Board index PBase Feature Requests Better .jpg compression or default to "original"

Feature Requests

Better .jpg compression or default to "original"

Request changes or modifications.
nogaroblue
 
Posts: 13

Better .jpg compression or default to "original"

Post Thu Feb 07, 2008 4:33 pm


Can we get either of those options? (or even better both).

The .jpg compression Pbase uses to smoosh the pictures to the default large size really looks bad sometimes. It's a big loss in quality.

My originals look much better. I'd like to either make the larges look as good as the originals or be able to default to the originals because I have a gut feeling that most viewers never realize they can change the size.

Thanks.

akmc_in_au
 
Posts: 921

Re: Better .jpg compression or default to "original&quo

Post Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:26 pm


nogaroblue wrote:Can we get either of those options? (or even better both).

The .jpg compression Pbase uses to smoosh the pictures to the default large size really looks bad sometimes. It's a big loss in quality.

My originals look much better. I'd like to either make the larges look as good as the originals or be able to default to the originals


The only problem with having Original as the default is when people put up huuuuuuge originals (say 3000*2000) which are (a) just too big to fit on 99.999% of screens anyway and (b) murderous on the bandwidth of those with slower connections.

As discussed in another thread a few weeks ago, I think that the ideal compromise would be to bump up the Large (default) size to about 1000 pixels (from the existing 800), meaning that if the image is no larger than that then the Original will be used anyway.

Scaling an image down in this way is always going to cost you some quality no matter how good the algorithm, unfortunately, and if the Original CAN be displayed, so much the better.

I have a gut feeling that most viewers never realize they can change the size.


I think you're dead right on that one. If I send someone a link, I try to remember to make it the link to the Original size. That's actually why I steered away from an experiment of using the Black Standard template in some of my galleries; the size options weren't even displaying for some users using IE6, which is scary...

nogaroblue
 
Posts: 13

Re: Better .jpg compression or default to "original&

Post Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:21 pm


akmc_in_au wrote:
nogaroblue wrote:Can we get either of those options? (or even better both).

The .jpg compression Pbase uses to smoosh the pictures to the default large size really looks bad sometimes. It's a big loss in quality.

My originals look much better. I'd like to either make the larges look as good as the originals or be able to default to the originals


The only problem with having Original as the default is when people put up huuuuuuge originals (say 3000*2000) which are (a) just too big to fit on 99.999% of screens anyway and (b) murderous on the bandwidth of those with slower connections.

As discussed in another thread a few weeks ago, I think that the ideal compromise would be to bump up the Large (default) size to about 1000 pixels (from the existing 800), meaning that if the image is no larger than that then the Original will be used anyway.

Scaling an image down in this way is always going to cost you some quality no matter how good the algorithm, unfortunately, and if the Original CAN be displayed, so much the better.

I have a gut feeling that most viewers never realize they can change the size.


I think you're dead right on that one. If I send someone a link, I try to remember to make it the link to the Original size. That's actually why I steered away from an experiment of using the Black Standard template in some of my galleries; the size options weren't even displaying for some users using IE6, which is scary...


If anyone is so foolish to make their default picture 3000+ pixels across, just don't look at their images. I wouldn't.

Leave it up to the Pbase user to keep whatever image size they default to within reason.

I'm not asking to force a default to "original", I'm asking for the user to have an option on what size they want to default to.

akmc_in_au
 
Posts: 921

Re: Better .jpg compression or default to "original&

Post Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:42 pm


nogaroblue wrote:If anyone is so foolish to make their default picture 3000+ pixels across, just don't look at their images. I wouldn't.


I don't, but that's not the point. The point is that someone who is browsing images won't know ahead of time how large the image is going to be. If that image DOES turn out to be a 3000 pixel monster, it'll have two effects.

1/ For someone on low bandwidth they'll have already wasted a chunk of that bandwidth by the time they realise it and try to navigate elsewhere; and
2/ For users who aren't pBase members (and who don't know the place) having an (effectively) unviewable image popping up doesn't exactly reflect well on the site.

pBase is right to impose SOME limit on the default size; I just believe that with current screen resolutions 800 pixels is too small for that default.

Also I think it's unfair to characterise someone who puts up such images as "foolish"; they may just be starting out and are yet to get to grips with doing image resizing. I know of people who have uploaded images just as they came out of their camera, and that's the result. It wasn't the result that they INTENDED, but it's there anyway.

nogaroblue wrote:Leave it up to the Pbase user to keep whatever image size they default to within reason.

I'm not asking to force a default to "original", I'm asking for the user to have an option on what size they want to default to.


I understand what you're asking for (and to an extent I agree with you) but the "within reason" qualification is why pBase defaults to the "Large" size currently. It prevents the issues discussed above. It was a reasonable restriction when people were using 800 * 600 screens; less so now.

If the users could set any size as the default (and I can't imagine a situation where anyone would choose a size OTHER than Original if they were given the choice, but that's by-the-by), you could get an image of ANY size popping up in your browser without warning. If, on the other hand, pBase were to upgrade what "large" is defined as, then the issue goes away for all images which are, as you correctly say, "within reason". For ones which aren't, the Large size still becomes the "fallback" position.

{Edit} Actually 1200 rather than 1000 might be better for the definition of "Large" since (a) 1280 * 800 may not QUITE be the entry level yet but certainly will be soon; and (b) It would allow your Porsche Cayman gallery to display full size by default. Choice. Very, VERY choice...

nogaroblue
 
Posts: 13

Re: Better .jpg compression or default to "original&

Post Sun Feb 10, 2008 5:34 am


akmc_in_au wrote:
nogaroblue wrote:If anyone is so foolish to make their default picture 3000+ pixels across, just don't look at their images. I wouldn't.


I don't, but that's not the point. The point is that someone who is browsing images won't know ahead of time how large the image is going to be. If that image DOES turn out to be a 3000 pixel monster, it'll have two effects.

1/ For someone on low bandwidth they'll have already wasted a chunk of that bandwidth by the time they realise it and try to navigate elsewhere; and
2/ For users who aren't pBase members (and who don't know the place) having an (effectively) unviewable image popping up doesn't exactly reflect well on the site.

pBase is right to impose SOME limit on the default size; I just believe that with current screen resolutions 800 pixels is too small for that default.

Also I think it's unfair to characterise someone who puts up such images as "foolish"; they may just be starting out and are yet to get to grips with doing image resizing. I know of people who have uploaded images just as they came out of their camera, and that's the result. It wasn't the result that they INTENDED, but it's there anyway.

nogaroblue wrote:Leave it up to the Pbase user to keep whatever image size they default to within reason.

I'm not asking to force a default to "original", I'm asking for the user to have an option on what size they want to default to.


I understand what you're asking for (and to an extent I agree with you) but the "within reason" qualification is why pBase defaults to the "Large" size currently. It prevents the issues discussed above. It was a reasonable restriction when people were using 800 * 600 screens; less so now.

If the users could set any size as the default (and I can't imagine a situation where anyone would choose a size OTHER than Original if they were given the choice, but that's by-the-by), you could get an image of ANY size popping up in your browser without warning. If, on the other hand, pBase were to upgrade what "large" is defined as, then the issue goes away for all images which are, as you correctly say, "within reason". For ones which aren't, the Large size still becomes the "fallback" position.

{Edit} Actually 1200 rather than 1000 might be better for the definition of "Large" since (a) 1280 * 800 may not QUITE be the entry level yet but certainly will be soon; and (b) It would allow your Porsche Cayman gallery to display full size by default. Choice. Very, VERY choice...


I think you're missing my point. The size isn't my main issue.

My problem is that Pbase's "Large" Default .jpg conversion algorithm has major impacts on photo quality.

If Pbase didn't reduce the quality of the photos when converting to the non original picture sizes, I wouldn't have any complaints.

I take pride in my photos, as most do here. When my relatively untrained eye can clearly see artifacts of the size transformations, there is a problem.

akmc_in_au
 
Posts: 921

Re: Better .jpg compression or default to "original&

Post Sun Feb 10, 2008 6:09 am


nogaroblue wrote:I think you're missing my point. The size isn't my main issue.

My problem is that Pbase's "Large" Default .jpg conversion algorithm has major impacts on photo quality.

If Pbase didn't reduce the quality of the photos when converting to the non original picture sizes, I wouldn't have any complaints.

I take pride in my photos, as most do here. When my relatively untrained eye can clearly see artifacts of the size transformations, there is a problem.


No I'm not; I understand exactly what you're getting at. What I'm saying is that if the default size were to be larger than it is, then there wouldn't be any need for resizing (except of the excessively oversized images that we've spoken of previously) and there therefore wouldn't be any loss of quality involved. That would render the whole issue of the resizing algorithm academic for most users (that is, the ones who have resized their images to a suitable size for the web).

I agree that resizing to the existing default size of 800 pixels involves a (sometimes significant) loss of quality, but I'd be surprised if pBase could come up with a suitable algorithm to overcome that. Even using CS3's bicubic sharper algorithm, which is about as good as it gets (for most but not all images), I've found that images sometimes still benefit from a quick brush-over with unsharp mask to help restore some of the sharpness that you (inevitably) lose. But I don't think that pBase (or the users) would be comfortable automating that process in a "one-size fits all images" fashion. The best approach, then, is to avoid the images HAVING to be resized for the default if at all possible. The most desirable outcome is for viewers to see the image as the photographer intended (with no resizing / loss of quality at all), but the current 800 pixel limit makes that difficult, I think.

sdommin
 
Posts: 18


Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 1:54 pm


I would also like to see the default size raised to 1000 pixels or even 1100 pixels. These days more and more people are getting bigger and bigger monitors.

nooutlet
PBase Admin
PBase Admin
 
Posts: 249


Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:14 pm


http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_display.asp

I don't see any reason to go above 1000.

For what it's worth, when a picture really catches my eye, I hope that it will give me a horizontal scrollbar when I click the "original" link.

shawnkraus
 
Posts: 352

my 2 cents

Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:52 pm


I don't see any reason to go above 1000.

For what it's worth, when a picture really catches my eye, I hope that it will give me a horizontal scrollbar when I click the "original" link.


Maybe because the majority of monitors now support at least 1024 x 768.

Not everybody enjoys scrolling everytime they come to a larger image.

Not that I know anything about monitors or image size, but if the Pbase gods see no reason to go above the 1000 pixel mark, who am I to think differently.

nooutlet
PBase Admin
PBase Admin
 
Posts: 249

Re: my 2 cents

Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 5:56 pm


shawnkraus wrote:Maybe because the majority of monitors now support at least 1024 x 768.

Indeed and according to the link I posted, the majority of users are on 1024 x 768. That seems to me like a reason to NOT go above 1000.

shawnkraus wrote:Not everybody enjoys scrolling everytime they come to a larger image.

I'm confused by these statements. You understand that I'm saying I don't think that the large size should be more than 1000 pixels wide BECAUSE most people are only on screen resolutions of 1024x768 and would likely not want to scroll to see that last 76 pixels of the image, right?

shawnkraus wrote:Not that I know anything about monitors or image size, but if the Pbase gods see no reason to go above the 1000 pixel mark, who am I to think differently.

We're offering opinions here. Shall I make a new PBase account that doesn't have PBase Admin as the rank title so that I can share without it being the uncompromisable stance of PBase.com?

shawnkraus
 
Posts: 352

my 2 cents

Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:34 pm


I don't see any reason to go above 1000.

On the chart you gave, 26 percent were over the 1024x768. That is why I said at LEAST in my first response. It would make a nice option for people to choose a larger size. My 4 year old laptop is set at 1440x900.
Also from a photograhic standpoint when is the last time a camera image has come out of the camera with one side of the frame being an exact 1000 pixel ratio. Sorry, I forgot you are a programmer!

sdommin
 
Posts: 18


Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:54 pm


Regardless of whether we think it the default size should be 1000 or larger than 1000, we all seem to agree that the current setting of 800 should be changed. So... how hard would it be to change it? Let's at least start at 1000 and go from there. Is there some kind of programming problem?

akmc_in_au
 
Posts: 921


Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 8:29 pm


sdommin wrote:Regardless of whether we think it the default size should be 1000 or larger than 1000, we all seem to agree that the current setting of 800 should be changed. So... how hard would it be to change it? Let's at least start at 1000 and go from there. Is there some kind of programming problem?


I agree that given the choice between "increasing to 1000 now" and "not increasing until everyone agrees on a size", the former is the better option... but I'd like to throw a couple of thoughts into the ring in favour of going straight to 1200.

(a) My bet is that the vast majority of images will be under 1200 anyway, which would automatically make them default to the "original" size. (This will remove the default resizing of the image and the consequent quality loss that triggered this thread) ; and
(b) Based on the w3School stats that NoOutlet pointed to, some trends can be detected:
- 800*600 was dropping at 3 percentage points per half year. If the trend continued through 2007, it would be down to under 10% by now, and I'd suggest that it's even less considering that 800*600 is really just a relic of the CRT era. The swap over to LCD screens (and the increasing rate thereof) suggests that it'll be extinct sooner rather than later.
- 1024*768 peaked at 58% in July 2006 and then slid back 4 percentage points in 6 months, while "larger" jumped 7 percentage points in the same time.

That's not surprising given that 1280 is probably the coming de facto standard.

My point is... going straight to 1200 now might prevent a repeat of this thread in 18 months time.

nooutlet
PBase Admin
PBase Admin
 
Posts: 249

Re: my 2 cents

Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 9:57 pm


shawnkraus wrote:
I don't see any reason to go above 1000.

On the chart you gave, 26 percent were over the 1024x768. That is why I said at LEAST in my first response. It would make a nice option for people to choose a larger size. My 4 year old laptop is set at 1440x900.
Also from a photograhic standpoint when is the last time a camera image has come out of the camera with one side of the frame being an exact 1000 pixel ratio. Sorry, I forgot you are a programmer!


I said "I don't see any reason to go OVER 1000"(by which I meant 1024; this is a common shorthand in programmer-town since we're much more used to nice-looking binary numbers) because it would mean that OVER HALF of the people viewing that image would have to scroll.

sdommin wrote:Regardless of whether we think it the default size should be 1000 or larger than 1000, we all seem to agree that the current setting of 800 should be changed. So... how hard would it be to change it? Let's at least start at 1000 and go from there. Is there some kind of programming problem?


It actually would be a hassle. Think about it. How many pictures are there on PBase? Millions easily. That's a lot of deleting larges and re-compressing originals.
Not only that, but you can't think of the statistics on the page I linked to as being defined by linear equations. It may be below 10% but it also may not. Furthermore, w3schools is a place where people go to learn about programming mostly and those statistics are gathered from their viewers. So their userbase might be more inclined to have higher resolutions than ours.
I have not said I'm in favor of increasing the default large size. I've only said that if we were to increase it, wanting more than 1024 is ridiculous.

You see, I have to consider the 10%(or whatever) who are then ALWAYS going to have to scroll just to see the default size. I think that would be much more annoying than the loss of quality during compression.

akmc_in_au wrote:
sdommin wrote:Regardless of whether we think it the default size should be 1000 or larger than 1000, we all seem to agree that the current setting of 800 should be changed. So... how hard would it be to change it? Let's at least start at 1000 and go from there. Is there some kind of programming problem?


I agree that given the choice between "increasing to 1000 now" and "not increasing until everyone agrees on a size", the former is the better option... but I'd like to throw a couple of thoughts into the ring in favour of going straight to 1200.

(a) My bet is that the vast majority of images will be under 1200 anyway, which would automatically make them default to the "original" size. (This will remove the default resizing of the image and the consequent quality loss that triggered this thread) ; and
(b) Based on the w3School stats that NoOutlet pointed to, some trends can be detected:
- 800*600 was dropping at 3 percentage points per half year. If the trend continued through 2007, it would be down to under 10% by now, and I'd suggest that it's even less considering that 800*600 is really just a relic of the CRT era. The swap over to LCD screens (and the increasing rate thereof) suggests that it'll be extinct sooner rather than later.
- 1024*768 peaked at 58% in July 2006 and then slid back 4 percentage points in 6 months, while "larger" jumped 7 percentage points in the same time.

That's not surprising given that 1280 is probably the coming de facto standard.

My point is... going straight to 1200 now might prevent a repeat of this thread in 18 months time.


The reason that going over 1024 to 1200 for a default size is ridiculous is because 70% of the users of W3Schools would then have to scroll to see all of the image EVERY TIME they went to an image page that had that size.
Now, note the thing that W3Schools says on that page: Those statistics are from users of W3Schools who are mostly web developers and programmers. Right now, my screen resolution is 1920x1200. We programmers tend to like our resolutions big so we can fit all our tasks on there. They may not be accurate statistics for PBase. Now, if the majority of PBase viewers are photographers, the resolutions may very well be very similar because digital photographers would generally want to see as much of their image as possible on their own screen when they upload it to the computer.

akmc_in_au
 
Posts: 921

Re: my 2 cents

Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:26 pm


nooutlet wrote:The reason that going over 1024 to 1200 for a default size is ridiculous is because 70% of the users of W3Schools would then have to scroll to see all of the image EVERY TIME they went to an image page that had that size.


Well when it comes to "ridiculous" that statement's in the running.

Most images on pBase will fit into 1000 pixels. If the default limit, limit I repeat, was 1200, how much scrolling would be involved for the majority of images? A great, fat whopping dollop of none at all. Not only will they not have to scroll, they won't even KNOW that there's a 1200 pixel default limit. It's not as if images which are under 1200 would be resized UP to that as a default.

Yes, if the user was running at 1024 * 768 and came across a relatively rare 1100 pixel wide image, they'd have to scroll. A little. And yet, if they didn't want to, they'd still see the overwhelming majority of the image on their screen.

The objective here is to avoid, and avoid for as long as possible, the unwanted, undesired, irritating, photo distorting, arbitrary restriction that pBase imposed as the default size god knows how many years ago when people were still using steam powered monitors.

I repeat; the intention of making the default limit 1200... not making images resized UP to 1200, mark you, but making the default LIMIT 1200, is that not only will it reduce the number of photos that are seen in a way that the photographer doesn't want, but will CONTINUE to do so for at least 2 or 3 years.

And yes, I know that the 800*600 numbers aren't necessarily "linear". My own stats show that the 800*600 brigade isn't merely under 10%, it's under 5. I doubt that I'm alone in this amongst pBase gallery owners. The percentage of people who "just have a computer for e-mail" who are still on that resolution may be higher, but that's not really relevant for pBase gallery owners.
Last edited by akmc_in_au on Thu Feb 21, 2008 11:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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