JPEG is now lossless

By Andrew Hudson Published: January 20, 2014 Updated: October 18, 2016

JPEG is the most popular format to store photos but has one major drawback — it degrades the image upon every save. This forces high-end photos to be saved in RAW or TIFF formats, which are both lossless but require much larger file sizes. Today that changes, as JPEG version 9a has debuted with a valuable option — lossless compression.

The updated format also supports more detailed colors (from 8- to 12-bit color depth), more scaling functions, and other compression options.

New features of JPEG 9a:

  • Add support for wide gamut color spaces (JFIF version 2).Improve clarity and accuracy in color conversion modules.
  • Extend the bit depth support to all values from 8 to 12
  • Enable option to use default Huffman tables for lossless compression(for hardware solution), and in this case improve lossless RGB compressionwith reversible color transform

Independent JPEG Group

Sources: Press release on photoscala. Image credit: Wikipedia.

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