What is Pixel Peeping?

taz98spin

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Can you guys give your own definition of pixel peeping?

Hate to bring junk from DPR over.., but some folks told me that viewing an image at 100% is considered pixel peeping.

I'm really confused, because I always view my images at 100%?
 

EarthQuake

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In this instance, 100% means 1:1 pixel ratio, ie: the size of a pixel in the file itself is the same as 1 pixel on your monitor/display. Looking at a photo at 1:1 or 100% means zooming in very far, generally being much closer than anyone would reasonably view the photo from if it was printed. Its sort of like blowing your photo up to 4 feet wide, and then standing 12 inches from it.

If you can see the entire photo on your screen at once, usually that means you're not looking at it 100%. You're looking at it "fit to screen". Exceptions here would be a file that has already been sized down for web viewing (which wouldn't be pixel peeping either then), or if you have an insanely high resolution monitor.
 

pdk42

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What's pixel peeping? - I think it's mostly about looking for minute technical defects, usually by viewing at 100%, rather than appreciating the shot for its overall artistic, emotional or whatever purpose.
 

taz98spin

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In this instance, 100% means 1:1 pixel ratio, ie: the size of a pixel in the file itself is the same as 1 pixel on your monitor/display. Looking at a photo at 1:1 or 100% means zooming in very far, generally being much closer than anyone would reasonably view the photo from if it was printed. Its sort of like blowing your photo up to 4 feet wide, and then standing 12 inches from it.

If you can see the entire photo on your screen at once, usually that means you're not looking at it 100%. You're looking at it "fit to screen". Exceptions here would be a file that has already been sized down for web viewing (which wouldn't be pixel peeping either then), or if you have an insanely high resolution monitor.
So in Photoshop, view 100% is different from 1:1 pixel ratio? Or is that the same thing?
 

taz98spin

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that is indeed 1:1. What do you mean by you always view your photos at 100% though?
I do portraiture. So in photoshop, I zoom in a 25%, 50%, and 100% to remove skin blemishes, etc.

So instead of viewing at "Fit to Screen" or just being satisfied with what shows up on my camera's LCD, I view it at the actual size.
Even some photos that appear to be sharp & in focus, when viewed at 100%, I can tell they are not, and I can disgard them.

My puzzlement and reason for questioning, is.. don't most photographers do that??

Took a few photography classes and PP classes during college, and not a single student viewed their image at "Fit to Screen" sizes & our school labs had those large 27 inch Apple displays.

Even for adding personal photos to social media, I always view them at 100% to make sure they are in focus.
 

Linh

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Heh, well, what you're doing is called work (especially with skin work and focus as needed) :)

Those who pixel peep would do that (or at a higher percentage) and nitpick/obsess at every little detail. That's how I've always seen it. There's certainly value to this when needed, but the term comes from abuse of it and tending to make that the primary factor over the subject mater. Even obsessing over perfect focus can go too far (again, depends on what you're doing).
 

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