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Q

First we need to distinguish the two measurement systems we use most of the time, when talking about image size and pixel, the Metric system and the Imperial system.

The first thing to know is that the term DPI and PPI are both derived from the Imperial system of measurement  and literary means Dots-Per-Inch and Pixel-Per-Inch, and as you se are developed on the imperial system.
The system was developed under the system of the imperial system so the term DPI and PPI were ‘internationally standardized’ and are used in most software and hardware system to day. The minimum standars for hight quality printing to day is 300 DPI.

A general recommendation is to view 100DPI as acceptable quality and 200DPI good quality and 300DPI excellent quality depending on quality expectations…which is, whoever looking at it, entirely subjective.
So what image size can you print depending on your camera ?

To go deeper in to the subject we need to get a little technical, and to talk about camera censors. Different camera sensors have differens aspect ratios witch affect the maximum printing size. One more factor that effect the printing size is cropping factor, you use upon the camera sensor. If you have a 3:2 sensor with 26 Megapixel and you use a 16:9 or 1:1 aspect ratio cropping, the total maximum printing size will become smaller. See illustration below.

So if you use a camera with sensor with aspect ratio of 3:2 with 26 Megapixel you get most out of you photo if you use 3:2 cropping when photographing. To get an idea about the printing size put in the required info in the Image size pixel calculator….follow the link below.
 

ImageSizePixelCalculator

Having a correctly calibrated monitor is the most important factor when you want to prepare images for printing. Without a calibrated monitor you won’t know what the image actually looks like. Calibrating the monitor means to balance and correct its colors, typically done by using a spectrometer and calibration software. This is something everyone should do even if they don’t plan on printing an image. If the colors of your monitor are off, it means that all your images look different on other devices. There are various tools out there that you can use to calibrate the monitor. One way to do this is calibrating in windows follow the link for instructions Screen Calibration in Windows and Calibration in macOS macOS Screen Calibration.

The difference between the two terms DPI and PPI is in what media it is used in. PPI is (Pixel Per Inch) for screens, and the measurement for the resolution when printing a image is DPI (Dots Per Inch).

Dots Per Inch is a key factor when talking about print resolution. The more dots you have, the more detail you have. This also means that the lower the resolution of your file (digital image) is, DPI, the less detail it contains.

The recommendation for hight quality images 300 dpi or more. You can say that 100dpi is acceptable quality from viewing distant 50cm and 200dpi  is good quality and 300dpi is picture perfect when printing. You can get away with a lower DPI for smaller prints but you’ll lose detail in larger prints.

Soft Proofing is a simple method used to visualize what the printed image will look like. You can do this in both Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop as well as in other photography-related software.

When Soft Proofing, you’re able to choose between different color spaces and different printers (plus make your own presets). With the correct printer and color space selected, you can continue making adjustments to the saturation, color balance and sharpness until the image resembles the original version.

CMYK is the color space (C)Cyan/(M)Mangenta/(Y)Yellow/(K)Black, for printed media where light are reflected on a surfaces (paper) that is used for 4 colours printing process.

RGB (R)Red/(G)Green/(B)Blue is the colour space for digital screens where the screen are emitting light, where the white colour are added in the colour space RGB

Printing an image that’s saved in a larger color space than the printer can handle can lead to dull-looking images as the printer is out of gamut (meaning the colors aren’t able to be reproduced on the printer).

We recommend that you save or work with your file in Adobe RGB colour space before uploading your image.  When you save your file in RGB our printer software will translate the information in to CYMK colour format.

If you ever encounter the task to resize your artwork or photos and images you probably have seen terms like Bicubic, Nearest-Neighbor or Lanczos. To go in to the topic in detail, we have to use an entire webpage to describe this, and luckily for us the internet is full of videos and webpages to describe this. One webpage that goes in to the details is Cambridge In Colour 

On Cambridge In Color you get all the detailed information you possibly need to get a firm grip about the different type of methods, and comparisons between the methods and much more. The page even have a nice tool, Photo Enlargement Calculator, to estimate what size you can print your image in.

Over all Cambridge In Colour is a great resource for any one that work with any digital medium or devises surrounding digital image handling and reproducing.

ICC stands for International Color Consortium and is a collaboration to create a standardized colour management system for different electronic devises and computer operation system, to manage colours as accurate as possible. The latest updated standard is ISO15076-1:2010

The ICC-profiles Necander.com is providing is specifically for our ProGraf Pro Canon printers and you need to use ICC-profiles provided by Necander.com when you use our services, for the best results. Some of our ICC-profiles are available from the specific paper manufacturer we use. 

Depending on what paper you want to print on, glossy or matte or any other type necander.com will provide ICC Profile that adjust for the white paper hue or tint so you get the correct adjustment and the colors you want. ICC Profile download are available on our paper displays.

PDF

Portable Document Format (PDF), standardized as ISO 32000, is a file format developed by Adobe in 1992 to present documents, including text formatting and images, in a manner independent of application software, hardware, and operating systems. Based on the PostScript language, each PDF file encapsulates a complete description of a fixed-layout flat document, including the text, fonts, vector graphics, raster images and other information needed to display it.

PNG

PNG is an acronym for Portable Network Graphic, a type of raster format. It is a particularly popular file type among web designers because the format can handle graphics with transparent or semi-transparent backgrounds. PNG files using the .png file extension can handle 16 million colors – something that definitely sets them apart from most file types.

JPG

JPEG is a commonly used method of lossy compression for digital images, particularly for those images produced by digital photography. The degree of compression can be adjusted, allowing a selectable tradeoff between storage size and image quality. JPEG typically achieves 10:1 compression with little perceptible loss in image quality. Since its introduction in 1992, JPEG has been the most widely used image compression standard in the world, and the most widely used digital image format.

Lossy vs Lossless Compression 

This topic is the most complicated area to explain when it comes to explain digital image quality. 

Lossless compression and lossy compression are two different methods of compressing data, typically used in digital media formats like images, videos, and audio.

Lossless Compression:

Lossless compression is a method of data compression in which the original data can be perfectly reconstructed from the compressed data. The compression algorithm is designed to identify and remove redundancies in the data without losing any information. This means that the compressed data is an exact replica of the original data, with no loss of quality.

Lossy Compression:

Lossy compression is a method of data compression in which some information is discarded during the compression process, resulting in a smaller file size. This method is commonly used for digital media like images, videos, and audio. During the compression process, the algorithm analyzes the data and discards parts of it that are deemed less important or visually insignificant. The result is a compressed file that is smaller in size but also of lower quality than the original.

Key differences 

The Key differences between lossless and lossy compression is the amount of data that is lost during the compression process. Lossless compression preserves all of the original data, while lossy compression discards some data to achieve a smaller file size. As a result, lossless compression is typically used when quality is a top priority, while lossy compression is used when file size is more important than quality

Raw File

A raw file is an uncompressed and unprocessed image file format that contains all the information captured by a digital camera’s sensor when a photo is taken. Unlike other file formats like JPEG or PNG, raw files are not compressed or altered by in-camera processing, which makes them larger in size but also preserves more image data and offers greater flexibility for editing.

Raw files are typically saved with a specific file extension that varies depending on the camera manufacturer, such as .NEF for Nikon cameras, .CR2 for Canon cameras, or .ARW for Sony cameras. The raw file format varies between camera models and manufacturers, which means that different raw file formats may require different software to read and edit them.

Because raw files are not compressed or processed, they can be challenging to work with for inexperienced photographers or those without the proper software. However, they offer more creative control over the final image by allowing adjustments to exposure, white balance, and other parameters during post-processing without losing any image quality. Additionally, raw files can be used to recover details lost in underexposed or overexposed images, making them a valuable tool for professional photographers who require the highest quality image files.

Data Loss in Compression from Raw Files 

Data loss between raw file and jpg:
 
When a raw file is converted to a JPG file, some data loss occurs due to the compression algorithm used in the process.

JPG files use a lossy compression algorithm, which means that some information is discarded during compression to reduce file size. This can result in a loss of image quality, specifically in areas with high contrast or fine detail.

In a raw file, all the information captured by the camera’s sensor is retained, including color and light information. This allows for greater flexibility when editing the image because the original data is still intact.

However, when a raw file is converted to a JPG file, the original data is compressed, resulting in a smaller file size but also a loss of information. This loss of information cannot be recovered or restored once the file has been converted.

In summary, while a raw file contains all the original image data and allows for greater flexibility when editing the image, a JPG file is a compressed image file that sacrifices some image quality for a smaller file size. The data loss that occurs during the conversion from raw to JPG cannot be recovered, so it is important to make a backup of the original raw file if maximum image quality is desired.

Data loss between raw file and png:
 
When a raw file is converted to a PNG file, there is generally no data loss because PNG uses a lossless compression algorithm. This means that the original image data is preserved during compression, resulting in a higher quality image than a lossy compression format like JPG.

PNG files also support transparency, making them ideal for use in graphics and web design where transparency is needed and image quality is a top priority. However, because PNG files are not as widely used as JPG files, they may not be compatible with all software and devices.

In summary, when converting from a raw file to a PNG file, there is generally no data loss due to the lossless compression algorithm used in PNG. PNG files offer higher quality images and support transparency, making them a good choice for graphics and web design. However, compatibility with all software and devices may be limited.

Data loss between raw file and pdf:
 
When a raw file is converted to a PDF file, there can be some data loss depending on the compression algorithm used in the process. PDF files can be compressed using either lossy or lossless compression algorithms, depending on the settings used when creating the file.

If a lossy compression algorithm is used, some information will be discarded during compression, resulting in a loss of image quality. However, if a lossless compression algorithm is used, the original image data will be preserved during compression, resulting in a higher quality image.

PDF files are commonly used for document sharing and printing and can be used to preserve the quality of images and text in a document. However, if the compression algorithm used in the creation of the PDF file results in data loss, then the quality of the original raw file may be compromised.

In summary, when a raw file is converted to a PDF file, there can be some data loss depending on the compression algorithm used. If a lossless compression algorithm is used, the original image data will be preserved during compression, resulting in a higher quality image. If a lossy compression algorithm is used, some information will be discarded during compression, resulting in a loss of image quality. PDF files are commonly used for document sharing and printing and can be used to preserve the quality of images and text in a document, but it is important to consider the compression algorithm used and its potential impact on image quality.

JPG, PNG and PDF compression

  1. JPG (or JPEG) Compression:

JPG files are compressed using a lossy compression algorithm, which means that some information is discarded during compression to reduce file size. This results in a smaller file size but can also result in a loss of image quality. The level of compression can be adjusted when saving the file, allowing a balance between file size and image quality.

  1. PNG Compression:

PNG files use a lossless compression algorithm, which m

eans that the original image data is preserved during compression, resulting in a higher quality image. However, this also means that PNG files are typically larger in file size than JPG files. PNG files also support transparency, making them ideal for use in graphics and web design.

  1. PDF Compression:

PDF files can be compressed using either lossy or lossless compression algorithms, depending on the settings used when creating the file. Like PNG files, PDF files can also support transparency and are commonly used for document sharing and printing.

In summary:

JPG files are best suited for digital photography and web graphics where a smaller file size is more important than image quality.

PNG files are best suited for graphics and web design where transparency is needed and image quality is a top priority.

PDF files are best suited for document sharing and printing and can be compressed using either lossless or lossy compression algorithms depending on the desired balance between file size and image quality.