Resources » Working With PDFs (Basics) » How to ‘Merge’ JPG Files Into One PDF

Why and How to Merge JPEG to PDF (Online for Free)

Photo illustration showing a man and a women sitting at desks, uploading or merging files through the cloud

If you have photos in a JPG or similar photo format, you may want to “merge” them into a single document for easy storage and access. Unfortunately, you cannot merge multiple jpegs into a single file. That said, you can put multiple JPGs into a PDF and then store that without a loss in quality. This tutorial explains why you can’t merge JPEGs and how you can convert them into mergeable formats.

Have you received a recommendation to move your photo albums to a digital space? Or are you looking for a way to combine JPEG (also known as JPG) files into a single file? This can make a lot of sense as they will no longer take up physical space, are easy to share with others, and don’t run the risk of being damaged or torn. Once you’ve scanned your photos with a printer or scanning services, the questions remain: How do you store your photos? And, why can’t I merge JPEGs? Let’s answer the latter question first.

Why Can’t I Merge JPGs?

This is because a JPG is considered a single image with a fixed resolution. The resolution of an image refers to how many pixels are displayed per inch of an image. A pixel is a tiny square that contains a color and the resolution represents how many of these squares there are in the image (width X height). If you look closely at your monitor or zoom in on a digital image, you will see these tiny squares that appear as an image when observed from a distance.

Screenshot from Wikipedia showing resolution on a file with 1x1 to 100 x 100 pixels per image.

Image source: Wikipedia

In general, the higher the resolution of an image, the better quality it is. However, if you were to put multiple pictures into a single JPG, the images would be considered new pixels added to the image and would stretch the resolution of the image. For example, if you had a 100 x 100 image you wanted to combine with another 100 x 100 image into a single jpg, the final version would be a file with both images stacked on top of one another with a 100 x 200 resolution. 

High-quality photos can be 1920 x 1080 pixels or higher. Putting multiple of these photos into a single JPG would bloat the file size of the image and not display any of the images correctly. Opening this merged JPG on a computer monitor would result in a compressed, messy image that a person would struggle to read. You also would not be able to view images on single pages like you would a photo album. 

So how do you host multiple photos in a single document?

Convert JPG to PDF

PDFs can be multi-page documents that contain images, text, and any other images that you want formatted in a specific way. The benefit of converting JPGs to PDF is that you can display your images as single pages in a document and store them all in a single file as opposed to multiple JPGs in a folder.

Think of this like a digital photo album. The PDF format allows you to create a collection of images in a single file format that can be easily shared and stored. 

To do this, you’ll need to convert your JPGs to a PDF. This is easy with PDF.Live’s JPG converter. Simply drag and drop your images into the converter and select convert. You will then receive your image in a PDF file format. You can then head over to the Merge PDF tool. And drag and drop your converted images into the merger. 

After selecting Merge, you’ll receive a single PDF file that contains all of the images within. If the images didn’t store properly or aren’t aligned correctly, you can always use the PDF Editor to make adjustments to the PDF. 

After you’re done, the PDF file will contain all of your images just like a photo album! You can compress the PDF and send it off to your friends and family to view in one single document.

Illustration 61023182 | Iryna Bezianova |