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Author Topic: Inkjet Printing - Practical Advice  (Read 589 times)
LLPhoto
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« on: December 23, 2012, 06:54:59 AM »
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Hi all,

I've been a reader here on and off for some time and thought I'd take the opportunity of your wisdom...

I have a good understanding about color management and have a good workflow summarized as; Calibrated monitor, LR4 to import/process RAW files, PShop CS6 to prepare the file for print, soft-proof and print.  I use a Z3100, with either a standard or my own profile (depending on paper) and the printer is regularly calibrated.

What I am looking for is information on how to get the most of the printer itself.  I have read books/articles and watched the LL video, etc but I always find they are missing the practical elements.  For example, I can make a printer profile, perform a calibration then print out a test print - but what do I actually do if I find something I would like to improve.  For example, if shadows are a little plugged or colors look off, do I re-profile with different setting (more ink, less ink, different paper types, etc)?  What should I do? 

I know some of this is printer-specific but is there a good source of practical information anyone could recommend (internet, book, video, etc)?

Thanks
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2012, 08:55:50 AM »
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I have a good understanding about color management and have a good workflow summarized as; Calibrated monitor, LR4 to import/process RAW files, PShop CS6 to prepare the file for print, soft-proof and print.  I use a Z3100, with either a standard or my own profile (depending on paper) and the printer is regularly calibrated.

What I am looking for is information on how to get the most of the printer itself.  I have read books/articles and watched the LL video, etc but I always find they are missing the practical elements.  For example, I can make a printer profile, perform a calibration then print out a test print - but what do I actually do if I find something I would like to improve.  For example, if shadows are a little plugged or colors look off, do I re-profile with different setting (more ink, less ink, different paper types, etc)?  What should I do? 

I know some of this is printer-specific but is there a good source of practical information anyone could recommend (internet, book, video, etc)?

Thanks

Jeff Schewe is finishing the latest edition of The Digital Print, there is a recent thread in this forum with the same name.

Keep your paper choices limited and learn their characteristics. On a good Z3100 with papers calibrated and profiled you should not make profiles again and again, the calibration once in a while should keep the profile up to date. Color management is not the method to edit images or prints.

Issues with plugged shadows in the print usually are related to a monitor that is too bright for the viewing light and both can be off to the actual print display conditions later on. The viewing light should ideally have a full spectrum white light and a color temperature of 5000K or below. The gamut of the Z3100 justifies the use of a wide gamut monitor.
 
The Z3100 gamut is good but could use the better red ink of the Z3200 and its little change in gamma on the ink lay-down that shifted the color gamut more to the darker colors. If that is what you miss in color try a small gamma increase in the Advanced Color settings. If that helps in more cases then it could be wise to select other media presets that lay down more ink and build the calibration + profiling based on them. HP has documents on media preset ink lay-down, ink channels active then and the use of third party media. Hue mismatches are not covered that way and usually can only be improved by editing the image file based on true proof prints.

My 2 cents

--
Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.
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