How to convert a pdf to a wallpaper?
August 12, 2009 4:58 PM   Subscribe

Creating a high resolution jpg/bmp image from a pdf file.

Basically I'd to convert a pdf file that I have to a 1680X1050 pxl sized image to use as a wallpaper. Can I do this using only Inkscape and GIMP or would I need some additional software as well. If it can be done, how much of a learning curve should I expect? And if someone could also point out the basic flow of steps involved towards implementing this or recommend a good introductory book on graphic design, I'd be very appreciative.

posted by sk381 to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Sure, it'd be super easy to do it with GIMP. Open the PDF and it'll let you specify the dimension in pixels. Once it's open, save it as PNG or JPG or whatever you want.
posted by zsazsa at 5:05 PM on August 12, 2009

I guess I don't understand. I use Acrobat, so I'd just SAVE AS a .jpg (or whatever). I'm guessing this isn't an option?
posted by RavinDave at 5:07 PM on August 12, 2009

Ghostscript can handle this beautifully, although it's more of a command line program so there's a bit of a learning curve. I use this at work to render PDFs to JPEG all the time, and if you don't find a better solution by morning I can mail you a windows script that will run it with options optimized for quality, just change the file names and output resolution.
posted by waxboy at 5:08 PM on August 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

Most versions of Gimp will import PDFs as bitmaps (by using a bundled version of Ghostscript). You just have to fiddle around with the resolution, as zsazsa said. If you have a version that asks you for Text Alpha Bits and Graphics Alpha Bits, you probably want to set those fairly high; screens are relatively low resolution, but can display many colours, so adding a bit of anti-aliasing makes the image look nicer.

If you're running Windows, and your Gimp can't import PDF, PDFCreator can print anything to a bunch of different formats, including PNG at various colour depths.
posted by scruss at 5:10 PM on August 12, 2009

Hey! I didn't know GIMP would do that! Just tested it, works great! Thanks zsazsa!
posted by Xoebe at 5:12 PM on August 12, 2009

Best answer: Assuming your monitor is already at 1680x1050,
1> Open the pdf in Acrobat Reader to the page you're interested in.
2> View>Full Screen Mode
3> Hit the Printscreen button on your keyboard
4> Paste it into GIMP/Inkscape and save as a jpg/tiff
posted by tybeet at 5:13 PM on August 12, 2009

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