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File Formats

Table 2.1 lists the file formats that can be used, saved, exported, or imported by Photoshop.

Table 2.1. Photoshop File Formats
FormatDescription/Comments
PSD, PDDPhotoshop document format
BMP (RLE DIB)Bitmap format (Windows)
GIFCompuServe Graphical Interchange Format; a web image format supporting transparency; 256 max colors
EPSPhotoshop EPS Encapsulated PostScript format
DCS 1.0 2.0Desktop Color Separations format; a version of EPS; supports CMYK; DCS 2.0 supports spot channels
JPEGJoint Photographic Experts Group; most common graphic format for the web and even for print despite its lossy compression; supports RGB, CMYK
PSBLarge Photoshop document format (Photoshop Big); allows files over 2GB
PCXOlder PC image format; opens in Microsoft Paint
PDFPhotoshop Portable Document Format
RawPhotoshop raw format; different than camera raw format; cross-platform binary format supports RGB and CMYK, alpha, and more; cannot contain layers
PICTMac OS graphic format for the screen; supports RGB, index, grayscale, or bitmap modes
PXRPixar format; designed for high-end graphics commonly used in 3D work; suports RGB grayscale and single alpha channel
PNGPortable Networking Graphics format; a quality, patent-free alternative to GIF; well-supported web format; supports RGB, grayscale, bitmap modes, transparency; lossless compression options
PBM, PGM, PPM, PNM, PFMPortable Bitmap formats; family of bitmap screen graphic formats
SCTScitex Continuous Tone high-end color format; sometimes used for magazine ads
TargaDesigned for systems using TrueVision boards; commonly used for video-editing systems
TIFFTagged Image File Format; raster format; supports CMYK, RGB, Lab, indexed color, grayscale, some transparency and Photoshop layers; bit depths of 8, 16, and 32
AIPaths drawn in Photoshop can be exported as empty paths (no stroke or fill information) for use in Illustrator
WBMPImages for mobile devices; 1-bit images contain only black or white pixels
CINKodak Cineon Film System format; RGB 16-bit; channel image support
HDR, RGBE, XYZEHigh Dynamic Range image formats; support higher range of luminance levels; used in high-end photography for more realistic lighting and exposure
SWFShockwave Flash format; still images and animations can be exported from ImageReady



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