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Accessory talk Those important extra system components.

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Old 29th May 2013
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Printing problem

I've got a problem when printing photos, all prints come out very dark. The results are identical whether I use use my own Canon printer or on-line printers Loxley and Zenfolio. My monitor is calibrated and the brightness is set correctly. The images look fine on screen, are correctly exposed and not clipped in the histogram.

So it's not the printers and post processing is OK. I could set a large brightness offset to get the print to look right but that would also affect the on-line image which would now be too bright. My photos in Zenfolio look fine on-line but any prints ordered come out far too dark.



Anyone any ideas?

Steve
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Old 29th May 2013
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Re: Printing problem

Hi Steve, check to see if your callibrated file in installed to your video driver.

Also check to see if when you are printing that you disable the printers management driver as this can affect the print as the printer would process the colour management twice once from photoshop anf by the printer management too.

Also when sending an image to a commercial printers remember to embed the profile to your image file.

This should work as its the most common fault of printing way to dark.

Good luck

Dave
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Old 29th May 2013
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Re: Printing problem

Hi Steve, unfortunately with all the information you have provided the culprit does look like it is your monitor and its calibration. But it could also be the location of the monitor and the ambient light. Basically, if several independent print sources are showing the same fault, they are not likely to be the problem.

What kind of monitor is it and what is the target brightness set in the calibration software you are using? Also what is the gamma setting? What kind of hardware (if any) are you using to calibrate your screen with?

Ian
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Re: Printing problem

I have just had a look at your Zenfolio site. Your pictures don't look desperately dark on my display but they are on the dark side. For example:

http://www.photography.stevecain.co....bc62#h5477bc62

I can't see any detail at all in the shaded areas on the bank/cliff to the left; it's a big black hole. Most of your images look dark and moody - which is very nice for some but maybe too dark for others.

Ian
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Old 29th May 2013
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Re: Printing problem

Dark prints are a common problem and I had the same issue when I started printing seriously.

I used to use the Photoshop trick of creating a merged layer, duplicating it and setting the duplicated layer blend mode to screen and opacity to 20% for prints.

Lightroom v4 has the same feature as a slider for output.

The better colour management solution was to lower my monitor luminance setting to 75cd and use softproofing before printing.
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Re: Printing problem

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
Hi Steve, unfortunately with all the information you have provided the culprit does look like it is your monitor and its calibration. But it could also be the location of the monitor and the ambient light. Basically, if several independent print sources are showing the same fault, they are not likely to be the problem.

What kind of monitor is it and what is the target brightness set in the calibration software you are using? Also what is the gamma setting? What kind of hardware (if any) are you using to calibrate your screen with?

Ian
Hi Ian, The printing sources aren't the problem as you say.

The monitors are not facing any bright lights or window and when I calibrate the monitor the Spyder software reports ambient background light to be slightly low but OK for photowork - I have just recalibrated and the light through the window is low - horrible, grey rainy day outside here.

I am using Spyder4Pro to calibrate an HP Compaq LA2405x monitor. Gamma is 2.2 and the monitor brightness set to 35 (which is what the Spyder software showed as correct in the calibration bar). Looking at images now on the recalibrated monitor shows little difference from before, plenty of detail in the shadows.

The difference between the monitor display and the print output is quite stark. My uncalibrated, cheap monitors on my other PC do show dark images but I am using my calibrated one on my Photo PC as being true. The prints match the dark uncalibrated monitor displays.

Steve
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Re: Printing problem

I have my monitor set to 120cd and some suggest 90. That's not the adjustment value in the monitor OSD menus, but target brightness in the calibration software.

Ultimately, you should set your monitor to match a print you know to be correct.

Ian
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Re: Printing problem

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
I have my monitor set to 120cd and some suggest 90. That's not the adjustment value in the monitor OSD menus, but target brightness in the calibration software.

Ultimately, you should set your monitor to match a print you know to be correct.

Ian
The OSD setting of 35 gave a target brightness of 120 cd. I'll recalibrate to 90 and see how that works.

Cheers,

Steve
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