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Author Topic: Photokit Sharpener and CMYK Output Sharpening  (Read 4931 times)
David Eichler
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« on: July 14, 2012, 03:25:48 AM »
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As I understand it, capture and output sharpening are interrelated. With a computer monitor, or if doing our own inkjet prints, we can immediately determine if our output sharpening is well balanced with the capture sharpening. When our images are printed with the half-tone process, we don't have this ability, unless we have the opportunity to actually view proofs as they come off the press, which is not available to most. How, then, can Photokit Sharpener offer a single high-quality option (adjusted for image size and and number of lines) for output sharpening for half-tone printing? It seems to me that the only really good way (assuming a skilled printer) is to let the printer do the output sharpening. In other words, is the Photokit Sharpener cmyk output sharpening essentially an expediency to account for those situations where one suspects the printer may not be very conscientious?
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Schewe
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« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2012, 03:36:36 AM »
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How, then, can Photokit Sharpener offer a single high-quality option (adjusted for image size and and number of lines) for output sharpening for half-tone printing? It seems to me that the only really good way (assuming a skilled printer) is to let the printer do the output sharpening.

Because we did a lot of testing...and no, you REALLY don't want to leave the output sharpening to the "printer" cause they don't know shyte about output sharpening (trust me, they really won't make the effort)...although you are welcome to test this for youself.
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David Eichler
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« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2012, 04:26:31 AM »
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Because we did a lot of testing...and no, you REALLY don't want to leave the output sharpening to the "printer" cause they don't know shyte about output sharpening (trust me, they really won't make the effort)...although you are welcome to test this for youself.

How, then, can one be sure that the capture sharpening is optimal with the PKS cmyk output sharpening if it is hard to judge the output and make adjustments?  Or are the PKS (or Lightroom) inkjet output sharpening settings a sufficient guide for this purpose? I know, for example, that the Lightroom print/standard/matte setting seems to work pretty well for typical quality halftone prinitng, even though my images are being resized after I have delivered them. However, perhaps the printers are doing some additional sharpening to these?

Also, if most printers don't know what they are doing regarding output sharpening for cmyk, what about most graphic designers, who are frequently resizing the images after we have delivered them?
« Last Edit: July 14, 2012, 04:33:36 AM by David Eichler » Logged

Schewe
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« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2012, 11:41:12 AM »
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Also, if most printers don't know what they are doing regarding output sharpening for cmyk, what about most graphic designers, who are frequently resizing the images after we have delivered them?

Designers, by and large know less...and are even less involved that printers or prepress.
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David Eichler
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« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2012, 01:36:06 PM »
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Designers, by and large know less...and are even less involved that printers or prepress.

So, in your opinion, what then is best practice when we have no idea what the final print size may be. The ASMP suggests either generic sharpening or no sharpening at all and make sure the client is aware. However, is generic sharpening really useful on a full size Tiff file where the final print size will be considerably smaller? And, if generic sharpening is used, is there still an advantage to using the PKS cmyk sharpening versus, say, Lightroom's print output sharpening, which has seemed to me to be quite adequate for this purpose for 3000 pixel wide files delivered to the client.
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Schewe
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« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2012, 01:54:16 PM »
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So, in your opinion, what then is best practice when we have no idea what the final print size may be. The ASMP suggests either generic sharpening or no sharpening at all and make sure the client is aware.

If you don't know what the final output size is, you can't do output sharpening...all you can do is capture and creative sharpening and tell the client it'll be their responsibility to do the output sharpening themselves once the image is at the final size, or have the prepress people do it.
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David Eichler
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« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2012, 03:52:20 PM »
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If you don't know what the final output size is, you can't do output sharpening...all you can do is capture and creative sharpening and tell the client it'll be their responsibility to do the output sharpening themselves once the image is at the final size, or have the prepress people do it.

Guess we should be promoting the use of PKS to graphic designers and printers. :-)   I can sort of understand a lot of graphic designers being ignorant of good sharpening practice (even though many graphic designers seem interested in photography and may even do some commercially), but I have a hard time understanding why most printers (except for relatively cheap services) are ignorant about this.
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Schewe
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« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2012, 07:29:44 PM »
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Guess we should be promoting the use of PKS to graphic designers and printers. :-)   I can sort of understand a lot of graphic designers being ignorant of good sharpening practice (even though many graphic designers seem interested in photography and may even do some commercially), but I have a hard time understanding why most printers (except for relatively cheap services) are ignorant about this.

Yeah it would be useful if ADs and designers learned about PKS2 :~)

As far as the prepress, it's understandable for two reasons: 1st, printers are reluctant to actually _DO_ anything to client files-particularly without instruction and charging and 2nd, printers really aren't very practiced in the art of sharpening...in the old days when images were scanned, sharpening was built into the scanner so they didn't have to worry about it. In the digital age, it takes skills and experience to properly sharpen for output. And, by the time they get files, they're in CMYK which changes the relationship of the pixels (think 4th K channel) and sharpening becomes more difficult and PKS2 can't run on CMYK so printers won't be interested in using it :~(
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Czornyj
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« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2012, 03:30:06 AM »
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Yeah it would be useful if ADs and designers learned about PKS2 :~)
It would be useful if PKS2 could sharpen files in PDF - how the hell can designer predict the final size of all images before designig? How can he resize and sharpen dozens of images? What if the project will be printed in various layouts and sizes?
« Last Edit: July 21, 2012, 03:33:40 AM by Czornyj » Logged

Schewe
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« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2012, 11:25:38 AM »
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It would be useful if PKS2 could sharpen files in PDF

PhotoKit Sharpener is a Photoshop plug-in...
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