Animated GIFs are an endless source of information and entertainment. However, if you want to share or use them for personal or business use, their size can be a problem. Here’s how to reduce the size of an animated GIF.
The format GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) is widely used on the internet. It is able to store several images in the same file to display an animation. This explains their success with the general public and their massive use on social networks and many websites. You can create them from a photo burst, video and even right on your smartphone.
However, their size can quickly become very large and exceed several Megabytes. We will explain to you how to reduce the size of an animated GIF through the service Ezgif.com usable on smartphone, tablet or computer, whatever your operating system.
How to reduce the size of an animated GIF?
- First thing to do: go to the site ezgif.com then click on the tab Optimize.
- Upload the GIF file by clicking on the button Choose file or by entering a URL and finally pressing the button Upload !
- The web page then displays the animated GIF and just above a whole series of tools to modify the appearance of the GIF. Click on the button Optimize.
- Under the display of the GIF are indexed the size in pixels, the number of frames (images) and its weight.
- Still below, a drop-down menu with the different optimization options. By default, the function Lossy GIF is selected. It increases the compression ratio, but generates loss. Here you should test the different rates before choosing the right one for you. Just press the button Optimize GIF ! To start the process. Good pick, each modification gives rise to a preview under this button in the section Optimized Image. In addition, the gain in byte and percentage is clearly displayed below.
Push the optimization to reduce the size of an animated GIF
Ezgif.com is not limited to the level of compression alone. The drop-down menu provides access to four other compression functions in addition to Lossy GIF. This allows you to optimize your animated GIF based on its very structure. Here are all the options available to use independently depending on your GIF (animation complexity, number of frames, graphic and colorimetric complexity) and your size / visual rendering objective. After you’ve applied an optimization and it’s okay with you. Press the button Optimize under the preview space. You can then apply another optimization to the GIF you just lightened. No need to try to apply them all, it will often be counterproductive. You have to test each one and see the result.
- Color Reduction will play on the colorimetry by reducing the available palette (256 colors per pixel of nase) with Color Reduction. Color Reduction + Dither adds dithering reduction (juxtaposition of several colors to simulate a color not available on the 256 color palette of the GIF format). Finally Use Single Color Table for all Frames imposes a unique palette on each image making up the animation. Best if your GIF displays few colors.
- Drop Frames is very easy to understand, it will remove frames, images from animation. You can eliminate duplicate images with Remove duplicate frames. Otherwise, you can skip every other frame (Remove every 2nd frame), one in three images (Remove every 3rd frame) or one in four images (Remove every 4th frame). Use tactfully, as the animation will lose fluidity and detail. You can, however, save a lot of space.
- Lossy GIF compression, as seen previously you can adjust the compression rate, but generate loss.
- Transparency, animated GIF files apply transparency filters to handle switching from one frame to another during animation. Thus, the image n + 1 will see the zones of colors identical to n transparent. By increasing the gauge, you will make the range of color considered the same larger. This generates less subtlety in the display and above all is effective mainly when the images include large static areas and with close colorimetry. Do not apply it on a GIF with each frame showing a very large number of different pixels, such as a GIF taken from a video or a series of photos.
- Coalesce, a function that should never be used except if a buggy or poorly rendered GIF to try to improve the rendering, but this comes at the cost of a very large growth in the file size.
If that is not enough?
Have you combined the various optimization functions and that is still not enough? Under the preview area are very practical function buttons to optimize the size of your file.
- Crop is simply used to cut the image, it will be smaller and therefore the file lighter.
- Resize allows you to change the dimensions of the file, from 1280 x 1024 to 640 x 480 pixels for example. Easier still, enter the desired reduction level as a percentage in Percentage.
- Speed allows you to speed up the animation, which can reduce a few frames and save a few bytes, but not much.
- Frames gives you access to all the images that make up your animated GIF. Here you can remove one by one those you consider to be too many.
After having done your various tests and obtained the desired result, you just have to press the Save button to download the optimized version of your animated GIF. For example, the example GIF file below is 282.6 KB.
We applied Remove Every 4 th Frame and reduced that weight to 221.25 kb (-21.71%). In this precise case, Color Reduction brings no gain, just like Transparency.
Finally, by applying Lossy GIF to the maximum, we gain 42.84%, on a file already lightened by 21.71%. In the end, by losing slightly in quality on the three colored bars that make up the F of Frandroid, we went from 282.6 KB to 126.48 KB, which makes a reduction of -44.75%.
Now, it’s your turn to play.