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Author Topic: LR 4 export output sharpening  (Read 7119 times)
jrsforums
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« on: May 10, 2012, 01:13:32 PM »
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Jeff...

I believe that I understand the workings of LR printing and how the print sharpening works in it.  With it, LR produces reasonably good output.

However, I find that, even though it requires a add'l, simple step, Qimage produces a much higher quality print.  Some of the thoughts on this are expressed in this thread: http://ddisoftware.com/tech/qimage-ultimate/print-better-than-lightroom-4/

I have been doing some comparison printing....prompted by recently reading his thread....mainly to prove again to myself what I had seen in the past and to see if LR had made any under-the-cover changes resulting in improved output vs Qimage.

This raised a question relative to output sharpening on exporting a jpeg or tiff.  That is, does the ppi designation of these files effect the sharpening applied.....i.e....if I have a 3000x2000 pixel file tagged at 72ppi, will the sharpening be different if he same exact file were tagged at 360ppi?  What does sharpen for screen vs printer (gloss/matte) do?

Thanks....John
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John
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« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2012, 02:21:06 PM »
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This raised a question relative to output sharpening on exporting a jpeg or tiff.  That is, does the ppi designation of these files effect the sharpening applied.....i.e....if I have a 3000x2000 pixel file tagged at 72ppi, will the sharpening be different if he same exact file were tagged at 360ppi?  What does sharpen for screen vs printer (gloss/matte) do?

The output sharpening is based on the final PPI of the exported image, so 360PPI will have different sharpening than the 72PPI exported image even if the image has the same pixel dimensions...as far as the export settings for sharpening, Screen is designed for output sharpening for the "screen" (display devise) while Matte or Glossy is designed for inkjet output sharpening...
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jrsforums
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« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2012, 06:52:39 PM »
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Thanks, Jeff...

If you select screen, is 72ppi used?

If you have originally set ppi as, say, 240....and want to change it, how would you do it....without resizing?

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John
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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2012, 09:14:31 PM »
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If you select screen, is 72ppi used?

If you have originally set ppi as, say, 240....and want to change it, how would you do it....without resizing?

No, the PPI is determined in the Export...and if you export at one ppi and then change it afterwards (or resample) the output sharpening will not be optimal. If you need to work on an image outside of LR, when you export you should NOT apply any output sharpening when exporting.
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jrsforums
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« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2012, 10:20:53 PM »
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I guess I was not clear....

I bring a RAW image in at 240PPI....do my work on it and want to Export it as a JPG or TIF.

If I am outputing to the web, I select screen out put sharpening.  What PPI does the sharpening us in it's calculations.

Second, I am sending to someone/some Place for remote printing and want to sharpen for the size I will be using and the PPI the printer expects, say 360ppi.  What do I do?

John
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John
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« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2012, 11:26:46 PM »
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I guess I was not clear....

I bring a RAW image in at 240PPI....

No, you have it wrong...when you import your image into LR, it's doesn't have a PPI, it has a pixel dimension related to the MP size of the capture, for example, a 1DS MIII Canon capture is 3744 by 5616 pixels. If you print that at 13.33" x 20", the resolution will be 281 PPI, if you print it 12" x 18" the PPI will be 312. It's only on export or printing that a specific dimension in inches and PPI is applied. It's THAT size, the final image size and PPI that the output sharpening is applied at.

You raw image has no PPI until you specify and output size and resolution...ok?
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jrsforums
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« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2012, 06:04:44 AM »
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Sorry.  Yes, I knew that.  Just always kind of assume that the PPI is "set" by what is entered in the "edit In" preferences....as it seems to follow through as default unless specifically changed on output.

So....you have confirmed that on output for printing you need to go through the x by y by PPI calculation for the specific size/printer.

You did not reply to other question, "If I am outputing to the web, I select screen output sharpening.  What PPI does the sharpening us in it's calculations"
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John
John Cothron
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« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2012, 06:05:56 AM »
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I goes by the PPI setting you choose in the export dialog.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2012, 07:30:45 AM »
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I goes by the PPI setting you choose in the export dialog.

Hi John,

Which reduces the 'problem' to what PPI do displays have? Often they are 96 PPI, but they can be higher. The LCD on my laptop is 128 PPI ...

Cheers,
Bart
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John Cothron
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« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2012, 07:38:21 AM »
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Hi Bart,

I usually export at 100 PPI, which covers most of them.  At least I haven't noticed any issues anywhere I've viewed them.  I see your point though Smiley
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jrsforums
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« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2012, 07:12:58 PM »
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I goes by the PPI setting you choose in the export dialog.

Is this the 'Resolution' in the 'Image Sizing' block?  I was not aware this was in effect if "resize" was unchecked.

If you need to change the resolution to display ppi, it the begs he question (to me).....why a selection of 'Screen'?  What does it do different than the paper selections?

More confusing, to me, is that PhotoKit Sharpening, which I believe the LR output sharpening is based, says, in their user manual, "...The Web and Multimedia Output Sharpeners resemble the Capture Sharpeners more than they do the other Output Sharpeners in that they are organized in terms of pixel dimensions and SuperFine, Narrow, Medium, or Wide Edges..."

John
« Last Edit: May 11, 2012, 07:39:18 PM by jrsforums » Logged

John
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« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2012, 10:46:06 PM »
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If you need to change the resolution to display ppi, it the begs he question (to me).....why a selection of 'Screen'?  What does it do different than the paper selections?

Even if you don't "resize" in export you still set an output resolution...it is that resolution that impacts how the sharpening is applied when choosing screen matte or glossy. If you set the resolution to 72 (or 100) PPI then select a paper output sharpening you won't get a good result. Same as if you set the resolution to 360 and apply a screen sharpening.

And yes, the output sharpening in LR is based upon PKS inkjet and screen output sharpening but it was determined that a single sharpening designed for 72-120ppi was suitable for screen output sharpening so LR's output sharpening for screen is not size dependent, only resolution ppi.
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jrsforums
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« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2012, 05:03:42 AM »
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Even if you don't "resize" in export you still set an output resolution...it is that resolution that impacts how the sharpening is applied when choosing screen matte or glossy. If you set the resolution to 72 (or 100) PPI then select a paper output sharpening you won't get a good result. Same as if you set the resolution to 360 and apply a screen sharpening.

And yes, the output sharpening in LR is based upon PKS inkjet and screen output sharpening but it was determined that a single sharpening designed for 72-120ppi was suitable for screen output sharpening so LR's output sharpening for screen is not size dependent, only resolution ppi.

Sorry...seems to be like peeling an onion, one set of Q&As lead to more.

If the screen sharpening is "...designed for 72-120ppi..." why are ranges outside that allowed ( or allowed without a warning)?

If screen sharpening is not size dependent, the same sharpening will be applied to a 6000 pixel wide image as would be applied to a 1000 pixel wide one?  The only way I (as a layman) could see this working properly would be by assuming a set ppi 72-120), thereby determining the output size.

Why is a sharpening for paper better taking in account resolution size, but not for screen?

Don't mean to badger with questions, but I am not good at cookbook solutions.  I don't need to know the math or the code, but it helps me to understand the logic on why selections are made.

John
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John
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« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2012, 01:30:12 PM »
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Jeff...

I believe that I understand the workings of LR printing and how the print sharpening works in it.  With it, LR produces reasonably good output.

However, I find that, even though it requires a add'l, simple step, Qimage produces a much higher quality print.  Some of the thoughts on this are expressed in this thread: http://ddisoftware.com/tech/qimage-ultimate/print-better-than-lightroom-4/

Just to drift a little OT here....  I use Genuine Fractals to uprez to my target ppi output to the printer, and I get noticeably better results than straight out of LR (I am uprezzing from around 180 ppi to print at 360 ppi).  In the Qimage comparison you can see jaggies in the LR print that are not present in the Qimage print.  It's the same with actual print comparisons between LR4 and GF.  I'd really like Adobe to improve this, as LR is not yet the one-stop solution for me I wish it was.  I'm not sure why Adobe limits itself to bicubic given the availability of superior algorithms.  I guess if you are printing from FF or MF this may not be an issue.
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« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2012, 05:13:03 PM »
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Sorry...seems to be like peeling an onion, one set of Q&As lead to more.


You are making this far more complicated that it needs to be. The screen output sharpening was designed for web and multimedia images to be displayed at one image pixel for one display pixel. Designing the sharpening for screen was done so images look good on screen for that image criteria. Displays are low resolution devices...you can't look at a 6000 pixel wide image on a screen that is displaying HD (1920 by whatever) at 1:1. The user is expected to process their images for the purposes and sizes they need. It would be foolish for a user to apply the LR Screen sharpening to a 6K image...yes, there's nothing in LR to keep you from doing that just like there's nothing to keep a user from screwing up their images in the Develop module by yanking to controls and making the image look like crap.

The inkjet output sharpening was designed to work for PPI resolutions used for printing...it works well as resolutions between 180-720 PPI. Matte for matte paper and glossy for glossy...

If you can't arrive at the final image size and resolution of an image in the Export module, then you really shouldn't be applying output sharpening. Output sharpening is intended to work at the final size and resolution without any additional resampling or resolution changes after the fact.
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jrsforums
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« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2012, 06:36:12 AM »
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Jeff, with all due respect, I do not believe I am trying to make it more complicated than it is.  It is just that my approach is different than yours and I need to better understand the underlying logic to be able to better approach it.

If I were going directly to print or to a specific size on the screen the LR/PKS method might work fine for me....and it is quite good for those doing this and who do not want to think about it.  However, my workflow for output is different.

If I were using Photoshop for final output, I would sharpen the file so it looked sharp, but not over sharp, as iewed on the screen.  I would do this at 100% and do it the same whether it was a 6K image or a 2K cropped one.  There is a reason for this and it worked successfully before using LR.

Today, most high end photo hosting sites, such as Smugmug and Zenfolio, allow you to upload full size images.  These images are then downsized, behind the covers, using Lanczos, or better, interpolation, to progressive smaller sizes so that the image the viewer looks at appears to be automatically resized to the monitor or window the user has.  If one were doing this with simple resizing, even with bicubic, you would normally get jaggies or halos....I know, I have done it...but with these services you do not.

Qimage does similar for printing.  I will take a properly sharpened, but not resized for printing image.  Based on my selection of print size, it will resize the image for the size selected and the ppi the printer wants (for Epson 4900 usually 720 or 360).  It does the resizing with high end interpolation and applies "smart sharpening" so the sharpening is properly adjusted for the actual output to the printer.

I find this workflow to provide great quality output images without the need to provide multiple output image files for each screen size or print size that I may want or need.

The problem (but for some people, the strength) with LR's output sharpening is that you cannot view the output on the screen to evaluate it.  This is why I am Tediously, to you) asking you to provide better insight into the differences in what is done when selecting 'screen' or print and how the ppi designation changes what the sharpening routines do.

Thanks, John
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John
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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2012, 08:35:41 AM »
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If I were using Photoshop for final output, I would sharpen the file so it looked sharp, but not over sharp, as iewed on the screen.

That’s a problem in that what looks good on screen even at 100% often is less then ideal sharpening for output. Or to put it another way, an image that looks ‘crunchy’ and over sharpened on screen often prints much better than the image that looks better on screen. What You See Isn’t What You Get.

Quote
The problem (but for some people, the strength) with LR's output sharpening is that you cannot view the output on the screen to evaluate it.

If you believe that WYS isn’t WYG, then this isn’t a problem, it is a feature.
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Andrew Rodney
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jrsforums
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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2012, 10:14:51 AM »
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That’s a problem in that what looks good on screen even at 100% often is less then ideal sharpening for output. Or to put it another way, an image that looks ‘crunchy’ and over sharpened on screen often prints much better than the image that looks better on screen. What You See Isn’t What You Get.

I understand that, which is why I said "final output" rather than "direct printing" as I did in the paragraph above the one you quoted.  By "final output" I meant just before creation of a full size jpeg for uploading to the web photo site or creating a tiff to print in Qimage.

Quote
If you believe that WYS isn’t WYG, then this isn’t a problem, it is a feature.
I thinking said that..."The problem (but for some people, the strength) with LR's output sharpening is that you cannot view the output on the screen to evaluate it"....where "strength" indicates a feature...in fact, as I said, for many a really good feature.
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John
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« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2012, 12:40:48 PM »
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If I were going directly to print or to a specific size on the screen the LR/PKS method might work fine for me....and it is quite good for those doing this and who do not want to think about it.  However, my workflow for output is different.

Output sharpening is intended to be applied at the final size/resolution only. If your image is expected to be resized in any manner after doing output sharpening, then you really should not be doing any output sharpening–period.
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jrsforums
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« Reply #19 on: May 14, 2012, 03:08:18 PM »
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Output sharpening is intended to be applied at the final size/resolution only. If your image is expected to be resized in any manner after doing output sharpening, then you really should not be doing any output sharpening–period.

Jeff, I understand it is nt what you do or what you recommend....

However....

In the case of Smugmug or Zenfolio, I have no choice.  The images air going to be resized.

For printing, I get better results in Qimage...whether you agree or not. 

But I do need to do print sharpening some place and it is easiest to do on export from LR.

Whether you agree with the way I want to do it or not, please answer my question about how the sharpening works.  I agree to understand your warning and be fully responsible for the mistakes you tell me I am going to make.

John
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John
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