Have you ever wondered how big you can enlarge a digital photo without losing quality? The question is not as simple as it seems, Even a few years ago, the answer was different, Today though, I have written an article that tells you everything you need to know about enlarging digital photos.
How to enlarge digital photos
If you want to enlarge a digital photo, you should use a photo-editing program or a photo-sharing site, The most important thing to remember when enlarging a digital photo is to make sure the photo is sharp, After you obtain the original image, there are many ways to make the photo sharper, Sharpness is not always about making the digital image sharper but also by reducing the noise in the image, Noise consists of pixels in the image that do not contain any information, If you try to make the digital image sharper and the adjacent pixels become even smaller, the result is a blurred image, Sharpness is a measure of how much information is contained within the images.
When you take a photo with your smartphone and then enlarge this image, the increase in the resolution you can do is determined by your smartphone’s camera resolution, Thus, if your Smartphone has a resolution of 1200 pixels wide and 1200 pixels deep, then you can take a photo of 1600 pixels wide and 1600 pixels deep, On the other hand, if you take a photo with a resolution of 400 pixels wide and 400 pixels deep, then the larger photo will comprise of 1600 pixels of even smaller pixels, The sharpness of any digital photo depends on the technology and the camera used, Thus, the following list of the components comes as a generalized guide, However, at the end of the day, you’ll have to decide for yourself which one suits your needs the best.
When it comes to sharpness, the file format is of utmost importance, JPEGS files, for instance, contain fine detail rather than pixels, What’s more, a bitmap file preserves the 3D structure of the pixels quite well, I usually photograph in grayscale and remove all details not necessary, such as the ground or the sky, For this reason, my files tend to be quite sharp, Moreover, a digital photograph will become less sharp without having to be cropped.
What you should look for when choosing a photo enlarger
When choosing a photo enlarger, make sure you’re getting the kind that’s right for the type of printing that you do, There is a lot of choices nowadays, The vast majority of optical solids, such as enlargers, emit light that needs to be white-masked, If your print job requires you to show print errors, exposure, shadows, highlights, or other dark details, then a lightbox is a must-have, Lightbox makers are always devoted to making sure more light reaches the print cartridge, if possible, and that black areas are filled in, But be aware of black-and-white prints too, This will result in exaggerated highlights that render the image totally illegible and discolor the paper colors.
There are many kinds of lightbox that have adjustable intensities, one of which is the Gel LAB Lightbox and its range of 10–30 watts (sold separately), But if you restore the image to its original size by making a white mask, the Gel LAB series is not recommended by the photographers because the white areas are gone, I prefer the Photofax series because of its adjustable temperature, so the light levels can be adjusted to any temperature, Another quality-enhancing feature of lightbox makers is their digital noise reduction and correction systems, With the improved noise reduction and correction technology, digital images look sharper than images shot in the film.
And because the image is saved in a compressed JPEG format, serious quality-enhancers can take advantage of this faster compression, Keep it in mind when selecting the type of lightbox you pick, Size matters, Sorry to burst your bubbles, but large prints are more costly and take longer and longer to print, It takes me 4–6 hours to print a 10″ x 17″ photo on a 4″ x 5″ sheet of paper, That takes me around two and a half days at normal speed,
How to get the best results from your photo enlarging machine
To get the best results from your enlarging machine, you need to use the photo enlarging paper that is the right type for the type of enlarging machine you have, There are two types of photo enlarging paper: traditional photo enlarging paper and fiber-based photo enlarging paper,If you try to use paper that has the wrong type for your enlarging machine, you will have to buy more paper, For example, I think the best paper for Nikon digital photo enlarger is Lenolt Gelb Alpa photo enlarging paper.
However, a friend has a very good photo enlarging machine and he uses a large format photo paper, After a few tests, I think he has found the right paper, I received the paper from him and now I know about Lenolt Gelb Alpa, If you are using the right type of paper for your type of enlarger, the results will be much better, I did not speak a word to my friend until he did his final tests and was sure that Lenolt Gelb Alpa is the right photo paper for his Nikon digital photo enlarger, Have you ever wondered why digital photos might not show up properly in your scanner or phone? I asked him what type of camera he has that can enlarge photos, He says that he has a Canon EOS 10D that he uses for his enlarging.
Another friend has a D3400 digital camera and he says that it cannot enlarge any type of photo, I am not sure about his D3400, honestly, I only have a D3400 digital camera now, Do you know what I think? I think there is a wrong understanding about photo enlargement, There are several types of enlarging machines, You might have seen some types of them, I think my largest enlarging machine is based on a Pentax 645D, It has a 100 x 100 mm (3,9 x 3,9 inches) plastic or metal plate, Everything is connected to each other with 16 balls that have mics, lights, and fans.
Today, there are countless photo enlargers on the market, and they vary not only in quality but price as well, That is why it is important that you do some research before buying one, In this article, I have given you a few tips that will help you get the most out of your money when shopping for a photo enlarger.
In conclusion, when you shop for a photo enlarger, remember to:
1) know how much enlargement you need,
2) know what you want to do with it,
3) Know your budget,
4) Remember to check your enlarger’s specifications to make sure it has the features you need,
5) Ensure that the enlarger has a warranty, And lastly,
6) Look at your enlarger’s website and its photos to decide if the item you’re buying is safe to purchase, We travel to big cities and work at the car wasn’t facilities, Sometimes our clients ask us how large digital photos can be expanded before losing their quality.
According to our experience, enlarging these photos takes a lot of money and time, Because of that we hurried to write this article, It answers the questions most people are asking us, When we asked our customers how much they needed to enlarge their digital photos, they varied, We’ve repeated this situation several times, The common value was between 1 to 2 megapixels, Nowadays, we receive many customers asking for 5 to 8 megapixels, You can check the number technically through an online service like mapprox.is Another thing always asked was how to set the desired megapixel size, This is what we tell our customers?
One of our customers with 16 megapixels came to us because he wanted to enlarge his photo from 24 to 56, He wanted to make sure that the few elements of the photo are indicated with as many dots and definition as possible, To meet his needs, we tested the photo and it appeared to us that doubling the image size from 24 to 56 mpx would make it noise-free, In the end, he paid us for the test job, which cost him about 600 euros.
Another customer wanted to enlarge an image from 24 megapixels to 80, He said that he wanted to have as much information about objects in the photo, In addition, he wanted to have as much definition of the outline of the objects and, especially, to make sure that it is well lit.