why do photos need color correction prior to printing ?

Started Jan 24, 2013 | Questions thread
C Spyr
C Spyr Forum Member • Posts: 78
Re: why do photos need color correction prior to printing ?

apaflo wrote:

Compared to a monitor which always defaults to too bright.

I think this is the most important statement relating to the problem of the OP. In the majority of cases when prints appear 'too dark', the problem is not the print but the monitor. If the brightness (or more correct the luminance) of the monitor is set very high (as it is by default), the print with it's limited maximum 'brightness' can simply not keep up, so to speak. The print cannot match your expectation of 'brightness' that your overly bright monitor is creating.

One of the best articles on the net with practical advice how to deal with these issues can be found here:


One thing is clear: the first step towards solving the problem of non-matching print and monitor brightness is to calibrate the monitor to a realistic luminance ('brightness') level. If the prictures on the monitor then appear too dark, then they need adjustment in Photoshop before being sent to the printer.

[quote OP]:

The data from the camera is not being optimized by iphoto or adobe PE for that matter when it is displayed is it , I would think it is being shown as the camera recorded it ? If the camera recorded it right should it be able to be transferred directly to the paper, with it's corresponding ICC profile and look terrific ?


There is no hard link between the picture as it was recorded by the camera and its appearance on the monitor per se. The monitor is a device with its own characteristics which in part can be adjusted, i.e. are not hard-wired. If you turn monitor brightness way up, the picture will look overly bright and washed out, and the opposite if you turn it way down. This implies that the choice of monitor luminance ('brightness') is criticial for the way it appears on screen and thus whether you think it's spot on or too bright or dark, especially in comparison to a print. You will not be happy with the printed output without implementing at least basic principles of color management.

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Kind regards

Christian Spyr

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