How Can I Convert a JPG to Fit a CD Case?

by Chris Anzalone

To avoid the often-unreasonable expense of hiring someone to design and print CD artwork for you, you can design your own CD covers at home and insert them into blank cases. Standard compact disc cases adhere to very specific measurements, so as long as you use the precise dimensions, you can turn any JPEG into your next personalized album cover and make as many copies as you need, confident that your design will work with any case.

Open your image using a photo editing program such as Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro. Your program must include a "crop" option and a resizing option.

Select your rectangular marquee tool. In your list of tools, it will appear as either a square or rectangle made from dotted lines.

Create a square marquee around the portion of the image you would like to use for your CD cover. Do this by clicking your mouse where you would like the marquee to begin, and then dragging it across the entire intended area. Many programs will allow you to preserve specific dimensions with your marquee. For example, Photoshop has an option called "Fixed Ratio." To make a perfect square, just set those dimensions as 1x1.

Select the "Crop" option from your menu bar. This will eliminate everything outside of your marquee, giving you a perfect square fit for a CD jewel case.

Change the image size. For a CD cover, you will want the size to be exactly 4.75 inches by 4.75 inches with 72 dpi resolution.

Tips

  • For the back of a CD, change the dimensions to 4.62 inches (width) by 5.87 inches (height).
  • Using your photo editing software, you can further make your image look CD-ready by adding titles, artist info and imaging effects. Experiment with your program's filters and effects and find the best look for your album.

Warning

  • Remember to crop your photos before changing the size, if they do not already look relatively square. By forcing rectangular dimensions into square dimensions, you will warp your photo and make it look unappealing. For this reason, cropping is essential.

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