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Photography Question 
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/7/2005

Large Prints

I have been asked to print some pretty big prints - 35in x 25in. I use a Canon 350D 8.3 megapixel. When I size these prints to 35x25, the dpi reduces down to 88dpi. My printer only accepts photos at 300 dpi, but when I re-size them at 300 dpi the photos end up over 225meg and crash. Has anyone printed images this large from an 8.3 megapixel camera, how are the results? My client has ordered five at this size, and I thought I would just print one as a test first so I don't waste my money. The largest I have gone previously is 16x23 and the image is beautiful ... is 35x25 pushing the limit?
Thanks very much.

1/14/2007 5:04:12 PM

John Rhodes
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/24/2005
  Natalie, you didn't specify who your printer is. I assume you have a professional lab doing your printing. since most of us don't have the capability to print anything that large at home ... perhaps your print service can suggest a solution. Maybe they can step up the size after you upload the image in a smaller size. The math is simple, as you indicated. If you multiply 300 times 25" x 35", the resulting file is going to be very large. You very likely may have to tell your client the largest size you can produce (16 x 24).

1/15/2007 6:52:39 AM

David A. Bliss

member since: 5/24/2005
  Take the edited but unresized file to a good local lab to have it printed. Their software will do a much better job at enlarging, and it will enlarge it to their printer's specific dpi. Have one print made so you can see how it looks. Remember, a print that size is meant to be viewed at a distance, not close-up, so it is best to look at it from about 10 feet or so. Even 35mm film, when enlarged to that size, will show some softness and grain when viewed up close.

1/15/2007 2:29:02 PM

BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/7/2005
  Thanks very much for your responses.

I spoke to the pro lab I am using and they said it will be fine, but to upsize them slowly (10% increments). If I am unable to do it, then like David said, I'll get them to upsize them (but they charge). They are also going to print a test strip to see how they go before the final print. I definiately understand the viewing distance, hopefully my client will also.

Thanks very much!

1/15/2007 4:21:08 PM


member since: 9/25/2006
  That's right, Natalie, if you enlarge by 10% (and save, and close), and do that a couple times upto the desired size (mind: lowest possible JPG compression!), you end up with biiig print files that can produce amazingly high-res prints. may come in handy.

1/15/2007 5:23:49 PM

BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/7/2005
  Ill do it in Tiff mode then convert to jpeg once it is done.

1/15/2007 5:31:12 PM

She-She Killough
Contact She-She
She-She's Gallery

member since: 11/15/2005
  Nat, I do it with C1 PRO and the conversion is done at one time. If per chance the size won't work it will tell you. But I have sized upto 250 megs so far with no problems. (That is from Raw files, then I edit from there) But it is an expensive program, but I really do like it. Not sure if that might help you in the future or not? Good Luck!!! Sheesh :)

1/16/2007 5:34:20 AM


member since: 9/25/2006
  "Ill do it in Tiff mode then convert to jpeg once it is done."

You're right, of course. Lossless is best.

1/16/2007 5:50:10 AM

Richard -. Morton

member since: 9/11/2004
  While I currently use a Nikon D200 with 10+ mp, I still have my old Nikon D-70 with 5.6 mp,so I am speaking from similar experience. I use Photoshop CS2 and I have an Epson 7800, on which I regularly produce 24 X 36 prints, both borderless and with a 1" or 1.5" border that looks like a mat.I have a fairly new Dell with 24" monitor so that I am able to see the enlarged pictures. I have little problem producing good photos with this equipment and I know a number of other photographers who do the same thing with similar equipment. I did go out and buy an additional 500 GB external drive to store all the very large files. It works just fine. I did enlarge, in in Photoshop the size file to handle to 300 MB. There is no probelm in working with these large files producing big prints. They are wonderful.

1/16/2007 6:06:03 AM

John Rhodes
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/24/2005
  Natalie, All good responses.

I might add an inexpensive plug-in to enlarge a little at a time without having to go through all the 10% increases manually. Look at the Fred Miranda plug-in "Stair Interpolation." You must first set the desired aspect ratio, then use the FM plug-in to do the stair process automaticaly.

Site is

Hope this helps

1/16/2007 6:37:24 AM


member since: 6/8/2006
  I have an action from Scott Kelby's PSCS2 book for photographers, that I use in PSCS2 that increases the file size by 10% with each push of the key. I burned the file to a CD and took it to Kinko's and had it printed at a 24x36 size. The image is a handheld macro, cropped a bit from a 2 mp Olympus C2100 UZ. I can stand 2' from the image and it's pure perfection, if I do say so I used JPEG.

1/16/2007 6:38:57 AM

Debbie Del Tejo
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/30/2005
  I found to be very good, very fast and excellent. TIFF is they way to go and that site tells you how many megapixels and what size you can go up to.....very reasonable with great results. You can also see the cropping per size requested. Just trying to help.

1/16/2007 6:39:56 AM

Bruce A. Dart

member since: 1/7/2007
  While I am now working with the 10.2 meg D200, I have previously had 30x40 prints made at my lab without difficulty. As previously mentioned, the file size must be increased in step process by 10%, usually about four times to get the size you need, otherwise your file falls apart at that size. You probably need to keep the image as a tiff and will probably need to burn it to a CD to send to the lab -- all of which your lab and others have already advised. The step increments keep adjacent pixels being selected instead of random ones that degrade the image. Saving as a jpeg will throw out data you just acquired and the resulting file size will be too big to send via internet. This can produce great results.

1/16/2007 8:17:26 AM

Jim  M. White
Jim 's Photo Courses:
4-Week Short Course: Learning Your Canon Digital SLR
If your original is shot in RAW, you can upsize the image in ACR (Adobe Camera Raw)prior to converting and saving as a TIFF. There is a selection box that allows you to increase the megapixel resolution beyond the native 8.3mp. You should then be able to go to 180 dpi from the TIFF and get a good-sized image without interpolation. You can then use the 10% method to kick it up the rest of the way. Any professional grade printer can print with that resolution, and at 25X35, 300dpi is overkill. Printers are optimized for resolutions in multiples of 60, i.e. 180, 240, 300, 360, and in my experience you are better off reducing the dpi then you are inventing pixels.
I have an image in our state welcome center, shot with a 20D, that is 3 by 5 feet at 180 dpi.

1/16/2007 9:16:29 AM

BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/7/2005
  Oh wow, thank you to everyone who responded it. I very much appreciate it.

Ok, so what I'll do:

Leave them as Tiffs and send them to pro lab on CDs - ouch.

I also have Scott Kelby's action, so to upsize is only a click of the button like Susan said. I can't believe you got a 24x36 from a 2mg camera! That is fantastic.

Ok, well when my client makes the final payment and they are all printed, I will let you all know how they turn out.

Thanks everyone again for supportive comments.

1/16/2007 2:07:48 PM

Roy Blinston
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 1/4/2005
  If your computer cannot handle large file sizes, a quick fix is to scale your JPEG file to half size (12.5 x 17.5 inches @ 300dpi) then ask your Lab to output the file at 200%.
A picture 25 x 35 inches is 225 meg in 300dpi TIF format - but this is only about 21 meg in JPEG (minimal compression, level 12).
As stated above, the larger the print size the more one views it from a distance. Get up close on "any" poster size print and you will see either grain, printer's screen dots or rosetta patterns.

1/16/2007 4:44:16 PM


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