JPEG vs PNG vs PDF: which format should you use?

There are many file formats to choose from and each one has its particular strength and weaknesses. Here we aim to explain the differences and when you should use which one.

 

JPEG

The JPEG format was designed to minimise the file size of photographs and make it easier to share and use them in web design. This quality allows faster page load times and provides a better user experience as a result. However, this quality can also been seen as its weakness. When a JPEG is saved the file is compressed by a process that finds similar coloured pixels and blocks them together in tiles, this form of compression creates a loss in quality and data which cannot be retrieved once the image has been saved.

 

PNG

PNG means Portable Network Graphic and this format is most effective for graphics such as graphs, logos and text. It can also be used to save a photograph and because PNG files were not intended to reduce file size, the result will often be of a higher quality than that of a JPEG. Unlike JPEGs, which will compress and lose information every time it is resaved, a PNG will experience no loss of quality when created and can be saved, edited and opened again and again without degrading over time.

 

PDF

PDF files are the perfect option for file sharing because they create an exact replica of any document, including images. The main attributes of a pdf is the assurance that your graph, photo, or document will display correctly across devices without being altered. Their high quality make them ideal for graphic design that will ultimately be printed as opposed to living online.

So, to summarise a JPEG is ideal for posting photos and images online, as they keep file size to a minimum. For the same reason, they are great for emailing preview images to customers. PNG images are perfect for web graphics, particularly when you need an image to be transparent. They are also a good choice for multiple editing and saving. A PDF is the top choice for printing, they are high in quality and display correctly across devices without being altered.

If you are still undecided on what’s the best format between JPG vs PNG vs PDF, then we can take the stress away and create the right format for the right process. Making the correct decision at the beginning will guarantee the most successful result in the end. Call today on 01487 843311 or email info@printandlabel.com