How to Convert an Image to PNG Format

diagram showing different image file formats

PNG files are a great way to store images (like logos) that require transparency and fading. They do this while retaining their original appearance on any color background. We will review two ways to convert your images to PNG format.

What is a PNG file?

PNG, or Portable Network Graphics, is a popular image format used in Internet graphics for its ability to support transparency in browsers. It was first developed in the 1990s as an open alternative to GIF, which uses a proprietary compression algorithm. PNG is free.

PNG supports 8-bit and 24-bit colors, as does GIF and JPG, respectively. They are also considered a lossless file, which means that they do not degrade in quality, no matter how many times you open and save the file.

RELATED: What is the difference between JPG, PNG and GIF?

How to Convert an Image to PNG

One of the main advantages of PNG over formats like JPG or GIF is that PNG is a lossless format with 24-bit color support. If you are converting from JPG, take into account that JPG are lossy files and may lose some quality from their initial compression. However, because PNG is lossless, your file will not lose its quality each time the image is opened or re-saved.

RELATED: What are lossless file formats and why you should not convert Lossy to lossless

There are two main ways to convert an image to PNG format. You can use an image viewer on your computer or use one of the many file conversion sites available on the web.

Converting an image with Windows

I know we say it a lot, and you may be tired of hearing about it, but IrfanView is one of the best free image viewers on Windows. Period. You can do the same type of conversion that we are about to show you in most editors (including Paint), but we will use IrfanView for our example here.

Open the image you want to convert to PNG by clicking File> Open.

Navigate to your image, then click "Open".

Once the file is open, click File> Save As.

In the next window, make sure that PNG is selected in the format drop-down list, then click on "Save".

By default, the compression ratio is set to "Best", but if you want a little more control over the compression of your file, the Save Options window has a few extras to check out. Changing the compression ratio will determine the file size, the higher the number, the less compression will be used when saving your image.

Converting an image with Mac

Mac comes preinstalled with Preview, which you can use for more than just viewing image files. It is an excellent image editing program capable of cropping, resizing and converting files.

Open an image in Preview by right-clicking the file, and then choosing Open With> Preview.

In Preview, go to File> Export.

In the window that appears, make sure that you have selected PNG as the file format. Rename the file if you want, then click "Save".

Converting an image online

If you prefer to use an online file conversion site instead of a desktop app, look no further than Convertimage.net. This is a site dedicated to converting images – not just PNG – while keeping your privacy in mind. ConvertImage does not publish or store any of your files for more than 15 minutes, deleting them from their servers after processing.

First, select the output format in which you want to save an image.

Then click on "Select your image".

Navigate to the image you want to convert, then click "Open". Note that images have a maximum size limit of 24.41 MB.

You just have to accept their terms of use, then click on "Convert this image".

On the next page, once your image has been downloaded and converted, click "Download Image" and your PNG will be saved to your browser's download folder.

That's it! You have successfully converted your images to PNG format.

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