Why Are Images Fuzzy in PowerPoint?

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Microsoft PowerPoint is a presentation program for Windows systems that lets you create digital slides containing text, graphics and photographs and share them with an audience. The program saves your presentation in a single file, but graphics and photographs within your presentation may appear fuzzy or less than sharp when you open the file again. The problem does have a solution, and you don't need a special program to correct the problem.

Compression Issue

  • When PowerPoint saves your presentation, the program automatically compresses the size of graphics and photos you have within your presentation file. This results in the objects becoming fuzzy, blurry or less than sharp when you open the file again. The automatic compression can also cause any animated Graphics Interchange Format, or GIF, files to stop working. The compression is set to run automatically every time you save your PowerPoint presentation files.

Repairing the Problem

  • To solve the problem, click the Microsoft Office icon in the upper-left corner, then click "Save As." In the Save As dialog box, click "Tools" and then click "Compress Pictures." Click "Options," then uncheck the "Automatically Perform Basic Compression on Save" and "Delete Cropped Areas of Pictures" check boxes. This turns off the automatic compression of graphics and photographs. Click "OK" to close the Compression Settings dialog box, then click "OK" to close the Compress Pictures dialog box. Click "Save" to finalize the changes to PowerPoint's compression option --- your new settings take effect immediately.

Turning off Compression for Only One Presentation

  • To turn off PowerPoint's compression option for only one presentation file you are saving, click the Microsoft Office icon in the upper-left corner, then click "Options," "Advanced." Uncheck the "Discard Editing Data" check box. Check the "Do Not Compress Images in File" check box. Click "OK" to close the Advanced dialog box. Click the disk icon on PowerPoint's main toolbar to save your presentation without compression.

Registry Correction

  • You can also turn off PowerPoint's compression option via your system's registry. Close PowerPoint. Click "Start" and type "Regedit" in the "Search" box. Press "Enter." Click "Yes" when prompted if you want to run Regedit. Navigate to the "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\PowerPoint\Options" entry in the left pane of the Regedit dialog box. Double-click on the "Options" entry and change "12.0" to "14.0." Right-click in the right pane and click "New," "DWORD". Name the new DWORD entry "AutomaticPictureCompressionDefault." Double-click on the "AutomaticPictureCompressionDefault" entry and enter "0" as its value. Click "OK," then click the "X" in the upper right of the Regedit dialog box to close the utility. Be careful when editing your computer's registry --- entering or changing the wrong registry entry can stop your computer from booting correctly into the Windows operating system.

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  • Photo Credit Digital Vision/Digital Vision/Getty Images
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