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Change Pasted Image format from Tiff to JPG How?

16144 Views 37 Replies Latest reply: Sep 16, 2009 9:41 PM by vincejr RSS
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madpixl Calculating status...
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Jan 2, 2009 11:34 AM
I would like to have my images paste into mail as jpegs,gifs,pngs, whatever the source format, rather than being converted to TIFF format which is not viewable by a large number of users.

To change the clipboard, in terminal one writes:
defaults write com.apple.screencapture type jpeg

Is there a similar command that will change the default image formmat for mail?
macbook pro 17, Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • Mulder Level 6 Level 6 (8,980 points)
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    Jan 2, 2009 12:10 PM (in response to madpixl)
    When you attach or embed an image in Mail, it does so in the original format of the image; it is not changed to anything else. If you want to change the image to some other format, you can open the original in Preview, then Save As… and choose one of the available image formats.

    Mulder
    iMac G4 1.35 Ghz, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Mulder Level 6 Level 6 (8,980 points)
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    Jan 2, 2009 12:37 PM (in response to madpixl)
    What makes you believe it's a TIFF file? Has the actual file size changed; the extension, etc.? If Mail did this, then every time you mailed a web page it would have to convert all those .jpg images to TIFF and insert them into Mail, and I've yet to see it do this, ever.

    At the same time, I've mailed thousands of images that started out as .jpg images and Mail did not change any of those, either. There is no such preference to change in Mail, so I can only go by what I know to be my years of experience and say that it's not happening.

    Mulder
    iMac G4 1.35 Ghz, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • V.K. Level 9 Level 9 (56,120 points)
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    Jan 2, 2009 12:44 PM (in response to madpixl)
    as mentioned Mail does not alter file types. if the attachment shows up as TIFF it means it was tiff to begin with. you have to save it from photoshop as a jpeg and attach that. the terminal command you mention has nothing to do with this. it changes the format in which screenshots are taken but screenshots do not exist before you take them. image files that you attach from photoshop already exist.
    Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, Mac OS X (10.5.6), Mac Pro 2.66GHz, powerbook G4 1.5GHz
  • chris_R Calculating status...
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    Jan 2, 2009 4:38 PM (in response to V.K.)
    I think what the OP is getting at is using copy/paste to transfer data from another app directly into Mail, rather than attaching a file. In that case it's always attached as a TIFF because that's the format used by the system clipboard. It has nothing to do with Mail.

    The solution is to attach the original file instead (or save the image to a file if it's been altered).
    MacBook Pro / 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • V.K. Level 9 Level 9 (56,120 points)
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    Jan 2, 2009 4:50 PM (in response to chris_R)
    chris_R wrote:
    I think what the OP is getting at is using copy/paste to transfer data from another app directly into Mail, rather than attaching a file. In that case it's always attached as a TIFF because that's the format used by the system clipboard.

    I'm not aware of that. when i copy a jpeg image in preview or iphoto (I don't have photoshop) and then paste it into Mail it pastes as a jpeg.
    Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, Mac OS X (10.5.6), Mac Pro 2.66GHz, powerbook G4 1.5GHz
  • chris_R Level 2 Level 2 (300 points)
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    Jan 3, 2009 2:41 AM (in response to V.K.)
    Really? That's strange because I tested it using Preview with a JPEG image and it pastes into mail as a TIFF (and if I look in Clipboard Viewer the format is reported as public.tiff).
    MacBook Pro / 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • tmvc Calculating status...
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    Jan 14, 2009 11:07 PM (in response to chris_R)
    I have the same problem. It happens randomly.

    a) I copy an image from the web which is a jpeg and paste it into my Apple Mail and it auto converts to a TIFF file.

    b) I am forwarded a jpg file and I re-forward it to other people, and it mysteriously becomes a TIFF file and they can't see it.

    Looks like a bug. How do we report it. It's intermittent. Thanks
    macbook pro 15 & 17 inch, Mac OS X (10.5.5)
  • doug123a Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jan 15, 2009 6:15 AM (in response to chris_R)
    killall SystemUIServer

    I can verify the same problem, it drives me crazy with Photoshop and screenshots. If I copy-and-paste or DRAG an image directly from Photoshop I get a gigantic Tiff, and if I shift-cntl-cmd-4 screenshot to clipboard, paste, same problem. (It creates something call pastedGraphic.tiff.) The email size is much larger -- check the size estimate at the bottom of the window as compared to a shift-cmd-4 screenshot to disk (jpg). Or try dragging the image from Mail to the desktop.

    But it can get worse. Try taking a screenshot to the clipboard, paste it into an email, and then also open a coipy of the screenshot in Preview. Select all, copy, paste into Mail. A shot that was 176K on disk, 238K in Mail, becomes 1.8 MB. Similar problems arise from Photoshop.

    Another hint: If you choose a size less than "larger" in the Mail "Image Size" selector, it changes TIFF's to JPEG. Now the pic is called pastedGraphic.jpg.
    http://forums.macosxhints.com/archive/index.php/t-72700.html

    in fairness some of these issue probably arise from the way other apps (including the screen grab) prepare images for the clipboard. Mail then accepts what it is given. HOWEVER we do want to fix the format to something acceptable for mailing. It is this a buried feature, issue for a 3rd party developer, or do we just wait?

    Would love a fix.
    iMac Intel; Macbook '08, Mac OS X (10.5)
  • Mulder Level 6 Level 6 (8,980 points)
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    Jan 15, 2009 6:37 AM (in response to doug123a)
    Would love a fix.


    While it's tempting to label everything you don't understand the rationale for as a bug, this is not a bug. If you really think that Apple should change this behavior, send them Feedback.

    Mulder
    iMac G4 1.35 Ghz, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • chris_R Level 2 Level 2 (300 points)
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    Jan 15, 2009 7:15 AM (in response to Mulder)
    Agreed.

    Apple chooses to implement the system clipboard as TIFF (for most image data) and that's probably not going to change. The reason the result is so large is because you're dumping raw, uncompressed image data into your email. The simplest solution is not to do it. Understand that images in emails count as file attachments, so save the image and then attach the actual file. That way you can control the size and format easily.

    That said, it probably wouldn't be too difficult to add a context menu item to convert an image to jpeg, but without changing the size. As Mulder said: submit feedback and ask them nicely to implement such a feature.


    As an aside: if you copy a web image from within Safari, it will paste into Mail in the original format, because Safari copies the url of the image into the clipboard as well as the image data (as TIFF). Other browsers, like Firefox, won't do that.
    MacBook Pro / 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, Mac OS X (10.5)
  • doug123a Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jan 15, 2009 8:38 AM (in response to chris_R)
    Well, hang on guys. The "simplest thing" is not to turn the computer on. What happens from there forward depends so much on the wisdom of the folks who write the OS and apps. Because we like things to be easy and "intuitve," we prefer Macs (among other reasons).

    To the extent the handling of images is unpredictable, it is a bug. To the extent it does not produce the result desired, no matter how rational it might be, it is counter-intuitive, contrary to the Mac UI. That Mail suddenly recodes the image as soon as you reduce the size to medium, the file size instantly falling from 1.8 MB to 372 KB, for example, is not a behavior to TIFF or JPEG people would anticipate. There are VERY few people who want their quick copy-and-paste image to ship out at 2 MB!! Very few ordinary people even use TIFF's, and the minority who do probably have the sophistication to wrestle with this.

    Hmm, maybe Windows handles this better.... Ha!
    various; iBook G4, Mac OS X (10.5)
  • Oliver Reid Calculating status...
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    Jan 21, 2009 9:28 AM (in response to Mulder)
    "What makes you believe it's a TIFF file? Has the actual file size changed; the extension, etc.? If Mail did this, then every time you mailed a web page it would have to convert all those .jpg images to TIFF and insert them into Mail, and I've yet to see it do this, ever."

    Not true: If you set the OS screen capture format to PNG, the when you take a screen shot direct to the clip board and paste in Mail, it is inserted in the email as a PNG. It would be nice if Mail could do the same with JPG screen shot.

    It's a pain b/c AOL mail recipients cannot view PNG files
    MacPro, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • AF38 Calculating status...
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    Jan 24, 2009 11:14 AM (in response to doug123a)
    I agree this is so counter-intuitive that it should be considered as a bug.
    Yes, the bitmap format of the system clipboard is tiff (Next inheritance) but the Mail.app developers can easily convert the received bitmap to any mail compatible format, e.g. jpeg.
    G5, iMac, MacBook pro, Mac OS X (10.4.10)
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