What quality picture do you need?
Basically the picture quality from almost all digital cameras
will look amazing! Avoid choosing images taken from smartphones, unless your
smartphone has a decent or high megapixel capacity.
If you’re interested to learn more on digital printing, a brief
summary (technical crash-course) below will surely help:
Proper Photo Requirement
information below is to provide you with a better understanding of requirements
to achieving great print results.
What Print Shops Really Mean by DPI
- your print shop/graphics designer/magazine has asked for a digital photo at
300 DPI. What do they really mean by this?
What they are really asking for is a photo that will print at a certain paper
dimension in inches at 300 pixels per inch (PPI). The term DPI is a holdover
from when this setting in a digital photo would set the paper output quality
(resolution) of a printed image (number of printer dots per inch). This is no
longer the case, but people still confuse DPI with PPI.
Back to our print shop - if they are looking for a digital photo to print at 10
inches by 8 inches, at 300 PPI, then they are really looking for a digital
image with a resolution of 3000 pixels by 2400 pixels (regardless of the DPI
setting of that image).
Print Shops Really Need
concept that 300 PPI = photographic quality is also a holdover from the quality
of printing equipment a decade ago. Present day printers will output a good
quality digital photo, with "photographic quality" at 200 PPI - so
the requirements for a 10 inch by 8 inch paper photo become a good quality
digital image with pixel dimensions of 2000 pixels by 1600 pixels.
A good quality digital photo is one:
- taken with a good
quality digital camera (good optics and digital sensor)
- a photo that has not
been enlarged either in post-processing or by in-camera digital zoom
(never (ever) use digital zoom).
- a photo that has been
properly shot (good lighting, no blur)
- a photo shot within the
camera's ideal ISO range (usually a low ISO such as ISO 100)
- a photo that has been
stored in either a lossless format (i.e. TIF) or a very low compressed
JPEG (highest camera JPEG quality setting).
photo will reproduce on paper at photographic quality (assuming current
printing technology) at 200 PPI.
This useful information has been referenced
Written by Ken Watson