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Definition: JPEG, short for Joint Photographic Expert Group, is the most commonly used type of formatting for image files created with a digital camera. JPEG, pronounced jay-peg, is a form of compression that reduces the file size significantly, allowing you to fit more photos on a memory card. JPEG is especially useful for beginner photographers.

With most beginner-level digital cameras, the photographer can choose between a few different levels of JPEG compression. As you apply more compression to digital image files, image quality suffers. Sometimes, highly compressed JPEG photos can end up with artifacts, which are image distortions that the compression causes in the file.

To make high-quality, large prints with JPEG images, select as little JPEG compression as possible.

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