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Sometimes i work with JPEG files for my web designs. There are occasions where the PNG format is not suitable..

There are several optimization techniques for the PNG format, but I noticed that for the JPEG format, the possibilities are limited, especially if you work on a Mac.

Probably the most elegant solution so far is the selective compression that allows you to precisely control the compression in specific areas of the images. If you combine then the image with JpegOptim and jpegtran from libjpeg (or use imageOptim) you can reduce even more the filesize.

I am still not satisfied by this options. I don't want to buy a license for fireworks only because of the selective jpeg, and I wonder if there's some other image optimization software out there that offers similar features..

On windows you have Jpeg Optimizer..

Is there any tool that you use for your workflows that you can suggest me?

Thank you

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What is it you are trying to accomplish? If JPG compression is such an issues, then maybe you shouldn't be working with JPGs. The type of compression a JPG uses has never been an issue for me, but rather finding that balance between size and image quality using the defaults afforded to me by Photoshop. Done and done. –  Philip Regan Aug 26 '11 at 14:40
I am interested to know the reason why the OP finds it necessary to finely tune the compression in this manner. The only scenario I can conceive of right now involves a PBKb&C, but I am willing to be taught. –  horatio Aug 26 '11 at 16:25

4 Answers 4

up vote 6 down vote accepted
  • MozJPEG is a modernized JPEG encoder, probably the best one you can find.

  • JPEGmini is pretty good at recompressing JPEGs to the lowest still-good quality. They claim to have a better model to predict which lossy changes are imperceptible to the human eye.

  • Adept tries to automatically adjust quality, lowering quality of "uninteresting" areas of the image.

The latter two are best combined with lossless ImageOptim (includes jpegrescan) for the most efficient JPEG compression I'm aware of.

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With JPEGmini you have to do 2 lossy compressions instead of 1. :( –  sam Jul 19 '14 at 1:09

Ten years ago, this would have been a great question. But in 2011, unless you are sure that a high percentage of site visitors will be on dial-up or similar low-bandwidth connections, the effort put into selective compression doesn't produce enough value to be worth it. The differences in quality and file size are so minimal, and broadband connections so ubiquitous, that you end up saving no more than a few milliseconds in page load times.

Even mobile devices, constrained for the moment by 3G speeds in most places, will not benefit significantly from selective compression.

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as of 2013 I don't think this is true anymore, at least for mobile - a lot of these 3G connections are not so fast. Also the amount of images used and the increase in device screen resolution calls for more optimal image compressions. –  Luciano Dec 12 '13 at 16:11

Lately I've been using ImageOptim and ImageAlpha with very good results.

ImageOptim is very good at optimizing and compressing GIF/JPEG/PNG and I'm using ImageAlpha to convert most of my images to PNG with good results: most of the times I get PNG files (full color) that are smaller than GIFs (50-60%), with very little quality loss. It even has an option for making "IE6-friendly" Alpha transparency (although I didn't test it).

Maybe not in 2011, but now PNG's are a good option, specially at such small sizes.

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I've been looking into this lately and running my own tests using many different tools and techniques.

I've found that for JPEG images, combining JPEGmini and ImageOptim (in that order) works best. They each do different things to reduce the image size.

For PNGs, I like ImageAlpha followed again by ImageOptim.

I don't plan to publish my benchmarks but they very closely mirror those published by Jamie Mason.

Jamie Mason also created an awesome command line tool for using these three image optimizers if you need a really deep level of control. Otherwise they all come with GUIs onto which you can drag-and-drop your images.

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