AI to PNG: The Ultimate Conversion Guide

Some users of graphics programs are better served if they can convert one type of file into another.

In this ultimate guide on how to convert Adobe Illustrator (AI) files to Portable Networks Graphics (PNG), users will learn why they may want to convert files from AI to PNG, and how to convert the files using web-based services and CorelDRAW.

These two file formats do create images in different ways.  For example, AI files are created with vector graphics which build images by connecting different points.  These different points indicate the image to display.

PNG files are created using a raster image method that creates the images based on divided sections of a photo.  This image file format usually is used for website graphics rather than for print. The reason is that it only supports the RGB color model and not the CYMK model.

What both the AI and PNG file formats have in common is that the quality of the images created in both formats will not suffer as the size of the images is reduced.

Why you may want to convert your files

There are very few software platforms that will accept AI files and the few that do are not software platforms that the hobbyist or graphic artists, who need very few features, have access to.

Because of this, AI files are hard to share and edit among multiple people in different locations.  To solve this problem, the answer is to convert the AI file into a more common format, such as PNG.  PNG is more common because this format does not have copyright limitations.

How to convert AI to PNG

Using Convertio

There are several web-based programs to convert these files, such as Convertio and CloudConvert which are free and won't require much hard drive space.

Here are steps to convert AI to PNG using Convertio:

  1. If not already selected, select AI from the menu in the first slot and PNG in the second slot.
  2. On the site, either click the "Choose File" button and select the desired .ai file or drag and drop the desired .ai file there.  The file will start uploading.
  3. Once uploading is completed, click on the "Convert" button.
  4. After the conversion is completed, click on the "Download" button to save the converted file to the computer.

CloudConvert works in the same way as Convertio as far as selecting which file formats to convert to and from and which files to convert.  But, they have added options for the user to set the desired output width and height in pixels.  Also, the user can set the desired output resolution in pixels per inch.  If these options are used, they override the pixel density settings.

CloudConvert is free for up to 25 conversions per day.  It is possible to purchase conversion minute packages if there is a need for more conversions.

Using CorelDRAW

If you have access to CorelDRAW, here are the steps to converting AI to PNG.  First, create a new document and import the .ai file that you need to convert.

  1. Select "New Document"
  2. Click on "File" at the top left screen
  3. Click on "Import"
  4. Find the file folder the .ai file is stored in and select the folder.
  5. Select the .ai file you need to convert and click "Import"

Second, convert the AI file to PNG.

  1. Again, click on "File"
  2. Select "Export" from the menu
  3. Set "Save As" type to .png
  4. Set where you want to save the file
  5. Click on "Export"
  6. Select settings as required
  7. Click "OK"


So there you have it.  Everything you need to know about converting AI files to PNG files.

This is important information to know if there are multiple people, in different locations, that are involved in the same project.  Not everyone has access to Adobe Illustrator so performing this conversion will be helpful for everyone to be able to share and edit.

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