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MRC Compression with ImageGear

As more and more companies embrace digitization of paper documents, they’re looking for ways to minimize the virtual storage space necessary for these new files. They’re already benefiting from increased office space and improved workflow efficiency, but they also need data compression techniques to make access to digital information quicker and less costly.

One standard method is mixed raster content compression (MRC), which greatly reduces the size of stored PDF documents. Since the vast majority of data being digitized and archived is in PDF format, MRC compression is an ideal tool for converting high volumes of paper documents into compressed, searchable files.


MRC: The Basics

Mixed raster compression works by breaking down an image (typically a full page of a PDF document) into its various components: mostly text and color image files. This is done in order to utilize the most thorough compression algorithm available for each part of the page.

As a result, even though the color images are highly compressed into their core elements (background, color, grayscale, etc.) they retain vivid detail and can be displayed subsequently with essentially no loss of quality, and any text from the original page remains searchable.


Putting High-Grade Compression to Use

A real estate firm, for instance, can use MRC compression to efficiently store a database of home listings, each with potentially dozens of color images and a searchable street address, with little to no compromise in file fidelity.

Consider these numbers: MRC can compress a 20 MB .TIFF color image file (which is part of a source PDF) to anywhere between 96 and 170 KB, based on the level of compression desired. This range suggests, of course, a tradeoff between file size and image quality, but is a significant reduction from the source image in any case – with differences in the displayed file barely discernible.

The most recent MRC tools make its integration into existing applications simple as well, usually involving just adding a few lines of code to these make such dramatic compression ratios a reality. For all the talk of companies creating fully digitized records archives, MRC compression is one technique that’s making it more feasible than ever.


Let Us Help

If you’d like to learn more about mixed raster content compression, including how our ImageGear features highly refined MRC functionality, contact us and our experts will get in touch. We’re here to help developers make applications that put organizations on the forefront of digital content management.