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Photographers And Pselements

Posted by: Donna Proctor on 07/10/2013 - 10:52 AM

I've been talking to JC in email about this topic and he suggested I ask my questions to photographers who use or are very familiar with PSElements since it's not a camera issue.

When I had older versions of PSE once I brought up a raw image in the program, it always showed under "image size" that the resolution was 300 pixels/inch. I purchased a new version and this one always shows as 240 pixels/inch. Can anyone help me to understand why? I know it has nothing to do with my Nikon camera since I also used the newer Nikon with the older PSE and the resolution automatically came up as 300.

This is perplexing. I'll check back later for any comments and or, advice.

Thanks in advance -

Donna Proctor


Oldest Reply

Posted by: Crystal Wightman on 07/10/2013 - 10:56 AM

I don't use Elements and haven't in years. But I am guessing there is a default setting in Elements set to 240pixels/inch. You'll have to find that default setting and change it to 300...or whatever you would like.


Posted by: Donna Proctor on 07/10/2013 - 10:58 AM

Thanks Crystal, but I have searched for it and it can't be found. Not by me anyway...


Posted by: Jason Politte on 07/10/2013 - 11:10 AM

I haven't used Elements in years, but it shouldn't really matter as long as the image size remains the same, which I'm willing to bet that it is as I doubt Elements is automatically resampling the image for you. If you go into "image size", you'll see where you can change the dpi of the image. As long as you uncheck "resample image", you can change the resolution to 72 or 240 or 300 or whatever, and you'll notice the inches of the image will increase with lower dpi and decrease with higher dpi. If you left the resample box checked, you would actually be changing the parameters and resolution of the image.


Posted by: Bradford Martin on 07/10/2013 - 11:27 AM

The DPI shown in the dialogue box does not mean anything for all practical purpose except printing on your own printer. Try and set the default to 300 DPI and just leave it there. The number of pixels is the only thing that really matters. All that dialogue box tells you is the size pint that could be made at a given DPI. Changing the DPI changes nothing in the file unless you also resample.


Posted by: Gary Heller on 07/10/2013 - 11:27 AM

Hi Donna, as other stated the default ppi is really unimportant. However, if you feel more comfortable having it back to 300ppi default it likely has to do with Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) processor that handles and opens your RAW files. In the camera RAW window (the window that opens your RAW files and offers you adjustment sliders to edit before opening as a TIFF or PSD in Elements) under the photo/image you should see a link that states the color space of the file and its resolution/size.Its a clickable link that will open up a workflow dialogue box that will allow you to set the default setting.


Posted by: Susan Wiedmann on 07/10/2013 - 5:36 PM


Is your PSE version 11? I've read so many negative reviews about it that I'm sticking to PSE 9. Of possible interest to you might be this link about changes in screen quality in PSE 11: .

I've read that 240 is the MINIMUM resolution to use to get a good small print on everyday printers. But why change it from 300, which gives better prints? Adobe makes changes that don't need making and then it tries to convince everyone to buy the unneeded new version.

Please let us know if you discover anything related to your issue.



Posted by: Mary Bedy on 07/10/2013 - 5:40 PM

Susan, glad you posted this. I got the email for the upgrade the other day and was considering it. I'll stick with what I have now....sorry Donna, don't mean to get off topic. I have 9 as well, and I never paid attention to the default ppi - I'll have to look when I get home (at work now).


Posted by: Susan Wiedmann on 07/10/2013 - 7:30 PM

Mary, Adobe apparently never heard of the old adage "If it's not broken, don't try to fix it!" :))

Do you have a Nikon or a Canon?


Posted by: Kathi Shotwell on 07/10/2013 - 10:09 PM

Hi Donna, I have PSE9 and I noticed the same thing. There is a default setting for "new files" that is set to 300, but that doesn't change the behavior, and I couldn't find any other default settings for resolution. My very old version (like v2-ish) didn't do this.
Also, I looked for the default setting changer on the ACR window as Gary described but could not find anything like that. Mine just has a changer for bit depth on it. Maybe Camera Raw has more features in PS than in PSE...?

Anyway, like they all said, it really doesn't matter unless you are printing. I finally stopped obsessively batch-changing each image to 300 and haven't thought of it in a long time. If I need to change it I will, but haven't needed to yet.

Good info about PSE11. I have been thinking maybe I should upgrade. I was sure disappointed when I saw that some of the things I used in PSE2 are not available in PSE 9.


Posted by: Gary Heller on 07/10/2013 - 10:39 PM

Kathi, so it seems maybe there is no way to change that in Elements, as I am able to with PS. You are right in that in does not matter what the default ppi setting is, the original file coming out of the camera is the same. Higher ppi will make the physical dimensions smaller while lower ppi will make the physical dimensions larger...the file remains exactly the same.


Posted by: Christopher Edmunds on 07/11/2013 - 2:26 AM

Hi Donna, I don't know what difference it makes but I choose No Restriction for the crop tool, type in 300 to Resolution and every subsequent Raw file is listed at 300dpi. I'm using PSE10


Posted by: Kathi Shotwell on 07/11/2013 - 2:40 AM

Christopher, so you "crop" the image at 300ppi but the "crop" is actually the whole image? That's ingenious!


Posted by: Carolyn Marshall on 07/11/2013 - 4:16 AM

Donna, I have PSE10. I use it (most of the time) hand-in-hand with LR4. When I upgraded from PSE6 to 10, I noticed the change, too. I searched all over the place trying to find the answer on how to change it, but couldn't find anything. I finally posted a question in the Elements Village forum and got a few responses from an "Enlightened Elder" and a "Senior Contributor". Basically, their responses were the same and pretty much in line with what the others have said. There is no apparent way to change it when you import raw files directly into that program.

In my workflow, I import my images into LR4 first. I do most of my edits there in the beginning. If I need to do bigger cloning or editing jobs, I move it to PSE to edit and then back to LR. In that scenario, my import into LR initially leaves the file at 300dpi. After I edit it in PSE and bring it back to LR, it is still 300 dpi. The dpi doesn't change in the LR > PSE > LR flow. That being said, when you work in LR, you are working with your images in 16-bit mode. You can only edit PSE files in 8-bit mode, so you have to change that temporarily to edit in that flow. The new version PSE12 might have the capability to work in 16-bit mode, too, but that's just what I heard, I'm not sure if it's true. Not sure, either, if that would fix the 300/240 problem.

Just FYI - Here's the link to the post I made and responses back in August of 2012:

This may not help you any more than it did me except to tell me that we can't change it. :-)

Carolyn Marshall


Posted by: Kathi Shotwell on 07/12/2013 - 1:49 AM

That's pretty much what I do now too, Carolyn, since I got LR4 in December. What a dream Lightroom is! I rarely go back to it from PSE, though. I have been either making jpg's from LR4 or from PSE, wherever I'm at when it's "finished". It just feels easier to be "creative" in LR, and I often don't need PSE any more at all.

Thanks for the link. That will take me to elementsvillage, which sounds like a good resource.


Posted by: Carolyn Marshall on 07/12/2013 - 3:07 AM

The main thing I use PSE for from LR is when I have a cloning cleanup job that is not a circular type spot (like long lines, squiggly lines, etc.) LR5 is supposed to address that, but I haven't had time to check it out. I can also edit directly from LR with installed plugins. Found out tonight I can edit with Topaz plugins from LR. Now I just get to pay for the full Topaz as my trial ran out. :-)

Donna, I know some of these responses aren't directly relating to your OP. But these hopefully they will be of some use to you.

Carolyn Marshall


Posted by: Gregory Scott on 07/12/2013 - 7:35 AM

The simple answer, with regard to your preliminary photo processing, is to ignore the PPI value, and merely concern yourself with the pixels in the original image.

There is a danger here. If you change the PPI, the software can resize your image (presumably any software might do this) with the result that the image is upsized or downsized and that the resolution is degraded. Attempting to increase the number of pixels or increase the PPI which resize the image will actually (and counter-intuitively) DEGRADE the image resolution and sharpness, rather than improve it. This is why FAA warns people not to upsize their image. Such images are the ones most frequently rejected by quality control when a customer orders a large print.

The list of "printable" sizes that is generated when you upload is NOT based on image resolution/sharpness. It is ONLY based on the pixel count. Images that have been upsized indeed have more pixels, but many don't understand that in spite of that fact, the image is actually less sharp and lower resolution than the original.


Posted by: Ginny Schmidt on 07/12/2013 - 9:03 AM

After using PhotoShop for years, to the point that to upgrade was out of my budget, I got PSE10 and have been using it exclusively.
I never noticed that images uploaded at a specific dpi set by the program - I have had cameras that upload at 300, 400, and now for
some reason everything is coming in at 72dpi, but I do think that is a camera issue. However I am going to save this discussion and
check back for advice on working with PS elements - I am already convinced not to bother to try going from 10 to 11, and now I know
to uncheck "resample" if I want to change the dpi setting under image size - and I will check out "no restriction" for the crop tool.

Thanks for posting this - looks like it will be useful.


Posted by: Donna Proctor on 07/12/2013 - 2:35 PM

Hi Everyone - WoW, lots of great information here and thanks to each and every one of you for your contribution! :)

Yes, That pesky dpi issue is annying to me, probably because when I first started out on POD sites, they always stated what the dpi had to be - ie, 150for that, 200 for this, 300 for that, etc. So, it stuck in my head, and I've always been under the impression that 300dpi is the very minimum for quality prints. So, I appreciate that ya'll helping me out with that.

Just like a few of you - I went from PSE4, to PSE6 and now using PSE 10. Really glad I didn't buy 11 since I bought 10 when 11 was first released. Some of you have accurately pointed out that there is NO way to change the default setting (240) permanently, which means it needs to be changed every freakin' time if I want to change it to 300.

@ Gary - Thanks for your always helpful information. I did search high and low for the link you mentioned in the ACR - couldn't find it. I noticed that a few users here said they don't have it either - they must have done away with that in PSE 10.

@ Christoper - yes, I've also done it that way and glad you mentioned here for others!

@ Everyone - Right - now I completely understand why my images changed their overall size from PSE 6 to 10. Both PSE 4 & 6 had their default set to 300 so it was never an issue for me.

Thanks again... I will leave this thread open for others to learn from, and if it doesn't get anymore comments, I'll look for it and close it up.

--Donna Proctor


Posted by: Mary Bedy on 07/12/2013 - 2:41 PM

Why is nothing ever easy any more LOL?


Posted by: Roger Reeves and Terrie Heslop on 07/12/2013 - 2:51 PM

Well we had to switch to elements 11, because when we upgraded one of our cameras to a Nikon D5200, Elements 9 could not read our RAW files...and there was no now we both use 11 and sold the 9 version...Perhaps we shouldn't have for at least my camera...but I am not so much software savie.


Posted by: Roger Reeves and Terrie Heslop on 07/12/2013 - 2:51 PM

Well we had to switch to elements 11, because when we upgraded one of our cameras to a Nikon D5200, Elements 9 could not read our RAW files...and there was no now we both use 11 and sold the 9 version...Perhaps we shouldn't have for at least my camera...but I am not so much software savie.


Posted by: Kathi Shotwell on 07/13/2013 - 2:33 AM

Donna, when the POD's say a resolution like 150 or 300, etc... I haven't been changing my ppi for that. I just make sure my pixel dimensions are big enough. Like, if it requires 300ppi resolution, and it needs to cover a surface that is 12" wide by 10" high, I'll make sure my pixel dimensions are minimum 3600 pixels wide by 3000 pixels high (multiply the inches needed by the resolution needed, and if the image is that size or larger, it will work). It sure saves a lot of time and it seems to be acceptable to the POD's. At least I haven't had a problem with it yet. But it might be different for different companies, too...


Posted by: Ginny Schmidt on 07/15/2013 - 3:46 PM

There is one site that I upload to that insists on 150 dpi - it is Spoonflower which is for fabric design, and 150 dpi is their default setting for printing the design at actual size, such as if you create a fabric design that prints on an 8x8 inch repeat, they would print it at 150. HOWEVER, you are given the option there of adjusting the print size by increasing the dpi - so that if you want your 8x8 inch design to print with a 4x4 inch repeat, you would increase the dpi to 300. You cannot make a design bigger on Spoonflower, so you have to save it as large as you want it at 150, but there is apparently no limit to how small you can make it. I actually sell fairly regularly on Spoonflower, but unless a Hyatt wanted to curtain all the rooms in a new hotel with one of my fabrics, I will never get rich there - it is hard enough just to break even, considering the cost of buying a proof swatch before you can post a design for sale. A few of my fabrics are popular, but I have hundreds of dollars invested in proof swatches for designs that nobody even looks at. Spoonflower was addictive when I first joined, and I posted and ordered pretty indiscriminately, until I realized what a financial hole I was digging for myself. Not that that has anything to do with the dpi question, but there ARE PoD sites that require a particular dpi.


Posted by: Kathi Shotwell on 07/15/2013 - 10:53 PM

Good info, Ginny. And Spoonflower sounds kinda cool, too. Too bad they don't print their own proof swatches and make the decision for themselves instead of charging the artist for something that may never sell.
I was trying to remember if the photo-book people (MyPublisher, Adorama) had dpi requirements when I used them. I can't remember, though.


Posted by: Lara Ellis on 07/16/2013 - 12:07 AM

I just ignore the 240 dpi and I've had some sales on here and even one that was a larger print and I haven't had any problems. I use PSE 11 too.


This discussion is closed.