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How to Reduce the Size of Animated GIF Images

written by: S. R. Obbayi•edited by: Amy Carson•updated: 1/7/2011

You may have pondered over how to reduce the animated GIF image size of that bloated and cluttered image that for some reason you cant really do away with altogether. You have found the right place to guide you to reduce the size of animated GIF images.

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    Inside the Animated GIF Image

    As you contemplate on how to reduce the size of an animated GIF, its good to understand what animated GIFs are. These are images that display in the form of micro movie clips which function by iterating through several frames looping through once the end has been reached.

    Going by this description, you realize that the size of animated GIFs in the least, end up being the same size as the total size of the combined frames that make up the animated GIF Image.

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    Before You Reduce the Size of Animated GIF Images

    animated gif frames When attempting to reduce the size of an animated GIF Image, you need to consider the factors above. This means that you need to minimize on the number of frames in the animation where possible.

    Before you can edit any of the frames in an animated GIF Image, you need to have the right tools. Corel Photopaint is one such tool that is capable of opening an Animated GIF Image as individual frames.

    The next thing you need to determine is whether you can safely remove any frame. By this I mean If I have an animated GIF Image with two frames and one reads, "DAILY LIGHT" and the other reads "FOR ALL YOUR LIGHTING NEEDS". You may not have much flexibility when it comes to removing either frame, assuming in this case that the first frame is the brand name and the second frame contains the corporate tag line.

    But what if there was a third frame originally and it had information on a temporary promotion that has just run out. This would be a good candidate for reducing the size.

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    Optimizing the Animated GIF Image

    The next thing you can do is optimize the individual frames by using the available compression options the software gives you. Another way you can reduce the size of animated GIF Images is to strip off extra memory resources from the GIF Image frames. Take this example. If your Animated GIF Image comprises of two colors for example a black background and white text, you actually do not need to use a color palette that accommodates 256 colors. You can change the color palette from a 256 color palette to a grey scale or a two color palette and therefore you save on computer memory needed for the GIF image.

    Another method if it makes sense to you is to reduce the resolution of the animated GIF image. For example if the animated GIF has a Full Banner size with a resolution of 468 X 60 you can change the resolution to make it a Half Banner which has a resolution of 234 X 60. This can be done by reducing the size of each and every individual frame.

    The key in these methods is to use your eyes as over compressing the GIF image or changing the color palettes of the image may reduce the visual quality of the GIF and have negative effects on the final animated GIF Image.

    With these few tips I believe you now know how to reduce animated GIF image size without a hassle.

    You can read up on other kinds of online banners, some HTML photo tricks as well as using JavaScript to animate images.