How to Save High-Quality Images in Photoshop

How to Save High-Quality Images in Photoshop

  12 Jan 2024

Key Takeaways

  • Choose JPEG 2000 or PNG formats for high-quality images in Photoshop. This minimizes compression and reduces pixelation.
  • Save images as PSD files in Lightroom before transferring to Photoshop. This gives you more flexibility in editing and higher-quality images.
  • Consider color mode and PPI when preparing images for print in Photoshop. And save them as TIFF files for preservation of quality.

You can save high-quality images in Photoshop for all kinds of use cases, whether that’s sharing your art on social media or preparing your content for print. In this easy-to-follow guide, you’ll learn how to save your pictures in Photoshop while ensuring that compression is minimal.

Which Formats Should I Use to Save High-Quality Images in Photoshop?

If you want to save the best-quality images in Photoshop, you need to choose file formats that minimize compression. Unfortunately, not all formats are equal in this respect. For example, JPEGs will compress more easily (though they do benefit from being easier to transfer across the web).

JPEG 2000 and PNG are the two files that are worth using if you need to save high-quality images in Photoshop. Both consume more space on your hard drives, but they’ll give you a better chance of less pixelation. We’ve got a full guide on what PNG files are, and what you should use them for, if you’d like to explore that topic further.

If you’re planning to use your images in print media (e.g. a magazine or book), you should use TIFF format instead.

Start by Saving Your Images as a PSD File in Lightroom

If you’re one of the many creators that use Lightroom and Photoshop together, you should save your pictures as PSD before transferring them to Photoshop. That way, you’ll have much more flexibility when editing in Photoshop. And as a result, you can also save higher-quality photos when you’ve finished editing.

Follow these steps to save your photos in PSD format before continuing to Photoshop:

  1. Go to File > Export in the toolbar at the top of your screen.

  2. Scroll down to File Settings and expand the toolbar next to Image Format. Here, choose PSD.
    Choose to Save Your Content as a PSD File in Adobe Lightroom

  3. Go back to the top of the window. Under Export Location, pick the folder you want to save your image in by selecting Choose. If you’re using both Lightroom and Photoshop, it’s a good idea to have a separate folder for Photoshop edits and then another for the finalized version.
    Choose Where to Save Your File in Adobe Lightroom

  4. When you’ve picked your file location, tap Export.

How to Save High-Quality Images in the Photoshop Desktop App

Once you’ve finished editing, and you’re ready to save high-quality images in Photoshop, the process is very simple. You can use the steps below to save both JPEG 2000 and PNG files in the desktop version.

  1. At the top of your screen, click on File and select Save As.
    Choose Save As when exporting your file in Adobe Photoshop

  2. Expand the dropdown menu next to Format at the bottom of the next window.
    Select Whether You Want to Save Your File as JPEG 2000 or PNG in Photoshop

  3. Select JPEG 2000 or PNG, depending on your preference. You can scroll down via the downward-facing arrow if you don’t immediately see either option on your screen.
  4. After doing the above and naming your file via Save As at the top, select Save.

How to Save High-Quality Images in Photoshop for the Web

To use Photoshop for the Web, you’ll need to open Google Chrome, Edge, or Firefox. The process of saving high-quality images is also slightly different from the desktop app, and you can either save your picture to Creative Cloud or on your device. Moreover, you can’t save your image as JPEG 2000, but PNG is available.

Let’s start by saving your picture to Creative Cloud:

  1. Tap the horizontal three-dots icon in the top left-hand corner of the app.
  2. Select Save as when the dropdown menu appears.
    Save a file to Adobe Creative Cloud via the Photoshop app for your computer

  3. Enter the name you want to save your image as. Then, select Save.
    Save Photoshop File to Adobe CC After Renaming

Once you’ve saved your photo in Creative Cloud via the web app, you can go to the Photoshop desktop app and save your picture as JPEG 2000 or PNG via the same instructions in the previous version.

If you’d rather download your image to a hard-drive instead, and you want PNG rather than JPEG 2000, the following steps are for you:

  1. Select Download.
  2. Expand Where and choose your desired file-saving location.
    Choose where to save your file when using Photoshop for web

  3. Go to Format and select PNG.
    The option to save a file as PNG when using Photoshop for the web

  4. Tap the Save button when everything looks as it should.

You can check out how Creative Cloud works if you want to learn more about the platform.

How to Prepare Images in Photoshop for Print

A common mistake in Photoshop is failing to take the Color mode and the PPI (pixels per inch) of the image into account. These Photoshop export settings make a huge difference when preparing media for print.

Using Color Mode in Photoshop

Photoshop supports a variety of color modes; you’ll find them all under Image > Mode. The default color mode is RGB (Red, Green, and Blue). This is the main color mode used in Photoshop.

The different image modes available in Adobe Photohshop

If you change the Color mode of your image, the switch from RGB to CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key) might not be immediately noticeable. The difference can be felt more in their use. RGB is an additive color mode, while CMYK is a subtractive color mode.

Additive colors are more useful when dealing with something like an image displayed on a screen. Subtractive colors are best for images that you intend to print later on.

Subtractive colors begin with a white surface, much like a piece of printer paper. Colors, in the form of ink, subtract from the brightness of the surface in layers. The more layers that you have overlapping one another, the darker the area of the image gets.

Once you’ve chosen the right image and color modes, you should save your pictures as TIFF. Here’s how to do that:

  1. Go to File > Save As.
    The Save As Option for Files in Photoshop

  2. Pick the place you want to save your image. Then, expand the dropdown menu next to Format.
    Choose TIFF when saving a file for print in Photoshop

  3. When your list of options appears, select TIFF.
  4. Once everything looks good to you, tap Save.

Saving your file with care will preserve the quality of the image. Why settle for a JPEG when there is so much more to choose from?

When saving high-quality images in Photoshop, think about the platforms you’ll use them on. For example, JPEG 2000 works if you upload pictures to social media from your smartphone, but PNG is better for client projects. It’s also a good idea to consider the different file size limits that different platforms have.

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