How can a JPEG file size grow larger, after editing?

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Humansvillian Senior Member • Posts: 1,728
How can a JPEG file size grow larger, after editing?

Like most things about MFT cameras, it's easy for me to blame Guy Parsons for my attempts to try and find how many angels will fit on the head of a pin, digitally speaking, and see just how small of a file size my OMD M5 II is capable of generating.

Guy Parson started me down this road to obsession, and I reckon now I don't even want to stop this MFT habit, and probably couldn't if I wanted to.

We'd gone over Large, Medium, and Small picture sizes in another thread, and also tossed and batted around the proper compromise compression settings, which for Olympus are Super Fine, Fine, Normal, and Basic.

So I played with my settings, and discovered that you can set the camera to take a Small Basic picture, and then there's another setting deep in the Oly menus to select what megapixel size Small and Medium sized pictures are, and I selected Small to be 1280 x 960, which works out to be about 1.2 megapixel.

I also set the compression to the lowest setting, Basic.

Then I went outside to shoot my wife's defenseless garden.  I found that the the Small basic setting produces file sizes of about 200 kb,  although of less resolution that even my laptop monitor.  But, the image really didn't look bad, just not as good as it could be.

Garden in JPEG Small Basic Normal 203 KB size

So, I punched the Enhance button on my trusty Windows 10 photo editor, to see how many little bytes would be crunched out of the file, and to my amazement, the picture improved but the file size more than doubled, to 485 KB.

Garden Small Basic edited grew from 203 KB to 485 KB

Now when I ponder this, is appears to me that bytes have been created in the editing process, from nothingness.

And I don't want to be superstitious, but maybe there are angels that we have entertained unawares, messing with these dad blasted computers and digital pictures.

But maybe there's a dry scientific explanation to ruin the miracle.

As the little boy said--

How Dat Do Dat??

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Humansville is a town in the Missouri Ozarks

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