Resolution of photos

Feb 15, 2011
Hi everyone, hope you guys can help me out on this.

I've been slightly confused lately about what to deliver to customers after shooting a wedding, namely about the resolution of the photos to be returned, because I have customers asking what are the resolution of the photos that I return to them. Usually I tell them it's high-res but I want to give a more professional answer (as well as a correct output resolution).

I read that the output method is different for photos to be viewed on screen and for photos to be printed so I hope someone can advise me on this. Is there any industry standard as to what resolution should the photos be returned to the customers be?

P.s: I always shoot on the second largest RAW settings on the Canon 5D2 when it comes to actual day wedding photos, and the largest RAW settings for outdoor/pre-wedding. I use LR4 predominantly for my post-processing works.

Many thanks in advance =)



Senior Member
Mar 11, 2004
Web size is 72dpi and standard print is 300dpi.

No there is no industry standard as long as your min is 72dpi for web. For print by right 300dpi, if printing 4R or smaller you may even be able to get away with 200dpi as long as you're not too particular with quality. If you want to be kiasu, can even give 600dpi or more.

Either give only 300dpi or both 72dpi & 300dpi. Depends on your level of service.

I'm surprised this is news to you.... it's rather basic....


Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
Punggol, Singapore
telling your clients/customers your files are in is how many dpi is irrelevant, it is only useful when come to printing.

you only need to tell your clients/customers it is good to print up to what size of print is good enough.

yes this is very basic, and not surprise so many photographers are still blur about these, it only confuse their client and customers further.
I see some photographers said in their web, they give images in low resolution and it is good to print 4R photos.

so how high is high and how low is low??

FYI, hope you are charging enough for releasing your digital images.

Please Don't Just Give Your Clients The CD or DVD!

Photography Business Sense: Giving Away Digital Files On CD


Senior Member
Jul 9, 2008
So far no one asked. I state in my FAQ that they get high res, but I never said they get full res. I need creative freedom to crop and I don't work with clients who care for the wrong things. Also, its not practical to promise a specific number because you could easily overcrop while saving certain snapshots and failed to deliver the promised size. Which leaves you open to attacks by bad clients. Remember we are selling a service and an art, not something tangible that can be measured in units. You can promise a safe number, but it will only make you look stingy.

My common answer is high resolution enough for your prints and album usage, even big prints for your bedroom wall. Which is the truth. With proper photography + proper printing knowledge, a 6mp D70 file can print A1 or A0 size and still look very good.

With bad photography, a medium format file is 60 megapixels of that same bad photography.

Last edited:
Feb 15, 2011
Thank you for the advice and answers- It has certainly helped me gain a few insights on this topic, especially with the links that Catchlights included.


Senior Member
Dec 31, 2004
There isn't a Benchmark on the resolution to be called high, mid or low, but we use them to differentiate the maximum printable size by consumer. Just need to define them and put it on your rates so you don't get caught out for the ambiguity of the naming of the file.

I never believe in giving clients a CD for nothing. Digital negative is after all a format that your work is being stored.

If you are in the business in photography, your softcopy might be your single most valuable item. It really depends on how you value them.

Like one of the link, my high resolution files are one of the most expensive item on the ala-carte product offering.



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