I have a few pictures that contain some text. What is the best way to fix a low resolution photo, in order to make the text readable? I'm not an advanced user of photo editors, and I don't know any fancy tricks.

enter image description here

I'm running linux because I have a crappy laptop, and I can't use photoshop. Gimp is the only things that works for me, but a lot of things are similar to photoshop, so if you know anything, please let me know.

The only method that improved the picture by 1-2% was by sharpening the image, but it didn't make it readable.

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    No there is nothing you can do about this image. – joojaa Jul 19 '16 at 15:14

First, save a copy of the image to experiment with. ;)

Then you could try increasing the contrast, carefully.

I can't tell if the one you posted is the actual size of the image. If so, it's pretty bad. But if it's actually larger than this, you might have a chance.

  • That's the original picture. I'll try playing with the contrast and see the result – Marian Ioan Jul 17 '16 at 21:24

Can you take a picture again? Or was that picture sent to you by someone else and you can't get another good shot? Try taking pics of documents using Office Lens
It takes a good quality photo with focus on making the text readable, adjusting the brightness and contrast automatically.


I used CamScanner in Android to do some 'magic'. This is all i got:

enter image description here

The resolution of your image is like 72 dpi. No OCR software can operate at such low resolution. You need to take a picture with at least 300 dpi resolution in order to do an efficient OCR (optical character recognition). That means you need a 5 Mpix camera.

  • ... and no, just changing the dpi/ppi value of the existing image to 300 won't magically make it fixable :) The photo has to have the N inches * 300 dpi/ppi pixels in width and height from the start. – Michael Schumacher Jul 19 '16 at 21:15
  • @MichaelSchumacher: Yes, of course. Hence the need for 5Mpix camera. Thanks for the subtle clarification. – ipse lute Jul 22 '16 at 10:11

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