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Old Dec 26, 2006, 4:15 PM   #1
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Hi everybody,
Could someone tell me the best way to edit and re-size an image in order to retain the best quality ?

At full size on my D50 I have 3008x2000.

If I want to reduce the size to 900x598, should I edit first, merge the layers and then resize or should I resize first and edit the resized file ?

Thanks for your help
Daz
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Old Dec 26, 2006, 6:45 PM   #2
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daz7 wrote:
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...
If I want to reduce the size to 900x598, should I edit first, merge the layers and then resize or should I resize first and edit the resized file ?
...
I assume that you are downsizing for the web since I cannot think of any other reason to do it.

First, downsize further - to something like 600x400 - that cuts the pixel count by more than a factor of two so you don't have to step on the JPEG compression as much. But I do have dial-up, and will have untill the phone company drags a better cable a mile through the swamp to our house. They ain't gonna do that for a single customer.

Second: experiment. Try things and see what works for you. I think you will find that different amounts of compression can be used for different kinds of photos. Dreamy, foggy landscapes can be compressed more than a macro of a butterfly's wing.

I alway do the editing before downsizing because if it is good enough to put on the web, it is almost always good enough to have at least a small print made for a photo albumn. No reason to go through the editing twice.
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Old Dec 26, 2006, 7:16 PM   #3
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Daz, if you are downsizing for the web and you have Photoshop, you can use the Save To Web function which will help you optimize the image, or send the image to ImageReady, which is made for working on the web. I don't know if Elements has the Save To Web feature.

It seems to me that there are other programs that perform this kind of optimization, but I'll have to leave the chapter-and-verse of that to others.

I agree with BillDrew when he said: I alway do the editing before downsizing because if it is good enough to put on the web, it is almost always good enough to have at least a small print made for a photo albumn. No reason to go through the editing twice.

I think that I would only downsize first if this was going to be strictly web material. Editing goes faster on smaller files. You'll probably also have to resharpen the smaller file. Smaller, lower resolution pix can take more sharpening than bigger files.

Grant
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Old Dec 26, 2006, 10:00 PM   #4
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You have to learn a new set of skills if you edit after you crop and downsize the images. You have to use a much smaller radius for sharpening for instance and your noise reduction plug-in will require completely different settings.

However there are a lot of advantages to downsizing first if you are going to do a bunch of images.
Everything goes a LOT faster.
They will probably look different after you downsize after editing and you might as well start with the small image as have to tweak it afterward.
You do different editing for display compared to print. You sharpen a lot less for display for instance. One edit doesn't fit all situations and you might as well have the advantage of working faster and seeing the final image while you edit.
You can view it 100% and know what it will look like onscreen – at least to people using your screen resolution.

I had a stick of RAM go bad and am down to a Gig. I run out of RAM fast if I work with too many full sized images.

If you are using Photoshop or Elements it is recommended that you use bicubic sharper for a downsample. I prefer to do my own sharpening and use Genuine Fractals for any resample.

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Old Dec 26, 2006, 11:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
I don't know if Elements has the Save To Web feature.

Elements 3 does have the "Save For Web" feature.

------------------ Bill
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Old Dec 27, 2006, 1:17 AM   #6
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Elements 1 has the save to web feature also.
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Old Jan 7, 2007, 9:32 PM   #7
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I wish I understood the relationship of size/pixels/dpi etc a lot better than I do. I just got a new Canon 30D and I'm using the Large/Fine JPEG setting. When I bring up an image in PS CS2, it comes up 72 pix/in at 32X48 inch image!

I either post to the web, or print images usually at 11X8.5 so I usually like to work an image down to that size.

Should I just resize and at the same time reset the pixels/inch to 300 or something similar for print purposes. Once I get a good image that I like at that size I then will resize down to 72 for web purposes to publish on the web.

I'm just not sure of what PS is doing during the resizing process, am I losing quality by making these changes? Is there a right way to do this using PS. Is there a setting I can set so that the image doesn't come up with a 72 pixels/inch 32X48 inch image?

Any pointers to a good doc to help me understand this better?

Thanks all for any helpful replies?


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Old Jan 8, 2007, 1:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
I wish I understood the relationship of size/pixels/dpi etc a lot better than I do. I just got a new Canon 30D and I'm using the Large/Fine JPEG setting. When I bring up an image in PS CS2, it comes up 72 pix/in at 32X48 inch image!

I either post to the web, or print images usually at 11X8.5 so I usually like to work an image down to that size.
The 72PPI is totally immaterial until you select a print size. Many cameras like Canon default to 72, Olympus usually defaults to 150 and I think most Nikons default to 300PPI. All 3504 X 2336 pixel images are exactly the same regardless of the meaningless default PPI.

To print an 8.5 X 11 from a 3:2 DSLR image you have to first crop it to the proper ratio. You can do everything with the crop tool.

Open the image in Photoshop and select the crop tool. Put 11 inches in the width and 8.5 inches in the height (or the other way round) with nothing in the resolution box. The crop tool will maintain the proper proportions for the print and the only change to the image will be that some of the pixels will be cropped off. All of the remaining pixels will be unaffected in any way as long as you leave the resolution box blank. If your printer will do borderless prints you can go directly to File > Print and it will print at the size you put in the crop box.

If you want to know what resolution you ended up with go Image > Image Size. I have yet to find a photo printer that you can see any improvement over 240 PPI even using a loupe. And it is very difficult to see improvement over around 190 PPI. So unless you are cropping a lot off the image and end up with something lower than 180 PPI I wouldn't resample to a higher PPI.

To get a smaller image for the web you have to resample. You can either just save the image using File > Save for Web and it will reduce to a small size. Or go Image > Image Size, check "Resample" and put a smaller number in either the width or height. You do not want to print an image after you downsample for the web, so keep them separate.

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Old Jan 8, 2007, 6:23 AM   #9
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Thanks, that is helpful!!

I also found, starting for your suggestion that in the "Image size" dialog box I always had "resample" image clicked. By unclicking it, it allowed me to change the size of the image down toward the print target size and the resolution chaged upward towards something just slightly less than 300pix/inch automatically.

Thanks Slipe!!

I've got a number of older PS7 books but I guess I should maybe invest in one of the better newer CS2 PS books and do some homework.


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Old Jan 13, 2007, 2:44 PM   #10
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Thanks for your help everybody.

Daz
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