How many print their own?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by joconn, Mar 25, 2008.

  1. joconn

    joconn TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2006
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Wondering how many folks do their own digital printing and which brand printers they use. I`m not all that happy with commercial labs and considering buying the Canon iP4500.
    Joe.
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,817
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    What is it that you aren't happy about with the labs?

    If you are a real stickler for accurate prints, doing it yourself is probably the way to go...but you should realize that you will probably be paying more to print at home, once you figure in all the costs.
    Printer, paper & ink obviously...but good quality paper and ink isn't cheap. Then you may run through significant amounts of both when you are trying to calibrate your printer and keeping the heads clean.

    Also, with some printers, you need to replace the print heads. With others, the heads are built into the cartridges...so they get replaced with each ink change...but then the cartridges are more expensive to buy.
     
  3. joconn

    joconn TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2006
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Thanks for that, Mike. Could be that the people writing the reviews aren`t telling the whole story. The problems I`ve been having seem to be with sizing ..... body parts chopped off, and wrong vertical/horizontal orientation. Now, that could be my fault in preparing the photos for printing. What I must do is train myself to do more preparation work in the camera and cut down on editing. I`ve come to suspect we might be relying too much on editing programs. I`m new to digital photography still on the learning curve.:wink:
    Cheers,
    Joe.

    BTW: using GIMP.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,817
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Oh....that is your problem? That's easy...just crop to the desired print size before you send any files for printing.

    The problem is the aspect ratios. 35mm film is 2:3 which is perfect for 4x6 prints...that's why DSLR cameras also use this format. Many digi-cams use a different ratio and standard print/frame sizes are different ratios as well. 5x7 is different and 8x10 is different again...so if you send a 2:3 (4x6) image to get an 8x10 print...you will end up with a cropped image.

    When I prepare files for printing...I will make different copies for different print sizes. I also make sure they are set to 300 PPI, so there is plenty of resolution. This means that the larger prints require rather large files...but that's OK.

    When I'm done editing and am ready to print...I might have 5 or 6 different copies a a given image. The original RAW file, the working file (photoshop or TIFF file), a 4x6 print, a 5x7 print, an 8x10 print, maybe a larger print size, and probably a downsized version for web and e-mail.
     
  5. mrodgers

    mrodgers No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,662
    Likes Received:
    7
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Ok, so here's my question. How do you crop to a particular size in Photoshop? Or more how do you lock the crop to a particular ratio so that you can crop to the different photo print sizes?

    I know you can specify a particular ratio in Lightroom then resize the crop and it keeps that ratio. Can you do it in Photoshop? (I can't imagine not being able to)
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,817
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Yes, you can absolutely do that in Photoshop. When you click on the crop tool, the settings bar (usually at the top) has fields for the width, height and resolution...so if you enter 8 inches by 10 inches at 300 PPI...the crop tool will lock that ratio...and when you crop, Photoshop will resize (up or down) to your desired resolution. In fact, there should be a drop down menu with presets for different print sizes.

    An alternative technique is to open a new canvas at the desired size & resolution (again, there are presets). Then go back to your image, copy all...then paste it into the new canvas. You can move it and use the handles to resize it, in order to get the crop that you like. When you OK it...you are left with the proper size and resolution.
     
  7. Lazy_B

    Lazy_B TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    I actually use a lab Due to a number of reasons

    1) the one i use is a very trusted person and i know him well and he knows the quality i like

    2) for a 8 x 10 he only charges 6 dollars per print... and because i only usually get a couple of prints done at that size, it's realitively cheap.. he also does packagedeals which consist's of various size photographs which are 40 in total for around 25 dollars

    3) I'm a real fussy bugger and the only good ones i use stay in my portfolio

    but for the record i do have a hp lazerjet printer which i use to print out examples of the pictures to show kinda what they would look like when they come back from the lab
     
  8. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,713
    Likes Received:
    203
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I have a Canon iP4200 and I can give you some pros and cons:

    Pros for home prints:
    - You're in control
    - No fussy problems with wrong aspect ratios
    - Your own colour management, nothing gets stuffed up if you know how to do it

    Pros for lab:
    - Much cheaper especially for 4x6
    - Prints are much nicer (i'm not sure about the iP4500 but I assume it's not significantly better than the iP4200 to invalidate this statement but I'm just guessing). This also depends on which lab you go to. Find one you like!
    - Less work

    I go to the lab for everything, and the only time I print at home is if they foul something up. Like the very dark print I sent in once that came back way too bright. I wasn't prepared to go back just because they stuffed up 1 print, so I printed myself.

    Also I am using Canon inks on Canon Photo Paper Pro, including the photo black cartridge, but the dark shadows have a green cast on my printer. Again I am not sure if this is also a problem for the iP4500.
     
  9. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    7,006
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    Kankakee, IL
    I use Epson for proofing, but all "final" prints go to the lab.

    I'm better at photography than I am at printing. Just like in my film days, I leave the printing for those who do it well.

    Note: I do mean pro labs, and not drug store printing.

    -Pete
     
  10. patrickt

    patrickt TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Messages:
    312
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Oaxaca, Mexico
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I view photography as a process.

    Step 1: Understanding and using the camera.
    Step 2: Taking the photo
    Step 3: Post-processing the images.
    Step 4: Printing

    Step 2 is what I enjoy. But, I've known people who found their joy in step 3 and some thoroughly enjoy step 4. There used to be a gentleman on a forum who never took a photo that wasn't planned down to the tiniest detail. I don't.

    So, on step 4. I don't produce enough prints to ever, in my opinion, become a skilled printer or to justify the cost of quality equipment. I go to a shop, always the same shop, where I know the people. When I had them the files they're cropped, sharpened for printing, and ready to go. They understand they're to not make alterations without checking with me and I'm almost always sitting there waiting for my prints. When I get the prints I look at each to make sure it's what I needed.

    My brother-in-law takes bird pictures and sends them to an on-line lab. Totally different system but it works for him.

    One last thought. Keep in mind which steps you really enjoy. I found once that I'd gotten hooked on post-processing and was spending more time sitting in front of my computer than I was spending behind the lens. That's not what I want. I also don't want to spend time with printer profiles and learning to be a printer.

    I'm obviously not a professional. For a professional, it's totally different. They aren't in it for the fun. I was in the shop that does my printing and saw one of the guys, obviously not happy, using Photoshop. A bride in a shoot decided her ankles were too fat and he was whittling them down on all the photos that showed ankles.

    I did a couple of portrait shots for a friend and he said, "Your camera makes me look old." I said, "It's a common problem with this brand."
     
  11. S2K1

    S2K1 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Messages:
    288
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Utah
    I use an Epson R1800 and it works great for when someone needs a print fast, but I have been looking more so into labs because of the cost savings, I'd suggest a printer at home for ones you might think are going to be a problem, then let the labs do the rest.
     
  12. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    I use a lab. It's cheaper in the long run (unless you do an incredibly large volume of prints), and if they mess it up, I have them re-print it for free. That's right, I look at the photos before I pay, and if I don't like the color or if they cropped it weird (never had an issue with the latter because I do what Mike does), I have them re-print it and make sure they don't do some weird "Auto-Adjust" to "Enhance" my photo.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

my epson r1400 printed in the wrong orientation