Why Is Your GIF Low-Quality? [Here’s How To Fix I]t

A Graphic Interchange Format, or ‘GIF,’ is one of the most widely used file formats. GIFs are great for saving smaller clips of videos, sharing funny reactions to your group chat, and more. However, GIFs are not always of the highest quality. The moving pictures are often quite blurrier than other file formats. Why is your GIF low-quality?

GIFs have a color capacity, and when that capacity is reached through excess downloads and uploads, a GIF will lose quality. Additionally, GIFs can be low-quality if the file size is too big. Luckily, there are simple fixes to low-quality GIFs.

Continue reading to learn about why your GIF is low-quality as well as information regarding how to fix low-quality GIFs. You do not need overly advanced software to ensure that your GIFs appear clear and effective. GIFs are useful file formats for many purposes, and you should not have to worry about a GIF having poor quality.

Why Is Your GIF Low-Quality?

GIFs can hold 256 colors. If you fill these colors with many different tones, it can lower the quality of the GIF. Because GIFs are such short video files, it can be difficult for a GIF to gauge the colors within and present a clear, moving image. GIFs work better when the frames of the moving image are nearly the same, so when a GIF utilizes different frames, the images can become distorted. 

The purpose of a GIF is to support small files as moving pictures. When these capacities are exceeded, individual pixels are more noticeable. GIFs can appear low-quality if the frames are too different, the colors do not mix well, or the file size is too large.

Below, you will see more specific reasons that may explain why your GIF is low-quality. After learning why your GIF is low-quality, you will be better able to understand the possible fixes to sharpen your moving image format.

Causes Of A Low-Quality GIF

As mentioned above, your GIF could be low-quality for numerous reasons:

  1. Frame differences
  2. Colors
  3. File size
  4. Downloads and uploads
  5. Damaged or corrupted file

If the frames you use to create a moving image in your GIF are not alike, your GIF will not appear fluid and will instead be low-quality. GIFs are best made from still images of a clip that are less than seconds apart. As mentioned, one of the most common reasons your GIF is low-quality is because your still frames contain too many colors that simply do not mesh well together. This can dramatically alter the quality of your GIF.

The file size of your GIF is also quite determinant of whether your GIF is high-quality. GIFs are typically in the 100×100 range, and anything over that can distort the appearance of your GIF. As you stretch the pixels, the colors become less sharp, and the GIF loses quality – just as stretching any file type too much.

A reason for low-quality GIFs that many people are not aware of is that every time a GIF is downloaded or uploaded, it can lose even the slightest bit of quality. A GIF that is shared across different platforms will look less and less clear each time it is downloaded or uploaded. Additionally, as with any file type, your GIF file may be damaged or corrupted. Improper uploading and related instances can cause a GIF file to be damaged and low-quality.

Fixes For Low-Quality GIFs

While there are several causes for low-quality GIFs, there are also many ways to improve the quality of your poor-looking GIF. Fixes for low-quality GIFs include:

  1. Color changes
  2. GIF Resizing
  3. GIF compression
  4. Frame optimization
  5. Reduce animations

A GIF that contains too many colors or has colors that clash is going to be low-quality. Consider taking colors out of your GIF to both improve the quality and draw attention to the more important aspects of the GIF. Along with removing colors, ensure that the colors you use are complimentary and do not clash with each other on the color wheel.

You may also need to resize your GIF. If it is low-quality because the file is too large, making your GIF file smaller is an easy way to get back the high-quality version you may have seen first. You can also use online GIF compressors to aid in this aspect. 

In terms of frame optimization, a GIF may be low-quality if it contains too many frames that overcrowd the file. Optimize your GIF by removing unnecessary frames. In doing this, you must be careful, because you do not want to remove certain frames or so many frames that the GIF appears to skip through images instead of flowing smoothly.

Especially if you are creating your GIF from scratch, it is easy to get carried away with the animations. Some aspects of your GIF do not need to be animated, and animating too many parts makes the GIF lose quality. Consider removing unnecessary animations to make the important animations clearer.

Using Placeit For High-Quality GIFs

When optimizing your GIF creation, look to Placeit as your hub for improvement. Placeit allows you to edit your GIFs for high-quality results as well as offers thousands of free templates, logos, designs, and mockups for all of your graphic design endeavors.


It is easy for GIFs to appear low-quality if they are not properly optimized. Low-quality GIFs are a result of one or many problems with the file, but the fixes to a low-quality GIF are simple and effective.