Print An Image As Tiles With Maximum Clarity

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With modern digital cameras and scanners now able to produce image files at a very high resolution, not to mention the widespread availability of some gorgeous images for free download, sometimes it's nice to be able to print out your own large-format posters.  But if your printer is limited to A4 or letter size paper, which is around 8 by 12 inches, you'll need to use some special software in order to turn the large image into a series of tiled pages.

One of the best methods that I've discovered recently is to use 2 separate steps.  First, a free online service that splits an image file into a number of separate images, each in its own file.  Next, the built-in ability of Windows to easily print an image in good quality, right up to the edge of the paper, with no additional software required.  Here's how to do it.

First, find your large-format image file and then head to http://www.imagesplitter.net in your web browser.  Upload your image, choose the option to split it, and decide how many parts you want it to be split into.  For best results, don't change the aspect ratio of your image.  For example, if the site says that the image takes up 3 sheets by 2, calculate your required enlargement by multiplying both of those numbers by the same factor.  So 6 by 4 is good, as is 9 by 6, but not 9 by 7.

When the site has worked its magic on your file, you'll have a zip file to download that contains the constituent parts of your poster.  Download the file, unzip it, and then just right-click on each image and choose Preview.  Then click on the print option, choose Full Page Photo, and the job is done.  All that's left is to find a large enough space on your wall for the finished work.

 

 

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Comments

I didn't try out this website yet but will do asap to check the features.

I used to use Posterazor many times (and still always use that program if I need to print large posters) since in my opinion it has the best stitching features. It supports an important stitching feature: adjustable adjacent image overlap at two sides on every page. In that way, you only have to cut two sides of the paper and keep an overlap to stitch the result seamless together. The overlap makes that you don't have to be very secure cutting the paper, which is a big plus for Posterazor. Even a pair of scissors will work fine! Unfortunately, Posterazor hasn't seen a new version since several years. And alas it's not possible to generate JPG output so that you could use a photoservice to print your poster. That would probably give a much better result and would also be cheaper possibly than printing it yourself.

Posteriza.com also offers a great program to split images and make big posters. The program isn't developped also anymore for several years. It supports output as images but the crop feature is not as good as in Posterazor.

Unfortunately I'm not aware of another program which support both crop overlap at two adjacent sides of the paper and output to a graphics image like TIF or JPG instead of PDF (as Postarazor uses). So, I'll give imagesplitter.net a try and see if it's better than Posterazor.

Well, you see, my advice beside the mentioned website would currently be Posterazor.

Jms319

Well, I tried out the website. It does it's job very fast and splits the images into small parts, but without any overlap, what I like so much... It would be a great improvement if they would add an overlap to make cutting and stitching super easy as I wrote before. Without an overlap, you risk blank lines where you don't glue each page good together (which is very likely). With an overlap, you can't almost do wrong.

I also refreshed my knowledge about Posteriza 1.1.1 (last version from 2006). Posteriza is fine if you want to create a poster with text, images, borders, etc. You can export to JPG but it doesn't support any overlap of the image. Nevertheless, it is worth trying out if that program does what you want. You can download it from: http://www.posteriza.com and give it a try.

For me, my favorite (free) program still will be Posterazor!

jms319

Any suggestions on what size image (megapixels or megabytes) is big enough for a standard poster-sized print without degrading the final image?

Thanks!

A very good question. I took an image from the internet that was 3500 by 5000, so 17 megapixels, and tiled it onto 16 A3 sheets. The finished poster is on my office wall and measures some 45 by 64 inches. It looks excellent.

Nice article - nice online service. I tried it on a very large world map and the process went quickly and produced my map into 4 nice printable parts. Very easy. I've bookmarked the site.

The only thing I'll note is the same thing can be accomplished in most decent photo editing apps. I use Paint.net. It may be a little more hit & miss, and take a little longer, but it is something most of us already have and we can fine-tune the splits as desired.

That said, I will still use ImageSplitter on occasion. Very convenient. Thanks for the write-up.

Here is much better option:

http://posterazor.sourceforge.net/

This small program not only cuts the image, it provides the option of margins and saves the result in the multipage PDF that can be printed in a single shot.

How does this work if your printer doesn't print right to the edges?

I'm sure you'll get better answers, but the simplest answer is to print it with whatever margins your printer needs, then just cut the paper.

Cracking good tip, Rob: well done! I'm not entirely sure how well the finished item would look seeing as how the joining together of the separate A4 sheets might be a wee bit tricky, but as an alternative to investing in an A3 printer this is one option that's definitely worth trying. Thanks again.

Nice facility.

It is worth checking whether your printer has this facility built in. For instance there's an Epson utility that will do this which gives overlaps to allow easy pasting the pieces together, much easier than a full bleed version.

Also make sure you have enough ink before starting, posters use an awful lot.