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My EPUB contained many HTML tables, many of which would break on small screens. I therefore took screenshots of the tables and inserted the images into the EPUB in place of the HTML tables.

I just viewed my EPUB on Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) for PC. The table images look terrible! The text in the images is illegible.

The images become blurry only when ADE downscales them. If I expand the window and force ADE to upscale the images, they look better. At full size, they look crisp.

I have been looking for an answer to this problem ALL day. The best one so far is to create new images of the tables, this time using very bold text and thick lines. This works quite well. Most of the images become legible; however, they look very ugly, and some still look quite terrible.

Does anyone know how I can fix this issue?

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I don't think that you can really "fix" this; representing text with a raster image and downscaling it means that it will be displayed with far less pixels that are required to provide a clean and readable image.

You can try by using an image format that is better suited for this task; I would suggest .png (avoid .jpg like the plague in these circumstances!), it can help but honestly I won't expect miracles if the text is going to be downscaled a lot.

Long story short: don't use images to display text.

  • Thanks. It looks like I'll have to redo all images of tables using a thicker font and thicker lines so that when they are downscaled by ADE they do not lose too much integrity. I also have to downsize the images using Photoshop so that ADE doesn't have to downscale them too much. :-( – fluoresce May 3 '17 at 17:37
  • Do you have this blurriness just on ADE, or even with other software/devices? – Sekhemty May 3 '17 at 17:42
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Sekhemty already gave a good answer. I just wanted to throw out further thoughts.

First, issues of rendering HTML tables and images are less severe on tablets with bigger screens. You can put a note on the book description that the ebook is best when viewed on a 9 inch tablet or something like that.

For Amazon books, my rule of thumb has been to upload the maximum resolution image into the ebook because Amazon will downsize the image automatically according to the type and size of device. Downsizing images is unnecessary for kindles.

Another idea (regardless of whether you do images or HTML tables) is to use CSS to force a page break and then render the table or image in landscape mode using the css. A lot of tables tend to be wider than taller, and I think readers are comfortable for viewing tables in landscape mode.

  • Thank you for your help! I shall use high-res images for the Kindle version, as you suggested. :-) – fluoresce May 4 '17 at 11:37

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