, and Page Setup.

And this tells me that the on-screen show is 4:3.

4:3 means that the width divided by the height is equal to 4 divided by 3.

Let's start off by inserting a simple 4:3 video on our page.

So I'll click on the media placeholder and I'll select my video file.

Once PowerPoint has inserted the media, I can press Play, and we can see that the video plays perfectly, taking up the full slide.

Problems emerge, however, when I need to insert a video with different dimensions.

So I'll delete my existing video and insert one of my PowerPoint lessons instead, which are shot in 16:9, not 4:3.

And when I insert this video, the image placeholder has changed its shape to fulfill the 16:9 criteria, but unfortunately, my placeholder is no longer taking up the full screen.

To solve this problem, I have a number of different options.

First, I can change the size of the slide to 16:9 if I go to the Design tab in the ribbon and back to the Page Setup.

Here, a 16:9 option exists.

However, this is likely to affect the slides and the templates I've already created, and so isn't a great option.

The alternative is to change the image placeholder size back in my Slide Master to account for this new video format.

The placeholder won't take up the full slide, which I want to keep in the 4:3 aspect ratio, but it will look much better than the current layout.

So I'll return to the Slide Master and change the size of this image placeholder.

I'll start by decreasing its height and then deciding on a width that I think is suitable.

To make sure this is positioned correctly, I'll include the gridlines and the guides again.

And once I'm happy with its position, I'll make sure the dimensions are in 16:9.

I first need to check the size of the placeholder, so I'll right click and go to Size and Position, and take a note of the width as 24.4 centimeters.

Off-camera, I divided 24.4 by 16 and multiplied it by 9 to find the correct height, and this is 13.725.

When I close, I now have an image placeholder that will fit my 16:9 image perfectly.

I'll now close the Slide Master, delete the old template, and insert a new one.

And again, I'll insert my video file and remove the guides and gridlines before pressing Play on the video.

Although this layout doesn't fill the whole slide as I wished initially, it does represent a practical solution for matching different slide and video dimensions.