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Which Graphic Format Should I Use?

People are always asking this question. Although no one right answer exists, I'm going to pick a format for the following situations. In reality, I would choose on a case by case basis, but if you don't want to strain your brain just go with these choices:

  1. When working with a file in Photoshop, you'll get the most power and flexibility by keeping it in the Photoshop format. Always keep your image in Photoshop format and use the "Save As" command to make a different format for different uses.
  2. If you're not going to work on it in Photoshop but want a great quality image, save it as a TIFF.
  3. To use your image in another program (Word, WordPerfect, PowerPoint, etc.), save it as a JPEG with "quality" set to the highest setting.
  4. If you're going to put the image in a Web page, use JPEG for photos ("quality" set to medium) and GIF for flat color images like a clip art image.
Where is It Used? Format to Use
Not in Photoshop
Word Processing, PowerPoint
JPEG ("quality" set to highest setting)
Web Page 
  • JPEG for photos ("quality" set to medium)
  • GIF for flat color images (clip art, screen shots)

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Last modified on 08/18/10 11:18 AM
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