Book Printing

Locked Black and white printing help

Anyone have suggestions on how to get ‘true’ black and white quality? My first book was purple, the second one was darker, still purple….

Is there an ICC profile I need to fit the Epson 5000? Or, should I print elsewhere for black and white? The color images turned out fine in another book, but the black and white is unacceptable.

Why doesn’t blurb cater to the black and white photographer and use K3 inks or quadtone, or provide profiles…???

Posted by
speters
Jul 31, 2007 7:24am PDT
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speters
 

Don’t have an answer. Just want to add my black-and-white turned out purple too. :(
Very disappointing.
I’d even be OK with a little sepia if pure black and white is not available, but purple… too bad.

Posted by
earlyadopter
Jul 31, 2007 9:20am PDT
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earlyadopter
 

Thanks for posting….at least it’s not me…and perhaps if enough of us voice our complaints, blurb will get their act together…

Posted by
speters
Jul 31, 2007 10:26am PDT
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speters
 

Don’t forget that the inks are metameric.   Look at that purple book in daylight conditions and it will look more neutral.   Likewise, books printed too green will look very green under daylight.   I had the same book printed both too green and too purple, so on top of the metamerism you have to add that the printing shop isn’t calibrating the equipment frequently enough.

I fully support the idea that Blurb consider a K3 or other solution.   Blurb does market their products and services to professionals who demand the best and most consistent output for themselves and their clients.

Posted by
Kiddawg
Aug 1, 2007 11:42am PDT
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Kiddawg
 

Mine is purple no matter under what light I’m looking at it.

It’s just so dissapointing to upload images with no color information in them and get them printed with midtones all purple as there is no such thing as black-and-white photography.

Posted by
earlyadopter
Aug 1, 2007 11:56am PDT
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earlyadopter
 

Booksmart converts all color files to sRGB, no matter what the source profile.  I presume they do this with greyscale as well, so in fact there would be color information in your files.   I would think the printer is using the color inks (and not just the black), not matter if the file were greyscale.

I have been converting my greyscale to duo or tritone, then converting that to sRGB.   This seemed to me the best approximation to classic offset duotone in the Blurb context, and it takes the guess work out of how the printer would interperet the colorless greyscale file.  Since my monitor is calibrated, I then know any discrepancies are on the side of printing miscalibration; or metamerism if the same book looks different under different light sources.  I believe these recent complaints of purple images are owing to infrequent calibration, because if anything my earlier tests were on the green side, not magenta.

Posted by
Kiddawg
Aug 1, 2007 1:18pm PDT
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Kiddawg
 

I agree that quality of black and white pictures is poor, with magenta cast or green cast in some cases (even in the same book). If BLURB converts all files into sRGB. Suggestions to improve b&w would be most welcome.

Posted by
sjahjah
Aug 2, 2007 5:29am PDT
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sjahjah
 

I too have had problems with a black and white image printing magenta in my Blurb book.  What is interesting is that the old black and white family photos that scanned printed just fine.  While the black and whiite print of my own that I scanned was magenta.  I’m guessing that the old prints looked fine because they had a slight sepia cast. 

Posted by
barst
Aug 6, 2007 12:12pm PDT
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barst
 

This is disappointing. I wanted to create a black and white photo album

:(

I hope they look into fixing this so people can work with black and white images here.

Posted by
kimberlyjt
Nov 11, 2007 10:33am PDT
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kimberlyjt
 

Hi folks, a lot of our users have very good results with black and white imagery.  Keeping grayscale images neutral is one of the biggest challenges with CMYK digital offset printing.  As barst mentions above, when printing images that have a built-in cast like sepia, a color press has an easier time getting it right..plus a cast of one or two points may not be noticeable in a sepia image where with a neutral image it may show.

 Kimberly, my recommendation is to try a test book with some of your b&w images and stick with our standard or large format product, which tend to reproduce a bit more neutral.

Best,

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Nov 11, 2007 11:33am PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

speters,

Only if you conduct a search query on topic of “ICC profile”, I can assure you that you will be likely to come up with many forum discussion on the topic related to ICC profile fairly often lately.

Hope that helps and good luck.

Posted by
brianbonitz
Nov 12, 2007 12:15am PDT
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brianbonitz
 

speters,

FYI, have a look at most recent discussion, if you conducted this venue of search query.

Here,
http://forums.blurb.com/forums/2/topics/821

Posted by
brianbonitz
Nov 12, 2007 12:18am PDT
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brianbonitz
 

Hi!

Thought i’d repost on this subject

I’ve found some images to come out darker than profiled in my computer, monitor, and printer. I’m not sure what causes this, but a few prints that come out bright and even slightly over exposed can come out dark in a blurb book. Mind you my monitor, printer etc are perfectly calibrated and profiled. It seems if your image appears darker in blurb’s preview mood then it will print that way. You can compare a dark image in preview and then in cs or lightroom, and sometimes blurb’s preview will be darker. So just increase exposure slightly say 1/3 to 2/3 stops. Also try increasing fill lite, decrease shadows all very slightly. I find this corrects the darkness in images in preview. If it looks right in preview it will look right in the book. This darkness in photographs usually apears if at all in b&w or darkly shadowed images. It also helps to keep previous books that din’t turn out right so you know how to adjust the next copy. It usually takes me 1 or 2 off copies before i get coloring right, but then they look great. You can then send your off colored books back in for credit for credit or replacement, but specify you want a replacement with your current upload not the previous off colored one.

Posted by
bldduck
Nov 14, 2007 8:40am PDT
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bldduck
 

I haven’t done a Blurb book since the one I posted about in August where I had a problem with one B&W image printing magenta.  I have clicked on the links mentioned, but I am now contempating doing a book which will consist of all black and white photos, so I want to make sure I have the very latest info on profiles, etc. 

I seem to remember from the time that I printed my book (11/06-2/07) that the softcover books were done on a different press than the hardcovers and that the dust jackets were done on yet a different press.  Is this still the case?  If so, where is the best place to find the profiles for the different presses?

Thanks  

Posted by
barst
Dec 2, 2007 12:44pm PDT
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barst
 

By the way, I did successfully download the Indigo HP 5000 semimatte profile, but am wondering if this applies only to hardcover or to softcover as well.

Posted by
barst
Dec 2, 2007 1:26pm PDT
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barst
 

Hi Barst, all Blurb book pages are printed on Indigo except for 7×7 products.

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 3, 2007 12:09am PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

My first book was a 13×11. The B&W pictures had a very subtle magenta cast.  The dust jacket pictures had a strong green cast. The color pictures were all perfect.

 Pictures at:

http://forums.blurb.com/forums/5/topics/1352#posts-6331

 

Posted by
sergiolfr
Dec 3, 2007 6:21am PDT
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sergiolfr
 

Thanks for the info Bruce. 

What about the dust jackets? When I did my book, I ordered quite a few softcovers, but, but only a couple of hardcovers.  I never was satisfied with the color on the dustjacket.  The color was really off, and didn’t look anything like the inside pages.  I believe i was told that a different press was used for the covers.  Is that still the case?

Posted by
barst
Dec 3, 2007 8:38am PDT
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barst
 

The dust jackets and covers are done on a couple of different output devices.  Depending upon where your book is printed, dust jackets for standard and large format books are done on a Xeikon 6000 press or an HP Z6100 ink jet.  Soft covers are done on the Xerox iGen3 as are the dust jackets for 7×7 books.

The reason for all of this is that the Indigo has a maximum sheet size of 12×18.  

Best,

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 3, 2007 8:49am PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

So I guess that means that their is no such thing as a profile for the printer of the dustjackets. 

When I do my next book, I would be very hesitant to do a harcover then because I never thought the dustcovers successfully reproduced the color in the way that the book pages did.  It was pretty frustrating because the pages of the books themselves looked so good.  I guess I will stick with the softcover.

Posted by
barst
Dec 5, 2007 8:54pm PDT
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barst
 

Hi Barst, Blurb does not support color management per se.  The HP profile has been provided by a third party who is a Blurb user.  We do use the Indigo as our "standard" that we match to regardless of cover output device but because of the differences in technology (digital offset vs .dry ink vs. electrophotographic vs. inkjet) there are some visable differences.

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 6, 2007 8:43am PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

Thanks Bruce.  At least I will know a lot more about reproducing color then when I did my first book.

Posted by
barst
Dec 6, 2007 5:17pm PDT
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barst
 

Specifically, this is for Bruce…but other informed members have at it.

I’m fairly unsophisticated about digital. Im a classical black and white photographer who worked with Ansel Adams in the 80s. Now I want to reproduce my black and white work from then until now. Some of my images are 4×5 negs scanned into PS CS3.

Now, if I turn them to grayscale, the machine turns them back in to RGB? How do i set the best profile for these images? Should I just make them all RGB and convert to the profile HP indigo press 5000 semimatte? What specific settings should I be using…

If someone could walk me through how to set these black and white images for an 11×13 book (which I think would look best), id appreciate it much!

Posted by
chdant
Dec 6, 2007 7:31pm PDT
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chdant
 

Hi Christopher.  printing scanned images presents some issues in addition to color/tone.  If you worked with Ansel, I’m assuming some of the files may also be from black and white prints?  Either way, negs or prints, you may want to experiment with some different sharpening values before you put your final book together.  You will likely get some suggestions from the forums here from others that have done similar projects so I’ll leave that open.

Regarding profiles, the thing to keep in mind is that the Indigo presses are CMYK devices and need to create your black and white imagery using 4-color.  I’ve heard different opinions on if it’s best to save out as  grayscale or RGB.  Here’s my recommendation to you.  The standard 10×8 books are all done on the Indigo.  You can do a soft cover standard book of 40 pages for $19.95.  Try some variations on your images in the test book, tracking your settings page by page.  Once you get your test book back you should have a good idea of what is working best.

Good luck with your project!  FYI, I was running the imaging labs at Corbis when we did the deal with the Ansel Adams Trust in the mid 90"s.  Still the most fascinating project I’ve ever worked on.

Best,

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 6, 2007 11:46pm PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

Thanks bruce-actually they are a combination of 4×5 and 2.5 square negs scanned in as greyscale. The other (about half) are from a Nikon D80 10.1 mpix and saved in PS CS3 as greyscale.
good suggestion-<del>ill do 40 pp on smaller book and try differing settings on the images both scanned and true digital. i think it’s a crapshoot</del>-many of my previous stuff done on lightjet was always too warm (looked like it was toned in selinium toner), and i didnt like it. i prefer neutral tones. one of my friends, john sexton, has done several books of his large format stuff on offset with stunning results of course. i wish i could achieve that level of clarity….you’re working on it, right?
also curious as to why you suggest sharpening values—not sure what that means or why i would want to do that. the images on my mac 30 inch calibrated monitor is VERY clean.

Also, any suggestions on how to image for the dust jacket—i usually put my title in photoshop so i can place the tilte where i want it, shadow it, etc. (see my Europe 2007 example). other suggestions are most welcome!

Posted by
chdant
Dec 7, 2007 4:45pm PDT
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chdant
 

I’m rather dissapointed that I have not had anyone respond to these posts on black and white printing lately—this is a HUGE problem from I can figure out. There’s much variability and so many different possible settings of photos in Photoshop for this system.

I plan to do extensive tests with the system using differing profiles and even duotones to see how the Indigo responds. I cannot understand why Blurb folks don’t know this information, as it seems pretty basic, but I have calls into HP and other local digital houses to see if I can get some information on this issue. But in the meantime, the users of this system remain in the dark on some much-needed instructions on how to best profile their black and whites before printing books.

I’ll post my results when I finish all the tests.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 10, 2007 5:31pm PDT
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chdant
 

Hi Christopher,  we’re not the experts on Photoshop, which as you know has tons of settings and lots of print functionality.  There are lots of Blurb users that have created many black and white books so hoping that those users can chime in for you.  They can give you the best information of what has worked for them.

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 11, 2007 5:37am PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

Thanks Bruce.
I just sent in a test book. On my monitor, I noticed that the best looking black and white images came with sRGB space and convert to the Indigo5000 profile. Using greyscale looked too dark and contrasty, and Adobe RGB profiles tend to make the photo magenta. The proof will be in the print.
By the way, I was told by someone out there that you send your files to many different facilities to print on the Indigo5000-<del>is that true or is it just one facility. Also, they mentioned the paper weight is the lightest of most of them</del>-can you use heavier papers? If you use varying facilities, it wont matter whether we test, as we will get all different results.

Also, I was hoping you would explain why you suggested sharpening on my scanned images. It didn’t make any sense to me.
Thanks, CHris

Posted by
chdant
Dec 11, 2007 11:14am PDT
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chdant
 

Hi Chris, on the sharpening I’ve just noticed that some scanned files seemed soft as compared to direct camera files. I don’t have any data on this, just a suggestion as I know scanners generally apply some sort of sharpening in the process.
We do indeed use multiple print partners. Which one your books comes from is primarily determined by your location but other factors like the type of book you choose and the current load at each printer in the network also may play a role. All of our printers use exactly the same hardware and all North American printers use the exact same paper.
We are looking at a group of new products for 2008, paper choices being one of them. Look for new offerings in the first half of the year.
—bw

Posted by
bruce
Dec 11, 2007 1:36pm PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

Looking forward to Chris’s test results.

Posted by
jasperguy
Dec 13, 2007 9:40am PDT
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jasperguy
 

Regarding sharpening;  both scanned and digital camera files will be soft and require some sharpening.  The confusion may be in some of the default sharpening that may be preset in  digital cameras for jpegs, Adobe Camera Raw  preferences,  or in the scanning software. 

You should be able to clear out the sharpening presets and totally control the sharpening in Photoshop.  Though Camera Raw in Photoshop CS3 has much greater control of sharpening than earlier versions and should be investigated too.  For more than you ever wanted to know about sharpening, the late Bruce Frasier literaly wrote the book about it.  It is called Real World Image Sharpening with Adobe Photoshop CS2.

That said, I don’t believe that sharpening values are anywhere near the problem that getting the correct profile for printing black and white images images without a color cast on Blurb is.   I am nowhere near the production phase of the black and white book yet,  but I too am very worried about it after the magenta images i had in my mostly color last book. 

Chdant,  you may want to also check the forums on Dpreview and Flickr on this. Their are many topics on Blurb, profiles, etc.  

Posted by
barst
Dec 14, 2007 8:11am PDT
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barst
 

This site http://www.pixelgenius.com/ offers some great plug ins for Photoshop: some great color balancing, black and white and sharpening routines. Their sharpening plug in is one of the best in the business – there is a halftone option for sharpening. Two of the six original members passed away this year. I don’t know waht the future holds for Pixelgenius, but I use the plugings in Photoshop CS2 and they have been rewritten for CS3. I use Silverfast software when scanning negatives. I have been working in digital darkroom for six years. I spent a week with Jon Cone and his staff working with quadtone- <font size="2">Piezography</font> pigment inks. For my market I have been pretty happy printing black and white with the Quadtone RIP and Epson inks on a 2400 printer. I’ve accepted the fact that (for me) the success of my black and white printing is more driven by my memory of working in chemical darkrooms back in the 80’s and the highs and lows I experience after viewing the works of someone like John Sexton in a gallery than by the reaction of my audience. I am not satisfied but "they" love it. My current projects include some black and white images of a Passion procession in Mexico along with some high contrast images of clowns and "stilt walkers". I keep The Edge of Time by Mariana Yampolsky on my lap as a benchmark. Have my first couple of attempts with Blurb accomplished my dreams? No. But the recipients of these drafts are getting Christmas gifts they will love. And I will keep trying. Black and white printing in the digital age is a work in progress. But with the advent of new papers and a company like Blub what a great work in progress. I hope that sometime in 2008 I will have fine tuned my Blurb efforts into commercially viable editions.

Posted by
jegan414
Dec 14, 2007 11:32am PDT
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jegan414
 

Sharpening isn’t required on my photographs. The accutance and edge sharpness on a 4×5 neg scanned at 2400 dpi is as sharp as a tack, and the digital images the same from my 15MP camera. Sharpening pixelates the image and I do not use it unless I am printing on a lightjet and I use the unsharp mask setting. If you have PS CS3 you dont need this 3rd party stuff-its a waste of money. Im familiar with the forums…much of this is misinformation as it’s posted by amateurs who don’t bother testing.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 14, 2007 11:24pm PDT
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chdant
 

...and besides, this is a topic about BLACK AND WHITE PRINTING.

jasperguy, i’ll be posting my results as soon as the test books get mailed to me…interesting results i think.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 14, 2007 11:25pm PDT
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chdant
 

I have extensive experience calibrating multiple presses and I have been exhaustively trained and advised in color management as it relates to monitor profiling, press profiling and calibration, etc.

To qualify myself, I am responsible maintaining color calibration and profiling for 6 printers in our facility.

Among other things, we do highly specialized prints for high profile photographers and corporations so I’ll not bother dropping names as it serves no purpose in this context.

I’d like to strongly echo the statement that neutral grays from shadows through the highlights can be a bear to achieve using CMYK inks, but I may go into a little bit of detail WHY that is hard to do.

I realize Blurb doesn’t honor color profiles and i’m a little disappointed about that but for the price—I’ll not be so worried about it.
I’m not going to beat a dead horse on this as I saw the thread/argument over at dgrin about this. So, enough said about that.

Further to that, a CMYK profile is best generated after the machine had been properly calibrated. Proper calibration will bring the machine to a repeatable standard on each of the color channels. A profile is dependent on many things being unchanged – hardware, ink, substrate surface tension, even temp. and humidity in the production house.

It’s not metamerism causing the gray to print purple, red, green. It’s lack of maintaining press calibration.
I’ll assume Blurb’s RIP first assigns sRGB to any RGB image file that comes in, then converts to some canned CMYK destination profile. Unless this CMYK profile was built from THAT machine—and THAT machine has been optimally calibrated, you will always be aiming at a moving target.

Once the profile is generated, it will know how to mix the colors to achieve all the specific gray values.
And, of course, the eye is most sensitive to spotting color casts in grays.

As far as things looking sharp on an LCD monitor, yeah. They’re going to look crisp on an LCD. They can give a false sense of how sharp images are.

All digital cameras shooting RAW mode need to have sharpening applied due to the edge interpretation during the de-mosaic process.
I don’t know much about sharpening images from flatbed scanners. We use a drum scanner and we sharpen our drum scans.

Sharpening is important for printing because some printing processes will soften the image as well.

Complaints aside, I’m glad a company like Blurb exists and am anxiously awaiting my books to arrive, too. They seem committed to doing a good job and I have no doubt they’ll get their color work streamlined in the future.

Posted by
flexoffset
Dec 16, 2007 2:11pm PDT
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flexoffset
 

Hi Flex,

Thanks for this post.  It is consistent with my experience printing BW with Blurb, and everybody would be well served to read it.

I would like to make one clarification:

You are absolutely correct about calibration and the "moving target."  Still, perfect calibration (if it existed) would not change that fact that the inks are indeed metameric.  The greys in Blurb books will appear different under varying light sources (color images are much more forgiving).  I have no complaints about this, for the price.  But it should be clearly understood by those who would venture forth into printing BW with CMYK printers. 

Posted by
Kiddawg
Dec 17, 2007 12:11am PDT
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Kiddawg
 

“Experts” aside, I disagree with some of this post, and as a photographer who has published offset books, sharpening is not required on most of my work, and in fact, sharpening degrades the image esp. because most folks don’t understand how to use it.

My test book is nearly done, so I;ll post my results of what i find on the Indigo 5000 for my new black and white book.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 17, 2007 10:10pm PDT
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chdant
 

Bruce et al,
I have just gotten my test black and white book back. It was very revealing. Essentially, what it showed is that while greyscale profiles were completely neutral, compared with RBG images, they were far too contrasty and blocked up on the indigo. The best results were with sRGB profile and converting it to the Indigo5000 semimatte profile, although there’s just a HINT of sepia tone, but really not objectionable. In my black and white printing with Ansel Adams, we strove for such a result, as prints from our process were often a bit cool (greenish) in tone and selenium toning really knocked that back. But the sRGB/Indigo results really were open and expansive even in the shadows, the best result. These results were found whether from a digital 10.1 MP digital camera or a scanned 8×10 or 4×5 neg.

Hope this helps others!! Im ready to put together my 100 page retrospective of my printing from 1980 to today.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 19, 2007 11:32pm PDT
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chdant
 

Thanks for the feedback Chris…and I’m sure there will lots of folks that will benefit from your research.

Best,

—bw 

Posted by
bruce
Dec 20, 2007 4:10pm PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

After spending about a week organizing my photos and then entering them into the blurb software I decided to do a proof print. The color proof when printed on my Canon S9000 printer looked pretty close to what I was getting on Photo Paper Plus Glossy. When I printed a BW (looks fine in preview mode with the software) the proof printed on my S9000 was extremely light- just grays and no blacks. If this is what I am seeing for a proof then what would I get back with the printed book? I haven’t read anything on this forum about BW proofing looking too light (extremely light and washed out). I am dissapointed that there are other issues as well with BW that are mentioned on this forum- purple and/or magenta casts. Any feedback? Thanks.

Posted by
sculptor999
Dec 21, 2007 1:32pm PDT
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sculptor999
 

Okay everyone- I solved my problem. Very simple-  my print head was clogged which resulted in the very light proof print. I ran a head cleaning cycle and that fixed the problem.

Posted by
sculptor999
Dec 21, 2007 2:13pm PDT
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sculptor999
 

Sculptor999-you need to read my input on test book above about magenta casts. Your photographs have to be profiled correctly with the indigo5000 PPD and sRGB for printing on the indigo…magenta casts can result from incorrect profiling (eg, using the Adobe RGB 1998 profile will do that). Proofing on a Cannon printer wont give you the same result you get with the Indigo. You have to soft proof on a calibrated monitor and do a test book on the Indigo to truly understand what you’re getting. Take a look at bit of a test book i did:
http://www.blurb.com/images/uploads/catalog/57/149457/143759-49c0eea9a8b7a26e0ecc85ee757ae686.pdf

Posted by
chdant
Dec 21, 2007 4:58pm PDT
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chdant
 

Well I spoke too soon (see my previous two posts). Yes my print head was clogged and when I printed out of Photoshop after the head cleaning I had a perfect print. I had assumed that was the reason for the poor output on the proof print. When I tried again after the previous post I still had the same problem of a very washed out BW print with the proof print. I tried Photoshop again and my print was fine. In conclusion something IS WRONG with blurg. Anyone else with this problem?

Posted by
sculptor999
Dec 21, 2007 5:02pm PDT
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sculptor999
 

What is “Blurg”?
Nothing is wrong with the Indigo. It’s your settings, which you don’t seem to understand. Read the postings on here. You might also might want to just go to another online book maker like Lulu.

Posted by
chdant
Dec 22, 2007 5:07pm PDT
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chdant
 

Well Chris I checked out your link and it is clear that the sRGB converted to Indigo 5000 semi-matte profile is best. How do I import the Indigo profile into Photoshop CS. I figured out how to convert my grayscale to sRGB but how do I get the Indigo Profile into the right place in Photoshop CS? Any info or links to how to do this will be greatly appreciated.  Len

Posted by
sculptor999
Jan 7, 2008 3:10pm PDT
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sculptor999
 

Just got back my first Blurb. All Grayscale images. Dust Jacket looks superb.
Images inside look terrible. I was not expecting neutral, but these images have purple and green- on the same image- and with very distinct
blotches of each. The telltale is a page with an image of just solid gray.
It has distinct ares of green, and purple.
I am very disappointed in this. For the price, the quality should be much better,
which it seems people are getting with color images.
DOES ANYONE ANYWHERE PRINT WITH JUST BLACK?

Posted by
ridgemont
Jan 17, 2008 2:25am PDT
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ridgemont
 

sculptor and edgemont:
do a search on blurb for the indigo5000 profile and it will give you a link to download.

you CAN NOT get any images in black and white to come out decent on the indigo if you profile them for greyscale or really any other profile—you have to use the indigo profile and know how to convert your images properly if you’re going to get decent results.

i wish you guys luck.

Posted by
chdant
Jan 19, 2008 10:07am PDT
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chdant
 

Thanks chdant. One thing I don’t get- Blurb instructs you to provide images with no profile, yes? Do you send the images with one anyway?
I can see why the profile could be important for color, but my images are
B&W. I sent them as untagged grayscale, but got the results mentioned above.
I did not have the contrast issues you mentioned, but the print color….. HOW did you get
‘completely neutral’? As I see it, I should try: converting them back to RGB (with the Indigo profile?), let go of wanting neutral gray,and give them a bit of brown or something. Perhaps the test book would clear things up….

This all reminds me of printing B&W on my 2200 before I had Quad Tone RIP.
Trying for a neutral gray tone with monochrome images of any kind (metamerism aside) was completely futile, and I understand that. But this doesn’t encourage me about the prospects for achieving that with Blurb.
Funny thing is, the dust jacket of my book looks absolutely super, and it’s just black ink (I louped it)
Bruce, can’t Blurb source a printer for doing the pages this way?

Posted by
ridgemont
Jan 22, 2008 1:04pm PDT
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ridgemont
 

Hi ridgemont, your dustjackets are done on a 6-color ink jet device due to the size constraints of the Indigo press. While it would be great to offer that quality throughout the book the issues are first, no duplexing and second (and most importantly) price. The cost of doing a book totally on inkjet can be seen in products commonly used in the wedding photo industry.
We are working on some processes that will improve the greyscale reproduction in our books. More on that early Q2/08. In the meantime you are asking the right questions and our users have are getting better and better in prepping their files for b&w reproduction.
—bw

Posted by
bruce
Jan 22, 2008 1:48pm PDT
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bruce Icon_staff
 

Thanks Bruce

Could you post a Blurb recomendation for how to prep for monochrome,
both neutral gray and not neutral (ie warm, etc.)?

And what’s up with profiles? for 8×10 books I should do the HP5000 profile,
and all others sRGB?

Posted by
ridgemont
Jan 25, 2008 11:55am PDT
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ridgemont