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Thread: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

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    Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    Sorry if this is completely irrelevant for what these forums are for, but i have no clue of photography and i have an a4 sheet at the moment with 24 pictures on (4 rows of 6 photos) which are not amazing quality as they have slight lines printed through them as if they have been printed off a computer not completely well. Anyway cut it short, is it possible to enlarge these photos with restoring some quality to them by photoshop/editing them somehow. If yes does anyone have any suggestions where to get this done and how much it would cost?
    many thanks,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 10th May 2010 at 06:33 PM.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    Hi Rosie,

    Welcome to the CiC forums from me.

    Well you got the question in the right place, a good start.

    Could I clarify what you're asking - do you have the image files that produced the sheet of A4 paper, or are we talking about scanning and enlarging from the paper? This makes a huge difference to the advice and the result.

    Thanks,

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    Re: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    Hi Rosie,

    A big "CiC Welcome" from me too

    Short answer is "yes it can be done" (to a degree) but having just said that, I suspect that you'd be pretty disappointed in the results. The biggest problem is that there isn't a lot of detail to work with in the first place ... and you can't create detail where it doesn't exist. Plus, it sounds like it was printed on an inkjet printer.

    The result would be similar to what you see looking at the images with a magnifying glass.

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    Re: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    no i don't have the files they were produced from i just have the photo paper it was printed onto. would i go to a photography type shop then do you think or do you know of anywhere online to which i could pay for this if isent them the photos?
    Thankyou for your replies, much appreciated

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    Quote Originally Posted by rosiec678 View Post
    no i don't have the files they were produced from i just have the photo paper it was printed onto. would i go to a photography type shop then do you think or do you know of anywhere online to which i could pay for this if isent them the photos?
    Why can't you get to the files? Who had them, what happened to them?

    A photo shop ought to know what to do, but as we have said, the results will (very likely) be poor.
    It may also depend where in the world you are.

    Depending on the paper type, print quality and resolution settings they were printed at, you are unlikely to get anything viewable beyond say, a 3 times lengthening of each side, so it'll still be quite small, say 3 to 4 inches on long side. Blowing up further will just produce a picture built in fuzzy Lego bricks.

    Obviously, beyond the time spent recreating 24 individual files from one scan, further time will be needed if you want the streaks correcting to produce better images. It all depends on the personal value of the images to you, whether that's worth it.

    Cheers,

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    Re: Enlarging pictures while keeping quality?

    Quote Originally Posted by rosiec678 View Post
    would i go to a photography type shop then do you think or do you know of anywhere online to which i could pay for this if isent them the photos?
    Yes. Just ask them to scan them at a fairly high resolution, and then see how they look from there. It's really a 2 part process;

    1. Scanning them, and

    2. Seeing what's left to work with.

    I would suggest that looking at them under a magnifying glass will probably give you the best idea of what they might look at; at one end of the scale if it were a high-resolution photo print onto a glossy paper then there is cause for hope - at the other end of the scale, if it was printed with a home type inkjet printer onto ordinary paper then even "mediocre" would be a better result than I woud be expecting.

    Having just said that though, it all depends on viewing distances - if you stand back enough then it should look OK (problem is though that you may need to stand back as far as it takes to reduce the apparent size to the same as what you have, in which case you may not gain anything).

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