If you’ve seen your favicon at 32*32 pixels in one computer program and at 16*16 pixels in another, don’t wipe your eyes for a double take. Favicon ICO images can appear in more than one size as described below.
What is a favicon *.ico file?
A favicon is usually a small file in ICO image format (*.ico). ICO images are most commonly used on the Windows operating system to display icons for computer programs and menu options. As more and more web sites have started displaying favicons, the popularity of ICO files has increased beyond the Windows desktop.
What’s so unique about ICO files?
Unlike most image formats, the ICO format makes it possible to store multiple images in various sizes and color depths. This is so that a program icon can be viewed in smaller or larger size, and on computer displays with less or more colors.
What does this have to do with the size of a favicon?
Since a favicon is usually an ICO file, a favicon can also contain multiple images in various sizes. This is why you may have seen the same favicon at 16*16 and at 32*32 (or at even larger sizes).
Can I control the display size of my favicon?
Not really. It depends upon where your favicon is being displayed.
For example, if your favicon is displayed on the browser address bar, more than likely it’s going to be displayed as a 16*16 icon. This is not a rule however. Most browsers display favicons at 16*16 to conserve screenspace and also because it fits the size of most address/URL input boxes.
When your favicon is displayed on a computer desktop, it may appear at 32*32 if that desktop is configured to display icons at that size. Look for a menu option with a name such as "View" or "Icon Size" to change the size of icons.
So, essentially, the program that’s displaying your favicon is going to decide the best size and the number of colors for the favicon.
What about the favicons generated by FavIcon from Pics?
FavIcon from Pics is able to generate favicons with 16*16 and 32*32 images. You do not have to do anything extra to make these favicons compatible with displaying at either size.
Can I force my favicon to always display at 32*32?
Not really. Even if you don’t include a 16*16 version of the icon, most programs are going to resize it to 16*16 anyway. So it’s best to keep both sizes to make sure that you get the best display quality.
Will favicons have even bigger image sizes?
16*16 and 32*32 are the most commonly used sizes. It’s possible to include larger images but they’re not likely to get used at this time. FavIcon from Pics will support additional image sizes if they become popular in the future.