I'm currently working on a project in QGIS 3.10 . So far, I had somewhat ignored matters pertaining to projections, because things seemed to be going fine. However, I am now beginning to experience some issues. I am not entirely sure how to resolve them, because I suspect I don't fully understand projections in QGIS yet.

The project's CRS is set to EPSG 3857. I have a map with six layers. They are as follows:

enter image description here

The CRS of these layers are:

  1. Output: EPSG 4326
  2. Mean coordinates: EPSG 4326
  3. randstadstedeninfo: EPSG 4326
  4. studstedeninfo: EPSG 4326
  5. GADM36_NLD1: EPSG 4326
  6. Esri Gray (light): EPSG 3857

At the moment, the map looks like this: enter image description here

Apart from the “Output” (the green oval), it looks like I want it to look. I'm not really sure why it looks the way it does though.

How can I change the CRS of these layers in such a way that the Output (the vertical oval green polygon) becomes a nice circle?

When I change the CRS of the Output to EPSG 3857, it (again) goes somewhere else entirely. I'd like the depiction of layers 2 through 6 to remain the same, and change layer 1 in such a way that it fits neatly within the rest of them (as a circle).

  • 1
    see if my recent talk helps slides or the video
    – Ian Turton
    Commented Nov 7, 2020 at 11:44
  • @IanTurton I will check them out. Meanwhile, I've edited the question so it has more focus. May it be re-opened?
    – Max Muller
    Commented Nov 7, 2020 at 11:45
  • @IanTurton I've watched the video of your talk. I tried exporting the Output layer with “save features as...”, in which I set the CRS to 3857, but the new layer puts the oval at the same place as the old one. Do you know what I should be doing differently?
    – Max Muller
    Commented Nov 7, 2020 at 12:50
  • 1
    Just don't create a buffer using degree.
    – Erik
    Commented Nov 7, 2020 at 13:05
  • @Erik Right. But how do I change the units of Distance to, say, km? I don't know how to change the units in the QGIS buffer window.
    – Max Muller
    Commented Nov 7, 2020 at 13:12

1 Answer 1


Currently the "output" layer is in a coordinate system EPSG 4326 that has degrees as unit. Using degrees in the Netherlands has the complication that a degree east-west is shorter than a degree north-south, that is why you get an ellipse when you define a circle in degree units. If you create a new layer "output2” with coordinate system EPSG 3857, which has meters as unit, then your east-west distance and north-south distance will be the same, and a circle will look like a circle on your map. The (for novices sometimes confusing) benefit of QGIS is that it will reproject on the fly all your layers to project CRS.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.