Vector vs Raster Images: Understanding the Difference Between the Formats

The main raster graphics extensions below each blend the types of compression and color palettes in their own way. Choose the best one for you on a case-by-case basis, depending on your priorities. Take product photos, for example — their quality can make or break an ecommerce store.

what are raster and vector graphics

You can take the image below as a reference to decide what will work better with your project. They’re more flexible as each shape is separate and you can scale up and down as much as you like, but it’s harder to make the images look natural. Some compression algorithms, such as RLE and LZW, are lossless, where the original pixel values can be perfectly regenerated from the compressed data. Other algorithms, such as JPEG, are lossy, because the parameterized patterns are only an approximation of the original pixel values, so the latter can only be estimated from the compressed data. If you don’t have access to Adobe Illustrator and need a raster image converted over to vector, have no fear!

What’s the difference between vector and raster images?

In the world of computer graphics, a vector is the collection of techniques for constructing visual images straight from geometric shapes illustrated on a Cartesian plane, such as lines, curves, points, and polygons. You should use Raster graphics for designing true-to-life graphics like shades, shadows, and gradients. If you require complex colors and flawless color blending like a painting, choose Raster graphics. This makes them suitable for multipurpose projects that require flexibility in the size of the image. However, they are unsuitable for projects involving different software.

You can enlarge the image to the desired size with vector graphics without sacrificing quality. As long as their machine can handle it, users can increase the sizes as much as they like. Vector graphics easily defeat raster images due to the basic difference. However, there are some reasons why employing raster graphics may be the preferable choice. The image can be converted to a vector; however, doing so may be difficult and result in a loss of finer features. Raster pictures are, therefore, the most suitable for use in photography.

When to use each raster file extension

Evaluate how you will be using graphics and generate your images accordingly. Raster images are made up of many pixels, which are tiny blocks of color. Each individual pixel is so small that raster and vector graphics difference the image looks clear when you’re seeing it at its intended size. If you increase the dimensions of the image, you’ll notice the pixels and the blocks will become much more obvious.

what are raster and vector graphics