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SVG and PNG files are two of the most common file types for Cricut Users and crafters.
While both file types have their benefits, there are some key differences between SVG and PNG that you should know before choosing which file type to use.
In this post, we’ll break down the differences between SVG and PNG files so you can choose the best file type for your needs.
The Difference Between SVG and PNG for Cricut Users and Crafters
What is an SVG File?
SVG files are Scalable Vector Graphics files which are vector-based graphics that can be resized without losing any image quality.
This makes them perfect for use with digital cutting machines such as the Cricut and Silhouette because they can be cut to any size without losing any clarity or detail.
SVG files can be created in several different ways, but the most common way is by using vector graphic software such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Inkscape etc.
Once you have created your design in vector format, you can save it as an SVG file for use with your cutting machine.
What is a PNG File?
A PNG file (portable network graphics) is an image file format that employs compression algorithms to store image data in smaller file sizes.
PNG files are commonly used on the web due to their ability to retain high-quality images while maintaining a small file size.
For crafters and Cricut users, PNG files offer a versatile image format that can be used for various projects.
Crafters can use PNG files to create digital crafting projects, while Cricut users can use them as cutouts or overlays in their designs.
How to Tell the Difference Between SVG and PNG?
Here are a few differences between SVG and PNG files for Cricut users and crafters.
1) An SVG file will always be smaller than the corresponding PNG file so that it will take up less space on your computer and in your project.
2) An SVG file is resolution-independent, meaning that it will look sharp regardless of the device or screen resolution on which it is displayed. On the other hand, a PNG file is resolution-dependent and can look blurry if displayed at a resolution different from the one at which it was originally created.
3) SVG files can be edited using Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape, while PNG files cannot. If you need to make changes to your design after you’ve already saved it as a PNG, you’ll need to start from scratch or convert the file to an SVG.
When To Use SVG and PNG File For Cricut and Crafters?
Now that we’ve learned the difference between an SVG and a PNG image, you might be asking yourself, “Why would I ever use a PNG file with my cutting machine if it doesn’t contain any cut lines?”
1. PNG files are ideal for print and cut. PNG files are ideal for projects such as producing stickers or printing vinyl.
One of the key benefits to utilize PNG instead of SVG is that you won’t have to deal with all of the layers in an SVG file.
For cutting projects such as t-shirt making, tumbler making a SVG is more ideal.
2. Mock-up images come next. Because PNG files have a transparent background, they’re ideal for mock-ups. While placing the image digitally on the shirt or mockup, you don’t have to worry about the pieces of the design moving, changing, or going out of place.
3. Sublimation is another wonderful technique to use PNG files.
Because you will flatten the image before storing it, they can have a lot of layers as you design.
You won’t have to worry about any pieces being too small for your machine to cut, and the file has a plethora of shading and patterns!
How to save an image as an SVG or PNG file?
The process for saving an image as an SVG or PNG file depends on the software you’re using. In general, most image editing software will allow you to save images in both file formats.
To save an image as an SVG file, open the “File” menu and select “Save As.” Choose the “.svg” extension from the drop-down menu and click “Save.”
To save an image as a PNG file, open the “File” menu and select “Export.” Choose the “.png” extension from the drop-down menu and click “Export.”
Advantages of SVG and PNG File
Advantages of SVGs:
- Easily editable
- Compact file-size
- SEO friendly
Advantages of PNGs:
- Lossless compression
- It supports a large number of colors
- Support for transparency
- Perfect for editing images
- Sharp edges and solid colors
Tips for working with SVGs and PNGs in Cricut:
If you’re working with SVGs in Cricut, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Ensure all your SVG files are saved as “plain text” files. This will ensure that the paths in your SVG file are retained when you import them into Cricut Design Space.
- When you import an SVG file into Cricut Design Space, select the “Import as vector” option. This will ensure that the entire SVG file is imported as a vector graphic and not just the preview image.
- If you want to modify an SVG file in Cricut Design Space, be sure to select the object(s) you want to modify and then click on the “Edit” button in the toolbar. This will open up the editing panel, where you can change the selected object(s).
- When exporting an SVG file from Cricut Design Space, select the “Export as .svg” option. This will ensure that the file is exported as a vector graphic and not just an image.
When it comes to working with PNG files in Cricut, there are also a few things to keep in mind:
- Make sure the PNG file you’re working with has a transparent background. This will ensure that only the image is cut out and not the background.
- If you want to modify a PNG file in Cricut Design Space, be sure to select the object(s) you want to modify and then click on the “Edit” button in the toolbar. This will open up the editing panel, where you can change the selected object(s).
- When exporting a PNG file from Cricut Design Space, select the “Export as .png” option. This will ensure that the file is exported as an image and not a vector graphic.
So, which is the best file type for you? The best file type for you depends on the project you want to use the design for and the software you are working with.
We hope this post has helped clear up some of the confusion around SVG and PNG files and given you a better understanding of how they work.