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Author Topic: Method to find best media setting for third party papers  (Read 523 times)

MichaelKoerner

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Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« on: May 18, 2022, 12:37:19 pm »

I use an old, but trustworthy Epson SP7800 and like to experiment with different papers.

Many newer papers come without recommendations concerning media setting for that old printer. Besides that, most fine art papers from third party vendors come with the same recommendations: Epson Enhanced Matte for matte papers, Premium Photo Glossy or Lustre for satin/gloss papers. Can this always be the best choice?

So I started to evaluate different media settings to get max. density, largest gamut possible.

I started with visual comparisons of test images first, then moved on to Scott Martin's media selection chart., measuring it's primaries in LAB, putting those into an excel sheet, comparing them with regard to gamut/D max (by looking at maximum LAB values).

Now I got the idea to print targets with the smallest amount possible in i1Profiler (56 patches) and create "rough" ICC profiles for every media setting.

My considerations:
- those targets can get measured rather quickly
- the resulting Profiles can be compared in Color Sync utility "visually" or in Color Think Pro mathematically.

Does that approach make sense? Are there weak points I don't see? Or has someone a better way to determine the best media setting for a given printer/ink/paper combination?

Thanks and best regards,
Michael

MichaelKoerner

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Re: Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2022, 03:01:13 pm »

Franz Herbert from basICColor answered my question with "Yes, that approach makes sense".

First couple of real life tests show good results, too: ICC profiles with (little, but noticeable) larger gamut compared to recommended media settings (Photolux Lorenzo Canvas, Canson Baryta Photographique II).

nirpat89

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Re: Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2022, 06:11:30 pm »

Hi, Michael:

So what was the new optimized media setting for CBP II, for example?

:Niranjan.
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Gerd_Peters

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Re: Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2022, 03:59:21 am »

Hello Michael,

that would mean that Epson must have stored things like max. density, max. chroma or similar in the media settings. Are you sure about that? But maybe I have not understood your contribution correctly.

Greetings Gerd
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MichaelKoerner

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Re: Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2022, 05:13:38 pm »

So what was the new optimized media setting for CBP II, for example?

Hi Niranjan, sorry, I will have to report back a little later, I'm on the road.

MichaelKoerner

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Re: Method to find best media setting for third party papers
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2022, 06:00:00 pm »

that would mean that Epson must have stored things like max. density, max. chroma or similar in the media settings.

Hi Gerd,

to answer your question in short: No, media settings don't store density, chroma etc, they define them :-)

For the long version of my answer, let me explain my understanding of ideal printer configuration:

First, you calibrate, that is to bring the device to a defined state. With my Epson printers, I do that by 1) nozzle checks, 2) print head alignments and 3) Epson ColorBase.

Second, you linearize, that is to control the ink load per channel in a way to get (for example) 10% grey on paper when there is 10% grey in your file. When using a RIP (like EFI Fiery, Onyx or the like), you can do that step within that software.

Third, you profile, that is to measure the deviations of that calibrated, linearized system. Yes, the resulting ICC profile helps to correct those deviations, but basically it just describes the system.

Now, as most if us don't use a RIP to run our RGB printers, the only way to achieve step 2 (linearization) is to select the media setting which delivers the best, most neutral results.

But media settings are "black boxes", we can't read their parameters directly as we can with the settings of a RIP software.

That's why I started to search for the most efficient way to select the proper media setting for a given printer/ink/paper combination.

Greetings, Michael
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