High Resolution Images and Commercial Printing

January 25, 2010 at 7:26 pm Leave a comment

When designing and getting graphic design digital files ready for commercial offset printing, make sure all the images in your design are high resolution. Have you ever looked at some printed material that contains blurry or blocky images? The most likely cause is incorporating low resolution images. To ensuring that your design is a high quality printed job is as as proofing your design and making sure all of the image files are of high resolution.

What is D.P.I. and how it will affect your printed job?

Dots per inch (DPI) is a measure of spatial printing or video dot density, in particular the number of individual dots that can be placed in a line within the span of 1 inch (2.54 cm). Web graphics and online photos are normally created at 72dpi (dots per inch). This low resolution is great for the web because the images look excellent on a computer monitor and the file sizes are very small which helps web pages load faster. However, when designing graphics for commercial printing purposes, your images should be 300dpi or better.

How do I get High Resolution Images?

You can get high resolution images online, your camera, or scanner. There are a few great resources for obtaining high resolution photos online. Many of our corporate clients and graphic designers use istockphoto.com and dreamstime.com. Optionally, you can just do an online search for high resolution stock photos.

Importing Images from a Digital Camera:
Many graphic designers use images from their digital camera. There is really only one thing you need to know to ensure you are using a high resolution image. The only real difference between a high and low resolution image is the amount of pixels/dots (DPI) that are used to create the image. The higher the mega pixel camera you have for taking photos, the higher resolution the photos will be.

Most cameras that can take photos above 3 mega pixels should be more than adequate to provide high resolution images. Remember to set your camera to the highest possible resolution when capturing your images for print.

Scanning Images:
What if I only have the physical photograph and need to incorporate it into my print design. No problem, scanning is a perfectly acceptable method of acquiring high resolution images, just be sure to scan your photos in high resolution to begin with. All scanning software allows you to adjust the resolution of image you would like to scan. Selecting 300dpi (or higher) as your scanning resolution will provide you with an excellent quality image for printing purposes.


Entry filed under: commerical printer, DCS 300 DPI, File prep for printing, print planning, print smart, proof to print. Tags: , .

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