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08-30-2009, 04:45 PM   #1
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Inconsistent prints

This will display for all my ignorance, but I gotta start someplace, right?

I've a landscape shot I really like. It was taken with the 3 star JPEG setting on my K100. I've never had any problems with prints from it...until I ordered both an 8x10 and a 5x7. The 8x is superb (if I do say so myself), while the 5x is simply too dark. I pointed out the difference to the attendant, he went through several gyrations, pushed a bunch of buttons, even changed out the toner, or something. End result? The new 5x was worse. I understand how to recalculate exposure with an enlarger, but I thought digital printing was "different." By the way, I use a local Walgreens for my prints as it's a nice walk to pick up my orders. The JPEG was not modified in any way, just straight out of the camera.

I'm open to any and all suggestions. I've ordered 5x7's in the past, without this much trouble.

Thanks!

08-30-2009, 04:51 PM   #2
Ash
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Hi there.
Prints should come out consistently no matter the size if the printer is in good order.
My impression is that your printer is not of a high standard and suffers from QC issues.
You may find going to a professional printer will give you the best and most reliable results possible.
Ensure also that you provide the image in the colour gamut required by the lab (most need sRGB images, but some higher-end printers need Adobe RGB images).

All the best in that.
08-31-2009, 01:08 PM   #3
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yes, it is different (i used to do my own printing in the "wet" lab too, so i know exactly what you mean). there is nothing to recalculate, there is no reason why a 5x7 should be darker than an 8x10 (actually, if we talk about optical enlargers, it would be the other way around, wouldn't it?). it's just a malfunction/missetting in the printer used (or in the operator )

maybe consider buying a printer and doing it yourself (that's what i did). it's more trouble, but it will bring back those memories (remember what it felt like to be in control? ). a decent photo a4 printer is quite cheap these days, and with ink and high quality paper it works out to a cost per print of about what i pay at a decent lab (or even less), not as cheap as some internet order ones, or some us prices i heard, but oh well... my printer is an epson r285 (the cheapest epson photo printer you can buy, i daresay, probably not much more than 50bucks in the us, with enough ink to get you interested bundled with it -- just enough, not more though )
08-31-2009, 01:39 PM   #4
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They don't have their papers profiled properly.

08-31-2009, 06:11 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by nanok Quote
yes, it is different (i used to do my own printing in the "wet" lab too, so i know exactly what you mean). there is nothing to recalculate, there is no reason why a 5x7 should be darker than an 8x10 (actually, if we talk about optical enlargers, it would be the other way around, wouldn't it?). it's just a malfunction/missetting in the printer used (or in the operator )
Here's a wild guess theory - the print is doing some sort of auto-correction on the image, and when printing 5x7 versus 8x10, it has to be cropped differently, and that affects what the auto-correction algorithm sees. A really bright or really dark oject on the very edge of the scene that is cropped out in one version but the other might throw it.
08-31-2009, 06:56 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Here's a wild guess theory - the print is doing some sort of auto-correction on the image, and when printing 5x7 versus 8x10, it has to be cropped differently, and that affects what the auto-correction algorithm sees. A really bright or really dark oject on the very edge of the scene that is cropped out in one version but the other might throw it.
No, that's not it. Really.
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