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Tip 2: Choosing a File Format

CoverFactory can render your 3D images (using Render To File... on the Render menu) into several different formats: BMP, PNG, JPEG and PCX.

Which format should you choose?
  • If you need a Splash screen for use with Activ E-Book Compiler's Edit Start Up feature, you should choose BMP.

  • If you intend to use your rendered image on the web page or within the content of your eBook, you can use PNG or JPEG. You will generally get better results if you use PNG, rather than JPEG.
What is the difference between each of these formats?
  • BMP is an uncompressed format (although Activ E-Book Compiler will compress the data when placing it as a eBook splash screen), and is lossless.

  • PNG is a compressed format, and is also lossless.

  • PCX is a compressed format, and is also lossless. PCX is useful if you need to load your cover image into an older painting program, but otherwise we do not recommend using it.

  • JPEG is a compressd format, generally designed for photographs, and is lossy.
Lossless formats (BMP and PNG) will result in a perfect reproduction of the rendered images - whereas - lossy formats (JPEG) will result in some loss of fine detail in the rendered image (including potentially some minor artifacts appearing in the background around the cover).

Thus you should be sure to choose a lossless (BMP or PNG) format, if:
  • If rendering to JPEG produces images that look unclear or blurred.

  • If you intend to later convert your cover images to animations or transparent GIFs. If using version 2.10, you should make sure that the Soften Edges option in in Render Options is turned off.

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