When I compare an image I’ve posted on NPN and the same image opened in a web browser window, they look similar in terms of sharpness. But the same image posted on my SmugMug website and in Photoshop look noticeably sharper, which I prefer. I asked SmugMug if they do any sharpening and they said:
Thanks for contacting SmugMug. When you upload a photo to SmugMug, we store the original photo as-is (no processing is applied to your originals). We also create various display sizes, from a tiny thumbnail, up to sizes not much smaller than the original, and many sizes in between. These display sizes are what you see when you view your SmugMug galleries.
For those display sizes we create, we do apply a small amount of sharpening. We do this because whenever you create a smaller JPG from a larger one, there is always a natural softening effect due to the smaller number of pixels in the smaller size. The sharpening we apply to the display sizes helps compensate for this effect, to help ensure that your photos look crisp when viewing at any size.
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