Facebook recently introduced a few changes to its news feed so we decided to test out these new modifications and demonstrate the best ways to use them to get your images to look the best they can.
Until now, the dimensions of images of the news feed were very clearly defined and if a post exceeded those requirements, the excess parts of the post were simply not shown to the user. Now, for the first time, the feed is adapting to the post, scaling down to the post’s dimensions.
POST IMAGE DIMENSIONS
The new display dimensions are 403×504 pixels. If you create a post with 403×300 pixels, the display box will adapt to the dimensions of your post and your post will not get the Facebook light blue background.
You can do this by reducing the size of a post to a maximum of 20 pixels in height (403×20) – this can be used to your advantage if you’re running a special countdown campaign in which you’re doing a series of posts to build interest and engage the audience ’till the big reveal.
But let’s take a look at what Facebook says about this new change. They suggest that it is best to use 403×504 dimensions as they serve best to utilize the space. And they’re right. This is how it looks:
The higher point size works well, but as the size lessens, so does the readability. Since newsfeed and page sizes aren’t compatible, the image that is well optimized for feed works well on the page too so bear that in mind.
HIGHLIGHT IMAGE DIMENSIONS
The biggest challenge concerning highlights was finding the adequate size, because according to Facebook, the ideal dimensions are 843×503, 100 pixels up from the former feed. We tried that out and realized that those recommended dimensions don’t work as well as they’re expected to and result in unclear images.
1. 843×503, 72dpi – Using the recommended dimensions provides an image that is far from the desired sharpness we’re looking for.
2. 1686×1006, 144dpi – Much sharper than the original, but still not quite there.
3. 1200×717, 72dpi – The clear winner, generates pretty readable results even at 10pt. Keep in mind this depends on the font you choose and Photoshop font rendering.
PROFILE PHOTO DIMENSIONS
The specifications for profile pictures remain the same, the recommended 180×180 pixels. These dimensions are really not enough for a sharp image so we suggest you keep using 480×480, 72 dpi. Here’s why:
1. 180×180, 72dpi
2. 480×480, 72 dpi
COVER PHOTO DIMENSIONS
Cover dimensions are the same, 851×315 and that really is the best choice.
The maximum dimensions visible in the news feed is 470×394. But the size that produces the sharpest image and does a great job of replacing the classic “box” post is 1200×1007.
All the images uploaded to Facebook are saved as PNG-24. We purposely used white typography against a red background because that combination has proven to be the trickiest and shows every imperfection.