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General photography questions and answers: Discuss Prints are to dark...When I print an image in Photoshop CS3 on my Epson 3800, the prints are quite a bit darker than ...
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Old 07-10-2008, 17:54   #1 (permalink)
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Prints are to dark

When I print an image in Photoshop CS3 on my Epson 3800, the prints are quite a bit darker than on the monitor, the monitors are calibrated using spyder3, I am printing on Hahnemuhle FineArt Baryta and am using the relevant Profile downloaded from the Hahnemuhle website.
Can anyone help me sort this problem.

THANKS in anticipation, Paul
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Old 07-10-2008, 17:59   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Are you allowing photoshop to control the printer? The printer driver should be set to allow this, or maybe set to manual. I don't have an Epson, so not sure how the driver needs to be set.
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Old 07-10-2008, 18:02   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Yes "No colour management""Let photoshop manage colours" or something like that.
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Old 07-10-2008, 18:15   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

I usually find mine are a tad darker in print than on the screen so usually make a small curve adjustment to compensate for it.
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Old 07-10-2008, 18:49   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Oh, yes - photoshop should also be set to manage colours too. Option is in the print dialogue.
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Old 07-10-2008, 19:07   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

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Originally Posted by Whipspeed View Post
I usually find mine are a tad darker in print than on the screen so usually make a small curve adjustment to compensate for it.
How do you make the curve adjustment? I don't know anything about curves (only the curves on the opposite sex, then again I probably don't know much about them either, but I don't-half admire them!!!) do you just drag the diagonal line, or are there specific values I can use or the droppers, as I said I don't know anything about curves so instructions would be appreciated.
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Old 07-10-2008, 19:18   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

The pre-sets are mainly for contrast tweaks, so just pulling the centre of the line down slightly should darken the image.
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Old 07-10-2008, 19:30   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

I thought the the whole point of calibrating your monitors & using the correct printer profiles, was so the printer output matched the monitor (WYSIYG) and not having to compensate for it.
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Old 07-10-2008, 19:53   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

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Originally Posted by U/W Photographer View Post
I thought the the whole point of calibrating your monitors & using the correct printer profiles, was so the printer output matched the monitor (WYSIYG) and not having to compensate for it.
ESTD!

(Easier said than done)

Have you tried printing out a test chart?
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Old 07-10-2008, 21:46   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Quote:
Originally Posted by U/W Photographer View Post
How do you make the curve adjustment? I don't know anything about curves (only the curves on the opposite sex, then again I probably don't know much about them either, but I don't-half admire them!!!) do you just drag the diagonal line, or are there specific values I can use or the droppers, as I said I don't know anything about curves so instructions would be appreciated.


LOL! I pull up the bottom part of the diagonal line (about a 1/4 of the way up) and lift it a touch. It lightens up the darker part of the shot, but doesn't overblow the light parts. Probably not the best way, but it works for me, I'm ok with a camera, but not brilliant with PS.
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Old 07-10-2008, 22:35   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Have you tried using QImage to print, rather than Photoshop? Worth a go.
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Old 07-10-2008, 23:16   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

I know this is going to sound stupid but I had the same problem being my prints being dark so I set it to NO colour management and my prints are perfect give that a try you have 3 options let printer control them let photoshop do it or none as I said I use none
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Old 08-10-2008, 09:46   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

Is the printer calibrated? and how bright do you have your monitor? most come out of the factory turned up far too high for photo work.
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Old 08-10-2008, 09:57   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

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Have you tried using QImage to print, rather than Photoshop? Worth a go.
Another for Qimage.

Mind you I quite often add the equivalent of 1/2 stop or more brightness to my prints to take into account paper is reflective and monitors are transmissive.
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Old 08-10-2008, 10:43   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

A basic check would be to use Photoshop eye dropper and Information pallette to check a few values on the picture. Are the lightest areas near to R,G,B, 255, 255, 255 and do these areas look near white on the print similalry are the darkest areas close to 0 and do they look black on the print. If not you probably do have a calibration or profile problem. Make sure that you do initial tests with the recommended Epson paper and profile.

Prints will look less bright than a monitor as the light is reflected rather than emitted. This means that although the colours will be close the to hue on the monitor they may appear less saturated.

It sounds to me as if you are not using the Proof Colors feature of Photoshop. Set up Proof Colours initially by View>Proof Setup>Custom. In the Window from the drop down "Device to simulate" select your relevant Printer Profile. Set Rendering Intent to Relative Colorimetric and tick Black point compensation then Save. Type in a name which reflects the printer and intent (e.g. E3800RC). I suggest you repeat this for the Perceptual Rendering Intent and for any other Printer profiles that you use.

When finally viewing an image before printing select View>Proof Setup and select the relevant setup you have saved. Then View>Proof Colours. You will then see on monitor a simulation of what the image will look like when printed with that combination. Inevitably the image will look a little duller and you may need to brighten it a little. This is also useful if you are uncertain which rendering intent is appropriate particualrly when you have significant areas of colour out of gamut. You can try the simulation with both RC and P rendering intent and choose the best before wasting a print.
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Old 08-10-2008, 13:38   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Prints are to dark

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Originally Posted by Dave Canon View Post
It sounds to me as if you are not using the Proof Colors feature of Photoshop. Set up Proof Colours initially by View>Proof Setup>Custom. In the Window from the drop down "Device to simulate" select your relevant Printer Profile. Set Rendering Intent to Relative Colorimetric and tick Black point compensation then Save. Type in a name which reflects the printer and intent (e.g. E3800RC). I suggest you repeat this for the Perceptual Rendering Intent and for any other Printer profiles that you use.
I was using the proof colors but there isn't much difference, but when I went back into proof setup just to check, I have discovered that if I tick Preserve RGB Numbers, the proof is a lot darker & pretty much OK, if anything the print is slightly lighter than the proof.
What is this Preserve RGB Numbers box all about?
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