image size for internet use

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by megan_stone, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. im a portrait photographer, and my clients get the final portrait of them, enlarged on A3+ paper, and framed. nothing more. im often having clients asking for a digital version to send to friends on email or put up on their facebook and the likes. I have decided that I dont mind providing them with that, but want to make sure it's at a size that can only be used for that. Not at a resolution where they can get quality prints. so would a 4*6inch image size at 70dpi be a good setting? please advice.
    again, need it so that its a good size for email and facebook, but bad quality prints if they do try.
    thank you
     
  2. To avoid confusion you should think in terms of number of pixels when resizing images for the web.
    Facebook supports a maximum image size of 720 x 720 pixels, so assuming your shots are 3:2 aspect ratio then resizing them to 720 x 480 should do the trick. You could probably still get an OK 6"x4" print from this, but that's about all.
    Note facebook recently increased the upload size to 720 from 604 pixels, there is nothing to stop you using a smaller image size of course.
     
  3. thank you martin, if i want to go one notch down still to avoid a decent 4*6 print but still have something ok for internet viewing, what would you suggest?
     
  4. i shoot with my nikon d700
     
  5. Generally 180dpi is considered the acceptable minimum for a good quality print, this would mean that a 6"x4" print would need to be around 1080 x 720 pixels, this is obviously higher than the 720 x 480 I stated earlier, however it is not an exact science as different printers will impact the end result as well as people expectations of quality - (I would not be that satisfied with a 180 dpi print!)
    Personally I would be happy sending them at 600 x 400.
     
  6. thank you martin, very helpful of you. will give it a try and do a test print.
    so do i only punch in the pixels? no need for ppi?
     
  7. The ppi value has absolutely nothing to do with how many pixels are actually there. It can be a useful value for certain printing-related topics, but when it comes to on-screen display of images, actual pixels-wide by pixels-tall real dimensions are all that matter. A 600 x 400 pixel JPG file is still a 600 x 400 pixel file whether it's stamped in the file header as being 10 ppi or 10,000 ppi. So, yes: work in terms of final pixel dimensions. And don't forget to include the EXIF/IPTC data you want seen to help leave a trail, showing who created the image.
     
  8. thank you matt. where do i put the EXIF/IPTC date? this is new to me, what do you mean? please explain. much thanks.
    im thinking of adding a copyright symbol with my name along the border of the image, will create a white border and have that info there.
    but please do explain the EXIF. much thanks
     
  9. PPI _does_ make a difference. If you give them a 600x pixel file, and make it 300 Pixels Per Inch, they can make a very good print. For best understanding, make a file that size, and print it. PPI is the same as RESOLUTION and the higher the PPI, the larger the print they can make. If they know what they are doing, they can even change PPI from 72 to 300 PPI and make a better print. The lower you make the resolution, the less likely it is they can make a good print. . .
    Fool around with the PPI and file size of 600-700 pixels wide to see what quality print you want to send. Some even would do a 600 high, by as few as 52 PPI to make sure a good print cant be made.
    Because people normally think of printing in DOTS Per Inch, they dont think that PPI counts when printing. But, a file that is high in PPI, makes a LARGER file even if the length x width is limited to 600 pixels. Thus, a 300 PPI file can make a much sharper original. They can as an example change it to a to a 1200x and get a larger print.
    Then when printing it, set the printer to 600 or 1200 DOTS per inch and get a good image.... Larger DPI in printing, also means a better quality print. I never print at less than 1200 DPI, and sometimes on canvas print at 2400 DPI.....
     
  10. thank you robert. so do you say a 600*400 image at 70dpi will do the trick?
     
  11. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    If you give them a 600x pixel file, and make it 300 Pixels Per Inch, they can make a very good print.​
    This is absolutely not true, along with much of the rest of Robert Joshnston's post. A 600x400px file at 300ppi is the same as a 600x400px file at 5ppi. PPI settings only matter when inch dimensions are given. Follow Matt's advice above.
     
  12. To reiterate, the only resolution that counts is the number of pixels. The size (e.g., inches) and pixels/inch are derivatives of that number, and are merely used as tags for printing. If the number of pixels is constant, you can change size or ppi but not both.
    Internet Explorer (and most web browsers) display images on a pixel=pixel basis. The apparent size of the image depends on the size of your monitor and its resolution (e.g., 1024x1280). For example, if you set the image size to 400x600 pixels, it will fill about half the width of the screen for pleasant viewing, yet be suitable for only making a wallet-sized print (2x3 inches at 300 ppi). The client could print larger, but the quality would suffer greatly.
    (Robert needs to go back to school.)
     
  13. There are some cases where it is better to set the desired PPI, like when you superimpose text to your images.
    There are also applications that use ppi and dimension instead of pixels, like some versions of Flash.
     
  14. so whats the final take on this? :)
    what should i input for IMAGE SIZE in photoshop?
     
  15. 600 X 400.
    <Chas>
     
  16. Pixels are like Dollars. dpi and ppi are like the size bills used to buy something.
    If I buy 40 dollars worth of film from the Fotomat;
    I can pay with two 20's or four 10's or eight 5's or forty 1's; Fotomat still gets 40 dollars.
    Mark Ratner might purposely to vist 20 times for those 2 dollar rolls
    "Mike Damone: I can see it all now, this is gonna be just like last summer. You fell in love with that girl at the Fotomat, you bought forty dollars worth of ***** film, and you never even talked to her. You don't even own a camera."


    In printing here one tends to think first in print size in inches; then the ppi that print has or requires; basically the same as pixels.


    But with a web image; as already mentioned; what matters is just pixels; a lower number reduces your losses with folks lifting images.


    Web stuff should be more for selling your images than giving away the farm.
    A huge group of folks post big images on the web with no watermarks; no contact info; no lines through them if giant; and wonder why folks download them and print them at home; folks basically give away a mess of images.
     
  17. 4x6 inches at 75dpi and will look fine on a monitor and if they try to print that it'll look like dog poo.
     
  18. In order to do anything with a monitor that will simulate ppi or dpi changes: I think this would have to be a changing of the user's monitor settings, by the viewer. Ever scale the workspace area on a monitor with the display settings? Maybe by doing something like that could someone make a picture look better or worse. I can't think of ever seeing anyone do this just to see one photo.
    Maybe a zoom control in a browser application, again by the viewer, could do it. The image file itself would be the same; it'd be a presentation change on their end, by them.
    It's not that this type of change can't be done; it's that we associate that concept with the wrong hardware and software parameters. It's more about the viewer's computer than it is about the image file, with respect to immediate control over the image's presentation.
    The quality settings for the printer are not the same as quality on the monitor. Most of those software controls about DPI and PPI are for printers, not monitors. There's basically nothing for the monitor that you can set up where you are. You can write your own HTML page, and try to style it to create a foundation for web presentation basics; but, really, it's not going to be anything in the JPEG file itself. And still, that viewer's monitor would affect a bunch of stuff, just the same.
    People keep looking in the wrong place for this type of answer. Realistically, there's no good way to solve this problem. It's just a function of transmitting to a wide variety of receivers.
    Thus, a relatively small JPEG (under 600 px) will be more than adequate for a lot of web uses. You have no control over how someone else set up their monitor, what kind it is, or how it interprets anything. That interpreting is what that video hardware's all about. There's a great variety of video hardware and software out there; it'd be very ineffective to try to predict the appearance of anything on someone else's monitor, just based on the export settings.
     
  19. A small 600 pixel image is what folks often bring in for big posters too; this size image is good enough for 3x10 foot hockey dasher boards and most highway/freeway billboards
     
  20. Consider just emailing them a link to a low res Flickr slideshow. It would present nicer and solve many of your problems.
     
  21. Unless some one has very large monitors I find that 700x700 or 700x 1000 etc is good . Tha max size for this forum is a good guide and that is about 700 x 700 .
    I am assuming you are doing this for copyright reasons so you should check you copyright laws for your country and state , here in Australia the commissioning party owns the copyright therefore they have a right to get prints wherever they wish to .
    Personally for me I just supply high res files ( if you call 10MB hi res ) charge an extra price and be done with it .
    I also have a growing trend for clients to just want files they can take and get printed at Kmart .
    If some one hires you to take there photo you really don't have the right to dictate what they do with that photo . its there photo and you provide a service for witch you get paid to do
     
  22. thank you all for your replies & advice - much appreciated.
    my thought is, although i'm hoping they will only use the image for web use, i still can't guarantee that they won't attempt to make prints out of it. so to cover all scenarios, is it not best to punch in ALL info for image size?
    so punching in 600*400 pixels
    then let's say 4*6inch for image size
    and 55dpi.
    would i not be safer including all that info to cover anything they might do with the image?
     
  23. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    No. They can't do anything different with an image by putting in any more info than the pixels. The additional info you have specified here would not work anyway since they aren't equivalent. Displayed images don't have inches, so they don't have dpi (or ppi). Just do image size in pixels. Everything else is irrelevant for web display.
     
  24. thank you jeff - so i take it the final thought is 600*400 is the number i should punch in ... and with that, they will struggle to get anything more than a 6*4 image ... most likely a print much smaller than that - is that correct?
     
  25. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    They can certainly print it at that size but it won't look very good. Also, if you use a watermark, it will help. If you have a watermark through the center, it will be very difficult to print it at all, but it won't look particularly nice. I use a watermark along the bottom edge, the image has even fewer pixels if they crop it out (example below.)

    [​IMG]
    Portrait
     
  26. Scale everything down to 72 ppi, and 400 pixels width if horizontal image, or 400 pixels height if vertical. They can print a nice wallet size at that size, anything larger and they may get away with 4x6 or 5x7 prints.
     
  27. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    Scale everything down to 72 ppi​
    One more time. This is meaningless. There is no relevance to ppi for electronic display."DPI" is a five byte string in the header of the digital photo file. It's meaningless except when outputting to a printer.
     
  28. jeff, so when they do decide to print it, will the DPI (if left at 300) for example not affect getting a quality print? this is my concern.
    when they do try to print it, then its the dpi that affects it. if i leave that at 360 as i do when i print in-house, then will they not get a good print?
     
  29. Resize the pics to 400x600 pixels. The ppi wont make any difference for web display. A 400x600 pixel image would give a 6x4 inch print at 100 ppi. For some people that will be good enough to make a 6x4inch print for the family album or to put in a small frame. From what I have seen from the rest of my family they will print anything on to plain A4 paper and be happy regarless of how bad it really looks.
     
  30. mike dixon

    mike dixon Moderator

    If they want to print it, it's a very simple matter to open up the same "image size" box that you use and enter whatever dpi they want. You have no control over the final ppi used. Unless you're doing the printing, forget about dpi.
    Your only control over the quality of prints they make is limiting the pixel dimensions of the images you give them.
     
  31. thank you everyone! will give 600 by 400 a go and do a test print and take it from there.
    thanks again
     
  32. Don't you think you might end up doing yourself a disservice by supplying such small files? It might annoy your customers.
    Besides they could also take a picture of the framed portrait and have that printed. That should provide decent quality for prints.
     
  33. Robert Johnston - "PPI _does_ make a difference. If you give them a 600x pixel file, and make it 300 Pixels Per Inch, they can make a very good print."
    Its been a long time since I've heard such drivel. My word... the confidence in this post I am referring to while stating the facts incorrectly is astounding.
    It is VERY simple. A digital image has a certain number of pixels in the x-axis and the y-axis.
    Try this - downsize an image to 600 pixels on the longest edge, and save it as 1 PPI "resolution". Repeat this exercise on the original file but save it at 10000 PPI. Okay, now open each image and view on your computer monitor. What is the result.... they are identical!
    Now, send both of them off to a print lab and ask them to print them at 6x4. What is the result.... they are rubish as they only have 600 pixels on the longest edge. Both of them! A good quality print required say 180 pixels per inch, minimum (other may differ I tend to say this should be higher). So assuming 180ppi is the minimum acceptable level, then the largest print of acceptable quality is 600/180 = 3.3333" on the longest edge. This applies to both files, i.e. one saved at 1 PPI and the other at 10000 PPI.
    The two files printed at 6x4 will both have a "resolution" of 600px/6" = 100 PPI, which is a rubish quality print in BOTH cases.
    The PPI setting isn't some magic bullet allowing a higher quality print. If the required number of pixels are not present, then regardless of the PPI setting you will not get a quality print.
    Phew....
     
  34. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    Its been a long time since I've heard such drivel.​
    You must not spend enough time on photo.net, for some reason, there are a few people who believe that the dpi field is something other than a file header for a printer.
    Try this - downsize an image to 600 pixels on the longest edge​
    Although one can and maybe should try this, it's also been widely documented. You can find a good example at this page. There is also a decent explanation of what's being discussed here on that page.
    One more time for the original poster - choose a file size. Ignore the "dpi" field and the print size, these don't matter for resolution. Keep the resolution, i.e., the pixel dimensions, reasonable.
     
  35. Because so many folks are so *TOTALLY* confused about this basic stuff; many folks release big images in pixels. This really is a TWENTY year old subject; here I got our first 35mm slide scanner in 1989.
    This subject has been discussed many many many thousands of times on Photo.net.
    The old 72 number comes from printers points; it is about a 400+ year old number.
    It really does not bother me if I buy a good image that is 2000x3000 pixels tagged at 1,72,300, or 2000 ppi. The person I buy it from for 1000 bucks probably doesnt not care if he/she gets paid ten 100 dollar bills or twenty 50 dollar bills in cash. Folks with a screw loose will worry to no end about goofy stuff. If 144 eggs are required for a scout campout tommorrow; a select few will worry about the differences of twelve cartons of 12; versus 4 cartons of 36 eggs.
    A common thing on photo.net is worrying about what does not matter; or arguing when KEY variables are missing.
    (1) Thus many folks worry to no end how a 2000x3000 pixel image is tagged.
    (2 Folks worry about if a tiny spec of dust ruins a Leica lens.They would rather ask a zillion folks than shoot a single frame as a test. You wonder if they are confused about ketchup on fries at McDonalds; asking folks at each table what to do.
    (3 Folks worry about if it is ok to charge for shooting a wedding.
    (4) Folks worry about if a 12 megapixel image is good enough for a dumb giant billboard; that only requires about a VGA image.
    (5) There are endless threads where folks CAN NOT tie down the viewing distance of a print or poster and folks inject all sorts of absurd statements; often off by 100 times in the megapixels required.
    (6) There are endless threads were folks post BIG images on the web; then wonder why the stuff they gave away is lifted/stolen
    (6) we *all * start off not knowing anything. A decent part of dealing with the public here in printing is about the basics like pixels; thus after 20 years it is quite frustrating to see the average person with digital knows less than in past eras, With time maybe it will get better as more folks learn.
    (7) One has endless threads about flatbeds; where newcomers discover their flatbed is not really a zillion dpi device
     
  36. someone way up this thread suggested entering in exif data. It's a good idea for all images. And I just wanted to mention that Facebook strips all meta and exif data when you upload. I always suggest you use watermarks, Megan, for a couple reasons. One of course is a false sense of protection and the other is so that when they do use them and pass them around the internet, at least your logo goes with it and can at least capitalize on it and have it work in your favour for exposure. I know many photogs in the private industry that use this to their advantage and go a step further and help them by batch re-sizing their clients files to 720 pix and watermarking them and include the final images in a folder called "For Facebook" with a note that encourages the upload and sharing.
    Do you use Lightroom? If so, pay a few bucks to "Photographers Tool Box" (donation ware) for the LR Mogrify plugin. It makes adding your logo as a water mark so much easier in LR as the stock Adobe LR option for watermarking are so lame. Just save your logo as a .png file and not jpg.
     
  37. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    LR 3 completely changes the watermarking options. There is no reason to go for the Mogrify plugin unless you are stuck with LR 2. LR 3 watermarking is far better than Mogrify.
    If you do want to use LR, start with the LR 3 beta, the release should be at the end of the month.
     
  38. Indeed. But it's not a matter of being stuck. I just don't recommended beta to anyone. Besides, we've been hearing "should be released" for sometime now. Don't hold your breath.
     
  39. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    I don't know anyone having problems with the current beta. And Mogrify is not a particularly user-friendly experience.
     
  40. It's still delayed and behind schedule. I just don't advice anyone to put a business work-flow through a LR beta. As a windows user, we've even had released versions that were buggy.
    Mogrify is really popular, cheap, does more than watermarks, and has easily found support on the LR forums and Flickr groups for those that perhaps need help. Mogrify is how most of the LR users get away from the boring in-house LR version that we see too often.
    What did you find tricky about Mogrify?
     
  41. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator Staff Member

    Besides, we've been hearing "should be released" for sometime now. Don't hold your breath.​
    It's released. What's the problem? And no need for Mogrify any more.
     
  42. One more time. This is meaningless. There is no relevance to ppi for electronic display."DPI" is a five byte string in the header of the digital photo file. It's meaningless except when outputting to a printer.​
    ... actually there is a big difference. Have you ever tried to build a website using 300 ppi images without changing it to 72? Go and see what happens. That's why so many photographers who don't understand web end up with websites that take forever to load. Unless you are uploading images to something like facebook or something that compresses and does it through backend programming you are going to get crazy results. Not to mention that the higher resolution you upload to any site, people can still download that image to their desktop no matter how it displays. I use a mac and can easily drag and drop any image and it will appear on my desktop as it was uploaded to the server of that site. For example, go to this site: http://robliefeldcreations.com/ and you will see 3 images of artwork at the top that look fairly small. In fact they are about 200x400 in size. Save or drag one to your desktop and open and you will see they are larger than what is displayed. That first one I dragged was 740x1150 when I opened up in Photoshop. Anyone with knowledge on how pixels work can easily upsize to get a larger print.
     
  43. Rafael; one can have a 100x100 pixel image on many web sites and have them tagged at all sorts of "dpi/ppi" tags; an one still usually has the same image; same size file too; thus meaningless. The tag might as well be the photographers weight
     
  44. It's released. What's the problem? And no need for Mogrify any more.​
    Yes, lol, LR3 was FINALLY released yesterday. This event has no relevance when I posted. I still don't suggest beta versions and feel it's poor advice and practice for a pro work-flow when there are solid and proven methods already in place. There's nothing wrong with Mogrify and a ka-zillion thankful people use it. It's very inexpensive for the professional results it provides.
    What's the problem? Maybe she's not interested in paying $100 for an upgrade from v2 to v3? Instead, paying $5 for Mogrify is a great alternative for v2 software she might already have? Seems reasonable to me. But heck, we're not even sure if Megan has LR let alone wishes to start watermarking.
     

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