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Author Topic: Printer Profiling with Colormunki  (Read 18653 times)
Mark D Segal
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« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2008, 09:30:24 AM »
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Yes, there have been those discussions. I think this is one of those situations where seemingly well-reasoned logical premises need to be checked against actual field experience, why I'm so interested in the results which the early adopters are achieving with it. If we've now really got such a good profiling tool for around 500 bucks it opens up a lot of possibilities.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2008, 08:05:51 PM »
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I have just calibrated my Dell 2408 LCD panel with Colormunki.  It went without a hitch.  I tried both the EASY and ADVANCED modes and both are as straightforward.  I next profiled my Epson Stylus Pro 4000 with Premium Luster 250 paper.  I found the process simple and fast.  The resulting prints are also much better than the prints I made with Epson's canned profiles. 

The only thing I look forward to is for X-Rite to polish their software further.  Small improvements like allowing me to move the target area for the spectro would be nice since OSD for some monitors don't allow you to position the display off-centre and can be a little inconvenient when making adjustments.  Other than that, I'm most happy for what I have bought.  I had for so long wanted to buy the Eye One Photo to do this profiling but found prices to be high and read that scanning back the printouts from the printer to be tedious and slow.

I'm doing this on a PC running Windows XP SP3, Quad Core on ASUS P5Q-E, with 4Gb RAM, for those worrying about running Colormunki on Windows.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=221750\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Hello Henry,

Really glad to hear you're getting a good run on your CM with XP.

I'm having no end of trouble here in OZ and not sure if it's one of the early releases.

My S/N on the base of the device is  0819-01001735.

Could I trouble you to post yours in my attempt to hassle the supplier about getting a later version?

Much appreciated if you have a moment.

Terry Hunter
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Mike_Dougan
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« Reply #22 on: September 18, 2008, 10:02:51 PM »
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Terry,

My CM that I bought in the states has a S/N of 0823-2xxxxx



Mike
« Last Edit: September 19, 2008, 04:56:25 AM by Mike_Dougan » Logged
Mike_Dougan
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« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2008, 04:10:20 AM »
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I managed to do some more printing today using Ilford GFS and the profiles I had made with the CM. First though I examined the B&W prints I had made yesterday, I always feel the prints look better the day after and sure enough I could see in the two prints I did yesterday that there was an improvement in the shadow detail, very subtle but I've found this will all the prints I've done.

Today I printed some colour images (Ilford GFS/Velvia 100F) and immediately felt the prints had the wow factor that the image had on screen.

I happened to come accross some prints I had done on Ilford GFS with the profile Josh sent me for his iPF5100. Profiles were made with a Gretag MacBeth Spectro on a robot arm.

Comparing the prints (same image) done with Josh's profile and the one made with the CM (B&W image... this one...) there is absolutely no difference, well none that I can see.

On the colour image (same image again printed with Josh's profile and then with profile from CM.... this one....), the one with Josh's profile looks a tad duller, the CM one is just a bit brighter and closer to the on screen image.

Now, I do realize that the profile Josh sent me was for his printer and not mine but I'm just posting this for comparison. I actually forgot I still had those prints and came across them by accident.

For me, I feel the CM is very good value for money.
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Henry Goh
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« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2008, 04:41:06 AM »
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I'm not 100% sure but if I were you guys who have not activated the CM on 3 computers, I would not post the serial number of your device on a forum because you may risk someone using your serial number to activate their device.  In any case I'm not putting my numbers on this thread.

Terry: I'm sorry that you are still having issues with your unit and it could just as well be what you suspect but I have my theory about what may be a possible cause so if you are inclined to hear my suggestions, PM me offline.  

The one thing I noticed with CM is you need to be quite careful when you use it as a colorimeter to profile your monitor.  I have since re-profiled mine with my faithful old i1 display and use the CM for printer profiling.  This has to do with better control over brightness settings.

Have fun
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Mike_Dougan
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« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2008, 04:57:22 AM »
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Henry,

Good point, I've modified my post.



Mike
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #26 on: September 19, 2008, 07:37:44 AM »
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I managed to do some more printing today using Ilford GFS and the profiles I had made with the CM. First though I examined the B&W prints I had made yesterday, I always feel the prints look better the day after and sure enough I could see in the two prints I did yesterday that there was an improvement in the shadow detail, very subtle but I've found this will all the prints I've done.

Today I printed some colour images (Ilford GFS/Velvia 100F) and immediately felt the prints had the wow factor that the image had on screen.

I happened to come accross some prints I had done on Ilford GFS with the profile Josh sent me for his iPF5100. Profiles were made with a Gretag MacBeth Spectro on a robot arm.

Comparing the prints (same image) done with Josh's profile and the one made with the CM (B&W image... this one...) there is absolutely no difference, well none that I can see.

On the colour image (same image again printed with Josh's profile and then with profile from CM.... this one....), the one with Josh's profile looks a tad duller, the CM one is just a bit brighter and closer to the on screen image.

Now, I do realize that the profile Josh sent me was for his printer and not mine but I'm just posting this for comparison. I actually forgot I still had those prints and came across them by accident.

For me, I feel the CM is very good value for money.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=222596\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Mike, most interesting, and many thanks for sharing these observations.

First - an observation on looking at the prints the morning after. Indeed, they do look better the next day. Reason: when you just get them out of the printer, they appear just slightly "glazed" because they are not fully dried and the non-matte ones especially are "out-gassing". Once the ink is really dry the full tonality of the image is revealed properly.

Second - I just received my copy of the September edition of Photoshop User (NAPP), wherein on page 109 there is a review of the ColorMunki Photo. First let me say that on whole I've not been overly impressed with their product reviews - it's the weakest link in an otherwise very good publication. But that said, here's what the reviewer said about the ColorMunki: "ColorMunki's profiles came up short. Neutral tones had a slight color cast and shadow details were a little blocked up. I believe the ColorMunki software would produce better results if the printed targets had more color patches to sample."

This raises a number of questions:

(1) You guys using this device - do your results in any way confirm his? (Sounds like *no* from what you say, but please elaborate).

(2) Could he have been testing a slightly defective unit?

(3) Was the manner in which he was using it correct in all respects?

What makes me a bit suspicious of this review is that I can't imagine a firm like X-Rite marketing such a product with the obvious defect of not reproducing neutral greys, because it is the first and most obvious thing any knowledgeable photographer (including their alpha/beta testers) would look for. But then again, it wouldn't be the first time well-established companies make mistakes. So I wonder...........
« Last Edit: September 19, 2008, 07:38:29 AM by MarkDS » Logged

Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
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« Reply #27 on: September 19, 2008, 07:48:12 AM »
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Oh - further on this review - his last sentence I quoted above seems to me  speculative unless he has enough background in this branch of the mathematics of colour imaging to make such a statement. This business of the minimum acceptable number of patches for "accurate" profiling is a tired debate  - not because it may not have merit - but because very likely most of the people engaging it probably don't have the necessary technical background in the higher mathematics needed to really understand it, and in some cases may not have done the empirical homework correctly enough to argue confidently from observed outcomes.

Bottom line for me: I'm interested in a wider sampling of knowledgeable users' actual experience.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
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« Reply #28 on: September 19, 2008, 08:09:38 AM »
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Mark,

My display is calibrated with an i1D2

I've been lurking and following this post.  There are no issues with using a different colorimeter with the ColorMunki?  Any thoughts or experience with using the Colormunki in combination with the Optix Xr?
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Cynthia Merzer
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« Reply #29 on: September 19, 2008, 08:22:45 AM »
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Second - I just received my copy of the September edition of Photoshop User (NAPP), wherein on page 109 there is a review of the ColorMunki Photo. F

This raises a number of questions:

(1) You guys using this device - do your results in any way confirm his? (Sounds like *no* from what you say, but please elaborate).

No. Just the opposite.

Quote
(2) Could he have been testing a slightly defective unit?

Anything is possible. It could be user error. And he could have scanned more patches! That's an option albeit not necessary one in all my tests.
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Andrew Rodney
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« Reply #30 on: September 19, 2008, 08:23:17 AM »
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I've been lurking and following this post.  There are no issues with using a different colorimeter with the ColorMunki?  Any thoughts or experience with using the Colormunki in combination with the Optix Xr?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=222630\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

No reason you can't use the OPTIX for display calibration and CM for the printer.
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Andrew Rodney
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Henry Goh
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« Reply #31 on: September 19, 2008, 08:28:45 AM »
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"Colormunki Photo" is the correct name of this product we have been discussing.  I say this because there is also a "Colormunki Design".

Colormunki is a package comprising hardware and software.  The software only recognizes it's bundled hardware.  In other words, the software does not see my i1 display and hence you cannot use the software to profile the display using i1 display colorimeter.  Hence when I say my display is now profiled using i1, I mean I'm using iMatch 3.6.2 with the puck (colorimeter) and not with the Munki.

I can profile the monitor with other colorimeter and software and when done, I can work on printer profiling using the Munki but only using the printer profiling option which entails printing out a target that will be allowed to dry and then scanned or read back using the Munki and its software.

Now, back to concerns about color accuracy with lesser patches:  I'm no color scientist but I'm coming to my first level conclusion (which I reserve to change later on with more experience).  I think by using this small number of patches, X-Rite can get a printer profiled reasonably well such that it will give you "pleasing colors" and good tonal reproduction.  I'm now doing the second leg of getting more accurate printer profiles which is called Optimization of a profile.  Colormunki allows you to read in an image so that it extracts the colors in that file.  you get to see a thumbnail of the image while it reads.  Then you are asked to print out another target to scan in.  The software says that to get more accurate colors, you would want to read in more images so that each iteration yields more accurate colors.  I'm now doing this while my second generation target dries before scanning.

I will post more when I get results.  Hope that puts minds to ease that the initial small number of patches is not going to get you there.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2008, 08:31:42 AM by Henry Goh » Logged
Mike_Dougan
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« Reply #32 on: September 19, 2008, 09:17:48 AM »
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MarkDS,

I realized about 15 or so years ago that magazines existed for only 1 reason.

To sell copy.

Magazines never give a product a bad review, they will bum up the good side of the product but gloss over the bad side.

All they are interested in is the advertising revenue.

So the next time you read a magazine review, read between the lines. The truth is out there........... lol  



Mike
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #33 on: September 19, 2008, 09:24:05 AM »
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MarkDS,

I realized about 15 or so years ago that magazines existed for only 1 reason.

To sell copy.

Magazines never give a product a bad review, they will bum up the good side of the product but gloss over the bad side.

All they are interested in is the advertising revenue.

So the next time you read a magazine review, read between the lines. The truth is out there........... lol   
Mike
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=222644\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Mike,

What we are dealing with here is the reverse. Firstly, Photoshop User isn't just a magazine. It's a membeship in an organization, of which the magazine is one benefit amongst many others. I don't know whether or not you are a member of NAPP and receive the magazine, but in case you don't know, they do publish critical reviews. They have nothing to gain or lose here except their credibility with their members. If they publish glowing reviews of everything they will not thereby increase membeship in NAPP. And in this particular case, I would have to think that the comment I quoted from their review is quite critical - perhaps undeservedly so - and that is my main issue with reviews in this particular publication - whether the quality is always adequate. It's fine to be a bit cynical about the motives of commerce these days, but we also must be discerning and relevant.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
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« Reply #34 on: September 19, 2008, 09:33:09 AM »
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Mike,

What we are dealing with here is the reverse. Firstly, Photoshop User isn't just a magazine. It's a membeship in an organization, of which the magazine is one benefit amongst many others. I


I've been a proud member of NAPP for years and get the mag. It does accept advertising. So while I think Mark you're points are well taken and more accurate than Mike's, Mike does make a point in terms of the separation of reviews and ad revenue.

There are magazines that have no such advertising (two that come to mind that I get are Consumer Reports and Cooks Illustrated). Both provide reviews. Without an ounce of advertising, I feel they can be a tad more honest in their reviews (not that others are being dishonest, but there is a fine line to walk). Any mag that has reviews and advertising has to.
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Andrew Rodney
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Mike_Dougan
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« Reply #35 on: September 19, 2008, 07:07:09 PM »
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Mark,

Yes, I'm a cynical old fart but back to the issue of neutral B&W prints. I can see no difference between the prints I made with the profile Josh sent me and the one I made with the CM.
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #36 on: September 19, 2008, 07:39:33 PM »
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I've been a proud member of NAPP for years and get the mag. It does accept advertising. So while I think Mark you're points are well taken and more accurate than Mike's, Mike does make a point in terms of the separation of reviews and ad revenue.

There are magazines that have no such advertising (two that come to mind that I get are Consumer Reports and Cooks Illustrated). Both provide reviews. Without an ounce of advertising, I feel they can be a tad more honest in their reviews (not that others are being dishonest, but there is a fine line to walk). Any mag that has reviews and advertising has to.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=222650\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sure - in general, where any potential conflict of interest is avoided there is no fine line to walk, but we shouldn't flaggelate *Photoshop User* in this case, because the review was obviously unbiased by any concern about advertising. In fact, it would be interesting, Andrew, if there were some discussion with the reviewer about exactly what procedures led him to the findings he published.

Back to the main course here, I think Mike's comparative results are very encouraging.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
neil snape
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« Reply #37 on: September 20, 2008, 01:30:02 AM »
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I'm going to write a review on the CM as soon as I get time.
I'm not paid one cent for doing so, nor do I have anything to sell on my site etc.

Yet am I biased? Of course who isn't. Fair though of course, and more important open to all others opinions.

Now here's what I found while making the first profiles with the CM on a MAc (don't have time yet to see if Windows is still buggy).

The first profile set (first page, then second extrapolated patch set), went very well. The little thing is so easy to use. I didn't imagine it to be that easy considering my first spectro was a LightSource Colortron.

I then compared the generated profile from this to other profiles with factory or Profile Maker 5.08 for the same paper , same i1 Pro, same calibrations.

In overall volume it comes up slightly ahead of others. The shape of the repartition of colours shows slightly more green in PM profiles, but so slightly more red in the CM profile. Dmax is about the same with no deficiencies on either. PRoblem is I don't have the license for Monaco any longer, nor can I use command line for Argyll. So the two better profilers are not available for my tests.  
The curves in the CLUTs are smoother with a TC9.18 chart and PM. I expect that the greens are different because of the nature of the spectrum of the LED produces for measurement data, over the Tungsten bulb in my rev A i1.

No proofing the first profile (s).

It seems the CM profile lacks a bit of red in the yellowish / orange image areas. Overall there is  less saturation or better said brighter rendering of deep saturated colours. Greyscale on step wedges perfect. No colour cast, no banding, just perfect.

Overall the images printed with number 1 profile are very well balanced, very very close to the PM profiles and much more than acceptable. I had an idea it would be good but didn't expect with two letter sized prints a profile could be this good.

Now optimising the profiles. Seems nothing is stated in the docs that the colours in your image to be used for optimising the profile are sent as raw rgb numbers. Make an experiment, convert a rich image to sRGB and the same to ProPhoto.  Toggle between these in ColorMunki and you find the colours extracted will be much more intense on the sRGB image.

My optimizations hardly changed a thing in the profile in the greens I was trying to extend. The patches extracted are not what I think corrected for populating the chart patch creation. I tried 3 or 4 different images and the printed charts had many white or black patches. I suppose then you must make your own palette to use as a chart patch builder to optimise as you like.

So there you go first tries done.

PS The monitor calibrations and profiles are about equal both the i1 D2 and Match on Easy mode, and the CM. They are different, both good, but i1 Match and the i1 Pro was better (well on my MacBook PRo LED.
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« Reply #38 on: September 20, 2008, 05:22:43 AM »
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Terry,

My CM that I bought in the states has a S/N of 0823-2xxxxx
Mike
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Thanks Mike,

not sure what this means but I'll use it at the retailers when I return mine.

My whole system has been unstable since trying to use the CM. Maybe it's related, maybe it isn't.
I've tried to delete the program but the system is still actng funny.

Thanks again for your effort.

Terry
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #39 on: September 20, 2008, 08:43:11 AM »
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A. In overall volume it comes up slightly ahead of others. The shape of the repartition of colours shows slightly more green in PM profiles, but so slightly more red in the CM profile. Dmax is about the same with no deficiencies on either.

B. The curves in the CLUTs are smoother with a TC9.18 chart and PM.

C. It seems the CM profile lacks a bit of red in the yellowish / orange image areas. Overall there is  less saturation or better said brighter rendering of deep saturated colours. Greyscale on step wedges perfect. No colour cast, no banding, just perfect.

D. Overall the images printed with number 1 profile are very well balanced, very very close to the PM profiles and much more than acceptable. I had an idea it would be good but didn't expect with two letter sized prints a profile could be this good.

E.  My optimizations hardly changed a thing in the profile in the greens I was trying to extend. The patches extracted are not what I think corrected for populating the chart patch creation. I tried 3 or 4 different images and the printed charts had many white or black patches. I suppose then you must make your own palette to use as a chart patch builder to optimise as you like.


[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=222827\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Hi Neil,

I extracted bits from your most informative post and labeled them for ease of reference, as these raise some questions:

Let's start from the premise that the key objective for colour management in printing photographic images is the reliability of perceptual results moving from display to paper (allowing for the inherent limitations due to differences of gamut and light between the two).

(1) So, turning to your comment "A" on the difference of the red/green balance between CM versus the comparator: which would be a more accurate rendition on paper? Will you be testing for that?

(2) Is there any contradiction between "A" and "C" insofar as in "A" the profile seems to produce less red in yellows and oranges?

(3) In "B" you say the curves are smoother with PM, but in "C" you say the greyscale step wedge is perfect. Is there any contradiction between these observations? When you print the image using the CM profile, is there visually less smooth tonal gradations on paper from a CM profile?

(4) In "D" where you say the profiles are "much more than acceptable", have you had a chance to rank them against say Epson's latest series of canned profiles for their recent crop of professional printers, or a custom profile generated by the HP Z3100?

(5) Re "E" I simply don't understand the meaning of this paragraph. Probably because I don't own a CM (yet) so I'm not familiar with its optimization routines and therefore I don't have an idea of what they are supposed to be doing. Grateful if you could elaborate these observations in case there are also other interested parties in my situation.

Mark

(Edited to change back from program-induced smileys to the actual letters I intended to show here!)
« Last Edit: September 20, 2008, 08:48:02 AM by MarkDS » Logged

Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
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