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Understanding the creative importance of the roles and capabilities that different file types have on your graphics, photography, and print images are crucial in your creative processes. 

As an integrated creative, print, promo, and marketing company, MOSAIC has years of experience working with the different creative file types to best complement your creative needs. Here is our guide to determining which file type your designers and clients will need!  

Understanding the difference between Vector and Raster Creative File Types

Vector Files

Vector files are made up of mathematical points. They can be scaled infinitely while maintaining quality & file size. Vector files are best used when you are working with logos, icons, type, and illustrations

Raster Files

Raster files are made up of a pixel grid. The number of pixels equates to file size. Raster files can lose quality when scaled up too much. These files work best when you are working with detailed images and web-based graphics.


Now that you know the two groups of file types, let us dive deeper into which files are in these two groupings.

The Different Vector File Types

PDF: Portable Document Format

PDF Files support both Vector and Raster Files. They can be one page or support multiple paged documents. PDFs are quite common and are typically the standard printing file since the format remains the same no matter the device it is shown upon. PDF files are best used for print output, digital presentations, and online forms.

SVG: Scalable Vector Graphics

SVG Files are not as common and are used for very precise control. This file type is best used for web graphics and animation on web pages and when you are designing an illustration rooted in geometric shapes.

Tip: Social Media Platforms do not support SVG File Types.

EPS: Encapsulated postscript

Similar to PDF, EPS files support both Vector and Raster Files. EPS Files also support RBG and CYMK coloring. This file type is supported for print graphics and is best used for printing vector designs such as logos, icons, type, and illustrations.

The Different Raster File Types

JPEG/ JPG: Joint Photographic Experts Group

JPEG files are typically of a smaller file size and will load faster. They are widely compatible, nontransparent, and support a wide range of colors; RBG and CYMK. JPEGs are lossy files, meaning that compression on each export reduces the file size at the expense of quality. JPEGS are best used for photographs, detailed images, and web-based/ social media graphics.

PNG: Portable Network Graphic

PNG files can be resized while retaining the file data without losing the image quality. PNG Files only output RBG Color. This file type is best used for web page images, graphics, and logos.

TIFF: Tagged Image File Format

TIFF Files are typically a much larger file and less compatible than JPEG or PNG. They support both RBG and CYMK colors, and support layers or continuous editing in photoshop. TIFF files can be either lossy or lossless, and they are best used for print images.


You do not have to be intimidated by the different types of file formats. Let us at MOSAIC be your guide in understanding the creative importance of the different roles and capabilities of these vector and raster file formats. Contact us to learn more about our creative abilities.

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