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Key File Formats

This section will list each of the important file formats available for use with both digital cameras and image editors, including a few that you should avoid when working with images. I’ll discuss their advantages, disadvantages, and the types of image compression used.

JPEG

JPEG is the most common format used by digital cameras to store images, as it was designed specifically to reduce the file sizes of photographic-type images. JPEG allows dialing in a continuous range of quality/compression factors. In image editors, you’ll find this range shown as a quality spectrum from, say 0 to 10 or 0 to 15. Sometimes, editors let you choose from Low, Medium, or High quality. Those are just different ways of telling the algorithm how much information to discard.


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