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I am using Inkscape to edit some images, which will later be used in Latex. The format of the imported images is JPEG. The exported format is PNG. I found that the quality of the exported image from Inkscape was not the same as the original image. The quality had reduced. Which format is recommended so that the quality of the exported image is same as the input image? Please suggest keeping in mind that format of the exported image should be compatible with LaTeX.

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  • Hi. Welcome to GDSE. This really has nothing to do with Inkscape. JPEGs are less than ideal for editing. They use a form of lossy compression which can severely affect the quality of images depending on how much compression was applied, plus if you are then going on to export it as a PNG from Inkscape you will be basically magnifying the quality issues caused by the JPEG compression. If you must edit a JPEG because nothing else is available, then it's probably better to use a raster image editor instead.
    – Billy Kerr
    Apr 11, 2020 at 16:36
  • @BillyKerr: If you must edit a JPEG because nothing else is available, then it's probably better to use a raster image editor instead. – That’s not entirely correct. For something like labelling, a photograph, Inkscape is a reasonable choice. (Of course you shouldn’t export to PNG then.)
    – Wrzlprmft
    Apr 11, 2020 at 17:30
  • @Giri Can you show some example of what types of images and edits your are using? Apr 12, 2020 at 10:24
  • @Wrzlprmft well, yes, but it depends what you are trying to do. I simply meant that in general the OP would probably be better using a raster image editor to edit JPEGs rather than place a JPEG in Inkscape then export as PNG. I like your answer BTW. PDF is probably the way to go. +1
    – Billy Kerr
    Apr 12, 2020 at 14:32
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    @Giri I would suggest to use tikz for such arrows. This will ensure that the font size and line thickness will match your remaining document and you'll have a nice uniform look. Apr 13, 2020 at 11:22

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First of all, be sure that JPEGs and Inkscape are the right choices for what you want to do. For example if you want to add labels to a photograph, JPEG is a good format for the photograph (as it is inherently pixelated) and Inkscape is a good tool for adding labels. However, if you want to modify a plot, export it in a vector format (PDF, EPS, or SVG) to begin with. For other modifications of a photograph, a pixel editor (such as GIMP) is more suited.

Assuming that JPEGs and Inkscape are a good choice, use a vector format such as EPS or PDF (instead of PNG). If it was text you added, you may consider the option Omit text in PDF and create LaTeX file to have LaTeX render your text (which has advantages such as matching fonts, font sizes, etc.).

There are two reasons for this:

  • Whatever you edited in is vector graphics and using a vector format is best for this. As vector formats can embed pixel graphics such as your JPEGs, they pose no problem.

  • JPEG and PNGs are both pixel formats. Unless you make your Inkscape SVG such that the pixel grid of input (the JPEG) and output (the PNG) perfectly align when exporting, you will have aliasing problems due to mismatching pixels, explaining your loss of quality.

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