Personal Technology

How to watch a photo slideshow on a Sony Bravia TV

My father-in-law has a giganormous Sony Bravia television. We wanted to use it to share photos from our Alaska trip. What a convoluted process that turned out to be!

The Sony Bravia engineers were thinking “camera” not “USB stick” when they designed the software. Given that our pictures come from a camera, an iPhone and a GoPro … that model didn’t work for us.

1. Prepare your USB stick

My first stumble was using a 128GB USB stick formatted for my Mac.

Sony can only read FAT16, FAT32 and exFAT file systems.

My second stumble was not realizing that the TV was looking for a camera file structure.

  1. Create a folder at root named DCIM, just like your camera’s file structure.
  2. Create a sub-folder which will hold the photos. The naming convention: 123abcde (three numbers followed by five letters — it’s DOS-centric, it should not care about case).
  3. The Sony can display only JPEGs, using one of these three file extensions:  .jpg / .jpe / .jpeg.


2. Put the USB stick into the TV slot

Bravia USB slot
Where is the USB slot on a Sony Bravia?

When looking at the TV, the USB slot is on the left side, adjacent to HDMI slots.

3. Play your “media”

The instructions on the Sony site did not work for our TV.

In Settings, we had activated “auto-play” for slideshows. But the TV showed only the first set of photos in the folder; it balked when my naming convention changed. We went “up” to media, found the next image in the queue, and manually started the slideshow at this point.

What we did not try:



If you have used Adobe Lightroom to tweak your images, you may have issues viewing them. I had done quick-and-dirty edits in Photoshop and did not run into the problem articulated here when attempting to view HD images:

As Wouter Horré states Bravia TVs support the DCF 2.0 standard, which as is stated in the DCF 2.0 specifikation only supports Pixel/Chroma Subsampling YCbCr 4:2:2 or 4:2:0. This means that compression of the colors in the pictures is done in blocks of 2px across.

But professional image editors like Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and probably others use yCbCr 4:4:4 subsampling to increase the quality of the images. Sony Bravia TVs doesn’t play nice with this setting.


By Kathy E. Gill

Digital evangelist, speaker, writer, educator. Transplanted Southerner; teach newbies to ride motorcycles! @kegill

5 replies on “How to watch a photo slideshow on a Sony Bravia TV”

HI admin,

We are using USB stick as source to play photos, but our Sony tv doesn’t have auto-play under setting.
Which means we only can play 1 photo.

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