Despite the controversy that has arisen in recent months (and which is still going on), Facebook has long been a very important platform for photographers. A place to promote our work and that, in many cases, has become an alternative to web pages. Of course, this does not mean that it is a perfect place for photographers, in fact it has always suffered from several problems, mainly poor image quality.
This implies that one can have magnificent photographs, carefully processed for hours, that when uploading to Facebook may look like a child’s drawing due to a resizing that distorts or causes a banding problem (or similar). The question, of course, comes from the fact that this social network is not intended for photographers (as they are Flickr or 500px ), so Facebook has no special interest in showing the images as best as possible, but rather in that not too heavy. Something logical on the other hand since millions of photos are published daily on Facebook.
First, the size
When uploading the photos to Facebook it creates different versions of the image with different sizes to show them, depending on whether they are photos uploaded to the wall or to the albums. In any case, the sizes to be considered would be 480, 960 and 2,048 pixels on its longest side, which would be (respectively) the sizes in which the snapshots are seen in its smallest version (the Facebook wall) and even the largest is when you want to access the photo at its maximum quality.
Therefore, when uploading the photos you have to stick to these sizes because if we choose other formats, with a different screen relationship, Facebook can resize them, possibly causing them to distort. Our advice is that we upload them directly to 1920 pixels wide, which is just double that 960 and quadruple 480, so Facebook has it easy when resizing correctly.
Eye with quality
In addition, of the size, logically also it is important the loss of quality that takes place when reducing the photographs if we leave that the own Facebook takes care of it. This is why it is best to upload the photos already with a contained weight in such a way that the application does not have to do the work on their own. In an article we already talked about how to reduce photos properly , but we summarize that what is recommended in this case is to save the photos in JPEG format , compressed around 85% , with 72 pixels per inch resolution and in sRGB color space .
When creating an album there is the possibility of uploading the photos in better quality by checking the box High resolution (and if you use the Facebook app for iPhone or Android you can configure it so that the photos are always uploaded as well), but if we upload them according to the compression and the aforementioned sizes will avoid future problems and we will make sure to have the best possible quality.
Cover and profile photo
The cover photo is something like the presentation of our fanpage so it is important to treat it separately to avoid a bad impression of someone who comes to our page for the first time. The standard size of this photo is 851 pixels wide by 315 high so it is convenient to create it directly with these measures to avoid resizing.
In addition, Facebook itself indicates that we make sure that the file size is less than 100 Kbytes to avoid that the cover photo is compressed when uploading it. So, following the advice offered before (exact size, 72 pp resolution and sRGB color space) we will prepare our cover photo so that it looks good.
So if we follow the advice already given on how to treat the photographs to post them on Facebook we should not have problems. Of course, in any case, we must try to be aware of the possible changes that Facebook proposes from time to time, because the measures discussed can change at any time causing our photos to suffer with it.