Tell the difference between raster and vector image!

In simple words, we can say that both are the formats for the images that we use depending on the nature of our work. These are the two basic types of graphics images existing on the web. As these are both image formats, it is not easy to see the difference at first glance. Most of the people find it difficult to tell difference. There is a confusion to pick the right type for work.

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To explain the difference, we will be throwing some lights on the basic difference between image formats. We will highlight the seven important factors that will affect the choice of file format for your project:

1- Resolution

There is a very prominent difference when we are talking about the resolution of vector or raster image. The resolution of a raster image is formed by millions of square pixels, dot per inch (DPI) or pixel per inch (PPI). The size of a raster image is a fixed value. If you do not want to lose its quality, then the only way is to scale it down. The consequences in this practice will be as you will enlarge the picture, it becomes blurred.

On the other hand, the vector image is made up of plenty of paths. The paths are mathematically represented in term of proportions, ration, width, height, and other dimensions. In the case of vector art, during the resizing of image,  lines, curves, and nodes are recalculated to keep the images sharp and clear.

2- Scalability

First, on the list, we have the scalability of both the image format to tell the difference. The vector image will not lose it sharpness and clarity irrespective of the extent and the number of time you change the size of the image. In case of a vector image, you will get the same quality and sharpness in every size of the image.

The raster image is also known as a bitmap image. The image gets pixelated when trying to enlarge the picture.  When you will enlarge a raster image, it will lose its quality and you will not be able to see the details properly.

3- Development

The digital image development is different for both types. You can easily convert the vector images into raster images. The conversion of raster into a vector is a time-consuming process.

To create the vector graphics you need specialized software like Adobe Illustrator. It is impossible to take the photos in vector format. All the printed images and photos taken with the help of a camera or a scanner are in raster format. The vector image looks like a real photo ready to use.

4- Flexibility

You can resize the vector art multiple times without any compromise on quality. This characteristic makes the vector image a perfect choice for multipurpose projects that need flexibility in the image. For instance, a vector logo is a reliable source to create raster in different sizes. You can use them according to your need either in print or web. Additionally, you need a certain size of raster format to get a certain quality.

5- Compatibility

Compatibility is one of the important factors that need to be discussed for a better understanding. The vector images can only be opened in specialized software like Adobe Illustrator. Vector file extension .eps can be used as a vector format for editing when you are not having a .Ai file.

Contrarily, the raster file format is widely recognizable by all common image programs. Most of the digital images on the web are bitmaps even if they were vector previously. This fact makes bitmaps very convenient for mass use.

If you are planning to become a professional designer or illustrator, then you have to work with vector formats to get vector art designs. You need to be an expert in your work with adequate knowledge of software use.

6- File Size

Vector images are less in size as compared to the raster images. The dimension of a vector image is evaluated mathematical calculation.  Due to the high efficiency of the vector file size, it is easy to transfer them from one device to another device. Moreover, vector format is having more information in small file size as compared to the small size of the raster image.  The raster file is heavy with less information.

7- Printing

If you are looking to get the printed version, then you have the following two options to consider:

-You can work with vector source.

-You can use a high-resolution raster file.

Get things printed for individual need, brand awareness, screen printing, digital printing or more. For this, you should avail customized vector conversion services from the experts of  Absolute Digitizing. We are having skilled professionals to provide you quality work done in minimum time at affordable rates.

The file type in vector formats are .ai, .eps, .pdf, .svg, .cdr. The file types for raster image include .jpg, .gif, .png, bmp, .psd, .eps, .tif, .psd; plus.


The vector images and raster images are having their own characteristics. You should have proper knowledge of selecting the best type according to the nature of your work. The vector format is best for printing and raster format is best for painting. Hopefully, now you are aware of the difference.  The printing process mostly uses vector format for work to avoid missing any details.

Planning to convert image to vector? Absolute Digitizing is here to help. Our expert team will provide your vector image at affordable rates with quick turnaround time. The experts will ensure that you get the desired result on time.

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