I want to increase the target resolution when exporting slides as images in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac. In other forums it says to go to Preferences -> Save, and from there you can change the dpi.

Here's a fuzzy screen shot of what it should look like:

here's a fuzzy screen shot of what it should look like:

Here's what I see instead:

My Microsoft PPT preferences

What are my options to increase the resolution/dpi?

  • Your wording suggests you want to improve the resolution of the images you use within your slides, but the picture you have attached shows the resolution settings for when you export the entire presentation as a set of images, slide-by-slide. Which of these are you trying to do?
    – Lyes
    Mar 15, 2015 at 3:50
  • I want to export the image and then use it as a figure for a manuscript I am writing. When I export now and paste into MS Word the image is fuzzy - would like it to be as sharp in Word as it is in PowerPoint. Thanks! Mar 16, 2015 at 14:33
  • Couldn't you just go fullscreen with the presentation and take a screenshot? You would get the output in full resolution and no need to export (unless I'm misunderstanding something).
    – pwn'cat
    Dec 29, 2015 at 8:58

3 Answers 3


Unfortunately and inexplicably, Microsoft dropped this option ("Advanced resolution settings") in PowerPoint 2011.

A quick-and-dirty solution would be to simply increase the pixel dimensions in the export settings. You do this by entering e.g. the width (the height will be calculated automatically). Microsoft has limited the maximum possible export dimensions to 2999×2249 pixels (for aspect ratio 1:1.3) which is comparable to the size of a photo from a 6- or 7-megapixel digital camera. This is sufficient to print the slide on a full A4 or Letter sheet at 300 ppi.

Alternatively, you can save slides as PDF instead of images (File > Save As…), and place those in your page layout application or word processor. At least some of the graphical elements in the design templates are vector graphics, which ensures that these elements won't pixelate later in printing at any resolution.

However, since MS Office uses the OS X PDF framework to create the PDF files (which is no good for commercial printing workflows), you may still want to create high-resolution images from the PDFs. This can be done simply by exporting the images in the Preview application (File > Export). The export dialog allows you to set the graphics format and resolution. Alternatively, you can also open the a PDF in Photoshop or GIMP, which creates a new bitmap image, for which you can set the dpi of your choice.

Important: To avoid later pixelation of your photos or other images placed in the PP presentation, make sure these image files have a high resolution suited for the targeted printing process in the first place.


There are multiple ways to do it:

  • After making your slide, save it in PostScript format (easy to do). To do this, give a print command and on print setting setting page, select the "Print as Postscript" (I think default is PDF). This will save the file in .ps format. For publication, some Journals accept even .ps file also. If you want any other format, open .ps in Mac preview and Export it in desired file type and Resolution.
  • Another way is Select everything on your slide (Command A) and copy it (Command C). Then open preview and under File Tab>>select New from Clipboard. Then, Export it in desired file type and Resolution.

Just to confirm the therms used.

DPI: Dot’s per inch. The number of dots in a printed inch. The more dot’s the higher the quality of the print (more sharpness and detail).

PPI: Pixels per inch. Most commonly used to describe the pixel density of a screen (computer monitor, smart phone, etc…) but can also refer to the pixel density of a digital image.

Resolution: Resolution is the measure of pixels in the display, usually expressed in measurements of width x height. For example a monitor that is 1920 x 1080 is 1920 pixels across and 1080 pixels down.

Higher resolution means more detail. Higher DPI means higher resolution. Resolution is not “size”, but it’s often confused with it because higher resolution images are often bigger, but that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case.

Now to your question:

Insert a high resolution image in Power Point.

Right Click and select Format Picture ->size.

In this screen select the Resolution.


If you now click on the Compress in PP menu bar you can compress the file if you want to reduce the DPI.



If you want to export Pictures from PP2011 that you already have, than the highest resolution is equal to the original as saved, means PP would have reduced its size/resolution. Not so if you are making new presentation and save the picture in it its original size/resolution.

  • Thanks for your answer and screenshots! I actually am wondering how to export a slide into a high resolution image that I can use as a figure for my manuscript. Do you know how to do that in MS PPT 2011- I have found instructions for other versions of PPT, but not 2011. Mar 16, 2015 at 17:36
  • Did I misunderstand your question?
    – Ruskes
    Mar 16, 2015 at 18:22

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