Here is the dilemma that I had to face a few months ago – my digital camera captures pictures only in the 16:9 aspect ratio, but my color printer prints photos only on a 4″ x 6″ glossy page. The photographs, that my printer was printing out, had white space left-out unprinted on sides because of the unmatched aspect ratio. Then I discovered JPEGCrops – a freeware program that can crop your JPEG images losslessly (without losing any fine details) to fit on a certain aspect ratio.
You can download JPEGCrops from Toke Eskildsen, the programmer of the application. The downloaded file is a ZIP archive containing the portable application. Being a fully portable application, it does not require any installation. You can extract the contents of the ZIP archive to a folder and double-click on JPEGCrops.exe to run it.
First of all you have to open JPEG images by clicking on the Open Images button. You can select more than one image. All the images you select are displayed in a listview. You can choose a cropping area from the drop-down list. You can rotate the image clock-wise or counter-clock-wise. You can also flip aspect ratio to display the image either in the landscape or portrait mode.
The cropping area can be shown in many different visual styles like box, gray, fade, black, gray edge, black edge, fade edge etc. You can select these visual styles from the menubar by selecting View → Look and selecting one of the styles. You can drag the crop area around or resize it by dragging it by corner. When you are satisfied with the crop, you can click on the Crop button to crop the selected image.
If all the images are of same size and orientation, then you can apply the same crop as you selected on the currently selected image, by synchronizing the crops. This can be done from the menubar by selecting Edit → Synchronize Crops. This way you do not have to adjust the crop area for all the images but only for the currently selected image. To apply the crops to all the images, you can then click on the Crop all images button.
You can open JPEGCrops settings by selecting File → Preferences from the menubar. By default, it shows only the settings related to aspect ratios. But you can select the checkbox labeled Advanced Settings to view other options. In the settings, you can add aspect ratios, set a default aspect ratio, choose to retain EXIT, JFIF or other type of metadata, choose default cropping visual style, choose the rotation and cropping methods and more.
Though there are many free image editors available like IrfanView, XnView etc., but they lose the image data when you try to resize JPEG images with them. The free program JPEGCrops can rotate, resize and crop your JPEG images to fit a certain aspect ratio without losing any detail and quality of the original pictures.
You can download JPEGCrops from http://ekot.dk/programmer/JPEGCrops/.