While respiration-correlated CT is gaining acceptance in clinical radiotherapy, the effect of scanning parameters on the image quality has yet to be addressed. The intent of this study was to characterize the effects of gantry rotation and table speed on various image quality characteristics in multi-slice, helical, retrospectively-gated CT images. Images of stationary and moving phantoms were obtained in helical mode on a 20-slice CT scanner. Motion was generated by a computer-controlled platform capable of moving simultaneously in two dimensions. Motion was monitored using a pressure gauge inserted inside an adjustable belt. Selected scans were retrospectively gated into ten phases based on the monitored motion. Gantry rotation speeds of 0.5 s and 1.0 s were evaluated with pitches ranging from 0.1 to 0.45. Several parameters, including calculated object volumes, trajectory (movement from peak to trough), deformation (actual volume divided by volume created with the maximum diameter of contoured object) and z-axis resolution, were used to characterize image quality. These studies indicate that for objects in the peak phase of a movement pattern that simulates breathing, retrospectively gated scans using fast gantry rotation speeds produce volume, trajectory, deformation and z-axis resolution results comparable with those of a stationary object.