camera-monitor-photoprinter=calibration ?


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ST_sg

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#1
Guys,

I always encounters most of the photos print out from both Canon and HP printers, the finish looks dark and under exposure. But it was ok from my 17" CRT monitor.

Heard of calibration is a must between Monitor and Printer. Any idea how to ?

Equipment:
Windows XP
Philips 107S
Nikon CP5700
Canon CP200
HP 3in1 inkjet color printer

Your favorable advise/tips are very much appreciated :)

Thanks.
ST.
 

Astin

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Mar 2, 2002
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#2
I think there are many experts will answer your question soon. But just to clarify your questions: Do you have prints that are "under-exposed" or "off-colour"? These are 2 different problems.
 

ST_sg

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#3
Hi Astin,

Thanks for your quick reply. The finish print more looks like under exposed. Color, hue still acceptable.

Usually I keep 2 version, original image and "Modify" image. And through trial and error, original + 30% brightness + 5% contrast give me acceptable print out.

So, is this pre-shot or post-shot issue :confused:

Cheers!
ST.
 

blurblock

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#5
Alamak .... for quick and easy solution, get a Syder Pro from Cathay Photo at Marina Sq...... it is a pretty good calibrator for your photograph.

First ask the developer to develop your photograph without adjustment.

Then calibrate your monitor or at least the software that support ICC/ICM to your photograph ;).
 

ST_sg

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#6
Thanks Blurblock. So, your advise is first of all, I should get the Syder Pro.
What exactly is it huh??

A piece of software or ???

Next, how to get the right ICC/ICM file huh?
My monitor and Nikon Viewer allows me to input such ICC/ICM. But no idea where to get the correct ICC file :(
 

Neo

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#7
For the simple answer, it goes something like this...

Your image files contains information like colour and brightness etc. But when your monitor displays the image, it is usually not accurate because it is not calibrated. If you go shopping for TVs at a superstore, you'll see that the different TVs all display different brightness and colours, even though they're all connected to the same DVD player. So different monitors will display the colours and brightness differently.

In order to make any adjustments to your images on your PC, you need to make sure that your monitor is calibrated. Otherwise, you would be adjusting your image so it looks good on your monitor only, when actually it can be quite crappy. So if your monitor is overly bright, you might adjust your image to be darker and it can end up looking under-exposed on your final print.

Hope you can understand the logic of calibrating your monitor...
 

igpenguin

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#8
Am no expert so someone correct me if I'm wrong...

After your monitor is calibrated and the screen is ready for you to assess the colours, you would want to work in the correct colourspace in your photoediting program provided it's ICC aware eg. photoshop.

Not sure if your camera tags your files with ICC info, but assuming that your camera does not allow specification of the colourspace to shoot in, you assume that the pictures are in the sRGB colourspace.

To be able to "preview" the colours printed you can try View->Proof Setup->Custom and see if you can find your printer or some generic printer profile listed there (eg BJ Colorprinter Profile 2000).

This still doesn't mean WYSIWYG... factors like the paper you use and the print/printer settings have to be tweaked.

The screen's output will look or feel somewhat different from the print output given one is transmitting light and the other is reflecting/absorbing light.

I'm still trying to learn how to get a better printout... more pointers anyone?
 

blurblock

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May 30, 2003
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#9
ST_sg said:
Thanks Blurblock. So, your advise is first of all, I should get the Syder Pro.
What exactly is it huh??

A piece of software or ???

Next, how to get the right ICC/ICM file huh?
My monitor and Nikon Viewer allows me to input such ICC/ICM. But no idea where to get the correct ICC file :(
Sorry, wrong spelling .... it is spyder pro :). it is a pantone calibrating hardware / software.

For more information read this month's popular photography ;P...... too long to explain ;)
 

Feb 26, 2004
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#10
Hi ST,

Colour calibration is really a big thing and I think it's possible to get a degree if not a diploma to understand it! :p Think I can safely say not many here really understand the full process... For most, it's just a matter of trial and error and being satisfied with whatever results they can get, taking into consideration $ especially. (No offence to anyone as I've been reading the various posts here for some time here and seems like there are always variations or ambiguities. I'm struggling myself.)

The Spyder thingy can only calibrate your monitor. It will not ensure that your prints will agree with what u see on the monitor. Essentially, the device sets a sort of standard if you like and if you go round with it and use it on 10 different monitors, all of them essentially are set to the standard colours. It's like all of us may have watches but that does not men everyone of them will read the same time to the very second. We need to synchronise the watches with any standard clock for eg.

Printer calibration is trickier and you need another device to do it. Esentially, you need to print out a test colour chart (another standard) from your printer and use the device to let it know how your printer is printing. Then you will have a created file that you will use everytime you open your images and b4 you you send them to the printer.

These devices are not cheap. For eg, the Spyder alone can cost at least $350(???) brand new. May not be worth it if you're not really fastidious about 100% accurate colours. Even then, some say it's not as good as other brands which already cost $600 or more.

For printer calibration device, the price is simply nuts.... At least $1K I think. Please correct me if I'm wrong for those who know the details...
 

ST_sg

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#12
Guys, thanks for the clarifications. I do agree that calibration is complicated thing due to various hardware and technology different in nature, but at least a reasonable degree to D.I.Y.

Just curious, do you print photos with your own photo/color/inkjet printer?
If yes, did you do adjustment (brightness/contrast) before send to print?
If yes, any calibration done to your printer?
If you do some editing ie. Photoshop, did you calibrate your monitor?
Finally, is your photo printout acceptable if without doing any touch up?

Otherwise,.. no point spending money to on what 14400dpi color printers, glossy photo papers,..etc :cry:

What's your opinion man :D
ST.
 

ST_sg

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#13
I'm using Nikon CP5700. Do you think it support tagging ICC info :dunno: :embrass:

igpenguin said:
Not sure if your camera tags your files with ICC info, but assuming that your camera does not allow specification of the colourspace to shoot in, you assume that the pictures are in the sRGB colourspace.
 

ST_sg

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#14
Hi Neo,

most of the time if without any adjustment, the photos on screen are ok. Only problem is the print out. The result tends to get darker. That's why I keep 2 version of my photos, original and touch-up. And after some trial and error, +30 brightness, +5 contrast give me reasonable quality.

As the result, I'm wondering is it my printer problem or my poor photography skill (under-exposed shots) :embrass: :think:

Rgds,
ST.

Neo said:
In order to make any adjustments to your images on your PC, you need to make sure that your monitor is calibrated. Otherwise, you would be adjusting your image so it looks good on your monitor only, when actually it can be quite crappy. So if your monitor is overly bright, you might adjust your image to be darker and it can end up looking under-exposed on your final print.

Hope you can understand the logic of calibrating your monitor...
 

igpenguin

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#15
Besides looking at your images on a calibrated monitor you could check the histogram of the image as well. +30% brightness print setting seems to be quite a sizeable compensation.
 

#17
Hmmm... Just view your pics, they generally look a little underexposed and the rose's a little 'under saturated' on my monitor...

And your other qns:
Just curious, do you print photos with your own photo/color/inkjet printer?
- Yup, I do, all the time.

If yes, did you do adjustment (brightness/contrast) before send to print?
- Don't think I ever sent them to labs to print. But When printing at home, I generally adjust to what I like on screen, nv over compensate etc. for printing purpose

If yes, any calibration done to your printer?
- No calibration, just make sure both working in sRGB profiles and used adobe gamma for a rough calibration of monitor.

If you do some editing ie. Photoshop, did you calibrate your monitor?
- As above, only used adobe gamma... too poor, can't afford a spyder hee.

Finally, is your photo printout acceptable if without doing any touch up?
- Well, i don't really get what I see on screen, but close enough, my prints does seems a little brighter than on screen (wierd, i know), but still acceptable. Well, if the pic I took was acceptable on screen, then it is loh... as stated above, nv really compensate for printing.
 

ST_sg

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Mar 23, 2004
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#18
Hi Flare,

Thanks for taking your valuable time to see see my gallery :embrass:
Yup. I do agree indoor shots are quite under-exposed :(
The rose was taken in a rush shot at office, and the lighting are quite deem.

How about outdoor shots? ;p

As for the calibration, I'll experiment further :think: :think: :think:

Cheers!
ST.
 

zombiez

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Dec 12, 2002
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#19
Your pictures are underexposed. Use the exposure compensation if the under exposure is consistant. Not sure if CP5700 always under expose. Dim light should not cause under exposure unless you are doing manual.
 

Ice

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Mar 16, 2004
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#20
Veronica Choo said:
Hi ST,

Colour calibration is really a big thing and I think it's possible to get a degree if not a diploma to understand it! :p Think I can safely say not many here really understand the full process... For most, it's just a matter of trial and error and being satisfied with whatever results they can get, taking into consideration $ especially. (No offence to anyone as I've been reading the various posts here for some time here and seems like there are always variations or ambiguities. I'm struggling myself.)

The Spyder thingy can only calibrate your monitor. It will not ensure that your prints will agree with what u see on the monitor. Essentially, the device sets a sort of standard if you like and if you go round with it and use it on 10 different monitors, all of them essentially are set to the standard colours. It's like all of us may have watches but that does not men everyone of them will read the same time to the very second. We need to synchronise the watches with any standard clock for eg.

Printer calibration is trickier and you need another device to do it. Esentially, you need to print out a test colour chart (another standard) from your printer and use the device to let it know how your printer is printing. Then you will have a created file that you will use everytime you open your images and b4 you you send them to the printer.

These devices are not cheap. For eg, the Spyder alone can cost at least $350(???) brand new. May not be worth it if you're not really fastidious about 100% accurate colours. Even then, some say it's not as good as other brands which already cost $600 or more.

For printer calibration device, the price is simply nuts.... At least $1K I think. Please correct me if I'm wrong for those who know the details...
So using spyder is the only way to calibrate the monitor? Can we calibrate it ourself, like change some of the settings on the monitor?
 

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