resolution required for Large split Canvas at Costco 60x45 inches

Discussion in 'Printing' started by gdawg, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. gdawg

    gdawg New to Mu-43

    Dec 30, 2013
    Thank you for your time. It is my first post on mu-43 forums.
    The question I have is can my photograph print to such a large size and still be acceptable? I have never printed anything in my life from a digital camera and would really appreciate your opinion on whether printing this large is a foolish endeavor and also if there better places other than Costco.

    This photograph was taken with GX7 and I have been shooting RAW with camera settings at sRGB space. I am interested in printing at Costco 60x45 inches split canvas so that the single photograph that I have taken is split into two parts.
    Costco website:
    prices this at $289USD.
    Costco has recommended resolutions for various print sizes specifically for canvas at
    This Costco website above states that for a 60 X 45 split 2 part canvas, the minimum resolution at 75 dpi requires at "minimum" 4725x3600, and at "optimal" 150 dpi requires 9450x6450. ( I actually don't understand why there are two recommendations. Is it implying that if I send them a lower resolution image they will then print at a lower resolution of 75 dpi whereas if I send them a higher more optimal resolution then they will print at 150 dpi?)
    my exif data from the image I want to print is as follows:

    file is a TIF file. ( I started out as a raw file in light room five and then exported it as a TIF file that was edited in Photoshop and then subsequently saved as a TIF file)
    dimensions 4920X3683
    width 4920 pixels
    height 3683 pixels
    horizontal and vertical resolution both are at 240 dpi
    bit depth 48
    compression uncompressed
    resolution unit two
    color representation SR GB

    From the resolution of my photograph it seems that it meets the minimum requirement but is far from the optimal requirement. So it is difficult for me to know if I should proceed with this print or if it will be unacceptable and not worth the $298. I would hate to spend this kind of money and not even meet "optimal" results. To be honest I happen to particularly like this photograph and happen to needed decorating piece in the home so it is not like I will be printing large prints that often. In fact probably it will be many years before I will have such an interest in printing this large. Thank you all for your time I want to take this chance to thank many of you for all your various contributions on the forums and I have learned immensely from reading your writings in the last six months when I was first introduced to mu43.
  2. Canvas as a print medium is not as resolution dependent as normal paper. The combination of the natural texture of the canvas and the ink used gives a more "painterly" look than a standard print. I have printed 40" canvasses from my old Canon EOS 350D with has a native resolution of 8mp but after any cropping and changes to the aspect ratio to suit a 40x30 or 40x20 canvas the files will be closer to 7mp. When I upload files at that resolution they tell me that the print quality will be low or "sub-optimal" or somesuch but when I look around the room I like them as much as similar size canvasses I have had printed from 12, 15, or 16mp cameras. At these sizes the image still matters more than the resolution. 40x30" at 8mp is roughly the same print resolution as 60x45" at 16mp.

    I don't think that this really does them justice, but the images below are snapshots of the two 40x20" prints I have at either ends of my bedroom.

    8mp camera:


    15mp camera:

    • Like Like x 4
  3. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    First, I have to say that I think that Costco's canvas prints are a very good value. We have a couple and are very happy with them.

    Costco has two resolution guidelines so that you understand that below 75 dpi Costco thinks the print will look crummy and 150 dpi is as good as you need for a canvas print. As Nic pointed out, the texture in canvas prints makes them very forgiving for lower resolution images.

    One other factor is viewing conditions. How far away will the viewer be? If you are hanging this high on a wall, where people won't normally get very close, you will probably be fine. I you are hanging this at eye level where people will walk right up to it, you might not be happy.

    You could buy a smaller test print. Get a 14x14 test at similar resolution 1,100 x 1,100 and see how it looks. Use a crop not a resized image to get consistent results.
    • Like Like x 2
  4. photo_owl

    photo_owl Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 8, 2013
    some solid advice above

    I would add that the type and quality of the original is also a factor - if they are right, the viewing conditions are good, then the finished item should be fine.
  5. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    In think you're pretty safe on canvas, for the reasons stated above. It's not a medium well suited to getting really close to see fine detail, and bigger prints are usually admired from a distance that allows the entire print to be seen. You want more resolution for gloss printed stuff that will also be viewed at close distances.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    Your image will print at their minimum recommendation of 75 dpi. Dpi doesn't mean anything unless it's related to a specific output size.

    If your focus is good this should be fine for a print of that size.

  7. cmpatti

    cmpatti Mu-43 Veteran

    May 8, 2011
    Berkeley, CA
    Another factor that often gets overlooked in these discussions is image content. Some images are highly dependent on resolution of detail to be successful, others not so much. I agree with the suggestion above of making a test print from a cropped section of your image at the same dpi at which you will print the full image. It's the best way I know to get a sense of the quality of your full sized print without spending the money to make one.

    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43 mobile app
  8. yakky

    yakky Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jul 1, 2013
    IMO, it really depends on the subject. A person's face (captured in foucs) looks great on extremely large prints, because you capture enough detail to satisfy your eyes. Capture a scene of people or foliage, you really start needing that resolution.

    That said, it should be easy enough for you to do some math, split the image apart and print a crop on a cheaper print using the same DPI, say 8x10 and then judge before you spend that much money on a huge print.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. gdawg

    gdawg New to Mu-43

    Dec 30, 2013
    I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and time, especially lucky penguin for your pics. I think 75dpi will be acceptable and I will place the costco order. When it comes I will take a pic of it and post it.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. gdawg

    gdawg New to Mu-43

    Dec 30, 2013
    Quick follow up on some further information I found out for others to use.
    BTW I ended up deciding to buy a 22 inch TV to display the photos, cheaper long term solution than printing and framing and yes... I know its not the same thing..

    Some interesting things I found out along the way to share

    While browsing I found that Costco will provide the color profiles of their printers The links below show where to get the ICC files.

    (some user forum directions)
    COSTCO "ICC profile" question (printing) - Canon Digital Photography Forums

    (another user forum directions)
    Lightroom Plugins - alloyphoto

    (the source for all the profiles, read the "How to use printer profiles for your own images." for SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS on how to use these profiles)
    Dry Creek Photo
  11. ornithology

    ornithology Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 21, 2013
    Vancouver, BC
    Excellent answer and UNREAL shots!!
    • Like Like x 1
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