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Unit 30 D2 Digital


Roksana Rzezniczak

Table of Contents


File formats P.2-3

Different compression techniques


Image resolution P.4-5

Colour depth


Conclusion P.6

References P.6

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In this report I will be discussing the impact that file format, compression
techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on file size and image
quality. I will reference this to the images that I have edited on Photoshop.
The file formats which I will mention are GIF, JPEG and PNG. Each file
format serves a different function, for example, GIF images are best to use
on a website, JPEG are best for taking pictures, and PNG are best to use on
logos. This is because different file formats have different characteristics,
so when choosing a file format for an image, you must decide on which
file format is most appropriate for the content of that image in order to
get the smallest file size and the best quality.

File formats
There are many different file formats, for example, GIF, PNG, JPEF, AL, SVG
and so on. Each different file format is designed for a specific purpose.
Each varies in quality and size, for example, JPEG produces a best quality
image, which is why it is mainly used for taking photographs. However,
JPEG has quite a large file size, in comparison to. GIF, on the other hand,
produces worse quality than JPEG, as it is composed of pixels rather than
objects like JPEG is, so GIF cannot be used for images which consist of
many different colours. PNG too has a big file size, but produces as good
quality images as JPEG does.

File format

File size

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Compression techniques
Compression techniques involve reducing size file for example a
document, image, sound etc. Compression is useful because you can alter
the size of a large file to a smaller size in order to save computer memory.
Also, large files take longer to send, so if you reduce the size of a large file
it will, for example, allow you to send the file as an attachment via email
much quicker. Software such as WinZip allows you to reduce file sizes. One
type of compression is called lossy. This type of compression works by
getting rid of bits of the original information, so that less data needs to be
stored (1). It involves throwing away the patterns which would go without
notice (1). The quality of a compressed file might be slightly worse from
the original, but if you compare the file sizes, the file with a smaller file
size will take less time to download, which is an advantage of a
compressed file. Lossless means when a file hasnt been reduced, so no
original information has been thrown away. The good thing about a
lossless format is that quality doesnt get lost; however, it takes up a lot of
computer memory because of a large file size.
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Below is an example of a compressed and a non-compressed image and

their file sizes. The difference in file size is quite big, whilst the quality
doesnt differ much.

File size



Image resolutions
The resolution of an image is basically how detailed it is. The number of
pixels in an image determines this. Image resolution, therefore, is
measured in pixels per inch, or dots per inch. The greater the resolution,
the more detailed the image will be. Also, the resolution determines the
file size because the greater it is, the bigger the file size. Images with very
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low resolution often become pixelated, meaning that they lose quality and
look blurry (2). This is why when setting up an image for printing,
especially a large image with lots of colour, it is best to set the dpi to the
highest number- especially 300 dpi- so that the image doesnt come out
blurry (2). The images displayed on a computer will usually be around 7296 dpi, because they do not require high resolution for decent quality (2).
Below is an example of an image with a high resolution, and an image
with a low resolution.

Resolution and file size

72 pixels/inch

300 pixels/inch

Colour depths
Colour depth is referred to the number of bits used to represent a colour
(3). A bit is the smallest unit of data in computing represented by a 1 in
binary. The more depth, the more colours are available (3). For example,
black and white images only require two colours, so they have a colour
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depth of 1 bit. Most computer systems and digital cameras use 24-bit
images. The more colours there are the more the image looks realistic.
However, the more colour depth, the bigger the file size (3). The bigger
the file size, the more computer memory is required (3).

To conclude, there are a variety of file formats designed for different uses.
One file format may work better than the other in producing images on a
website, while the other may work better in producing images on a leaflet.
For example, GIF images are better to be used on a website, whereas JPEG
images are better to be used for making photographs. The difference
between different file formats is the quality, file size, compatibility etc.
When choosing a file format you must consider its characteristics. For
example, you must consider whether the images file size will affect its
download time, quality and so on. Compression is a very useful technique
for reducing file size in order to speed up the download time. However, it
is important to remember that images may lose their quality when
reduced or enlarged. Similarly, if you increase the images resolution and
colour depth, the quality of it will improve, however, the file size will

1. Lossy compression
ression/miniweb/pg6.htm Date accessed: 13/05/2016
2. Resolution
3.shtml Date accessed: 13.05.2016
3. Colour depth Date
accessed: 13/05/2016

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