The Movie Database Support

So, I've just started using a program called paint.net to crop and save images to be uploaded to TMdb. What I noticed is how, images saved from this program pretty much retain the file size those images had before they were cropped (as saved on my computer before editing/cropping).

Up until now I've been using (MS?) Paint to crop and save images. But they've always been significantly reducing the image file size of images after cropping and saving. I've compared 2 large images on their quality using Paint vs using Paint.net. To me, there doesn't seem to be a difference in quality (or, a difference at all- visually).

The question: does saving images in Paint reduce the quality of images?

Am I stupid for assuming image file size is associated with image quality? Have I been reducing the quality of images by using Paint? I think I've asked this before, but I don't think I've gotten an actual response (or I only asked it in passing/it wasn't the main question/focus of a post).

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It does sound like Paint has been reducing the quality of your images. The size of the file and the image quality goes hand in hand. You probably don't notice them, but you can bet the smaller file has (more) artifacts. :worried:

:rofl:

Lol, realz? Well, it's a question I've asked before, if not a few times. But I think the response I got was that, that's normal, and any image you upload to TMdb will naturally get a reduction in quality or something.

If you're correct in saying that Paint categorically reduces the quality of images. Then that really should be made known, that Paint should not be used. Unless, I'm the only knucklehead using it haha :joy:

(currently contemplating/figuring out whether there is a noticeable reduction in quality of images I've uploaded to warrant re-uploading all edited images I've ever added to the db using Paint.net instead of MS Paint)

Edit: I might wait for another mod to say the same thing, before I take on that :point_up_tone2: endeavour.

Edit x2: I'd really like this to be confirmed because I estimate it would be at least 250 images to (edit and) reupload (and at least 90 individual image reports).

But I think the response I got was that, that's normal, and any image you upload to TMdb will naturally get a reduction in quality or something.

That's also true. But I just tried it and the reduction using Paint is like abnormally big. :see_no_evil:

 Then that really should be made known, that Paint should not be used.

Good idea. Done.

@banana_girl said:

It does sound like Paint has been reducing the quality of your images. The size of the file and the image quality goes hand in hand. You probably don't notice them, but you can bet the smaller file has (more) artifacts. :worried:

I conducted a little (literal little; as in, small sample size) experiment to test this.

I used three images, the first was a large poster (with a resolution of 2880x3600), the second was a large poster (with a resolution of 2250x3000), and the last one was a small poster (with a resolution of 607x879). All images required cropping to meet the ideal aspect ratio (i.e. 2:3). Only the first image required any resizing (i.e. it required downscaling to meet the maximum size requirements of 2000x3000).

All three images edited then saved using Paint experienced a significant reduction in file size, especially in comparison to editing and saving the images using Paint.net instead. However, the second image, and the third image, did not experience any significant (or any at all) reduction in image quality (not that I could tell any way zooming in by 400-800%). It was only the first image that experienced a siginificant reduction in image quality.

So, what I gathered was that it isn't necessarily true that "the size of the file and the image quality goes hand in hand". I don't think the images I've uploaded after being cropped and saved using Paint have had significant reductions in image quality (if any reductions). I think it's likely that it's probably only the images I've uploaded after downscaling and saving using Paint that have had reductions in image quality and those are the only ones that should probably be reuploaded.

Thoughts? I'm hoping you guys come to the same conclusion that the only problem is resizing (i.e. downscaling) on Paint, and not cropping, (and not expanding solid backgrounds/ removing text & logos surrounded by solid color).

I just find it hard to believe that using Paint will always result in a significant reduction in quality, for a lot of reasons, but the biggest one is:

that all the image reports I've done, where I've basically just reuploaded the same image already on TMdb, with the only change made to it is cropping it down to the ideal aspect ratio. If it's true that the reduction in file size caused by saving images on MS Paint really always resulted in a significant reduction in image quality, then why hasn't there been a single response (not that I can remember) by a mod saying that the reuploaded version I uploaded was significantly lower quality than the one already on the db?

You would think each and every time, my image would get removed instead. But no, that doesn't happen, my image is always the one that's kept.

Edit: Actually, I've just gone a looked through a handful of images I where the only thing I did was properly crop an image that already existed on the db and reuploaded it. All of the ones I looked at actually increased (?? don't ask me why, I don't know much about this kind of thing) in file size after cropping it and saving it on MS Paint.

It's actually just entirely confusing. Now I've been checking what happens to the file size when you simply save an image (JPG format) on Paint (without doing anything to the image!). What happens is- hilarious :joy: sometimes it significantly decreases in file size, and other times it significantly increases in file size! I mean I doubt images are somehow "gaining" image quality by saving it on Paint hahaha!

The following text is based on my experiences. I'm sure there are some better technical explanations out there, but I'll give it a try...

I think the key here is that most images have been re-saved at least once before being published as a jpg image. (Most professional images begin their life in another format, either raw or as a processed file from an image program.) With some image programs you can see what setting was used when the image was re-saved. So, for example, when I take an image from porn studio Brazzers that image is usually published with a 50 (out of 100) base quality at size 2495x1663. This means that if I don't have the ability to change the 50 to something much higher, the new image will again be re-saved at that 50-rate resulting in a bad quality image. However, if I crop and re-size the image to 1920x1080 and save it at quality 98 the result is usually excellent despite the previous "50 quality". The 98 setting also significantly changes the file size, which was the point I was trying to get to (a 3x increase or more is normal).

My guess is that some images don't have a setting pre-determined, meaning that it will use the image program default in such cases. A typical default would be 85-90 percent, which should be enough to get a good image if the original is excellent quality. This won't completely explain what is going on with Paint, but I guess it can be a start to try figure out why the image size is changing.

@lineker Not really sure I understand most of that, but I think that's more on me than it is you.

I may not understand what's going on on the technical level, but I would at least like to know what method I should be using when editting, saving and uploading images onto the db.

Currently, when I edit (cropping, expanding solid background, or removing logo/text surrounded by solid color), I use the program Paint.net. Everytime I go to save an edited image it comes up with a pop-up screen called "Save Configuration" where there is a "Quality" slider from 0 to 100. I always save on 100. Is this a good enough method to take with all images?

Or must I check what the base quality (out of 100) is first, and if it's particularly low, I must both save it at high quality (98?), and re-size the image (to 1920x1080 for large backdrops)? Also, why 98 and not 100?

I just want to know:

1) How can I tell which images, if any, some, or all, that I've uploaded to the db, has suffered a significant reduction in image quality, in the process of editing (cropping, expanding solid color backgrounds, removing text/logos surrounded by solid color) and saving the image on Paint?

2) What is the method that I can use to reupload those images so that they don't suffer this loss of reduction and to upload new images without reducing image quality?

I always save on 100. Is this a good enough method to take with all images?

Yes, that should work.

Or must I check what the base quality (out of 100) is first, and if it's particularly low, I must both save it at high quality (98?), and re-size the image (to 1920x1080 for large backdrops)?

Knowing the base quality may simply be irrelevant for you using that program. If the quality of the original looks fine, it shouldn't really matter what the base quality was as long as you re-save with high quality. And it's always the end result that matters. My reasoning was based on a false assumption that you perhaps couldn't set the quality when saving.

Also, why 98 and not 100?

Going from 98 to 100 usually adds about 200-300KB to the image size (for a 1920x1080 backdrop) without me being able to see any difference. When I started I used 92 because I wanted to save bandwidth for TMDb, but then Travis gave the recommendation to always add the best quality possible. And now I'm at 98. :snail:

I just want to know:

I can't really come with any specific tips here. In general, find an image program you like. Get to know it, and make sure to check the final image (something you seem to be doing a lot, which is good).

Earlier this year I noticed a couple bad (upscaled) posters that I had added. I was very confused since the site I used as source was normally a sure thing. However, it turned out that for some posters on that site the quality was bad. The lesson for me: even a normally trustworthy site can sometimes add bad images and now I always check the final image before adding!

So, basically, the best thing to do is to go through my saved edited images and compare them visually to their original images, and judge whether or not they turned out fine, as opposed to, simply reuploading every single image edited and saved with Paint that has had a significant reduction in image file size?

With the few images I have been checking, it seems to me that the only images that have had significant reduction in image quality is the images that had to be re-sized (downscaled), and that the rest look totally fine. And using Paint.net to downscale instead, so far, has made a noticeable difference in every image that requires downscaling (i.e. downscaling using Paint.net seems to result in no significant/noticeable reduction in image quality- or at least, in contrast to using Paint it is managing to keep much more of the original image quality).

Does that sound plausible? That the only images that may require reuploading from Paint is the ones that I resized with Paint? (Or that these are likely the worst cases- worse than the images that didn't go through re-sizing using MS Paint- and the ones I should bother with/prioritise reuploading first?)

One last question, if you have an image that requires no editing, (re)saving it using a photo editing program to increase its file size (by simply opening the file on the program and saving it to a quality of 100), will never increase its image quality on TMDB in comparison to uploading it without (re)saving to increase its file size, right?

True, in theory image quality should not increase by simply re-saving it.

I did a test now and had an image at 239KB and after resaving it (at 100) the image got to 620KB but there was no visible improvement. So a good policy can be to only re-save if it's needed, say after down-scaling, cropping or making any edit to improve the image.

@lineker said:

However, if I crop and re-size the image to 1920x1080 and save it at quality 98 the result is usually excellent despite the previous "50 quality". The 98 setting also significantly changes the file size, which was the point I was trying to get to (a 3x increase or more is normal).

Don't have much to add other than I also save my images at 98. I try to add the best quality image I can, and don't want to lose quality on an original. JPEG encoders can indeed add to a file size. Even at 98 sometimes my version is higher than the source. It just depends on the image.

@travisbell said:

@lineker said:

Don't have much to add other than I also save my images at 98. I try to add the best quality image I can, and don't want to lose quality on an original. JPEG encoders can indeed add to a file size. Even at 98 sometimes my version is higher than the source. It just depends on the image.

Is there anything wrong with saving always saving to 100? (This is what I'm currently doing).

@lineker said:

True, in theory image quality should not increase by simply re-saving it.

I did a test now and had an image at 239KB and after resaving it (at 100) the image got to 620KB but there was no visible improvement. So a good policy can be to only re-save if it's needed, say after down-scaling, cropping or making any edit to improve the image.

There's actually been at least one image that has suffered a loss of color/tone after simply uploading it (I don't believe I ever resaved it on Paint). I have since reuploaded it with the problem fixed by using Gimp. Now, I'm not sure if what solved it was the little conversion to sRGB that Gimp sometimes asks you to do when opening a new image, or if it was something else that Gimp is doing behind the scenes- so for now, to be safe I'm resaving everything on Gimp first. Is there anything wrong with that?

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