I have a JPG image file (3000px x 1000px) which size is about 1 MB. I embedded it into Inkscape, drew vectors above the image and saved all of them into an SVG file. Now the file size is about 12 MB.

How to reduce the SVG file size, or how to save a compressed image in the SVG?

  • 1
    This may sound dumb, but did you delete the JPG from the document, once you finished tracing? You could also try scaling the SVG down in size. Since you are working with vectors, you don't need to work at your final output size. You can instead work at a fraction of the size, 1/10th for example.
    – Manly
    Commented Feb 21, 2017 at 21:07

1 Answer 1


An SVG with an embeded image will always be bigger as the SVG (without embeded raster image) and the original raster image together, because SVG files are text files and have to encode the embeded images as text (base64).

In case you made the the raster image smaller in Inkscape you should rescale the original raster image and embed the smaller version instead. Otherwise you could try one of the following options:

Save as svgz

+ Reduces file size drastically. In my test, the SVGZ was nearly as small as the embeded image in original format.
+ Just one file.
- Longer loading/saving time (but not that much).
- Some browsers cannot open SVGZ files.

Don't embed the raster image, link it

+ Small(est) SVG file.
- SVG and raster image must be kept together.

Save as PDF

+ Compression nearly as good as SVGZ.
+ PDF is widely supported.
- Loss of Inkscape specific data, for instance guide lines, grids, and so on.

  • 1
    I select the second options: link raster image.
    – Ivan Z
    Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 20:17

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