What resolution should I scan at?
It depends what your intentions are. If you are going to be doing some
print work you'll want to scan at least at 300 dpi. 300 dpi is standard
print resolution. If you are going to be making print enlargements and
have the space available on your hard drive, I would scan at 720.
It's safer to scan higher (if you've got the space) if you know that you may
use your photos for a multitude of formats. The rule with resolution is:
you can always go down, you can never go up.
If you know that you are just going to be using photographs for web, you can
quickly scan them in at 72 or 100 dpi. 72 dpi is screen resolution: you do
not need any higher resolution for displaying on the web (because then you have
to shrink down the image size to fit and you're just taking up extra space).
You can always export a file that is open by File: Save As and saving a copy of
the open image for instance as a .jpeg (the most favored format).
When you Save As: you are creating a copy of the current state of the
document you have open and depending on the format you choose, you are
decreasing it's file size. I will usually save from .psd to a .jpg on
File: Save For Web within Photoshop (I still haven't gotten very deep into Image
Ready). This will allow you to preview how it will actually look at the
file size you choose (you can adjust the quality).
It took me a while to understand that I don't want 720 resolution for the
internet (yes I admit it but I learned most everything myself-please don't do
that), I only need 72 resolution. So if I have a master Photoshop file
(usually I'll have 2 of every image) as a .psd which I can use for enlargements,
designs, print that I can easily Save As (a .jpg) for the internet use. If
the image is too big simply go to Image: Image Size and bring down the
resolution to 300 (print) or 72 (web) or change the image dimensions itself if
necessary. Note: Constrain proportions in the Image Size box will simply
keep your image scaled properly.
Now you should understand a little bit more about resolution! Read the
full article on resolution.
- Article by Orion Williams
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