Printing from Aperture - Print Settings / Paper issue

Started May 10, 2013 | Discussions thread
Jacques Cornell
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Screen brightness - 100cd/m2
In reply to TeleView, May 11, 2013

TeleView wrote:

Firstly, thanks to both of you for commenting.

Keven, you said:

In my Print Driver when I select "Print Settings" I then select "Media Type" which has 6 selections available - Photo Paper, Proofing Paper, Fine Art, Matte and Other.  Within EACH of these selections are further selections - I use Photo Paper to print using a Luster paper - the selections here are Ultra Prem Photo Paper Luster, Prem Photo Glossy, Semi-Gloss, etc..

I only have selectable options for Photo and Matte. Which is not good, as my son may want to print using plain papers for his university work. Maybe I need to re-install the Epson driver, or download it again and re-install it. I am using the latest version of Lion on this particular hard disk.

And Doug, all great advise. As to your last advise, I am using the on-screen printing.

Alpha Doug wrote:

... The paper settings in the printer driver that pops up last are merely controls for how much ink gets laid down on the paper.

Makes sense!

Most likely, the reason the print comes out a little darker than your screen image is twofold.  First, comparing a print which gets it's color from light reflecting off pigment vs. a screen which makes color by shining a light through colored pixels is never very accurate, with the print always looking slightly darker.

Yes, I understand that. Even how if you line up RGB, and CMY, you remove the opposite to figure out which colours make what.

However, I have found that if you place a desk lamp with a daylight balanced CFL bulb facing down next to your monitor, and hold the print under the light, you will get a very accurate idea of how well the print matches the monitor.  The other issue you may be having is that you monitor is actually set a bit too bright.  Even though it's calibrated for color, if it is running too bright, then the prints will look too dark.  Well known phenomenon.

Yes, I agree - my screen is set too bright. I am unsure though how to darken it ... perhaps lower it to 6000k?

You're confusing brightness with color temperature. 6000K is the latter.

I can also calibrate the room brightness with the ColorMunki, but I am not yet used to all that. Its setting is supposed to be low, at 80 ... but another way around that, is using as you say, a proper bulb ... even room darkness effects the monitor appearance it seems.

Much better not to adjust for ambient light and instead keep the ambient light constant and on the dim side. That way, you won't need an overly bright monitor to see what you're doing.

My monitor even has a should available for it, but I've not put it on. But it would make the screen brighter. I should really do all that, and buy a cheap monitor for normal stuff. If I was a Pro, I'd do that. But two monitors seems a bit rich for home ... I may do it at some time though.

The point is you need to set your monitor brightness to the same level as the light under which you're evaluating your prints, and this also needs to be similar to the light conditions under which the print will be displayed. So, there's no one correct setting. That said, I find a monitor brightness of 100cd/m2 (candelas per square meter, also called "nits") generally gives me a good idea how a print will look hanging on a wall in a home with indirect sunlight from nearby windows.

When you calibrate your monitor, you may be able to set a target brightness level. The cheaper versions of some calibration software may not include this feature. If you're using an iMac or an Apple display, chances are the appropriate brightness level will be around 50-65%.

I've given up on using artificial light to evaluate color in my prints. Even with special 92CRI 5500K spiral fluorescent bulbs in my workspace, my prints look different under indirect daylight. I discovered this once after printing a dozen or so images at night. They looked a bit greenish, so I tweaked the color. The next morning, when I viewed the prints by a window, the all looked magenta, and I had to undo all the color tweaking and reprint.

So, I do work prints at night first, just to check overall levels. The next day, I examine them by window light or skylight light to check color and then make final prints.

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