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If I save my file from Photoshop as a Photoshop EPS is that going to be okay as a vector across the board (ie will it be resizeable in whatever it's opened in)? I know if you open a .psd in Photoshop and resize the image, it holds it's quality, so that's fine, but when people need an EPS file because they might want to print it on the side of a building one day (or whatever) is a Photoshop EPS going to be okay? Or is there something else I need to be doing?

All my designs are always vectors within Photoshop, so text/shapes/designs done with the pen tool - I just need to know that they'll still be a vector for people who don't have Photoshop and can't open it in there to resize it.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

To a degree.....

With the exception of Live Type, Photoshop creates vector containers with raster fills. What this means is the edges of shape layers will remain crisp and clear when resized because the shape/vector layer edge is saved as a vector and it is recalculated when resized.

However, what is inside the shape layer is not vector. For example, if you create a shape/vector layer and then apply a pattern overlay, an inner glow, and a drop shadow, all those layer styles are not vector and will not scale infinitely. Layer styles are always raster and are bound by raster limitations.

Live type is vector and will remain vector and scalable when used in a Photoshop file and saved as an EPS. However, at times live type can be converted to outlines in eps files to maintain appearance. When converted to outlines, the type loses it's hinting properties and although it is vector, it may not look ideal at smaller sizes. Type is generally not a problem for anything above 12-14 points though.

As DA01 pointed out, eps is merely a file wrapper. Simply saving as an eps does not mean something is vector. EPS can contain 100% raster content or 100% vector content or a mix of the two. When using Photoshop, you always get a mix of the two if you have type and/or shape/vector layers. It is not possible to create a true vector file with any version Photoshop regardless of what you do.

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EPS, is an acronym for Encapsulated Post Script - it is a package of information (vector and raster elements) used for cross-platform print documents. Most would considered this a legacy format, well supported for print. In terms of vector information - it is probably the best choice for what you describe, Willow.

The EPS format can be used for RGB images - but in fact EPS will never be efficient for rgb, as it is designed for post-script print files.

Your vector images will always be printable as EPS, but it's not a particularly efficient file format and if you do include raster images, the transparency is not well accomodated (as you may have to save the alpha channel separately)

There should be a go-to summary of file formats and their strengths and weaknesses. For example, you are incorrect about PSD files and resizing. All raster images will pixelate when enlarged.

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It can be. It may also not be. And EPS file is really just a wrapper around whatever the image is itself. So an EPS an include raster images, vector images, or both.

When places ask for 'EPS' files they often are asking for vector files, of which an EPS may or may not be.

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I think as an example, an Illustrator file might be all vectors but with a texture fill which is a raster image. The portion which is based upon a raster image will never be vector and will not scale "infinitely" like the rest of the document. –  horatio Jun 1 '12 at 16:31

protected by Matt Jun 27 at 14:35

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