Summary

Pixel resolution, bit depth, and the image's total file size are Core Digital Values that together determine the quality of the final print you can make from a given digital image file.

The following guidelines will ensure that quality of your work is as good as it can possibly be.

1. Always carefully consider the ultimate goal of your project.

• If your intention is to make a fine ink jet print, the key factor to consider is the size of the largest print you plan to make.

2. Always capture your images at the highest bit depth possible to facilitate image editing.

• For digital cameras this means shooting in your camera's raw format.

• For scanned images this means choosing the highest bit depth allowed by your scanner.

3. Always scan your image at the resolution that is optimal for the final result you are intending.

• For ink-jet prints this should either be 240, 300, or 360 dpi.

• For offset printing this is 600 dpi.

• For Web-based images 72 dpi is sufficient.

4. After you have edited your high bit depth image you can reduce it to 8 bits per channel before sending it to your printer.

Learning how to appropriately maximize the resolution and bit depth of your images is important, but we now need to consider the role that proper exposure plays in this process.

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