Skip to content

Compression of Image Files With Only One Line of Code

I recently came across a tweet by organizer and developer advocate iChuloo by way of @JAMStackLagos on how to reduce the size of an image with only one line of code on Cloudinary.

That tweet rang a bell. I then recalled that I’d used that exact codeline in at least two React projects in the past.

This article digs deeper, showing you how to compress image files, again with one line of code, in PHP, Java, or Python on environments or frameworks like React, Node, Vue, and Angular.

As a rule, compression of image files are either for storage or for delivery.

The compression of image files for cloud storage when requesting their upload to Cloudinary. Subsequently, Cloudinary applies to the files the transformations you specified before storing them. The examples below show the codeline in Ruby, Python, PHP, and Java. You can also code in a similar manner in other modern languages.


Cloudinary::Uploader.upload("cat.jpg", :quality => 60)
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)


cloudinary.uploader.upload("cat.jpg", "quality" = "60")
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)


\Cloudinary\Uploader::upload("cat.jpg", [ "quality" => "60"]);
Code language: PHP (php)


cloudinary.url().transformation(new Transformation().quality(60)).imageTag("cat.jpg");
Code language: CSS (css)

In the code above, quality is a compression parameter that specifies the image quality and size for storage. If you’re not sure what number to assign to quality, just type auto. Cloudinary then automatically adjusts the compression quality for your image by applying the optimal balance between the image’s file size and quality.

In this context, you upload images straight to the cloud and then apply the quality compression parameter when delivering them to users. You can also serve images in the formats that pertain to the various web browsers and mobile devices.

You configure quality on a 0-100 scale. The higher the image quality, the larger the image size; the lower the image quality, the smaller the image size. To compress images on the fly, adjust their quality parameter. See the examples below.


cloudinary.image("cat", {quality: 50})
Code language: CSS (css)


cloudinary.url().transformation(new Transformation().quality(50)).imageTag("cat");
Code language: CSS (css)


Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Alternatively, simply add a q parameter to your image’s URL, for example:

Here, q stands for quality; 50 is your choice on a 0-100 scale.

Front-end developers can drop the components in their app out of the box, like this:


<Image publicId="cat.jpg" ><Transformation quality="50" /></Image>
Code language: HTML, XML (xml)


<cld-image publicId="cat.jpg" ><cld-transformation quality="50" /></cld-image>
Code language: HTML, XML (xml)


<cl-image public-id="cat.jpg" ><cl-transformation quality="50"></cl-transformation></cl-image>
Code language: HTML, XML (xml)


$.cloudinary.image("cat.jpg", {quality: 50})
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)


cloudinary.imageTag('cat.jpg', {quality: 50}).toHtml();
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Here, cat is the name of the uploaded image, which is usually the public ID (publicId) on the Cloudinary storage platform.

Uploading without images optimization or compression wastes bandwidth. Plus, delivering them on your app invariably takes longer. Why not automate the compression process with Cloudinary’s effective and simple drop-in tools so that your visuals load fast?

Register for free and for more details, check out the following Cloudinary documentation:

Back to top

Featured Post