posted this on August 2, 2010, 2:47 PM
Quantity IS Quality
If you want the best possible print, you need to upload the best quality digital file. Sometimes photos might look just fine when you look at them on your computer screen, and you might wonder what’s up with us when we say we can’t print them. Photos that don’t have sufficient resolution will look all blurry and pixilated (blocky with jagged edges) when printed.
Case in point: These horses look just fine at this small size. The image was shot at the camera’s lowest resolution setting and measures 368x256px. It would print out best at 3½x5.
Now take a look at what happens when we try to print this photo at a larger size.
This is why AdoramaPix has guidelines for the minimum resolution that is required for a good quality print, and we just won’t print images that don’t measure up.
All the print sizes that are available for your images will be shown on the “Enter Quantities” page. If you are placing an order and don’t see the print size you want, it may be that your images don’t have sufficient resolution to support a larger print size. Switching to “Advanced Mode” will let you see exactly which of your images can be printed at what sizes.
Resolution: It’s not just for New Year’s anymore
Resolution isn’t just something you think about on New Year’s Eve and then forget about the rest of the year. Photographically speaking, it is the amount of digital information stored in your image in individual pixels, or dots of color (or shades of black and white, if your image is, well, black and white). The more unique pixels or dots of information stored in your image, the more detailed the image and the better quality the print will be. Lower resolution means less detail, and unfortunately, a lower quality print of the image will result (the blockiness and general blurriness we mentioned above).
Resolution is measured in megapixels (that’s a million pixels!) for your digital camera, and in individual pixels for images. Your camera might be a 6 megapixel model, but if you set it at a low resolution setting, your images might only measure 500x500 pixels.
This handy table shows the standard image resolution in pixels that average megapixel cameras will create. Remember: always use the highest resolution setting in your camera for images that you will want to print.
Camera megapixels Approximate standard image resolution in pixels
2 megapixels 1600 x 1200
3 megapixels 2048 x 1536
4 megapixels 2274 x 1704
5 megapixels 2560 x 1920
6 megapixels 2816 x 2112
7 megapixels 3072 x 2304
8 megapixels 3450 x 2300
10 megapixels 3650 x 2736
12 megapixels 4288 x 2850
16 megapixels 4600 x 3450
18 megapixels 5185 x 3450
20 megapixels 5475 x 3650
24 megapixels 6000 x 4000
This table shows the optimal and minimum image resolution for printing at AdoramaPix’s print sizes. We recommend image resolution of at least 300 pixels per inch (it’s abbreviated dpi for Dots Per Inch) for the best possible image quality, but we will print photos for images of at least 100 pixels per inch. Anything below that? You guessed it, the blocky blurriness.