Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: [1]   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Thinking of upgrading from a Canon i9900  (Read 1371 times)
benInMA
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 186


« on: March 15, 2010, 05:14:15 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi everyone,

I have a Canon i9900 that I've had for hobby use for 5 years now.   I was extremely happy with it for a long time, although I knew it wasn't doing great on B&W due to color casts.

The last few years I've been entering more competitions and I'm blown away by the blacks on some of the newer printers.  Last year I got really into profiling, calibration, etc.. and I just have not been able to really improve the blacks even though I get very good matches now in every other aspect.

Basically what I'm seeing (both in B&W and color) is that in the darker areas of the print, the grays all "go to black".  It's almost like a clipping is occurring somewhere in levels.  I just can't get the same tonality that I see others getting.

I have Aperture & CS4, I seem to get the same results in each.  I've tried all the Canon papers, Ilford Galerie Classic Gloss, and I just got some Harman Matt FB Mp paper as well.   With Harman's profile it is maybe a bit better then Canon's paper/profiles, but it's still not there.

One other item.. if I softproof I can see this occurring on my monitor for the Canon Paper + Canon supplied profile.

If I softproof with the Harman profile or the Ilford Profile, this effect is almost completely gone, but it still occurs in the print...

Any thoughts or am I just tilting at windmills hoping to get closer to the results of newer printers that are using multiple black inks?

I really don't think I'm interested in a 17" format printer even though that seems to be the common advice.  For one thing a 13" printer prints large enough for the competitions I enter, for another I can't really see hanging something on the wall much bigger then 16x20 (framed).   I also of course don't print very high volume.  

I am not selling must stuff more then once in a blue moon (not really trying) but I'm really not happy with the prints where they are now.  I wouldn't necessarily feel terribly good selling someone an i9900 print both due to not being happy with the black/gray tones and also of course permanence.

Thanks,
Ben
Logged
bill t.
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2693


WWW
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2010, 05:58:02 PM »
ReplyReply

You need to open the blacks on your images.  Yes I know this offends profiling and soft proofing blah blah blah but if your dark grays are going black on the print, all you have to do is open up those areas on the screen.  Nobody has ever gone to techno-Hell for doing this.  Also it is all too easy to make darkish images on the screen that simply can not transfer intact to a lower contrast media like paper.  Aiming for an overall much more open look on the screen may be all that you need.

But if you wish to pursue things a bit...there is a general tendency for canned printer profiles to print rather dark, sounds like you might benefit from having custom profiles made.  $25 at Inkjetart.com and many other places.  Money well spent.

Also, you are wrong about the smaller sizes.  Big sizes sell.  I went from a 24" printer to a 44" printer so I could make bigger prints which sell better and bring in a lot more money for the same amount of work as small prints. I make 24' wide prints as working proofs, but not for sale.  If you want to completely blow away your myopic 13x19 competition, just march in there with some 24 x 36's or 40 x 60's, oh yeah!  The arguments I made to myself to initially buying a 24" printer instead of a 44" printer sounded exactly like what you said in your post, except slightly scaled up.  I have since learned to stop listening to my rational self in matters of art and scale.
Logged
benInMA
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 186


« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2010, 09:22:42 AM »
ReplyReply

Thank you,  that is actually some really helpful advice.. last night I went to a club meeting with a competition and I found someone else who has an i9900 who was clearly getting much better results, and he also advised me to get a custom profile done for the papers I use, he said it made a huge difference for him.  It hadn't occurred to me I could just send a print off to someone else to have the profile created rather then having to buy my own device or have someone come visit with a calibrator.

All I meant regarding print sizes for competition is we are not allowed to submit prints larger then 16x20 including the mat, so the 13" printers are basically sufficient.  I see your point about larger printers, sales, etc.. but I am certainly not at the point where I would spend thousands on a printer.  I think I actually appreciate these competition rules as it levels the playing field somewhat in terms of economic ability.  For example some of the folks in our club are professionals, they do have better access to larger printers, better cameras, etc.. but by restricting the print size it levels the playing field somewhat.   (They dominate based on image content a lot of the time anyway though of course)

I will also see about just opening up the shadows.. I have tried that in the past but it seems to be error prone.
Logged
hsmeets
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 182


« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2010, 01:56:50 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: benInMA
Thank you,  that is actually some really helpful advice.. last night I went to a club meeting with a competition and I found someone else who has an i9900 who was clearly getting much better results, and he also advised me to get a custom profile done for the papers I use, he said it made a huge difference for him.  It hadn't occurred to me I could just send a print off to someone else to have the profile created rather then having to buy my own device or have someone come visit with a calibrator.

All I meant regarding print sizes for competition is we are not allowed to submit prints larger then 16x20 including the mat, so the 13" printers are basically sufficient.  I see your point about larger printers, sales, etc.. but I am certainly not at the point where I would spend thousands on a printer.  I think I actually appreciate these competition rules as it levels the playing field somewhat in terms of economic ability.  For example some of the folks in our club are professionals, they do have better access to larger printers, better cameras, etc.. but by restricting the print size it levels the playing field somewhat.   (They dominate based on image content a lot of the time anyway though of course)

I will also see about just opening up the shadows.. I have tried that in the past but it seems to be error prone.

Yup, custom profile is surely the way to go. Especially on consumer machines it can improve much because these are mass produced with greater tolerances in every aspect of the build process.

About 17", yes here we go again :-), the Epson 4880 and Canon 5100 are small pro machines that not only give you bigger prints but give you also better IQ by means of wider gamut, finer dot screening, easier to get neutral B&W, etc etc. Depending on your printing volume they can be cheaper on ink in the long run. These machines most often also work better with canned profiles as the machines are build to tighter spec's and inter unit variation is a lot less.


Logged

feppe
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2909

Oh this shows up in here!


WWW
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2010, 04:24:57 PM »
ReplyReply

I got a custom profile for my i9550 and it indeed made a significant difference in print quality.

Quote from: hsmeets
About 17", yes here we go again :-), the Epson 4880 and Canon 5100 are small pro machines that not only give you bigger prints but give you also better IQ by means of wider gamut, finer dot screening, easier to get neutral B&W, etc etc. Depending on your printing volume they can be cheaper on ink in the long run. These machines most often also work better with canned profiles as the machines are build to tighter spec's and inter unit variation is a lot less.

[emphasis mine]

I would be surprised if that's the case. If you're referring to IPF 5100, uses pigment inks, which traditionally have smaller gamut than dye printers. I've tried to find a recent comparison of dye vs. pigment gamuts as I'm also considering an upgrade, but haven't been able to find one. Do you have a gamut comparison between those printers which shows the wider gamut of the pigment printers?
Logged

DaveRichardson
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 14


« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2010, 04:40:46 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: benInMA
Basically what I'm seeing (both in B&W and color) is that in the darker areas of the print, the grays all "go to black".  It's almost like a clipping is occurring somewhere in levels.  I just can't get the same tonality that I see others getting.

Hi Ben,
It is worth a quick check, before you dismiss your existing printer and profile, what rendering intent setting you are using to print (and soft proof). If it is relative colormetric then you need to set Black Point Compensation to "ON". For perceptual rendering intent it should make no difference.

Without Black Point Compensation the RC intent will clip any level darker than the darkest black of your printer to black. With BPC it should apply a slght curve to raise the level of the darker grays to ensure they print.

Dave
« Last Edit: March 17, 2010, 04:41:24 AM by DaveRichardson » Logged
Deepsouth
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 81


« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2010, 08:19:45 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: DaveRichardson
Hi Ben,
It is worth a quick check, before you dismiss your existing printer and profile, what rendering intent setting you are using to print (and soft proof). If it is relative colormetric then you need to set Black Point Compensation to "ON". For perceptual rendering intent it should make no difference.

Without Black Point Compensation the RC intent will clip any level darker than the darkest black of your printer to black. With BPC it should apply a slght curve to raise the level of the darker grays to ensure they print.

Dave

Dave, thanks for this reminder. I am not a fan of how PS slices & dices the printer interface, which is why I use PhotoPaint for most printing. Unfortunatly, PhotoPaint does not seem to have a BPC control.

The recent threads, "Printer Selection" and  "Looking at the Canon 9500 Mk2" are worth a read on this topic. I went from a Canon S9000 6 color dye to a Canon 9500 Mk. I 9/10 color pigment, and I certainly wouldn't go back to dye. I will go out on a limb here and say that for prosumer gear I'm not sure dye technology will continue. My opinion is that dye will be relegated to consumer "photo printers" and all prosumer/pro printers will be exclusively pigment technology before long.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2010, 08:21:47 AM by Deepsouth » Logged
benInMA
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 186


« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2010, 08:46:54 AM »
ReplyReply

I went & reviewed the rendering intents & some other stuff last night.  Perceptual definitely did a better job for the latest image I had printed.

There was another wrinkle though.. I print with Aperture occasionally.   Last night I redid the print in Photoshop with the same profiles and the various intents.

Photoshop is just definitely doing something right that Aperture is doing wrong.  Same image, same intent, same profile, same printer settings, Photoshop does not block up the blacks, Aperture does.

There is a convenience factor printing in Aperture.. I really gotta discipline myself not to do it.  It his broken in other less subtle ways as well...

I'm definitely going to send off for some custom profiles though.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2010, 08:47:22 AM by benInMA » Logged
Pages: [1]   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad