How to Upscale an Image?

Image Upscale Post Artwork

We work with digital images all of our lives. However, one of the worst issues that befall us when we are using images is that sometimes their quality is too low. Whether you are sharing memes or pictures, if your image resolution is not high-quality, no one will like them. Whether it be a low-quality download or a low-quality snap because you accidentally set your camera at lower megapixels, you will run into this issue at least once in your lifetime.

Fret not, for we have compiled a complete guide on how to upscale an image so you can easily get your images upscaled without losing quality:

Table of Contents

What Does It Mean to Upscale an Image?

Upscale refers to resizing an image such that the number of pixels inside the image is increased or enhanced. A simple technical way to explain this is:

Consider you have an image of resolution 1280×720 pixels or 720p. This image is usually taken from a 0.9-megapixel camera. When upscaling an image, the nearest comfortable option that you will get without losing any aspect ratio is by reaching a resolution of 1980×1080 pixels or 1080p. This image is usually 2.1-megapixels.

There are many methods of upscaling an image, depending on what software or technique you use.

How Do You Upsize an Image?

When trying to upscale images without losing quality, you will need specialised software or a professional who is very adept in using Photoshop. You can otherwise use quick methods to upscale your image, but you might lose a few points in quality there.

Quickly Resize Your Image: Microsoft Paint

upscaling in MSPaint

If you don’t have access to the internet or have a computer that somehow can’t handle any sort of AI, you can always use Microsoft’s handy-dandy MS Paint:

  • Open the required image in MS Paint. You can do so by right-clicking the image and choosing the “Open As” option. You will find Paint there.
  • After the image is open in MS Paint, increase the canvas of the screen to the resolution you want to upscale your image to.
  • Once that is done, you will want to drag your image to the end of the whole canvas that is left. Do note that this might break your picture’s ratio, so be sure to keep your images in a specified ratio. For example, if you have a 4:3 image (640×480), keep the canvas limited to 1024×768, 1280×960, 1440×1080 and so on.

You can now save your new upscaled image. However, you will face quality loss depending on how much you upscale, so keep this in mind.

Be a Little Tactful: Adobe Photoshop

Upscale a photo with photoshop

The most effective, but also the slowest method to upscaling an image without loosing a considerable amount of quality without connecting to the internet is through Adobe Photoshop.

You will need to learn a lot of concepts including, but not limited to bicubic interpolation upscaling, antialiasing, using different brushes and so on. It can take anywhere between 5 minutes to several hours of your time depending on how detailed your image otherwise is and your skill level. For example, it can take no more than a few minutes of your time to edit and upscale an anime or cartoon-related image. However, if you take an image of something like a real person’s portrait, it can take a few hours. 

You can also use Adobe Photoshop’s special Preserve Details feature as well as resample to enhance image size. However, since most of it is basic artificial intelligence, you won’t be seeing very good results, as they are more consistent than anything else we might be discussing later onwards.

How Do I Make a Picture Bigger Without Losing Quality?

If you really intend to resize and upscale an image without losing quality and keeping high resolution, you should invest in one of the new and fancy artificial intelligence-based tools that are available in the market right now. We will be briefly discussing a few tools that can help you improve your image quality both online and offline and then a few tips that can help you make a picture bigger without losing quality:

Best AI-Based Image Upscalers

waifu landing page

Do note that most of these image editing software or file upscaling tools are paid, but don’t forget that before you buying a subscription to any of these, you can test the service by using free trial for your account. So, without further ado, here we are:

  • Waifu2x – A free project that is aimed at enhancing the images of anime characters, Waifu2X has very promising results for colorful and hand-drawn images or images with text. Because it works with ai machine learning, its improving every month leading to better result. Although, you will not see great results with face upscaling.
  • Deep Image – Free for a few images, Deep Image is an online image upscaler that can allow images to go up to as large as a 5000×5000 resolution or 25-megapixels.
  • ImageUpscaler – promises that you will be able to upscale an image without losing any quality by consistently upscaling and refreshing the image up to 4 times. We see the best results with hand-drawn or cartoon images with this tool as well.
  • DFDNet has shown the most promising results when it comes to image upscaling for real faces. Though the results aren’t perfected yet, people can still expect a lot better and consistent quality when upscaling a real photos as compared to the other options on this list.

Tips to Know

Here are a few tips that you should know about:

  • You can only upscale your image so many times before it starts losing quality. For example, if you are upscaling an image that is the resolution of about 360p or 640×360, you will only see consistent effects till 480p or 720×480. Some images may even look good on 1280×720, but you will start losing quality after that.
  • Re-using the same tool on an upscaled image may help yield sharper results, but they will lose accuracy. You should keep a balance between both.
  • Choose the correct tool depending on your needs.
  • You can also combine an upscaled image with an AI-based image upscaler with Adobe Photoshop to see the best version of it.

We hope that this basic guide on how to upscale an image has helped you. If you have any further questions or comment, don’t forget to hit us up. We will try our best to help you and answer all the questions.

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Written by Artifix Team

Written by Artifix Team

Our people are interested in many different topics including artificial intelligence. That is why we are ready to think about the future now!

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