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Author Topic: Is Epson cheating with their ICC profiles for the new SC-P75XX/95XX printers?  (Read 804 times)

JRSmit

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    • Jan R. Smit Fine Art Printing Specialist

I have read several times now that owners of a SC-P75xx like the prints better than from f.i. a SC-P5000 using the same paper. Better like more vibrant, better details, etc
This confused me, as i did not notice such differences, both in viewing and in measurements. But i use by default my own produced ICC profiles.

So my question was, knowing how one can shape behaviour of ICC profiles very easily with certain parameters, if there was something with the canned Epson profiles.

When soft-proofing with profiles of Epson, in this case for Legacy Baryta, i noticed quite strong changes in the histogram, much more pronounced that with my own profiles, or other canned profiles for similar papers.
Based on the file size i could tell which had CxF data enclosed.

So i decided to use Babelcolor Patchtool to extract data from the Epson provided and own profiles.

CxF data, in essence the recording of the profiling tool used, its settings, and measured spectral data.
Not all profiles have these included, but the Epson canned ICC profiles for Legacy Baryta for one do, both for the SC-P7000/9000 and for the SC-P75xx/95xx

The really interesting part is the Profile Settings section, see the two attached text files.
The really interesting parameters in that section are:

EPSON_SC-P9500_7500_LegacyBaryta:
    <Saturation>90</Saturation>
    <UseMediaSmoothness>0</UseMediaSmoothness>
    <SmoothnessMedianOverall>-1</SmoothnessMedianOverall>
    <Smoothness>50</Smoothness>
    <Contrast>90</Contrast>
    <NeutralizeGray>75</NeutralizeGray>


SC-P9000_P7000_Series_LLK LegacyBaryta_PK_v1:
    <Saturation>55</Saturation>
    <Smoothness>50</Smoothness>
    <Contrast>50</Contrast>
    <NeutralizeGray>0</NeutralizeGray>

So for the SC-P75xx/95xx Epson has  seriously pushed Saturation, as is Contrast.

For me this could well be the cause why prints on Legacy Baryta with the SC-P74xx/95xx are more vibrant etc.

Hence my question: Is Epson cheating with their ICC profiles for the new SC-P75XX/95XX printers?

The other questions i have:
- Why does Epson use such different settings for these parameters?
- How can one measure the effects? (not all profiles have CxF data enclosed)
- What is the correct setting for these parameters? ( i use the default settings, say the neutral settings)


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Jan R. Smit

digitaldog

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What does the copyright tag for the profiles state?
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Andrew Rodney
Author “Color Management for Photographers"

JRSmit

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    • Jan R. Smit Fine Art Printing Specialist

Copyright X-Rite , Inc
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Jan R. Smit

digitaldog

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Good (i1Profiler, built in the US, better than Epson Seiko profiles). Cheating? So someone just altered the settings, by mistake or on purpose, I can't say.
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Andrew Rodney
Author “Color Management for Photographers"

JRSmit

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I checked the dates, and they are the same as the download of the driver combo exe from Epson USA. This is on my sandbox computer. On my test computer i only have the EU driver exe installed, and i have different profiles, most are stripped from the CxF data as they are much smaller in size : 742KByte. And these are from Epson: Copyright(C) SEIKO EPSON CORP. 2019
Also ICC profiles get downloaded when registering a media type with Epson Media Installer, some of these profiles are also have copyright X-Rite, and do contain CxF data.
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Jan R. Smit

Doug Gray

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I have read several times now that owners of a SC-P75xx like the prints better than from f.i. a SC-P5000 using the same paper. Better like more vibrant, better details, etc
This confused me, as i did not notice such differences, both in viewing and in measurements. But i use by default my own produced ICC profiles.

So my question was, knowing how one can shape behaviour of ICC profiles very easily with certain parameters, if there was something with the canned Epson profiles.

When soft-proofing with profiles of Epson, in this case for Legacy Baryta, i noticed quite strong changes in the histogram, much more pronounced that with my own profiles, or other canned profiles for similar papers.
Based on the file size i could tell which had CxF data enclosed.

So i decided to use Babelcolor Patchtool to extract data from the Epson provided and own profiles.

CxF data, in essence the recording of the profiling tool used, its settings, and measured spectral data.
Not all profiles have these included, but the Epson canned ICC profiles for Legacy Baryta for one do, both for the SC-P7000/9000 and for the SC-P75xx/95xx

The really interesting part is the Profile Settings section, see the two attached text files.
The really interesting parameters in that section are:

EPSON_SC-P9500_7500_LegacyBaryta:
    <Saturation>90</Saturation>
    <UseMediaSmoothness>0</UseMediaSmoothness>
    <SmoothnessMedianOverall>-1</SmoothnessMedianOverall>
    <Smoothness>50</Smoothness>
    <Contrast>90</Contrast>
    <NeutralizeGray>75</NeutralizeGray>


SC-P9000_P7000_Series_LLK LegacyBaryta_PK_v1:
    <Saturation>55</Saturation>
    <Smoothness>50</Smoothness>
    <Contrast>50</Contrast>
    <NeutralizeGray>0</NeutralizeGray>

So for the SC-P75xx/95xx Epson has  seriously pushed Saturation, as is Contrast.

For me this could well be the cause why prints on Legacy Baryta with the SC-P74xx/95xx are more vibrant etc.

Hence my question: Is Epson cheating with their ICC profiles for the new SC-P75XX/95XX printers?

The other questions i have:
- Why does Epson use such different settings for these parameters?
- How can one measure the effects? (not all profiles have CxF data enclosed)
- What is the correct setting for these parameters? ( i use the default settings, say the neutral settings)

No. They aren't cheating. These settings do not affect Relative or Absolute Intent and these are the only ones the ICC specifies any detail on. Perceptual is up to the OEM or profile maker. Apparently they have decided people like more contrast, vibrance, and saturation. And most people print with Perceptual. However, if they are pushing these qualities as if they were some characteristic of the printer, that's just marketing nonsense.

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Rand47

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Jan,

You have my print from the 7570 right there in your studio, made w/ the Epson OEM ICC profile.  Since it is of Bill Atkinson’s printer evaluation file, I did ZERO soft proofing and relative rendering intent in LR Print Module.

What do you see, yourself, “visually” as compared to prints from your own profiles?  I sent you a link to the Atkinson file.  For myself, I printed this file from my SC P5000 with a good quality custom profile, and from my SC P7570 with the OEM Epson ICC profile.  Hung them side by side on my grey magnetic wall, illuminated with 4700k Solux lamps.  The prints were both excellent.  As I posted previously the 7570 print had better dMax, better detail into the deep shadows, slightly smoother tonal transitions, and over all a very slightly more 3d look.  All of this my visual impression only, after carefully studying the two prints over several days.  To the average viewer I would guess that they’d see little difference.  The 7570 print was not “more saturated” nor was it “more contrasty.”

Rand
« Last Edit: July 09, 2020, 12:33:23 am by Rand47 »
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Rand Scott Adams

Mick Sang

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They aren't cheating. These settings do not affect Relative or Absolute Intent and these are the only ones the ICC specifies any detail on. Perceptual is up to the OEM or profile maker.

In fact, I have seen similar alterations in Hahnemuhle profiles for the Perceptual Intent. It's anyone's game for the Perceptual Intent. Personally, I print with the rendering intent which provides the best visual result. Half the time it's Rel Col and the other half Perceptual. I check Saturation on occasion. But, have yet to discover any real benefit.

Mick
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Mick Sang

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- What is the correct setting for these parameters? ( i use the default settings, say the neutral settings)

I use the "neutral" or default, central settings for the perceptual intent as well, Jan.  It's personal preference, of course. But,  the way I see it, if I want more contrast, saturation etc., I'll add it in post. Otherwise, I want to see the basic difference between Rel Col and perceptual before printing without a set of built in arbitrary adjustments muddying the waters for the perceptual intent.

Mick
« Last Edit: July 14, 2020, 10:59:24 pm by Mick Sang »
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Lessbones

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I use the "neutral" or default, central settings for the perceptual intent as well, Jan.  It's personal preference, of course. But,  the way I see it, if I want more contrast, saturation etc., I'll add it in post. Otherwise, I want to see the basic difference between Rel Col and perceptual before printing without a set of built in arbitrary adjustments muddying the waters for the perceptual intent.

Mick

The "perceptual" rendering intent is a totally subjective thing.  If you want to see the print as accurately as possible to the colorimetric values that are displayed on your screen, don't use perceptual.  There can be no muddying of waters when there is no defined specification--  if you make your own profiles, you can choose to emphasize whatever you want for that rendering intent.  Every different profiling application will generate perceptual in a completely different way.  Perceptual is equivalent to "looks like" as opposed to "mathematically equal".  Kind of like Pepsi saying that Coca-Cola is cheating because their cola doesn't taste the same.
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