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Choosing an Image Resolution for Print or Screen in Photoshop Elements 9

Part of the Photoshop Elements 9 All-in-One For Dummies Cheat Sheet

When you print digital images or share them on onscreen, choosing the right resolution for your output is of paramount importance. Good ol’ 72-ppi images can be forgiving, and you can get many of your large files scrunched down to 72 ppi for Web sites and slide shows.

Printing images is another matter. Among the many different printing output devices, resolution requirements vary. For a starting point, look over the recommended resolutions for various output devices listed in the following table.

In Photoshop Elements 9, you can select the right resolution for an image in the Image Size dialog box. To access the Image Size dialog box, choose Image→Resize→Image Size.

Avoid resampling up (upsampling) or risk image degradation. When you upsample, you set the new resolution to one that’s higher than the original image resolution without making the relative reduction in width and height dimensions.

Output Device Optimum Acceptable Resolution
Desktop color inkjet printers 300 ppi 180 ppi
Large-format inkjet printers 150 ppi 120 ppi
Professional photo lab printers 300 ppi 200 ppi
Desktop laser printers (black and white) 170 ppi 100 ppi
Magazine quality — offset press 300 ppi 225 ppi
Screen images (Web, slide shows, video) 72 ppi 72 ppi
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