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Fixing Low Resolution Photo


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ebony's Avatar
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04-Apr-2008, 08:28 AM #1
Fixing Low Resolution Photo
I am trying to upgrade a photo sent to me so it can be printed in a 4x6 format. The resolution is 72 pixels/inch. I know I can just increase the resolution to a much higher pixels per inch but I wonder if this is the best way to accomplish this? I'm using Photoshop CS2 .

Last edited by ebony; 04-Apr-2008 at 09:08 AM..
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04-Apr-2008, 09:28 AM #2
DPI means very little here.
You can't actually increase the resolution.
What's the total picture size in pixels ???
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04-Apr-2008, 10:11 AM #3
400x267 pixels. There is a second one of 604X453. Both are 72 pixels per inch.
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04-Apr-2008, 10:46 AM #4
The PPI reported is not correct .. (for what you want to see)

Work on a copy picture (of the 604x453) till you understand ...
Don't want to take a chance and mess up the original.

Before and After examples attached.
Go to Image size .. And make sure the Resample Image box is UNcheched.
This means the picture will NOT be changed... (Resampled)

Change the Width to 6 inches.
You now can see that this picture will make a 6 x 4.5 inch picture and will print at 100.6 pixels per inch.
As long as the Resample box in UNchecked ... This is only a calculator that will tell you how it will print.
Now .. the PPI means something to us ... (Print pixels per inch)

You will have to crop this picture to 4x6 inches.
Printing at 100 pixels per inch is not a very good resolution.
Your other picture will be even worse.

Is there a possibility that you can get a better Picture or scan ??
Attached Thumbnails
Fixing Low Resolution Photo-ss-01.gif   Fixing Low Resolution Photo-ss-02.gif   Fixing Low Resolution Photo-shop.jpg  

Last edited by Noyb; 04-Apr-2008 at 10:52 AM..
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04-Apr-2008, 11:13 AM #5
I was e mailed the photo. i think it's the only one they have. I guess what you are saying is that there really is no way of increasing the quality of the photo using photoshop.
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04-Apr-2008, 11:25 AM #6
Not really, but maybe using some tricks, We might be able to make it look a little better.

We can add pixels if the picture looks "Pixelated" ... (if you can see the Print dots)
But the Quality (Sharpness) will not improve... They only do that in Hollywood on CSI.

Can you attach one here ??
Let's start with the worst one .. (the least number of overall pixels)
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04-Apr-2008, 11:44 AM #7
Try this one.
Attached Thumbnails
Fixing Low Resolution Photo-adam-aniko-olivia.jpg  
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04-Apr-2008, 11:53 AM #8
This'll print a 4x6 at 99PPI.
If you can see the print pixels .. we can add some "Fill in" ..
But that will not improve the "Detail"

Looks like the person that Emailed it to you did some downsizing and jpeg compression.
Attached Thumbnails
Fixing Low Resolution Photo-olivia.jpg  
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04-Apr-2008, 12:47 PM #9
Thanks for the input Noyb. By the way what do you mean by "fill in"?
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04-Apr-2008, 01:05 PM #10
Adding pixels - between pixels - based on a best guess from the existing surrounding pixels.
This is ReSampling .. specifically upsampling ... not recommended in most cases.

If you were to increase the number of total pixels to Twice size ... twice the height and width ..
It would add 4 pixels for each existing pixel .. (one of each of the 4 sides)

This does NOT improve the resolution .... For example ..
If you were to double the pixels, to make a bigger picture, twice size ..
the bigger picture would look "out of focus", twice as bad.

Photoshop cannot "guess" what is missing.
Always save the original .. it's the best you'll ever have.

How'd that one look ??? .. Got another ??
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04-Apr-2008, 01:17 PM #11
I can see what you mean. I don't see much difference between the two. The next photo is very small so I'll just leave it. I don't want to waste your time. Thanks again for the input..
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04-Apr-2008, 03:16 PM #12
If you want .. Attach it anyway .. Now you got me curious.

Back in my ole 2mpx camera days, I took a couple of aerial pictures, and the gang wanted really big pictures.

I added a bunch of pixels (upsized the photo) and had really big enlargements printed.
Up close, They looked really fuzzy, but the audience was farther away, so they never noticed.
Sorta depends on the application .. Or how far away the viewer might be.
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04-Apr-2008, 03:26 PM #13
I realized that he sent me the proofs of a professional photographer and I don't think I should ask anyone to work on them. I'm not sure if it's ethical or legal .
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04-Apr-2008, 03:31 PM #14
Sometimes people have a dark picture and think that by increasing the resolution of the picture will increase the details of it. As it has been already explained, you really can't (without magic) increase the details of a photo's resolution, but you can get more to see by playing with the contrast, etc.

Since this first picture was already so dark, I decided to see what details were in the background. I used IrfanView to lighten it up a bit, and show what is in the background.

See if this picture is a bit more useful for you.
Attached Thumbnails
Fixing Low Resolution Photo-ebony1.jpg  
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04-Apr-2008, 03:53 PM #15
I still think the first one is the best but I don't think it will print well.
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