BetterPhoto Q&A
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Photography Question 
Lynnmarie Daley
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/2/2006

Resizing Images

I've noticed a considerable loss of image quality when resizing large file images to smaller sizes (i.e., 3600 pixels to 750 pixels) using Photoshop Elements. Even though the original is sharp and not grainy when resized, the sharp detail is lost. Does anyone have a solution or this problem? Would appreciate any feedback! Thank you,

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8/12/2011 9:14:28 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
  If you're looking at the re-sized image with Photoshop, then it will look worse if you zoom in on the screen image. You are getting rid of lots of pixels, after all.
It's meant to be viewed through your web browser. Just open the file without Photoshop, and it should look better.

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8/13/2011 7:22:41 AM

doug Nelson   If the reason for resizing is to post to the web or to send as an attachment, you are downsizing the image by using a smaller resolution (print res of 300 down to about 75 pixels per inch, for example) AND reducing the image dimensions (750 pixels across is pretty small). We reduce the file size to make the image manageable. As Greg says, it's only for screen viewing, anyway. Loss of quality is the price we pay for convenience.
Any image you do this to needs sharpening. For a jpg this size, try about 78 as your amount, .6 as your radius and 1 as your threshold. Maybe your PS Elements has a "smart sharpening" feature. Other users can advise you.

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8/15/2011 9:45:28 AM

Bruce A. Dart   Lynnmarie,
There IS a considerable loss of image quality when you downsize. For that reason you must rename the file and preserve your original or you will lose that quality. Screen resolution is 72 ppi, as mentioned but that is only for web viewing. Most of us have lost a good image in this process before we discover that we should not do that and then we become paranoid about having back-up files. Save the new file under a new name and you can always go back to the original large file. Also, if you are working on an image, (after renaming) then downsizing is the last step of the process. That also keeps larger files to view as you work on them. If you need to increase size of an image (you can never get back to the original) but if you need to make a larger print and don't have quite enough resolution, you can do a "step" process that helps. Just changing the file size to what you need -- for sake of explanation -- sort of arbitrarily grabs pixels from a large area of the image. When resizing (up), change pixels to percent and add 10%; i.e. make it 110%. It sort of grabs nearby pixels and makes the image better. Do that about four times in those increments and you can increase a file to something you can make a large print with. Years ago, I used a 16 meg file and increased it to where I could have the lab print a 40x60 with that process.

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8/23/2011 5:40:24 AM

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