ECW Image Format Information
Enhanced Compressed Wavelet (ECW) is a revolutionary image format that allows compression of imagery up to 50:1 with almost no visual loss of information. This means that images that were previously too large for practical use can now be easily used and distributed. The compressed images can also be speedily served to 1000's of users via the Internet using the Image Web Server.

Earthstar Geographics and our clients have used the ECW technology since its inception. For example, we offer our TerraColor image products in ECW to dramatically reduce the file sizes while retaining the original color and fine detail. The ER Mapper Pro software product includes unlimited ECW compression at no extra cost (and no per GB charges!).

Features and benefits of the ECW compression technology include: 

  • Optimized for fastest compression and decompression (display) of 24-bit RGB, greyscale, and multi-band 8-bit imagery  
  • Super-fast zoom and pan of huge images in viewing applications  
  • Designed for geospatial imagery (embeds map projection information)  
  • Unlimited output file sizes (compress 1000GB of data or more)  
  • Native support for ECW in over 100 software products, and free plug-ins for ESRI, Photoshop, and many other applications 
  • ECW images can be served to a large user base directly over the Internet using the Image Web Server 
  • SDK toolkits allow developers to build ECW compression and decompression support into their own software applications