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Now, the question at this becomes how is Photoshop going to generate those new pixels? And the way you answer that question is to go down here to this popup menu that says Bicubic, and you can choose one of these other options and just have the most ridiculous names. There is no way in heck you would know what in the world is going on with this. I will just very briefly explain what is happening.
Nearest neighbor just makes the pixels bigger, just makes the squares into bigger square, so that is not what we want. We are not going to get any smooth transitions. It is going to look bad.
Bilinear does sort of a bad job of sort of averaging the pixels. Bicubic does a better job of averaging the pixels. So really, you never want to use Bilinear. You might want to use Bicubic. Bicubic is pretty good setting actually.
Bicubic smoother is supposedly better for up sampling that is adding pixels to an image and Bicubic sharper is supposedly better for down sampling that is removing pixels from an image. But it is better to say that Bicubic smoother defeats noise inside of an image. If you have a lot of random noise, a lot of randomly colored pixels inside of an image; that is what noise means. Then Bicubic smoother will help to smooth away that noise.
Bicubic sharper is better if you want to sharpen the detail in the image. There is not much noise to work with, and you want to get the sharpest results possible. And in that case, that is what we want. We do not have any noise in this image. It is looks very smooth, very sharp, looks really good. So, let us keep that sharpness to the best of our ability. So, the best way to do that is Bicubic sharper.
This is the best up sampling technique that there is, the best way to add pixels to an image.
So eventhough conventional wisdom is that Bicubic smoother is better up sampling. We are going to choose Bicubic Sharper because it is better for up sampling when you have a super smooth image to work with in the first place.
So once you have done that, once you set all the settings, the way I have them here basically resolution of 600%, make sure all the check boxes are on, make sure this is set to Bicubic Sharper, then I want you to click Okay.
And all of a sudden, my screen just turns wide on me. This may or may not be what you see. You may see parts of an image or you may just see whiteness like I am seeing. But I am saying that I am looking at the image at the 1200% view size. That means every pixel is taking up 12 pixels wide and 12 pixels tall, so a total of a 144 pixels on screen.
Well, that is a way too big. So, I am going to zoom out. I am going to double click on the zoom tool icon in the toolbox to zoom out to the 100% zoom ratio. And now, I am seeing a 1 to 1 screen ratio, and I am going to press the M key to switch to my mark key tool, you can select all of the tools inside Photoshop from the keyboard if you want. And then, I am going to Spacebar drag over a little bit until we get to the queen. There she is.
Now, we are seeing the queen at the 100% zoom ratio. We are seeing the real pixels inside the image. Question is, does she look smoother than she look before? The answer is yes, I guess so. I mean, she look sort of gummy is what she really looks. But I suppose she looks smoother. We are not having the really harsh transitions between squares. The pixels do not look like just big exaggerated squares. Looks okay, however, there is no substitute for real pixels.
That is to say Photoshop can up sampling the image. You can add pixels to an image, but it is ultimately just averaging the pixels that are already there. It cannot generate new detail. So these eyes still looks kind of gummy, kind of oki-doki. It is never going to look better. It is never going to look sharper then it started out in the first place.
If you really want super sharp, wonderful, excellent detail, you need to scan that detail in the first place, either shoot that detail or scan that detail in the first place. So, let us go back to picture puzzle high, and let us check out the queen inside this image.
Notice already, just at the 50% zoom ratio, she already looks much better. And if I zoom in all the way, she looks extremely smooth. We have good detail to work with. These lines down here underneath her chin are obviously independent lines as compared with this image right here where they are just sort of these gummy weird like kind of dots connected to each other.
So, bad detail, you know, the best Photoshop could do with what you have gave it, low resolution image in the first place, garbage in, garbage out, basically one of those things whereas if you start with wonderful information in - in the first place, you will get wonderful information out.