REOLUTION AND PIXELS. Print Size & Viewing Distance

· 542 words · about 3 minutes


Paris Eiffel tour

When people ask me what size of print they can obtain from my digital download, the answer is not always simple, since this depends on several factors. For example, you do not need the same resolution to see a photo 20 cm away from your eyes, to see a poster that is a meter and a half away. If parts of a good resolution, you can get many print sizes, the resolution will decrease as you increase the size of the print, but this does not mean that the quality will be bad.

I will try to explain it as simply as possible, and I will help with an example.

What are PPI & DPI?

These two acronyms have different meanings. PPI (Pixels Per Inch) refers display resolution, or, how many individual pixels are displayed in one inch of a digital image. DPI (Dots Per Inch) refers to printer resolution, or, the number of dots of ink on a printed image.

My digital backgrounds (and also my overlays and digital art) have 300 dpi, this is HIGH RESOLUTION. This means that in your printing service you can get prints of different sizes with a good quality, simply, the bigger the size, the lower the resolution will be, but it will still be good because there are an important rule:


Lest see an example: 3600 x 3600 px, (or the exact correspondent 12″ x 12″ inch) at 300 dpi.

With these dimensions ,3600 x 3600 px, at 300 dpi, I have obtained canvases of more than 1 x 1 meter, and even more, for exhibitions. In the case of an image with those properties, you can get several print sizes, for example:

* 12 x 12 inch of excellent quality (300 dpi) Ideal for high quality prints, printing on photo paper and photo albums.

* 18 x 18 inch of very good quality too (200 dpi)

* 24 x 24 inch at 150 dpi, good quality, ideal for posters (the viewing distance is bigger than before) ( and depending on the image, when the photo is very clear, then you can still get good results with photo albums.)

* 37,5 x 37,5 inch at 120 dpi, quality acceptable if you’re close, but as these sizes are usually observed from a bigger distance, this turns out to be good to use for large format prints (prints on canvas, murals, etc.)

And so on, so you can get even a somewhat larger size with an acceptable quality.

Remember, the greater the viewing distance, the lower the print resolution you will need.

Online you can find many “Image size calculator” to convert pixels to inches (or cm).

Please notice: I have published this post for informative purposes, now you must consider that it is necessary to leave this type of work in the hands of good professionals. The Print quality will depend on the type of paper and printer used too.

Whit this information I am not liable for print quality, cropping or coloring of any photos not printed directly through a professional lab.

I hope this help! :)