Help DeskSmugMug Basics › Change the display size of my photos

Change the display size of my photos

Updated: 11/29/2016

Most photo-sharing sites shrink your originals to save space. Not us!

With SmugMug, you get to keep every pixel forever and show them as big as your screen will allow. Upload once, and we'll make up to 8 display copies from each file.
The 9 sizes of SmugMug:
  Pixels wide Pixels high
Tiny thumbnails (-Ti) Up to 100 Up to 100
Large thumbnails (-Th) Up to 150 Up to 150
Small (-S) Up to 400 Up to 300
Medium (-M) Up to 600 Up to 450
Large (-L) Up to 800 Up to 600
XLarge (-XL) Up to 1024 Up to 768
X2Large (-X2) Up to 1280 Up to 960
X3Large (-X3) Up to 1600 Up to 1200
Original (-O) Huge Huge
Example: If your original photo is between SmugMug's Large and XLarge sizes, we'll only create the Small, Medium, Large, and Thumbnail display copies.

Need Custom Sizes?

Nine sizes not enough? Make your own!

Got Jaggies?

It's possible to wreck how your computer displays photos, with just a few clicks.

Speed optimizers like Earthlink Accelerator and NetZero HiSpeed can destroy image quality. See this article from PC Magazine.

AOL image compression does the same thing. It's on by default but you can turn it off.

The settings for your display (or the displays of people you share with) can make a huge difference.

For Windows, set the number of colors available for display by going to Start > Control Panel > Display > Settings. The dialog you see below should display.

A setting of 8 bits (only 256 colors) does not allow the computer to display photographs well; 16-bit is much better, and 32 is best. You may have to upgrade your graphics card to see the 32-bit option.

Some Photos Are Color-Shifted on My Mac

The downside of (older, 1.8 gamma) Mac factory settings.

Resizing and Sharpening

SmugMug uses the Lanczos algorithm to make display copies because it preserves the most detail. It is not often seen in software like Photoshop because it is CPU-intensive.

Any time an image is downsampled (to go from your original to SmugMug's large display size, for example), the image loses sharpness. The usual way to restore sharpness is to apply unsharp mask. A typical value, and Photoshop's default, is 50%. By default SmugMug applies only 20% (0.20) because Lanczos does not lose as much sharpness when resizing.

Our default, shown in the center photos below, is a compromise between landscape, product, and wildlife photographers who like their images sharp, and portrait photographers who prefer a softer look.


Our obsessionOur obsessionOur obsession

Our obsessionOur obsessionOur obsession
0.000 0.200 0.400

These settings do not alter your originals. Prints are made from your originals so increasing unsharp amount can mean your photos will look sharp online but soft in print.