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Runny Colours Problem


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7 replies to this topic

#1 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 06:55 PM

Hi, why do pictures that I've created in Paint Program look blurred when I post them in forums?
For example the one below was crisp and clear when I created it and saved it to Photobucket, but when I posted it in a strategy games forum it came out blurry, and looks as if the colours have run, not crisp at all. Any ideas how to crisp it up?
(I'm WinXP Home)
Thanks

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#2 tg1911

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 09:39 PM

Have you tried to "Sharpen" it, before hosting it?
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#3 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 11:21 PM

Yes but sharpening often makes it look just as bad, the runniness goes but a new set of problems arise (washed-out colours, glittery pixellation etc)

#4 arcman

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Posted 05 July 2007 - 12:36 AM

When it's a graphic like that and not a photograph you want to save it as a .gif or .png file and not a .jpg
JPEGs use lossy compression to save space, and that usually looks OK for photographs, but it doesn't do well with distinct borders of solid color. A GIF or PNG will use lossless compression meaning it won't discard any data to save space like you'll get with lossy compression. It ends up being a bigger file, but with one that small it doesn't end up being that much bigger.

Also if you're not already, use a program other than MS Paint/paint.exe
If you don't have something like Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro, there are decent free ones out there like Paint.net and The Gimp.
There is also Inkscape, although that's more for vector image editing (drawings) rather than raster images (photos).
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#5 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 05 July 2007 - 12:26 PM

Okay thanks Arcman I did a new pic and saved as a PNG and there's a definite improvement, does it look better to you now in this post?

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Incidentally when saving it as PNG in Irfanview, I'm asked - "Select Compression Level 0-9 (9=best), default=6"
What's the option affect exactly? Shall I leave it at 6 or what?

#6 arcman

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Posted 05 July 2007 - 12:29 PM

Much better, doesn't have the artifacting (distortion) that the first image had.
EDIT: oop, missed the second question. I don't know exactly how Irfanview's options work, but I assume that's going to have to do with whether it's going to save the file as a PNG-8 or PNG-24, and the number of colors it's going to save. A PNG-8 is basically equivalent to the number of colors a GIF has, but with a smaller file size, a PNG-24 can save things in lossless true color like a photograph, though at a large filesize.

See more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Png#File_size...zation_software

Edited by arcman, 05 July 2007 - 01:35 PM.

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#7 MickinPlymouthUK

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Posted 05 July 2007 - 10:09 PM

Okay just to digress slightly can I ask another question - In the Win XP Home 'display settings' dialog we get the option to set 16-bit or 32-bit colours, i've tried both to compare them and can't notice any difference during game playing or anything else, why is that?
I hear the 32 setting consumes more processing power, so I might just as well leave it at 16, right?

#8 arcman

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Posted 06 July 2007 - 12:56 AM

Generally they're referred to as the difference between thousands and millions of colors at a time.
16 bit color or "highcolor" is preferable to 8-bit color, but isn't quite sufficient to show lifelike images.
32 bit color or "truecolor" displays millions of colors which will accurately display things like lifelike photos.
You always want it set to 32 unless it isn't possible. It doesn't take up any more significant processing power.
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