I've been working with a raster map in QGIS (a shape file made up from squares) and now I'm trying to export it. I want to create an overview map for Germany that allows some magnification to look at individual rasters of 1km². My problem is that QGIS is sort of smearing the individual squares, smoothing the edges.

"Smoothed Raster edges"

It also looks like this after exporting it even on 1200 DPI. If I set the scale of the map to a very small scale this doesn't occur, but obviously I don't want it to occur at all.

How can this be done?

Edit: Export Settings: enter image description here

I've reset it down to see if that changes anything, but it also happens on 3k DPI.

Edit2: This is how it looks in a pdf: enter image description here

As you can see now we have sharp edges (still no squares) and the squares are also missaligned.

  • Please provide a screenshot of your export settings.
    – Erik
    Nov 5, 2020 at 12:44
  • Added the settings, but we basically tried all possible settings expcept for saving as world-file already.
    – Timo
    Nov 5, 2020 at 12:55
  • That's not the whole export settings. E.g. it doesn't tell, which data type you're exporting to.
    – Erik
    Nov 5, 2020 at 13:05
  • That's all. We tried to export to .png and .pdf unless you mean the specific settings for pdf or image?
    – Timo
    Nov 5, 2020 at 13:11
  • .png will always be pixelated, since it is a raster format. If you export to .pdf and check the "export as vector" box, your shape data (aka vector data) will be exported as vectors.
    – Erik
    Nov 5, 2020 at 13:14

1 Answer 1


Alright, found the solution. We needed to increase the size of the print page in the print-composer. When we changed the size from A4 to A0 we got rid of the weird pixellated shapes.

The resulting picture is insanely large as a png, but as a pdf we got something like 4.5mb which is acceptable enough.

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