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Alpha Channels and Masks

When you use the command Select, Save Selection, you're creating an alpha channel. Like other channels, an alpha channel is an 8-bit grayscale representation. As an 8-bit image, there are a maximum of 256 shades of gray in the channel. The levels of gray represent the level of selection for each pixel. For example, a pixel colored 50% gray in an alpha channel is 50% selected when the channel is loaded again as a selection.

Remember that when a pixel is 50% selected, any adjustment or filter is applied at half the intensity compared to a pixel selected at 100%. This behavior also holds true for deleting, painting, and other steps performed on a selection.



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