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Quality loss when resizing from original size, to small ,back to original size

Community Beginner ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Hi, I'm having an issue with Photoshop that's pretty annoying. When I have a high-quality image that's pretty big and I resize it to be a lot smaller, and I then resize it back to its original size, it looks super pixelated. Even though I'm just back to its original size.

 

I do all of this using ctrl + t and then just dragging the corner (while keeping the proportions the same).

 

Does anyone know how to prevent this? 

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Conrad_C | Adobe Community Professional

This is how it works in any photo editor because when you make it smaller, pixels must be thrown out when the layer is resampled down to the smaller pixel dimensions you asked for.

 

Fortunately, Photoshop does give you a way around this: the Smart Object feature that was mentioned. If you select the layer and choose Layer > Smart Objects > Convert to Smart Object, it will sort of encapsulate the layer so that it keeps all its pixels as you transform it. As a Smart Object layer, you can scale it down and up at any time and it will not lose pixels.

 

However, you can’t directly edit a Smart Object, so if you want to work with the pixels inside a Smart Object you first double-click it. It opens as its own document that you can edit, and when you save that, it applies to the main document containing the Smart Object.

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Quality loss when resizing from original size, to small ,back to original size

Community Beginner ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Hi, I'm having an issue with Photoshop that's pretty annoying. When I have a high-quality image that's pretty big and I resize it to be a lot smaller, and I then resize it back to its original size, it looks super pixelated. Even though I'm just back to its original size.

 

I do all of this using ctrl + t and then just dragging the corner (while keeping the proportions the same).

 

Does anyone know how to prevent this? 

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Conrad_C | Adobe Community Professional

This is how it works in any photo editor because when you make it smaller, pixels must be thrown out when the layer is resampled down to the smaller pixel dimensions you asked for.

 

Fortunately, Photoshop does give you a way around this: the Smart Object feature that was mentioned. If you select the layer and choose Layer > Smart Objects > Convert to Smart Object, it will sort of encapsulate the layer so that it keeps all its pixels as you transform it. As a Smart Object layer, you can scale it down and up at any time and it will not lose pixels.

 

However, you can’t directly edit a Smart Object, so if you want to work with the pixels inside a Smart Object you first double-click it. It opens as its own document that you can edit, and when you save that, it applies to the main document containing the Smart Object.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Are you doing this within the same Transform operation? Once you commit the transform (which now happens automatically by clicking outside the transform box) - the pixels are gone and won't come back.  If you then resize back up it will look predictably awful.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Quality is always lost when you resize a raster image.  Only vector graphics resize perfectly.  If  you are going  to be resizing raster images you should use smart object layers for you images so you will not accumulate additional loss with each resize.  The resizing interpolation will always be from the smart object not  from other interpolated images. 

JJMack

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 10, 2020

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This is how it works in any photo editor because when you make it smaller, pixels must be thrown out when the layer is resampled down to the smaller pixel dimensions you asked for.

 

Fortunately, Photoshop does give you a way around this: the Smart Object feature that was mentioned. If you select the layer and choose Layer > Smart Objects > Convert to Smart Object, it will sort of encapsulate the layer so that it keeps all its pixels as you transform it. As a Smart Object layer, you can scale it down and up at any time and it will not lose pixels.

 

However, you can’t directly edit a Smart Object, so if you want to work with the pixels inside a Smart Object you first double-click it. It opens as its own document that you can edit, and when you save that, it applies to the main document containing the Smart Object.

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