Image size changes when dragging image into photoshop document.

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Hello, I'm a photoshop novice, just using it for various tasks, not a regular user. Today I have a piece of sheet music that I open as a PDF file. And I have to drag in some images that are created in another program. The problem is that when I drag the image (PNG) in, it makes it very large and pixelated, and I have to grab the transform control, and size it down to what I need and drag it into place.

The photoshop document is 300DPI. The other program that saves these PNG images gives me a width option in pixels for saving the image. I have 200 selected, so it's making all the images 200 x 216 (this can be changed). When I look at its image properties in photoshop, the resolution says 95.987.

So with what limited knowledge I have, I'm guessing this is some sort of resolution mismatch. But the question is, what width should these PNG images be saved as so that when I drag them into my document, they'll be the right size to fit (see screenshot showing one resized and placed, and the other how it looks after it's been dragged to the document. As you can see, the images need to be placed in that space between the notation and tablature staves) Or is there something else I should be doing altogether?

Thank you for your help!

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Mike C

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Posted 4 weeks ago

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Cristen Gillespie

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Yes, you're hitting the resolution "issue." This comes from print, where the resolution of the file makes a difference in the printed size of the image. Literally, if your pixels (dots on the printer) are smaller (300 vs 72, for example), you'll see a smaller image compare to one where the dots are much bigger, so they span a   bigger area.

Unless you're using a very old version of Photoshop, when you drag an image into an existing document, by default the new file comes in on its own layer as a Smart Object. This is very convenient. You don't want to resize the file. You want to resize the Smart Object. That way the transformation won't alter the original pixels, so you can rescale or rotate as you please without degrading the image quality.

You can, of course, use Image> Image Size on files before bringing them into another document, with Resample UNchecked. That way you're not altering the original image (by adding or throwing away pixels), but when you bring the file into an existing document that has the same resolution, you'll be better able to judge the relative sizes of the images. You'll likely still need to do some scaling to fit as you'd like, but you'll see an accurate match-up.
I hope this helps.
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Mike C

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CS6 and yes I understand it's a smart object on its own layer. I was just trying to see if there might be an optimum size to set the images to so that I don't have to go through the step of having to resize it after it's inserted in the document.