Questions about printing

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Polyphony, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. Polyphony

    Polyphony TPF Noob!

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    I have a few questions about printing digital photos. First the background:
    I'm making one print of a photo for my mom's birthday. I'm not sure what size print to make it. I want it to be around the same size as an 8.5 x 11 in. sheet. I would like to know what I have to do to the image to prepare it for printing. I will have it done from a site like mpix.com.

    Here are the specs of the image that I think you will need to help me.
    It's a vertical image.
    3127 x 4691 pixels
    Horizontal resolution: 240 dpi
    Vertical resolution: 240 dpi
    Bit depth: 24
    Color representation: sRGB
    Document size in Photoshop: 13.029 in. x 19.546 in.
    Pixel aspect ratio in Photoshop: Square

    I would like none of the image to be cut off and also no extra white space (although I guess I could trim that off myself).

    What size print should I make? What do I have to do to the image to prepare it for printing? Thanks for your help.
     
  2. Robin Usagani

    Robin Usagani Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    you have 2:3 aspect ratio photo file so you can print it for:

    4x6, 6x9, 8x12, 10x15 etc. without any cropping. (width x 1.5 for the height). but other than 4x6, these are pretty odd sizes so you have to cut the white borders.

    If you go bigger than 10x15, your printing resolution will be less than 300dpi and you will start seeing pixels.
     
  3. Polyphony

    Polyphony TPF Noob!

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    That's all there is to it? I don't have to change the color space or something? I was reading something about printing and how you should have the image color settings set according to how it will be printed.


    Side question: If that resolution can only print up to 10x15, how would I print a 20x30 or 24x36? (Not that I plan to, just curious)
     
  4. Robin Usagani

    Robin Usagani Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    im not an expert in printing but if you only print it as "photo", then you dont have to change it. If you are printing it to like magazine, cards, brochure etc., you need CMYK color space.
     
  5. myfotoguy

    myfotoguy TPF Noob!

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    I would send it as is, MPIX color checks their prints. If you go budget route you can turn off that service, but I am not even sure that can be truned off for larger images. Check their FAQ section on their site.
     
  6. Robin Usagani

    Robin Usagani Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    just divide your resolution by the width. For example 20x30. Your small dimension is 3127 pixels/20 inches = 156 ppi. It will print OK. You put it in your living room it will look good. But if you come closer, you will start seeing pixelation. But a lot of people say 200 ppi is good enough, 300 ppi is good for sure. So for sure I would not go bigger than 15"x22.5". Are you sure you want to do this dimension (2:3 aspec ratio). It is not a standard framing size. How about cropping it to 11x14 or 8x10?
     
  7. Steve01

    Steve01 TPF Noob!

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    No, there's more to do.
    To print the images there are a bunch of things you need to do to print it yourself to get it right.
    As already mentioned your resolution should be 300 dpi, 240 is acceptable.

    The image should be sharpened for printing.
    When you open the printer duologue box Ctrl+P under color management, set Photoshop Manages Colors.

    Set Printer Profile to the exact paper your using.
    For best results match the paper to the printer Epson printer, Epson paper, etc.

    Set Rendering Intent to Relative colormetric and check Blackpoint Compensation.

    Those last two settings are a good starting point but you may get better results using some other settings.

    This is important.
    Open Printer settings and shut off all color control, color correction and enhancement settings.

    Set the size of the paper, the orientation, and the paper your using.

    For your side question you can print as large as you want but the quality will suffer.
     
  8. Polyphony

    Polyphony TPF Noob!

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    Thank you but I will not be the one printing the photo. Sorry if I was unclear about that.
     
  9. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    you might ask the printer what color space they are using, and tell them you want to 'bleed the image" . they should be able to guide you to insure you'll be happy
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    When referring to digital photographs, there is no dpi (dots-per-inch), only ppi (pixels-per-inch).

    Years ago, if you had digital image and wanted a nice 8x10 print of it equivelent to an 8x10 print from a specific type of print film, you needed the digital image at 300 ppi.

    Not today. However, the higher the resolution, the beter the print.

    How To Prepare Your Images For Printing At Mpix

    In fact Mpix, and others, stake their reputation by accepting uploads at a minimum of 100 ppi.

    The bottom line is, it depends on the image.

    Additionally, sharpening for print is not done the same way as sharpening for on screeen display. An image sharpened for printing will look somewhat 'crispy' on a monitor.

    That's because Mpix makes chromogenic prints, characterized by a reaction between two chemicals to form the printed image.

    Your digital image is projected onto light sensitive paper (a silver-halide emulsion) containing 3 layers of color dyes - cyan, magenta, and yellow.
    A series of processing steps follow, which remove the remaining silver and silver compounds, leaving a color image composed of dyes in three layers.

    Thus, pixels are converted into continuous tones.
     
  11. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    No, those aren't odd sizes. Those are standard Mpix print sizes and there are no white borders.
    http://mpix.com/PrintPricing.aspx
     
  12. Polyphony

    Polyphony TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for clearing things up. I will probably use mpix in the end. I actually read the link you posted before you posted it.
     

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