Web Design - Understanding The Trace Bitmap Settings (Flash MX/MX 2004)


Tracing a bitmap converts a bitmap image into vector artwork. The biggest benefit of this method is reduced file size, as vector information takes up much less space than bitmap information. However, neglecting to set the Trace Bitmap options correctly can result in poor image quality and over-complex renderings. Here's a quick overview of what each of the Trace Bitmap settings control:


  • Color Threshold: The range that two pixels are considered different colors. Higher Color Threshold values decrease the number of colors, lower values increase the color range.
  • Minimum Area: The minimum number of surrounding pixels considered when assigning color to a pixel. Try to keep this number as high as possible to create larger areas of color.
  • Curve Fit: The degree of "smoothness" when the bitmap is traced. Higher values create smoother drawings; lower values create more detailed tracings.
  • Corner Threshold: Determines the sharpness of the traced edges.

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