7 Replies Latest reply on May 2, 2017 4:54 AM by Dazzer_21

    72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?

    WPgeek Level 1

      Firstly, I know this is a long post, but it was necessary.


      I am making a website where images will be available on web, but they can also be saved by users and printed. So I was wondering how much DPI should I choose.


      I decided to google it out. But I am super confused right now, because I am getting completely different answers to this question.


      Use Case:


      - Adobe photoshop file (.psd)

      - High resolution photograph

      - 1000 px by 1000 px

      - Saved as .jpg

      - Upload to website as well (file size not an issue)

      - Photo can be saved via website and printed


      There are 4 different websites I found giving me 4 different answers.


      Website 1: 300 DPI


      Print - 72 DPI < 300 DPI


      URL: http://www.vsellis.com/understanding-dpi-resolution-and-print-vs-web-images/


      "Print: 300dpi is standard, sometimes 150 is acceptable but never lower, you may go higher for some situations."


      With examples of 300dpi and 72dpi.


      Website 2: 72 DPI


      Web - 72 DPI = 300 DPI

      Print - 72 DPI > 300 DPI


      URL: https://daraskolnick.com/image-dpi-web/


      This author shows an example of how 72 DPI and 300 DPI look when printed. And guess what, the 72 DPI image looks bigger. How???


      Please search for:

      "Remember the three images I showed you above with different DPI values that look exactly the same on the web? Here’s what they’d look like printed:"


      72 DPI - https://daraskolnick.com/daraskolnick/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/72-231x300.png

      300 DPI - https://daraskolnick.com/daraskolnick/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/300-232x300.jpg


      Website 3: 300 DPI


      Print - 72 DPI < 300 DPI


      "300 DPI is usually a good rule of thumb."


      URL: https://graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/questions/95/what-dpi-should-be-used-for-what-situ ations


      Website 4: 72 DPI


      412 x 324 pixels, 7 dpi, prints 58 x 46 inches

      412 x 324 pixels, 72 dpi, prints 5.7 x 4.5 inches

      412 x 324 pixels, 720 dpi, prints 0.57 x 0.45 inches


      URL: http://www.scantips.com/no72dpi.html


      Sorry, but I don't understand what is going on here. Someone please care to explain??


      Thanks in advance!


      PS. Researching about this confused me even more. Haha.    

        • 1. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
          gener7 Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Pixels are screen units. That's what you go by when designing for screen.


          Dpi is a print term and has no relation to the screen pixels.  The more accurate term is "Pixels per Inch" It's actually instructions to the printer.


          A 100 x 100 px image will cover one inch of paper when printed at 100 ppi.  Increase print resolution to 300 ppi and it will be about 1/3 x 1/3 of an inch.


          72 ppi is a legacy term from the old 1984 MacIntosh screens. If there is no print data, that's what Photoshop defaults to.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
            WPgeek Level 1

            So how much DPI should I choose in this case?

            • 3. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
              gener7 Adobe Community Professional & MVP



              Laserprint: 200-225

              Commercial offset press: 267-300

              Photo stylus Inkjet: 360


              Make sure you have the pixels for the size you want:  20 inch photo print 360 x 20 = 7200 pixels.


              The lesson is to capture the maximum your camera or scanner will give you.

              • 4. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
                Theresa J Adobe Community Professional

                The question should be how many pixels do I need, and the answer will depend on the printer. gener7 does a good job of explaining this is his first post. I recorded a YouTube tutorial about this topic. It should help explain what resolution is. Photoshop Image Size and Resolution - YouTube

                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
                  Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                  It's print OR web. You must choose. If you want to make both available, and this is often done, the screen image can link to the print image. Otherwise it's like asking which compact car is best for transporting an elephant. No amount of fiddling with the details can make it suitable for both.

                  2 people found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
                    Derek Cross Adobe Community Professional

                    As usual Test Screen Name has come up with the succinct and excellent answer – building on his elephant metaphor, it's horses for courses. Most people seem to build websites nowadays that are around 1000px wide so no image should be wider than this, often smaller, but you can add links on your site to hi-res JPG images and PDFs that users can download for printing themselves.


                    And bear in mind most people are viewing website on tablets and smartphones phones, so your site should be designed to be responsive (rearrange itself to suit the viewing device).

                    2 people found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: 72 DPI or 300 DPI - Which Is Better For Web And Print Both?
                      Dazzer_21 Level 1

                      For web, you can work at whatever size (dpi) you're comfortable with. It doesn't make a jot of difference whether you work at 72dpi or 720 dpi as you are working to physical pixel DIMENSIONS as opposed to have to work with RESOLUTION constraints. One thing to bear in mind, though, is that if you create an image in Photoshop on a 'normal' ~72 pixel per inch screen, seeing it on a Retina screen at a far higher ~200ppi, your image in Photoshop is going to look a lot smaller at normal size, even through the physical size is exactly the same.


                      For print, however, it's an utterly different ballgame. It's OK to be asked for a 300dpi photo (bitmap image) but you need to know how it will be used. For vector artwork, this isn't an issue. For instance, the minimum requirement for a screen-printed magazine ad and that of a 96-sheet billboard poster are majorly different. The magazine will typically ask for a 300dpi image which is *about* right. However, for your billboard poster, that number is closer to 30. If you are looking at something close up, in order for the image to be crystal clear, the dots (or pixels in the on-screen sense) need to be close together. For items you look at from afar, that is not the case. In terms of file size alone, a 300dpi 96-sheet poster would be HUGE!! Knowing that in itself could save you from major headaches...

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