Contd.

 

Mac OS X

The initial few paragraphs of this page are common to all three Print Workflows described earlier. When you press the Print button (i.e. top right hand corner of Print with Preview dialog) the "System" Print dialog as shown in Figure 5 should appear. The System Print dialog is actually quite complicated in so far as it includes menu options for many print setting that are better set within Photoshop itself or the actual Print driver, and are therefore best avoided. In particular, you should not need to access options such as: Layout, Scheduler, Paper Handling, ColorSync, and Cover Page. I really can't emphasise enough how important it is that you configure the printer driver in the sequence that I describe otherwise there is a good chance that one of the settings will revert to the Epson default.

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Figure 5 - "System" Print dialog

 

Press the popup labelled Copies and Pages (shown in the screenshot with a red asterisk). Choose Print Settings from the list of options. When the Printer Settings panel (figure 6) appears choose the type of Media (1) that will be used. Next select the Advanced (2) mode.

 

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Figure 6 - Epson Printer Dialog - Main Window

 

Choose Best Photo or Photo RPM for the highest Print Quality (3) option compatible with the printer/media combination that you require. Also, for best quality High Speed (4) should be disabled.

Return to the popup now labelled Print Settings (5) and choose Color Management. The remainder of this page is separated into two parts, the first deals with Print Workflow 1 and the second Print Workflow 2 and 3.

Print Workflow 1 (Contd.)

For Color Management (figure 7 below) we have three options (radio buttons): Color Controls, ColorSync and OFF (No Color Adjustment).

 

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Figure 7 - Epson Print Driver: Print Workflow 1

 

The first two options, and for this workflow we're only interested in these two, are designed to automate the process of printer colour management, and you have the choice of Color Controls or ColorSync (6). I suggest that you avoid choosing ColorSync as it has been known to produce very unsatisfactory results with some printer models. Actually, I believe that Color Controls is the best option for  novice users. Also, remember that when this setting is selected the Photoshop Print with Preview dialog should be configured as shown in Print Workflow 1.

With the latest Epson drivers for printers such as the Stylus Photo R800, R1800 and R2400 you will see 3 modes of which Color Controls with the Mode set to either Epson Standard or Vivid. Lastly, unless you have good reason to choose differently I recommend leaving the Gamma setting at 1.8.

Print Workflow 2 and 3 (Contd.)

The third setting for colour management is referred to as Off (No Color Adjustment) (6a) and is ONLY appropriate when you're using ICC media profiles in Photoshop or printing the targets required for creating ICC media type profiles. In other words you should only use this setting if you have chosen to configure Photoshop Print with Preview dialog as shown in Print Workflow 2 or Print Workflow 3. This setting is by far the best setting for advanced Photoshop users. It's also worth mentioning that if you find your final prints are light and magenta in appearance then there's a very good chance that you chose one of the other two settings in error or that the sequence in which you configured the print driver was not exactly as I described above.

In the following screenshot you can see that choosing Off (No Color Adjustment)  (6a) resulted in the Mode pop-up, Gamma and Color Sliders disappearing from the print dialog; this is how it should be, so don't panic.

 

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Figure 8 - Epson Print Driver: Print Workflow 2 and 3

 

Once you have configured the driver for your preferred media, print quality and colour management settings it's a good idea to save them for future use. This is achieved by opening the Presets (7) popup and choosing "Save As" - do be sure to choose a meaningful name. Next time you need to make a print you can simply choose this media type from your list of Presets. In the example shown in figure 9 you can see that I have preset settings for Epson Enhanced Matte and Semi Gloss media.

 

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Figure 9 - Saving your settings as Presets

 

The next page deals with the Epson driver written for Microsoft Windows XP.

Contd on Page 3.

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