Frequently asked question

How is the scale level determined when building raster pyramids in ArcGIS?

Last Published: April 25, 2020


When building raster pyramids using the Build Pyramids, Batch Build Pyramids, or Build Pyramids and Statistics tools, the raster pyramids are built at certain scales that are automatically determined by  ArcGIS applications . A common misconception is that the scale levels of the raster pyramids are built according to the resolution of the input raster. However, raster pyramids are built at the scale levels of 1:50,000, 1:25,000, 1:12,500, 1:6,250 and so on, both up and down, in 2:1 scale intervals. The scale levels are not customizable because the tools are designed with pre-set scale levels to maximize the display and performance in ArcGIS applications. ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro display raster pyramids based on how close the display scale is to the raster pyramids scale level. If the display scale in ArcMap is 1:35,000, the raster pyramid scale level of 1:50,000 displays. If the display scale in ArcMap is 1:30,000, the raster pyramid scale level of 1:25,000 displays. 


Article ID:000016541

  • ArcMap
  • ArcGIS Pro

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