How to get high resolution photos from digital camera

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by vicki_blakslee, Mar 14, 2008.

  1. I am using a Fuji FinePix 9100 with the photo size set on 3488 x 2616 (what
    they call 9M F). I have also shot in RAW converting the image to Jpeg. When I
    upload to have pirnts made at onine services like Costco and Adorama I am
    informed that the largest that they can print and have the prints look good is
    8 x 10. I am informed that the pictures are of a low resolution. In
    converting the RAW to jpeg I set the resolution to 500 and still got the same
    result when uploading the files. How does one get the higher resolution
    photos to be able to print in 12 x 18 and 16 x 20? I have a friend who shoots
    with a Nikon D300 and his 16 x 20 prints look great.
  2. Vicki,

    Just a quick follow up question: you set the resolution to 500 what?

    If you're going to be uploading pictures to a site to be printed, your best bet is to open the images in Photoshop or
    Photoshop Elements and use the "Image Size" dialogue to resample the image, then use the "Canvas size" tool to get
    it to the exact size you want, assuming it doesn't scale proportionally. Not only will you have total control over how
    the image is cropped, but you can get an idea of whether or not the final print quality will be acceptable.
  3. [[In converting the RAW to jpeg I set the resolution to 500 ]]

    I too question this statement. Don't worry about setting the ppi or dpi values. Just upload a full sized, 3488 x 2616 JPG file and see what the site says about what sized prints you can make.
  4. The above assumes you have Photoshop / Photoshop Elements. If you don't I would recommend getting one of the two. Either would be acceptable for what you're describing, and at $100 or so, Photoshop Elements is a very good price for everything that it can do. The dialogues in this image are identical in both programs, though in "Elements" they will be found under "Image > Image Size" I believe. It's the same on a PC or Mac BTW. Click here to see the dialogues. I put it on an external page to make sure that it doesn't mess this one up. Hope this is helpful!
  5. There are far better ways to crop photos than by using the Canvas Size, TM.


    You can easily print larger with your images even without sampling. 9MP is about 8x12 at 300dpi, but you don't need to print at 300 dpi. Most online ordering forms allow you to print at any size you want and simply give you a warning when you drop below their hard-coded "acceptable" dpi value. But that's applying a universal rule and does not take into account the quality of the image nor the viewing distance nor a host of other factors.

    So, I think you'll easily be able to print larger simply by uploading and doing so. Ignore the warnings and just print one. If you don't like what you see you can revisit the issue by resampling the image.
  6. Well, there are different ways to crop photos, Rob. I don't know that one is better than the other, they each have their own strengths, one being better than the other based on what one plans to do with the image.

    I was simply opting for a method that would be easy to convey to someone who's experience level with Photoshop is unknown to me. It's very likely that what I describe above is nothing new to anyone.

    I agree that you can upload an image for enlargements without resampling. I guess years of working in printing and with printers (photographic and otherwise) have made me skeptical that the stranger receiving the file is invested in how good your image looks. For example, enlarging an image may amplify any noise that is in the image, or subject it to pixilation, and these are all things that can be dealt with before sending the image off.

    My experience has been that it's best to remove as many variables as you can before relinquishing control of the image.
  7. Don't set the resolution, just send the full image. I print 8X12's from a 3.3 MP Nikon CP 990,
    and they look great.
  8. This is the problem: when you upload to Costco, the default setting is "Fast Upload", which downsizes your image before uploading. You have to manually over ride this and select Big Print/File Upload or something like that. Then your full image size will upload, and you should have no problems.
  9. "You have to manually over ride this and select Big Print/File Upload or something like that. "

    Just how does one do that, I've never seen a way to change it? OTOH, I use it as is it, and I
    never have any problems with enlargements, even from a 3.3 MP camera.
  10. To get a good print, you need 300 pixels per inch. An 8x10 therefore requires 2400x3000
    pixel image.

    Either photoshop program can get you there.

    You also need to make the original at max file size the camera will make, then reduce to
    8" wide by however long it turns out. Then crop it so it is 10 long. Elements will do all
  11. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    You don't need 300 pixels per inch to get a good print. Plenty of good prints have been made at lower resolutions. There are a large number of variables in making a print, and the results is a combination of the variables.
  12. Well, you don't NEED 300 dpi to make a good print, but for the most part, it's the standard resolution for printing, and it's that way on most mediums: offset presses,
    production digital/laser, light-jets, large and small format ink-jets or Iris giclees. 300 dpi is essentially the resolution at which anything higher will stop being noticeably clearer.

    Of course, it should be noted that what's "acceptable" can be subjective. Obviously barring excessive noise, abhorrent colors or choppy gradations, each method of
    enlarging is going to have different advantages and disadvantages, as are the methods by which the print is produced. There's a lot of give and take in large images.

    Printer enlargements may yield slightly sharper images, but at a cost of some pixilation (the ever-popular "saw blades") : conversely, resampling the image to final
    size @ 300DPI is more likely to yield a SMOOTHER image, but at the cost of some sharpness. The subjective part is, which is more pleasing to you and which works
    better for the subject matter?

    The quality of the image itself is also a factor. Higher-end sensors of 6 MP will probably produce a more pleasing image than lower-end sensors of 10MP, due to the
    quality of the data they capture. If you resample your image ahead of time, you have the opportunity to see if there are going to be elements that will subtract from
    the image, such as compression artifacts, or channel separations (more often a factor with lower-cost cameras). When viewed at 100%, do you see obvious RED GREEN
    and BLUE elements, or is the overall color consistent? Regardless of the original size, if you don't see these artifacts, you can probably get away with just sending the
    image "as is" and letting whoever/whatever prints it scale it to size. If these artifacts exist, enlarging the image "as is" is going to amplify them.

    I'll probably get some "ha-ha's" for this one, but here goes. Something I've done for awhile now is to get laser prints at the final size. These are not archival prints, or
    even particularly attractive ones, but digital/laser is a very unforgiving print method. If the tone and color is consistent on a laser print, then the final prints you get
    will probably be to your liking. Being unforgiving as it is, if there is something undesirable in the image, you'll notice on laser for sure; more so than even my beloved
    light jets. Check your area for a small print shop with digital capabilities. At 50? to $1.00 a pop, what have you got to lose?

    I REALLY hope we didn't scare Vicki away!

  13. i have been sending my finished edited but not upsized images to and for awhile. kodak makes my 16X20 and 20X30 in matte. while jumbogiant makes my glossies and panoramas. i have been printing to 36inch wide(you can get 40X60 regular and 24X80 panoramas) with jumbogiant. you also have several choices of paper with they seem to be using Epson paper.

    i send my jpeg and they do any upsizing needed. you cannot send raw(which require converting and pp) or tiff(file size is too big).i also have been sending them the image in adobeRGB, they either change them or use them as is. the colors from either company come out great.

    you have to read the information of the printing website and see what they want and will accept.

    i would not resize or change the color gamut till you KNOW that the printing online outfit will not accept what you are using. if you have to change only change the copy to the specs you need to send them never the original image.
    i have been using adobeRGB and not resizing AT ALL to either outfit with no problems. and by not resizing i mean that i have been sending them every size imaginable and the print are all great from either place. sizes range from 6mp digital shots to unresized 4000dpi digital scans of slides which are still the original scan size(1.4inches X .9inches).
    i would not create a problem of your own till you have to.
  14. Well, you don't NEED 300 dpi to make a good print, but for the most part, it's the standard resolution for printing.

    I dont think ist teh standard resolution, i think its what its the easiest to remember liek a 72ppi file is good for screen.

    On the Epson site (or other place on the web) they stae that 240ppi is there magic number, when you print from Lr it is also writen at 240ppi, when you develop your image in ACR and Lr the default number is 240ppi.

    When i have done some test on inkjet and minilab, nobody could see the ddiference from 200 (that look good) 240, 300 or 360. Now if whe go back to the *standard* thing, on a commercial press, 300 again is there as a quick reference, depending of the lineature of your print one could use for news paper that have a lineature of 85lpi, 170ppi for is image (quick method is to take the lpi number and multiply it by 2 if you paranoid a bit, 1.5 should be enough) so acording a magazine use a lpi of 133, that mean a image could have 266ppi and that should be way enough since the printer couldtn use the rest of the data.

    But hey, dont just take my word for $; send a file to a lab at 360, 300, 240 and 200, a regular 8x10..let see if you can see the difference without spending 15min or deep search (it will cost you around 12$ to be fix!?). You could be very surprise of the result. Try it also on your inkjet..again you could have a major surprise.

    Im not talking about using a loupe or a microscope to find THE difference, but your eye only, at a normal distance and close if you want..

    im not sure that help answering your question, but use it as a general knowledge thing : )
  15. OK, here's an example. This image is 1.2 gigs, from my 3.3 MP Nikon CP 990. I've had it
    printed it at 8x12 by Costco, and it comes out beautiful.
  16. Im agree with Carl on this; a 3mp from a nikon 950 9and a 990 that Carl use) and up is pretty amazing, having use myself one of those at a 1400$ years ago : ) The secret i think was in the real glass lens vs a plastic lens (or similar) that many small pocket camera use.

    But you cant state that EVERY 3mp camera can give that quality..heck there is even some camera that have 10mp (sony, panasonic, etc) and cant give the Nikon 950 quality!LOL

    For what that worth, i have presentaly at home 4 16x20 print on a Epson 3000 under glass that look stunning when view from a normal distance, all taken with a nikon 950 3mp..but that was years ago now i have a Canon 5D and a Canon G9 that indeed does a better job ; )
  17. [[Well, there are different ways to crop photos, Rob. I don't know that one is better than the other, they each have their own strengths, one being better than the other based on what one plans to do with the image.]]

    I stand by my statement. Using the Canvas tool to crop your photos is not only silly it makes no sense to do so. The Canvas size is not the issue, your crop ratio is. Use the crop tool. There's one built right into Photoshop.
  18. Yes, Rob, you're right. Completely silly! Sorry I said anything....

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