I donĀ“t know anything about printing and have a huge question! My design is going on a bus (12 m x 1.13 m) and the printing company send me this instructions to follow:

"resolution 1:1 scale 100 dpi (dot per inch)"

If 12 m is 472.441 inches

Does it means the resolution needs to be around 5000 dpi? Am I wrong? :D

I hope someone help me fast because i have the deadline soon!!!! <3


Based on what you posted, your printer is saying they want full-scale artwork (meaning the exact dimensions as printed - that's what "1:1" means) at 100 DPI. But at 12 m in width, most graphic programs don't support such large sizes. You will likely need to break your artwork into sections that you connect back together when wrapping the bus. Talk with your printer and get clarification though.

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  • Thank you so much! I probably will ask again to the printing company and see if we need to break the layout! – VspBro Jan 23 '16 at 16:28

This is a late answer and although it is marked as a duplicate I am posting an answer to clarify and use this as an example.

My design is going on a bus (12 m x 1.13 m) ... "resolution 1:1 scale 100 dpi" ...Does it means the resolution needs to be around 5000 dpi?

Designers need to use the correct units, values and operations. The 3 terms.


The correct unit is not dpi (dots per inch) this is a unit for printer resolution.

The correct unit is pixels per inch, ppi.

The operations (and values)

a) 12.00 x 1.13 m = 472.441 x 44.488 in.

b) pixel per inch is in fact a formula by itself. It is pixels/inch, px/in for short.

So: in x px/in = px.

When you multiply 472.441 inches x 100 ppi = 47,244 the result is plain pixels. That is the absolute measure of your image in pixels. 47,244 pixels width.

47,244 x 4,449 pixels.

A tip. Work at scale

As that is a big document for a raster program. Do that at a scale on a vector one, and at the end, export a raster image.


100 ppi is too much for a moving bus. 50ppi could be enough, that is a better file size.

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  • I don't know why this is down voted. I think it's correct. I'd add that you could do this in photoshop if you want to, but PSD files only support up to 30K pixels in either dimension so you'd have to save it as a PSB file which supports up to 300K pixels. And yes, using Illustrator or InDesign would probably be easier. – Mysterfxit Mar 24 '16 at 3:43
  • Yea, it is funny how some people just come brandishing the mouse. :o) – Rafael Mar 24 '16 at 6:59

I'm not that good with printed matter myself, but if i would need to guess then 100? i know that i personally use usually 300 DPI for printed matter, (72 DPI for everything that's on a monitor of any kind, 150 DPI for newspapers). The printed matter on the buses are not in a good resolution, they just seem ok since we see them either fast or from afar, and never really focus up-close. i would assume its 100 dpi because of all the reasons above and for the reference i would assume a 5,000 dpi artwork would probably be excruciatingly hard for most computers. even a the good ones. Good Luck!

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  • Hi. Some tips: For a monitor of any kind you do not need ppi. And I do not know where you got that 5,000 dpi value from. – Rafael Mar 25 '16 at 3:27

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