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Easily Make Images Bigger without Losing Quality in Photoshop & Lightroom

You don't need a pricey plug-in to resize your photos for printing
Photo of Photoshop and Lighroom

You know that photo you took of your mom on your cruddy smartphone you want to enlarge so you can make a nice print out of it for her birthday? What if we told you that you don’t need some pricey third-party plugin in Photoshop to make it bigger without losing discernible image quality?

Yes, if you already have Photoshop or Lightroom, quality image resizing/enlarging is already built in. To use the photo enlarging feature, you just need to turn on one setting, or it might be turned on by default already!

Photoshop and Lightroom come packed with so many features that are constantly added and updated you may have missed this simple but effective resizing feature. Software expert Matt Kloskowski explains how to use it in the tutorial below.

“I’m doing this because there’s a lot of myths out there,” Kloskowski says. “Sometimes people think, well, if there’s a plug-in that does it, it’s got to be better than Photoshop. I’m here to tell you Adobe is constantly improving this stuff. If you use Photoshop and/or Lightroom, you have great technology already built into there. I don’t think you need a plug-in. I print all the time; I print big all the time. This is exactly what I use, and it holds up great for my prints.”


In Photoshop, just open the image you want to upsize, and select Image Size from the Menu bar. “Yes, it is that easy,” he notes. “It’s the same menu item that’s been there since almost the beginning of Photoshop.”

Once your image is open in the Image Size interface, select how much larger you’d like to make it either in inches or pixels. The real trick, as he explains it, is to make sure the correct Resample method is selected from the pulldown menu. The one you want is Preserve Details 2.0, which is available in most current editions of Photoshop. As mentioned earlier, it’s possible it could even be on by default.

Once Preserve Details 2.0 is selected, save your enlarged image in Photoshop and you’re good to go. The program automatically maximizes detail in your upsized image so it will look great when you print it out.

In Lightroom, select your image, and choose Export from the file menu. Under Image Sizing, resize the photo to make it larger for printing. Export it as a JPEG to your desktop and the “preserve details” technology will automatically run in the background to give you the best quality image for printing. It’s that simple.


To see this easy process for both Photoshop and Lightroom in action, watch Kloskowski’s video below. We’ve been using Preserve Details 2.0 for over a year now and all we can say is it’s been a lifesaver, particularly on images we’ve cropped but want to print out. We’ve can’t wait to see what Adobe brings next with Preserve Details 3.0.

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