QGIS 2.6.1, Windows 7
I am looking to import an image from Google Earth into an existing QGIS project. Is it possible to download geo-referenced images from google maps (or google earth) and import into QGIS? What CRS are these likely to be in?
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There is a plugin that will solve this for you called the OpenLayers plugin that allows you to add Google, Bing and MapQuest basemaps to your project. With regards to the CRS check out this answer: Why does Google satellite layer change the project CRS? (You can use on the fly reprojection to help with this as well)
Also bear in mind that there are licence limitations to the Google imagery depending on how you plan to use it.
With QGIS 3.0 you can add it as an XYZ Tile. A list of services can be found on NextGIS QMS page (from QuickMapServices plugin from QGIS 2.8). Just set Name, URL, Min. Zoom Level and Max. Zoom Level:
There is a also a simple plugin called Tile+. This Plugin provides some popular basemap like OSM, Bing, ESRI, Google, Stamen and also some updated earth data like rainfall rate, earth visibility, sea surface temperature, etc. This plugin enable user to load basemap easily to QGIS 3.