Bigger Works Better with Photoshop CC's Improved Image Size Command
My fellow dekeItarians, when it comes to enlarging images in Photoshop, bigger is better (than it was before). The redesigned Image Size command in Photoshop CC (released yesterday) now has a handy new preview feature and a better algorithm for increasing the size of your image. In this free excerpt from Deke's Photoshop Creative Cloud Updates course at lynda.com, Deke shows off the new preview window which lets you see what you're doing as you do it and demonstrates how the new Preserve Details interpolation method vastly improves the way Photoshop enlarges images.
When you first evoke the Image Size command in Photoshop CC, you'll immediately notice a difference from previous versions of the interface. The dialog box now sports an actual preview window that lets you see what you're doing as you do it. So, if I open Deke's sample file (a rasterized circle and cross graphic) then choose Image > Image Size, here's what I see:
The image preview comes in very handy for demonstrating the second significant improvement to the Image Size command, a new interpolation method for upsampling called Preserve Details. Read on to see how much better this new method works for enlargements:
Whenever you increase the size of an image, you're necessarily telling Photoshop to add pixels. Exactly how these upright square pixels get added is particularly tricky when it comes to enlarging a curve or diagonal edge. In the past, the recommended interpolation method for upsampling was Bicubic Smoother. It's still an option in the new dialog box, but look at this preview as I try to upsample the image by 600 percent; the edges along the curve and angled line have gone smushy and out of focus:
With the new Preserve Detail algorithm—which you can apply directly from the Resample popup menu or apply passively by leaving the Resample setting on Automatic for any enlargement—Photoshop does a much better job of preserving the edges:
(Deke's sample file does a great job of objectively showing off the improvement of the curves and straight diagonal edges of this graphic. Check out the video to see what it can do for a continuous-tone photograph.)
With the new dialog box, you can also quickly see how the image would look with no interpolation by clicking and holding in the preview window. Photoshop shows how the image would look with the Nearest Neighbor interpolation method applied, which uses a straightforward (and unintelligent) multiplication of every pixel in your image.
The new Image Size command in Photoshop CC not only does a better job of upsampling, but it demonstrates that improvement right there in the dialog box before you've officially applied it.