Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 5   Go Down

Author Topic: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?  (Read 5300 times)

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« on: October 30, 2019, 06:02:43 am »

Hello everyone!

Currently I am using Photoshop exclusively for printing, because I have not found any other software that offers the functions of its print dialog. Specifically I am looking for software that can print manually selected parts out of a larger image, but not just automatically tiling for posters.

For example, the original image is 162 x 213 cm (64 x 84 inches), from which I need to print manually selected parts on DIN A4 paper which is  21 x 29.7 cm (8,268 x 11,693 inches). I could crop these parts out of the image with other software, but since I need to print several different parts that are meant to align with each other that would mean several extra steps and more difficulties them. Most programs also don't allows to set proper margins manually, don't offer to save these as convenient presets or cannot handle images of such large sizes well (if at all).

Many also fail to read virtual printer paper sizes from the print driver, which brings me to the next point:

When my Epson 3880 printer is set to borderless printing *without* upsizing the image then it virtually increases the paper size (think canvas size in PS). DIN A4 paper then increases to a virtual size of 30.69 x 21.98 cm. PS' then allows to use "Print Selected Area" to set print borders that fit DIN A4's original size and thus print borderless without using bad printer driver upsizing and without spilling much (if any) ink over the paper borders. Additionally some prints don't need content on the whole paper, so it's a quick way of keeping more space blank.

I looked into *lots* of other software, but so far found nothing that offers any of the functions of Photoshop. So I am open to suggestions.
Logged

Bart_van_der_Wolf

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 8911
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2019, 10:37:45 am »

Hello everyone!

Currently I am using Photoshop exclusively for printing, because I have not found any other software that offers the functions of its print dialog. Specifically I am looking for software that can print manually selected parts out of a larger image, but not just automatically tiling for posters.

For example, the original image is 162 x 213 cm (64 x 84 inches), from which I need to print manually selected parts on DIN A4 paper which is  21 x 29.7 cm (8,268 x 11,693 inches). I could crop these parts out of the image with other software, but since I need to print several different parts that are meant to align with each other that would mean several extra steps and more difficulties them. Most programs also don't allows to set proper margins manually, don't offer to save these as convenient presets or cannot handle images of such large sizes well (if at all).

Many also fail to read virtual printer paper sizes from the print driver, which brings me to the next point:

When my Epson 3880 printer is set to borderless printing *without* upsizing the image then it virtually increases the paper size (think canvas size in PS). DIN A4 paper then increases to a virtual size of 30.69 x 21.98 cm. PS' then allows to use "Print Selected Area" to set print borders that fit DIN A4's original size and thus print borderless without using bad printer driver upsizing and without spilling much (if any) ink over the paper borders. Additionally some prints don't need content on the whole paper, so it's a quick way of keeping more space blank.

I looked into *lots* of other software, but so far found nothing that offers any of the functions of Photoshop. So I am open to suggestions.

Hi,

Have you looked at Qimage yet?
https://www.binartem.com/qimageone/

Cheers,
Bart
Logged
== If you do what you did, you'll get what you got. ==

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2019, 11:52:31 am »

The FREE Epson Print Layout allows you to 'virtually' crop a portion of the image like Photoshop and despite what their web site says, does support the 3880.
Open image, select "Crop", configure": Only that area prints through this substitute print driver from Epson and allows ABW while soft proofing your image!
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

jrsforums

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1246
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2019, 11:53:20 am »

Logged
John

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2019, 12:32:16 pm »

Yes, I looked at Qimage. It is a 32-bit program that cannot open these large files. When a tried with smaller files to find out about Qimage abilities I unfortunately did not succeed at doing what I needed due to the somewhat convoluted UI or due to the functions not being supported.
Logged

Bart_van_der_Wolf

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 8911
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2019, 12:47:01 pm »

Yes, I looked at Qimage. It is a 32-bit program that cannot open these large files. When a tried with smaller files to find out about Qimage abilities I unfortunately did not succeed at doing what I needed due to the somewhat convoluted UI or due to the functions not being supported.

Depending on the file type, there may be other size restrictions from the Operating System or File type. Besides, the print pipeline is 8-bit/channel so if that's the bottleneck, change to 8-b/ch mode first. Qimage dithers the output after resizing and Colorspace conversion, so it basically offers close to 9-bit/channel smooth gradients.
 
Did the files start that large, or did you upscale them first?

Qimage is also very good at upscaling.

Cheers,
Bart
« Last Edit: October 30, 2019, 12:51:30 pm by Bart_van_der_Wolf »
Logged
== If you do what you did, you'll get what you got. ==

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2019, 02:00:47 pm »

The files are upscaled via Topaz Gigapixel AI, which is superior to QImage. QImage cannot handle such large amounts of source data due to its 32-bit memory restrictions. 64 x 84 inches at 360 dpi is about 23040 x 30240 pixels, resulting in 1.993 gb of raw image data. QImage can only reserve a maximum of exactly 2 gb memory and needs some memory for its operation and other functions, despite (other) 32-bit programs being allowed to reserve up to 3 gb.

That being said, I did manage to get QImage to work using its own resizing and Page Edit -> Zoom function. In essence it does a crop, but with an interface closer to the Photoshop Print dialog. It's less precise in placement, due to the Zoom window being so small and the alternative crop window not allowing to zoom it, but it gets the job done.

Getting to the correct zoom ratio is somewhat convoluted, because QImage calls the image being shrinked to page size 1x zoom. So first I have to pull the zoom level until I get to the original DPI (72 dpi on my test image = 5x zoom). Then I have to apply the upsizing factor to the zoom level (1.42 x 5 = 7.1 in my test case). Next I can set print sizes and use the small zoom window to choose the right crop via mouse-dragging, somewhat similar to PS (but much smaller).

Because the result is just a crop out of the larger image QImage then is able to upsample that single page to 300/360 dpi (depending on printer) without running out of memory.

Would I use that as an alternative to Photoshop's "Preserve Details (2)" upsampling, even though PS also allows me to do all the proper measurements and calculations much more easily? Yes. Would I use that as an alternative to Gigapixel? No, I got spoiled.
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2019, 02:10:29 pm »

Besides, the print pipeline is 8-bit/channel so if that's the bottleneck, change to 8-b/ch mode first.
Not the print pipeline TO the 3880 from the Epson driver on Mac (not that it brings anything to the party). YMMV.
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2019, 03:40:21 pm »

These large images I am printing are only 24 bit (8 bit per channel) anyway. Their data/file size stems from their large dimensions.
Logged

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2019, 04:01:38 am »

I also tried "Epson Print Layout" before and still have it installed on my desktop. Its crops mode seems useless for my use case, because it resizes the image down to the paper size before any cropping happens. I did not find a way to load the image at full size and then place only a part of it on the paper. Did I miss something?
Logged

mcbroomf

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1412
    • Mike Broomfield
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2019, 04:33:21 am »

Did you look at Imageprint?  A new video on Photopxl shows a mural layout (~7 mins), and cropping at ~13 mins.  I think you can try it.  RED is the cheaper version, tho' still pricey.
https://photopxl.com/pxl-print-imageprint-video-2/
« Last Edit: October 31, 2019, 04:42:13 am by mcbroomf »
Logged

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2019, 05:18:12 am »

Thanks for the suggestion, it's well appreciated!

R.E.D. only comes with "Essential layout tools" and costs as much as 40 months of Adobe subscription (PS + LR). It offers a "Crop & Zoom" feature, but it does not look like it allows to just zoom in to 100% and then use a page-sized crop box. I would have to ask for the trial download to test that, but the price and fact that I would not make much use of the other features makes it not the most appealing alternative.
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2019, 11:45:43 am »

I also tried "Epson Print Layout" before and still have it installed on my desktop. Its crops mode seems useless for my use case, because it resizes the image down to the paper size before any cropping happens.
Nope, it can crop to size as well. Try again.  ;D
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #13 on: October 31, 2019, 12:20:34 pm »

Then be so kind and tell me how, because when I load an image into the application it is resized to the paper size. I can then crop a part out of it which again is resized to the paper size. I find no means of having my image show at 100% and then print a part out onto the paper without the application resizing anything. It also seems rather inconvenient having to crop out a part, then print, then undo, then crop the next part (with no alignment help around) and so on.
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2019, 02:46:05 pm »

Image Size>Crop. Not much different than PS.
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #15 on: October 31, 2019, 03:22:10 pm »

There is no "Image Size" here (Windows), but of there is "Crop Image". As mentioned this does not do what I need, so the Epson tool is no viable alternative.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2019, 03:25:24 pm by Timur_Born »
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #16 on: October 31, 2019, 04:08:37 pm »

There is no "Image Size" here (Windows), but of there is "Crop Image". As mentioned this does not do what I need, so the Epson tool is no viable alternative.
Well on this end, it crops and scales, so I’m not sure what else you desire and supposed you’re screwed and have to use Photoshop. Not sure why that’s a problem unless you don’t own a copy.....
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #17 on: October 31, 2019, 04:33:31 pm »

The main problem is that I am paying a monthly fee for strong software that I only use the print function off. Another problem is the total lack of proper support (no ticket system, "community support") and the print dialog being bugged for years already (workarounds exist). So despite me paying monthly I don't even get the benefit of good support.

Epson crop function automatically scales to page size. I don't want to use Epson's lower quality resampling, that's what I am using Gigapixel for. And the scale function is all mouse-dragging without any information of crop sizes or possibility to do fine adjustments. And in order to print several parts out of a big image you have to do repeated crops and undo, all without proper fine-control.
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20122
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #18 on: October 31, 2019, 04:40:43 pm »

Another problem is the total lack of proper support (no ticket system, "community support") and the print dialog being bugged for years already (workarounds exist). So despite me paying monthly I don't even get the benefit of good support.
Again no, there is all kinds of Adobe Photoshop support, several user to user forums and otherwise; need links?
https://helpx.adobe.com/support/photoshop.html
https://community.adobe.com/t5/Photoshop/bd-p/photoshop
https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family
https://www.adobe.com/products/request-consultation/creative-cloud.html
You're not trying but fine; I'm done attempting to help you.  ;)


"There are times in life when, instead of complaining, you do something about your complaints" - Rita Dove
Logged
Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management" on pluralsight.com

Timur_Born

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 54
Re: Alternative for Photoshop's Print dialog?
« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2019, 04:46:01 pm »

User to user forums are not proper support. Proper support is when you get backtracking for a reported problem, preferably with a ticket number and either e-mail or support form contacts.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 5   Go Up