54

Long story short, I have to do a presentation in PowerPoint, I want to be able to insert LaTeX equations as images (possibly png) with transparent background.

Normally I have found the MS office equation editor adequate for simple presentations, but this time I seem to be unable to get the effect I want with the particular font I want (probably because Powerpoint's font support is abysmal).

I'm looking for a way to do this quickly and efficiently. I know I can use something like the standalone class, but I'm looking for a more efficient way, if it exist. Something that allows me to generate equations and copy them on the fly without the hassle of a regular tex document.

I found this website that does almost what I want: https://www.codecogs.com/latex/eqneditor.php but unfortunately it does not give enough control over the choice of font and color.

Any suggestions?

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  • 4
    "best" is somewhat subjective and not a good fit for this site. "quickest" depends heavily on your prior knowledge and current computer setup. But getting an image of an equation with a particular font into Powerpoint probably does point to the standalone class. If you had more time, it may be simpler to use the beamer class instead of Powerpoint altogether, but learning beamer probably wouldn't qualify as "quick".
    – Teepeemm
    Commented Jul 5, 2019 at 22:10
  • I'm familiar with beamer, but unfortunately I HAVE to use powerpoint, for multiple reasons, one of which being collaboration. I think I found a solution, but I'm researching it a bit further before I updated my post.
    – johnymm
    Commented Jul 5, 2019 at 22:16
  • I recommend my answer to the following post. It uses one text file where each line is an equation. Then an Asymptote script reads that file and creates a PNG for each equation. I'm not sure if Asymptote can make a transparent background, but if not you could simply include a call to ImageMagick in the script to achieve the transparency. tex.stackexchange.com/questions/287481
    – James
    Commented Jul 6, 2019 at 1:36
  • 1
    @johnymm I will use IguanaTex (it is free) jonathanleroux.org/software/iguanatex
    – Sebastiano
    Commented Jul 6, 2019 at 10:08
  • @Sebastiano Looks interesting as it can integrate with powerpoint. Does it allow to modify the preamble in order to control fonts, colors, etc. ?
    – johnymm
    Commented Jul 7, 2019 at 13:35

11 Answers 11

29

Microsoft Word supports inserting LaTex code. You can then copy and paste from Word to PowerPoint.

  1. Open Equation Editor (Alt + =), and select the {}LaTeX option,
  2. Paste (as text) your LaTeX code. ( e.g.: MSE = \frac{1}{K}\sum_{k=1}^{K} (d_k - \hat{d}_k)^2)
  3. Hit Enter

A few LaTeX tags (like \textrm) are not supported by Word; some manual editing might be needed.

MS Word Latex input screenshot

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  • 6
    This now has native support within PowerPoint. No need to copy from Word. Commented Oct 5, 2021 at 5:12
  • 7
    @MohitLamba I couldn't make it work on PowerPoint, I only have the "$e^x$ Professional" option and it doesn't seem to work. Any idea why?
    – sam wolfe
    Commented Oct 27, 2021 at 14:42
  • @samwolfe the professional seems to work for me when I type latex. Ket and bra are only langle and rangle but it is usable
    – user206904
    Commented Nov 27, 2021 at 21:11
  • 1
    Question is on Powerpoint and not on Word Commented Aug 16, 2022 at 23:51
  • @PaulErlenmeyer You can convert the equation in Word then copy-paste into PowerPoint. Unfortunately like Sam, I do not see the option to convert in PowerPoint.
    – xngtng
    Commented Feb 5, 2023 at 23:02
26

I can highly recommend http://www.jonathanleroux.org/software/iguanatex/

It requires a LaTeX installation but works great, including editing in PowerPoint and support of vector graphics.

There is an updated version from end of 2020

Edit: IguanaTex is now on GitHub: https://github.com/Jonathan-LeRoux/IguanaTex

Latest version seems to be 1.60.2, released August 2022. So it's still alive and I'm still using it successfully.

enter image description here

13

Mac users: the MacTex distribution comes with a software called LaTeXIt. You enter LaTeX code (equations, TikZ, tables, whatever) and compile it to an image (png, pdf, etc) you can copy onto a slide. Works great.

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  • 2
    Still sort of a way around. I just noticed keynote allows you to type latex in the equation window. Great! You can edit it later as well. I'm converting my pptx to keynote as we speak...
    – dorien
    Commented Apr 22, 2020 at 2:49
  • 1
    LaTeXIt on macOS also supports linkback. This means that in those applications that also support linkback, you (double) click on the image to return to the source code in LaTeXIt. Commented May 5, 2021 at 15:39
  • @JeffreyJWeimer -- How does LaTeXIt linkback work? When I drag a formula out of LaTeXit and into PowerPoint, it goes as a graphic and doesn't link back. I saw linkbackproject.org but it doesn't list any MS tools.
    – Dave X
    Commented Sep 8, 2023 at 4:26
  • The workaround I'm trying is to type my equations as latex into the powerpoint notes, and then paste them into LaTeXIt, to render and paste the result into the slide.
    – Dave X
    Commented Sep 8, 2023 at 4:45
  • 1
    @DaveX The new approach is with these three steps. 1) create and compile in LaTeXiT, 2) copy to clipboard, 3) paste into a TEXT BOX in the destination. The third step bypasses using LinkBack. The intent is to edit the equation using a LaTeXiT App Extension popup selection that appears in parallel to the MarkUp editor popup selection for images pasted within text boxes. Keynote does not support images in textbooks. Also, even though PP pastes images in text boxes, the MarkUp extension is not activated. I've had success in Curio (macOS). Commented Sep 8, 2023 at 22:06
7

I found a decent-enough solution to my problem. KLatexFormula seems to do what I need. You can type anything you want and it immediately exports an image which may be copied, while also allowing you to efficiently control the preamble.

As far as I can tell, it's exactly what I was looking for.

3

I want to be able to insert LaTeX equations as images (possibly png) with transparent background.

enter image description here

I'm looking for a way to do this quickly and efficiently

No worries, we have got your back :).

You may want to go through @Sebastino's and @dacastror's answers. They have explained it well.

Finding myself in a similar position couple of days back, I got introduced to Mathcha tool and been personally using it 24x7. With it's super-easy GUI board, it gives freedom to create otherwise complicated diagrams/figs/ in an extremely customizable fashion.

To save your work in Mathcha, you may sign-in to Mathcha using your either of your facebook, google or twitter github account. You can directly start drawing your images with either a New Document or a New Repository.

You may as well refer Mathcha's documentation for efficient typing.

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    Well, and has the image transparent background or is it white?
    – Mensch
    Commented May 5, 2021 at 22:21
  • Afaik, you can export a 'drawing' in Mathcha either as image or Tikz code. If you go with image, you may either choose No/transparent background or white background or grid background. Does that answer your question?
    – kedarb
    Commented May 8, 2021 at 6:35
3

I didn't see any comment about http://latex2png.com/ It is an online service for conversion of equations to images. No background and good resolution.

Hope it will be helpful :)

3
  • Welcome to TeX.SE! What does your given link? please explain better!
    – Mensch
    Commented Jun 28, 2021 at 17:21
  • Thanks ! This website enable to transform a latex equation into a png image. If you copy it from your browser you just have to paste it into PowerPoint.
    – malopolo
    Commented Jun 28, 2021 at 19:08
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    It would be better to add those details to the answer, answers should ideally be self-contained.
    – GoodDeeds
    Commented Jun 28, 2021 at 20:42
2

pandoc can convert from Markdown to ppt. For example, consider the markdown file:

# This is a test

$$ E = mc^2$$

- Can we do $x = y$ _math_?

Compiling with

pandoc -t pptx -o test.pptx test.md

gives

enter image description here

1

One option is to have all your formulae in a pdf produced by LaTeX that contains all your formulae and that uses transparent background:

\documentclass[20pt]{extarticle}
\usepackage{xcolor}
% Whatever other options you need here

\begin{document}
\nopagecolor
\color{blue}  $$x + {y\over 2+y}$$

\color{yellow}  $$x + {y\over 2+y}$$
\end{document} 

Then copy-paste from the pdf to Powerpoint. This may be OS-dependent; at least on MacOS you can copy rectangular selections in Preview.app and paste them in a PPT document.

Copy in Preview:

enter image description here

Paste in PPT (resize there if needed):

enter image description here

0

This might not sound like a proper sophisticated answer. I think the quickest way is to generate the latex equations in the TeXstudio or something and then use the snip tool/any other screen grabbing tool to get the equation out. Works all the time.

0

Just an idea since I never had to do that. If you compile the latex source with htlatex, all the math formulas are rendered in png images. So you just have to gather them, but its up to you to have them inserted at good place.

-1

By the way, you can use mathpix snipping tool to convert low quality images of equations to latex, then use the latexIt to convert latex code to convert latex code into high quality images suited for powerpoint.

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    You need to also show how to use it. That would benefit future visitors and showcase the exact steps.
    – Werner
    Commented May 8, 2021 at 4:42

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