We have a finished magazine which was designed to A4 paper size but I need to have printed in the U.S. The magazine is in Adobe PDF. Conversion distorts the aspect ratio of all the pages. How can I get the A4 designed magazine printed to letter size standards without having to re-design the entire mag.

  • 2
    A4 and letter are different aspect ratios. You're going to have to make some sort of edits. Can you post a sample page? Since A4 is taller than letter, I'd be looking at compressing paragraph spacing as a way of reworking your spreads.
    – Geoff Ball
    Commented Jan 14, 2017 at 23:53
  • Thank you for your thoughts, Geoff. The magazine was designed by someone on a European publishing web site that used a standard template. So no way to re-lay it out. But thanks so much!
    – Bill Behr
    Commented Jan 15, 2017 at 16:53
  • The only way to do this without redesigning the entire document is to shrink the contents proportionally to fit the height, and acquiesce to having wide margins. As Geoff Ball pointed out, the aspect ratio is different. You can't fit a square peg into a round hole without something giving somewhere.
    – 13ruce
    Commented Oct 12, 2017 at 12:00

3 Answers 3


"Printed on the US" does not mean that you can not print a magazine of other sizes.

You can print a magazine of whatever size you want, for example a mega Magazine of 50x70 cm. or a tiny one of 10x10cm.

There are a lot of "standard" papers, for example 61x90cm or 70x95cm.

Your a4 magazine can easily be printed in thoose papers.

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So you can print that in US or almost any part of the world.

The question is, is A4 a terrible size for your magazine? For example, the case that you have a long tradition of a magazine Letter size? or the A4 size can give you an "European look" that is interesting?

If you need really to convert the magazine you need the source files and reformat manually.


For quality output, there's no way around a rework of the piece. You don't need to "redesign" the entire thing, but it will require manual adjustment of the layouts.

There's no shortcut if you want good output for both sizes.


I don't know if you're thinking about reflowing text and everything? In that case you should try to get a hold in the original layout document.

A hotfix could be a combination of resizing and adding equal margins on the sides, and maybe packing things a little bit more in the vertical direction. Might turn out fairly ok.

  • Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Since this was designed on a publishing web site using their standard template, there is no way to redesign the pages. But thanks so much! Probably just need to find a U.S. printer that can print to A4 paper size.
    – Bill Behr
    Commented Jan 15, 2017 at 16:53
  • @BillBehr yes indeed any printer than can not do a A4 size is not really a printer but a copy shop.
    – joojaa
    Commented Mar 16, 2017 at 13:34

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