View Full Version : Viewing images.

07-04-2009, 7:42pm
This minor problem has been bugging me for a while, I use CS3 to process my images and always sharpen as a final step. They look great in CS but when viewong them in Windows they look less sharp. I have no idea why this happens, I know they are sharp in print, when I send files to magazines and when I post them on the web. Windows file viewer seems to be the problem. Any ideas?

07-04-2009, 9:54pm
They look great in CS but when viewong them in Windows they look less sharp.
Any ideas?

Now, this sounds stupid, I know, but euhm... don't use the Windows viewer to check sharpness with? Chances are you're not looking at 100%, but resized. Resizing always is a tradeoff between quality and performance, thus PS might do it one way and Windows Viewer might do it another way.

If you are pixelpeeping at 100%, chances are the windows viewer doesn't use color profiles. That in itself isn't causing unsharpness, but due to the different meaning of the colors in your image, it might give the visual impression of unsharpness. Quite a technical story I'm afraid, but suffices to say it can happen.

Printing is a completely different story ofcourse. If you want tack-sharp prints, it's even best to oversharpen a bit.

08-04-2009, 12:48am
Jev thanks very much for that explanation.....I use Windows viewer as a quick way to look at and show images to others.....also noticed that on a friends Mac there is no difference between CS and the image viewer on Mac. I wish I had seen your response today before I went and ordered two large prints, the files were sharp in CS but perhaps I should have oversharpened, I will know when I pick them up lol.

I @ M
08-04-2009, 6:37am
The basic Windows viewer has, to me at least, never produced a good rendition of any picture whether it be one of mine or someone else's that has been sent to me.
I also noted in another post a while ago that the current version of the free Nikon software, View NX, seems to also apply a soft look to photos both pre and post PP whereas the previous version used to give a reliable guide to how they looked pre PP or post PP.
It seems to be a matter of the sizing generated for viewing as a trade off for speed in opening the file.

08-04-2009, 6:39am
Colour space?
You need to publish as sRGB for things to look the same. Not all browsers or viewers honour the colour profile information. sRGB is the PC default.