Golden Rules for Printing

LenShepherd 11 4.0k United Kingdom
8 Nov 2019 9:43AM

Quote:Is it worth working in aRGB without the benefit of an aRGB monitor and bearing in mind many printer drivers expect sRGB?

For the above detail any decent printer accepts the wider colour gamut of aRGB.

If you work flow entirely in sRGB you have a narrow colour gamut, particularly in green tones.

Lower price monitors/laptops often show distinctly less than the already restricted colour gamut of sRGB.

Unfortunately if you have an sRGB based monitor/laptop you cannot see the wider colour gamut that is available unless you first upgrade your monitor/laptop.

Digressing a little for those considering printing at home if you have the space and aim for highest quality consider investing in an Epson or Canon A2 printer.

Why A2?
First you get about £400 more in ink when you buy an A2 printer. This significantly offsets the higher up-front cost.
Second the ink cartridges are much larger. In consequence printing ink costs are at least a third lower using the larger and cheaper per ml of ink A2 cartridges rather and A3+ small cartridges.
Third - they print wide colour gamuts.

As to the rest of "it" - as with playing a piano to a good standard - it takes time and effort - and you decide what standard you want to be at.

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thewilliam2 2 1.3k
8 Nov 2019 10:28AM
Should we adopt the old cliché, "start with the end in mind"?

Much will depend whether we're producing a pretty picture to hang on the wall, in which case colour accuracy is less important, or something for commercial use, in which case it's vital.

Also whether we want colours, especially greens, to be vibrant or more muted because we get the extra gamut of ARGB by moving the "green point". The red and blue stay roughly where they are.

I've only ever used a desktop computer for post-processing although I own a laptop. What is the gamut of a typical laptop screen? Will it cover ARGB?
brian1208 16 11.6k 12 United Kingdom
8 Nov 2019 1:25PM
I have been printing my work for sale and competition use for over 15 years, (semi-pro level so it covers my costs and makes enough to pay the HMRC and still have money left for new equipment each year)

In my early days I profiled everything, using my own colour comparator and whilst I got good results I also ran into a wide variety of problems.

A few years back I came across an article that totally changed my approach (tile was something on the lines of "why aren't you using SRGB") and after a lot of trials have been using this approach ever since, to the extent that I no longer even use "the correct paper profiles" and print letting the printer manage colour

Whilst I'm not suggesting its the "right way" to do it all I can say is that none of my potential customers have rejected a print I made this way, no competition judge has ever had negative comments to make about the results and many in my club who still print "the right way" come to me to print their work when "the right way" fails them (and the blighters often get better scores than me in competitions Grin )

All I can suggest is, give it a try and see how it works for you.

(printers have been HP 9180, Epson R3000 and now the Epson SP-C 400, using mainly Permajet papers including Museum Heritage, Titanium Lustre and Distinction )
brian1208 16 11.6k 12 United Kingdom
8 Nov 2019 2:01PM
a few points of clarification (I was called away to lunch mid-stream):

- always make sure the monitor is properly calibrated, I use an Eizo CS2420 and calibrate using a Spider pro calibrator (from my experience this is where most screw up)
- I would never recommend my approach for colour critical applications (museum quality archival prints etc) but I have successfully produced prints for professional artists to record their work and for sales brochure / publicity material
- I work with a limited range of papers for which I have developed set printing routines that I know work. If I decide to use a new paper I do some thorough evaluations to get my settings correct for that new paper, so its not an effortless approach and does require some rigour in setting up)
- I always "preview" the image before printing to ensure I haven't screwed up a setting, the cost of the papers I use being significantly more than the ink I don't want to have to reprint anything to "get it right"
- stick to the OEM inks having run into too many problems with 3rd party inks. If you want to use 3rd party inks as a cost saving option then in my opinion full calibration / profiling becomes essential for consistency

Cameras now used are Olympus EM-1 mk2 and Sony RX10-4 and the images are processed using LR Classic with the workspace set to SRGB, printing from LR classic
Philh04 Plus
14 2.1k United Kingdom
8 Nov 2019 3:53PM

Quote: images are processed using LR Classic with the workspace set to SRGB, printing from LR classic

Trust you made a typo Brian as you cannot change the Lightroom workspace, it is always a linear version of ProPhoto....
brian1208 16 11.6k 12 United Kingdom
8 Nov 2019 7:48PM

Quote:Trust you made a typo Brian as you cannot change the Lightroom workspace, it is always a linear version of ProPhoto....

Not a typo but "Brain Fart" (just back from a short holiday and worn out and in need of a holiday )

What I should have said that I set it to Epson SRGB in Page Set Up (bottom of File drop down panel which takes me to Print Set Up )

Its great fun getting old Smile

Thanks for picking me up on this Phil

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