Friday, November 8, 2013

File Formats - Down and Dirty

Do you know about this helpful Photoshop website?


Recently I have been asked about if a TIFF file is better than a PSD file. I am sort of an old school graphic designer and we used to send flattened TIFF files to printers because of the great image quality and there were less issues with a TIFF file than sending a PSD file. Now a days Photoshop is compatible with a lot more than the current version and I haven't sent a TIFF file in ages!

I agree with this website that I save my master files as PSD. Of course different people have different ways of working.

Below are snippets from post on different file formats

Photoshop .PSD

Of all the file formats that Photoshop supports, the PSD format is probably the most important. PSD stands for "Photoshop Document", and as the name implies, it’s Photoshop’s native file format.


The JPEG (Joint Photographic Expert Group) format has been around for nearly 20 years now and has become the most popular and widely used file format for viewing and sharing digital photos.


The GIF file format, which stands for Graphics Interchange Format, has been around even longer than JPEG, and it’s the format of choice for web graphics.


PNG (Portable Network Graphics) was originally meant to replace the GIF format (PNG also stands for “PNG not GIF”). That never happened and GIF files are still in wide use today, yet the PNG format improves upon the GIF format in nearly every way.


Like PSD files, TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) is one of the few file types that support all of Photoshop’s features and is another great choice for archiving your images, with lossless compression that allows you to save photos with the highest possible image quality. The quality comes at a price though, as TIFF files can be very large, especially when compared with JPEG files.


EPS (Encapsulated PostScript) is another print industry standard format that’s been around for quite a while, but its use has been in decline over the years. EPS files are not really image files in the traditional sense. Instead, they contain a series of instructions for how a printer should reproduce the image. They can be imported into most page layout programs, but the “encapsulated” part means the files are essentially locked and can no longer be modified unless they’re re-opened in Photoshop. (My note: I still create and get request for a lot of .eps files for logo design).


Finally, while most people are familiar with PDF files for viewing, sharing and printing electronic documents (hence the name Portable Document Format), PDF is also gaining in popularity as a great choice for saving images destined for print. Like the PSD and TIFF formats, PDF supports and preserves all of Photoshop’s features, including the ability to use spot colors, something the EPS format does not support.

 Hope the link to is helpful as well as this post - thanks for reading and commenting!


  1. Very informative post Annie! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Great to "see" you Darlene! Thanks for commenting :-D


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