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How to convert an image to grayscale on Windows 10

A good way to save colored ink on a printer is to print images in grayscale whenever you can. You can’t avoid printing in color in some cases e.g., if you’re printing a pie chart, but most images work just as well in black and white. Black and white,or graryscale as it’s more commonly called, requires only black ink to print. Here’s how you can convert an image to grayscale without compromising the quality.

Print Dialog

Assuming you need to print the image, and the image isn’t part of a document, you can check if your printer’s print options allow you to print in grayscale. The Microsoft Print to PDF app unfortunately doesn’t have this option.

You can use Microsoft Edge to print in black and white.


If your printer’s print options dialog doesn’t allow you to print a colored image in grayscale, or the image quality deteriorates too much when the printer converts it, you can convert the image to grayscale first, and then print it.

One of the best apps to convert an image to grayscale is Paint.net. It’s free and easy to use. Download and install Paint.net. Open the image that you want to convert to grayscale in Paint. Use the Ctrl+A keybaord shortcut to select everything on the current layer.

Once the layer is selected, go to Adjustments>Black and White.

Save the new image with a different file name or allow it to overwrite the original image. The choice is yours. The resulting image is pretty good in terms of quality.

Microsoft Office Suite

If you’re adding images to a Word document, a PowerPoint presentation, or an Excel spreadsheet and you do not have the time to individually convert them all to grayscale with Paint.net, you can use the apps’ built-in picture editing options to convert images to grayscale.

To convert an image to grayscale in any of the Microsoft Office suite apps, right-click it and select Format Picture from the context menu. This will open an image editing panel on the right. Go to the Picture tab (the very last one). Expand the Picture Color options, and click the little dropdown next to the Presets for Color Saturation.

Select the black and white preview of your image, and it will be converted to a grayscale image.

To make things quicker, you should insert all your images into the document, presentation, or spreadsheet first. Apply the saturation to one image, select the next one, and use the Re-do function to apply it to the selected image.

There are online apps that can convert an image to grayscale and if you’re not satisfied with the quality of the image that Paint.net gives you, you can try them as well. For photographs, it’s better to use a professional tool like Photoshop that allows you to control the individual color channels. You can probably find something that’s much cheaper than Photoshop.

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