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  • Enlarging a photo

    Help !!! Should I resample or not when enlarging a photo? From what I've been reading both methods are recommended. Also , is the scan resolution critical when one is going to enlarge. I am restoring a 1" x1" headshot photo of two people taken about 1900 and want to enlarge it for family reunion coming up soon so don't have a lot of time to experiment . Also wondering how much to enlarge.
    Thanks ahead for any advice. Joyce
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  • #2
    Just speaking for myself, so dont put a whole lot of weight on this, I will scan in a photo that small at around 800lpi then try the enlarging, usually with Genuine fractals or Bicubic.
    The best way is to try a high res scan..perhaps at 2-3 different resolutions and see which is going to work best for you. Play around with just enlarging them..dont worry about cleaning the scan up too much..just enough to get a feel for the anticipated results.
    The problem is that there just isnt a whole lot of image data to work with from something that small and trying to go much over 5x7 may tend to blur/artifact out the image...
    I use a low power Binocular microscope set up with a camera to import an image magnified approx.15x-25x on these small ones, but even so, getting a pristine portrait quality print is unlikely...but... Experiment!!! I am sure that with a little "playing around" and some more tips from the helpful folks here you will do a great job...Tom

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    • #3
      A few days ago my wife told my Aunt that she wanted photographs of myself whan I was younger. My aunt sent us the only photograph that she had of me, its 29 years old and about as big as a smartmedia card. I scanned it at 1200dpi, resized it (NOT resampled) to 300 dpi therefor making the image about 5x5 inches, added a little Unsharp mask and printed on my Epson 890. The resultant photograph isnt perfect but its most pleasing to see that my son looks very much like I did when I was a toddler. The faded colours are the biggest problem.
      Oh I forgot to mention, the original photograph wasnt sharp but was quite smooth, not grainy at all, therefor using 1200 dpi was acceptable. If the photo was grainy then a lesser resolution would have produced a better result.
      Best Wishes
      Charles
      Attached Files

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      • #4
        Good advice from both Tom and charles. I would echo what they said. If the image is of good quality, go ahead and scan at the highest optical resolution your scanner can manage. (not interpolated!) It might not make for a wonderful enlargement but you are much better off getting as much "info" as you can from the initial scan and then enlarging if you have to.

        There are also several different techniques for sharpening that can offer even greater control than the standard unsharp mask. You might do a search in this site or others for suggested sharpening techniques on these types of images. The main idea will be to enhance some of the detail without also sharpening the inevitable artifacts.

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        • #5
          What good suggestions ! I have scanned in my orig photo at various dpi and printed the orig at some new sizes. That was interesting and in the long run a time saver. I wonder how I know the resolution of my scanner which is 600x1200 . After the number 1200 on my scanner res choices it goes to a different set of numbers so can I assume that 1200 is the end of my noninterpolated scans.? My scan at 1200 seemed to look about the same as the one at 800 and not too different from the one at 600 when I printed them all as a 3"x3" size. (no resampling) Am going to try the suggestion to set image size res to 300 and see what size PS arrives at. Whew.
          REading all the tips and tutorials on sharpening as fast as I can.

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          • #6
            Is it best to do corrections to the original size and then enlarge it ???? OR should I enlarge the original and make corrections and changes to the enlarged version.

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            • #7
              Good question...and I do not really have an answer! I usually enlarge it first, but that is just personel preference...no real technical reason for it.

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