How to Stop Compressing Images in PowerPoint 2013

PowerPoint 2013 has a default setting that compresses images to reduce file size when you save presentations. This compression can reduce image quality, which may not be desirable if you have high-resolution graphics that you want to retain their crispness.

Fortunately, you can disable image compression in PowerPoint 2013 with a few simple steps. Here’s how to stop PowerPoint 2013 from compressing your images.

Why PowerPoint Compresses Images

When you insert images into a PowerPoint presentation, those image files get embedded into the PowerPoint (.pptx) file. The more high-res the images, the bigger the file size becomes.

PowerPoint’s default compression serves to reduce overall file size by shrinking down image dimensions and resolution. This makes presentations easier to share and email.

However, compression trades off image quality for smaller file size. For most basic presentations, this trade-off is perfectly fine. But if image quality is paramount, you’ll want to disable compression.

How to Turn Off Image Compression

Disabling image compression in PowerPoint 2013 is easy:

  1. Open PowerPoint Options
    • Click the File tab > Options
  2. Go to Advanced Settings
    • Click Advanced on the left sidebar
  3. Uncheck “Compress Images”
    • Under Image Size and Quality, uncheck Do not compress images in file
  4. Select Default Resolution
    • Set to High fidelity for best quality
  5. Click OK to save settings

Now when you save presentations, images will retain their original resolution without compression.

Here are more details on each step:

Step 1: Open PowerPoint Options

Click the File tab to access the Backstage view, then click Options:

File tab > Options

This opens the PowerPoint Options dialog box.

Step 2: Go to Advanced Settings

On the left sidebar, click Advanced:

Advanced settings

This displays advanced settings you can tweak.

Step 3: Uncheck “Compress Images”

Under Image Size and Quality, uncheck the box next to Do not compress images in file:

Uncheck compress images

This disables image compression when saving PowerPoint files.

Step 4: Set Default Resolution

While you’re at it, set the Default resolution to High fidelity for best image quality:

Set default resolution

High fidelity retains maximum image resolution.

Step 5: Click OK

Click OK at the bottom to save the settings.

Compression will now be turned off for that PowerPoint installation.

Alternative: Disable Per File

The steps above disable image compression globally across all presentations.

Alternatively, you can disable compression on a per-file basis:

  1. Open the presentation
  2. Click File > Info
  3. Click Compress Pictures
  4. Uncheck Apply only to this picture
  5. Uncheck Automatically perform basic compression on save
  6. Click OK

This turns off compression for that specific presentation rather than globally.

Comparing Image Quality

Below is an example of an image inserted into PowerPoint with compression enabled (left) versus disabled (right):

Image comparison

As you can see, disabling compression retains more fine details and crisper text.

The difference is more noticeable on high-resolution images printed across larger formats.

When to Disable Compression

Here are instances when you may want to disable PowerPoint image compression:

  • You have high-resolution photos that you don’t want degraded
  • Your presentation will be viewed on large screens
  • You want sharp images for printed handouts
  • File size is not a concern for your purposes
  • You have sufficient storage capacity

Conversely, if you need to email presentations or conserve storage space, keeping the default compression enabled may be preferable to shrink down file size.

Just be aware that compression does sacrifice image quality. There is no free lunch!

Adjust Compression As Needed

PowerPoint’s image compression can be heavy-handed at times.

Rather than completely disabling it, another option is to manually adjust compression on a per-image basis:

  • Double-click the image
  • On the Format tab, click Compress Pictures
  • Adjust settings as needed

This gives you more granular control over balancing quality vs. file size across individual images.

Summary

In review, here are the key points about disabling image compression in PowerPoint 2013:

  • Compression reduces image resolution & quality
  • It’s enabled by default to shrink file size
  • You can turn it off globally or per file
  • Disable when quality matters more than size
  • Adjust compression manually as needed

Following these best practices will ensure your PowerPoint images remain crisp, clear, and high quality.