How can I keep the quality of a image even when it gets large?

By adu123 ยท 25 replies
Jun 17, 2008
  1. I have a small image file that's about 10.6 KB, I usually open it with Windows Photo Gallery. When I try to enlarge it using the wheel on my mouse to get a better look of it, all I can see are the pixels! (very blur)

    I wonder if there're any programs that I can use to keep the quality of the image even when it became large, just like the computer expert at the movie help the FBI to enhance the quality of the surveillant tape with a few click.

    Any helps are appreciated.
  2. acidosmosis

    acidosmosis TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,350

    That which you see on TV, well let me explain it to you in one word.


    I've been working with graphics applications for years. It's not possible to take a surveillance camera's video footage, take one of the frames and enhance a section from an already ridiculously pixelated image, then clear it up and make it look like a 13 megapixel camera took the picture. Although Hollywood will tell you it is (and a lot of people).

    Sorry dude.
  3. adu123

    adu123 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 278

    So that means there's no way I can enhance the pixel quality of a image(when it gets large)? No ways at all?

    a while ago, some people suggest me to convert the bmp image to a vector image, but the vector image program doesn't help me to get what I wanted, it only TRACE the outline of the original image, NOT enhance the pixel quality.

    I just don't understand why it is so difficult to develop a tool that does that?
  4. It's a mathematical impossibility to generate a higher quality image from a lower quality image. Raster images will always appear more and more pixellated as you scale them up / zoom in. You cannot take one of those pixels and some how enhance it, simply because the better quality, higher resolution data was not there to start with.

    Converting to a vector won't help either as the trace progam will also trace all of the jagged pixellated edges. The result will be a mess with many many nodes will look the same when zoomed in and won't be worth the effort to clean up.

    If it's a simple image just paste it into your vector program (coreldraw? Illustrator?) and then manually trace over it to reproduce it.
  5. adu123

    adu123 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 278

    It's not a simple image, it's a photo taken from a camera.

    The vector program I'm using is Inkscape, When I trace the photo(.bmp format), the color is in black and white, and all the human feature are missing too. I'm not sure if I used it correctly.
  6. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    Post it

    Attachments are allowed.
    I have received many camera pics.Their usually huge
    and need resizeing smaller.
    This makes them even better quality.
    Check your camera,doesn't sound right.
  7. Obi-Wan Jerkobi

    Obi-Wan Jerkobi TS Maniac Posts: 502

    I would agree with Zipperman. My $50 5.1MP Camera takes pictures at 2592x1944 at 5.1Megapixels. That's probably 2x larger than your screen resolution.

    And that FBI thing is just (mostly) fiction, I don't think it's possible to take a 30x30 GIF and turn it into a High Quality 800x800 image. :p
  8. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7


    29 x 29 to 300 x 300 pixels
    Doesn't work too well.

    Attached Files:

  9. CCT

    CCT TS Evangelist Posts: 2,653   +6

    Theoretically, a sophisticated computer of GREAT power could be programmed (ie: have a program installed) that could interpolate by inferance capabilities what would appear if a specific area was expanded IF the starting picture was high definition enough to start with (say 128 bit and extremely HIGH resolution).

    The USofA probably has satellite surveilance that generates pictures of that quality (Hubble looking at your backyard deck), but the average consumer won't get that capability.

  10. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    Pixel shape

    We must remember that pixels are squares.I learned many years ago about
    jaggys.Drawing a line will look like a set of stairs at low rez and colors.Windows
    has told me that i need 32 bit 16 million colors for smooth icons and fonts etc.
    Magnify these and see how it's useing many colors to fool you into seeing
    a straight line,or circle thats truly round.
    You can see that in my enlarged rose.

    Attached Files:

    • Rose.jpg
      File size:
      826 bytes
  11. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    Grayscale the image and use rendering.. I repair a lot of photos under PhotoShop some really bad and cracked faded and washed out. Video you can only do so much. I say get rid of the color chroma noise and filter it out and make high res gray/black/white. Not like were on Mars trying to make every image look rust color.
  12. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    Thats even worse

    He wants a larger color picture.Greyscale will only make it more pixelized.
    It needs 16 Million colors for any enlargement possibilities.
  13. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    Don't forget 1 Billion colors 32-bit or higher, 24-bit for 16 Million colors. Oh well so he needs color video.
  14. adu123

    adu123 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 278

    Wow! It sounds so complicated, I'm not sure what you guys talk about here. :confused:

    Once again, is there any way I can see the all the features in the image clearly when I enlarge it?

    The small image is 47x46, I've attach the image

    Thank you for all the advices

    Attached Files:

    • 123.jpg
      File size:
      10.7 KB
  15. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    400 Percent
    Sharpened slightly

    It is poor quality though

  16. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    I have to say NO

    I doubled it in size and it's not so good.Use this as a lesson on useing
    this camera.As i said they usually need to be resized smaller.
    Can't you just waste this picture.They cost nothing i was told.
  17. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,518

    Flogging a Dead Horse Named, "Should Be Obvious"

    But why stop there, can't you turn this into hi-res wallpaper?;) :haha:

    The only reason they sell high resolution digital cameras is as fashion accessories. You can do it all with a phone. :stickout: :wave:
  18. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    Tiny image I'll have to switch to my video editor box to see what I can do...
  19. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    Not much to work with but this is what I've done before you hit the blur mode..

    Actual one I had worked on.. The first one the picture site likes to blow it up to full screen...
  20. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,518

    We try to relegate ourselves to the possible.

    I'll try to keep this answer as breif and unambiguous as possible.........NO!

    The small image is 47x46, I've attach the image

    Thank you for all the advices[/QUOTE]
    Since it shouldn't be dificult, why haven't you succeeded in doing so? You're probably wasting too much time on the internet wondering what the people here at Techspot talk about.

    The High-Tech explanation:
    I have a degree in photography, and I think I know why it can't be done, because the computer just can't pull non-existing, imaginary information out of it's a**, then paste it into the photograph to your liking.
  21. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    It's the skilled human being and the dummy computer (college professor code name for the PC) have to perform the task of editing a poor image into a good one. If it can be done or not? There are photo studios that can use Adobe Photoshop or better to try to clean up the image. Not going to be cheap process either way you cut the pie!
  22. I'm sure you know this tipstir and this is really directed at adu123, but Pixel averaging/blurring is not equal to increasing quality. What tipstir has done is the best you can hope for.
  23. Obi-Wan Jerkobi

    Obi-Wan Jerkobi TS Maniac Posts: 502

    Best...explanation...ever! :haha:
  24. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,472   +126

    Yes I know it's aim at that user, but thanks for the nod though...
  25. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 11,122   +982

    this is a classic Desktop Publishing issue; resolution ( xx by yy) is not the same thing
    as DPI (Dots per Inch).
    • the image size is measured in the resolution which defines the paper size needed to contain it.
    • the DPI setting controls the print quality. minimal lazer printer dpi is 300, but professional
      b/w, 4 color spot images or full color printing is sent to the printer in EPS formats with
      a dpi > 1200.
    do the math (1200 dpi x resolution width x resolution height) and you see that these
    are VERY LARGE files.

    the original image must have a high DPI value if enlargement is to have any hope of
    decent quality.

    a GIF/BMP is always low dpi as they are designed for screen (monitor) display,
    while a JPEG can contain any reasonable dpi * resolution.
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