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is it large enough

TheWanderer 7 20 2 United Kingdom
16 Sep 2011 9:45PM
I have sold an image to a guy in america but he is saying it may be to small to print on a 4ft wide panel. The file i sent him, which is the largest is 2.4 MB. He is waiting to here from his graphics designer. Has anyone any idea if it can be printed that big.

Many thanks


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User_Removed 7 4.6k 1 Scotland
16 Sep 2011 10:19PM
It can be printed but it might look pretty horrible.

To some extent it would depend upon the file format as well as the file size. For example, one of my 15Mb Raw files will print quite adequately on A3+.

I have converted files to TIFF and, to be good enough resolution to print to 20x16 inches, the file size is about 60Mb but that may be to do with the way Photoshop has handled them.

At the other end of the scale, using JPEGs, some of the magazines I work with need about 5Mb if they are going to print full page.

I appreciate that may not be very helpful - maybe you need to give us more information.
newfocus 11 647 2 United Kingdom
16 Sep 2011 10:25PM
A certain amount depends on your image format and the desired print resolution but for instance, if you were printing at 120 pixels per inch and the image is 3:2 ratio, you'd need 48x32x120x120 pixels = 22MP

For an 8 bit uncompressed tiff I make that about 66MB. As a comparison, the traditional standard for stock photos is 50MB tiff, so that gives you some idea of the right ballpark.

Obviously compressed formats (including jpeg) will be smaller so you probably want to look at how many pixels per inch you're aiming for and go from there.
cameracat 13 8.6k 61 Norfolk Island
16 Sep 2011 11:32PM
You may need to use something like " Genuine Fractals " to increase the image size etc......!

That said the resize in lets say PS ( CS4 ) for example should be able to double the size without to many problems, Assuming the original file is pretty spot on in all departments.....!!!
sut68 13 2.0k 76 England
16 Sep 2011 11:47PM
You didn't mention Jon, but I'm assuming the file supplied was a JPEG and in landscape orientation? Without knowing the actual physical image size [in pixels] it's difficult to know exactly what size it can be printed at successfully.

Also, JPEGs can vary significantly in file size depending on the amount of image detail within them. A low contrast monotonal image for example, would likely be smaller in memory than say a high contrast shot of a corn field with lots of detail [at the same data compression]. The level of data compression you have used will change the physical memory size of the image, so agin this can be a little misleading.

I would imagine that the file will probably be too small to print successfully at that size, but then again at 4' across, you wouldn't be standing as close to view it as say a 8"x12" print, so a lower resolution output might be fine in this instance.

As Vince says you may need to look at interpolating the image up to increase it's printability ... that said, they could always do that!!!
User_Removed 13 3.3k 4 United Kingdom
17 Sep 2011 12:05AM
You can calculate it with this but make sure you understand about ppi/dpi and enlargements from here
User_Removed 13 17.9k 8 Norway
17 Sep 2011 10:41AM
(I've got an Excel SS somewhere that does that Chris...) Nice link. I'll tuck that onto the iPod! Wink
MeanGreeny 11 3.7k England
17 Sep 2011 11:57AM
It also depends on the distance at which the panel is to be viewed. If it's to be hung 10ft off the floor behind a rope 15ft from the wall then you can get away with pixels like golf balls [ish].

You don't view a 4ft panel from the same distance as an A4 print - you look like you're at a tennis match - so a straight forward calculation of the pixels needed to make 240/300 dpi print 4ft wide is meaningless and misleading.
User_Removed 13 3.3k 4 United Kingdom
17 Sep 2011 1:24PM
That's why you'd use the calculator though. If it's to be viewed at that kind of distance you find out what you can get away with (say 75 ppi) then calculate if you have enough pixels in your image. The calculator lets you spec the target ppi.
User_Removed 7 4.6k 1 Scotland
17 Sep 2011 3:35PM

Quote:It also depends on the distance at which the panel is to be viewed.

That's a very good point MG. I wish camera club competition judges would take it on board.

I saw a formula once that suggested that the optimum viewing distance for a print or painting was between 3 and 4 times the diagonal dimension of the print. A photograph with an 18" diagonal that looks just right at a distance of about 5-6 feet might look either unsharp or over-sharp when scrutinised too closely.
thatmanbrian 5 342 3 Spain
17 Sep 2011 8:26PM
What no one has asked is what size is the original image in pixels - width and height? This is the only thing that matters surely? I supplied a panorama tiff file 7,000 pixels wide and it was used to make a restaurant advertisement 12ft wide.

As another forum member suggested in another post, print a selected area on A4 but set the image size to 4ft wide. Don't view the print in your hand though! You're really holding a 4ft wide print!! View it from across the room. It seems we need to constantly remind ourselves that the larger the print the further away we need to view it. I mean, if it is going to be seen close up, why is it being printed so large eh?
TheWanderer 7 20 2 United Kingdom
17 Sep 2011 9:57PM
Many thanks guys. Its all worked out just fine now. Thanks for all the info, it'll will come in handy in the future. Much appreciated.

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