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Black and White (and Blue)

 
 
embee
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      12-12-2004
Hi, I've been experimenting with black and white printing using my Epson
1280 printer and I am unhappy with the results. I've noticed my prints have
a distinct blue tinge in grey areas and I recently printed an A3 sized
mozaic of more than 160 BW crops from pictures of a recent holiday which
really is very blue when viewed under daylight (although it's not as
noticable under tungsten light).

I made the pictures black and white using the Monochrome option under the
Channel Mixer in Photoshop 7. I kept the Blue Channel input to a minimum
because looking at the Channels, blue is the worst channel. A typical
picture would be about 40 per cent red, 50 per cent Green and 10 per cent
blue and they look fine on the screen.

Is the blueness due to the limitations of my printer for Black and White
printing? I'm happy with my colour prints, but Black and White just lacks
any impact and is too blue. Before I give up completely and take my black
and whites to a printing lab in future, can anybody explain what is going
on?

Thanks


 
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chrlz@go.com
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      12-12-2004
>Is the blueness due to the limitations of my printer for Black and
White
printing?

Yes. Although it depends on the paper, what ink batch you have, etc.
To my eye, they look a bit purplish.. It is VERY difficult for any
colour printer to use colour mixing to get neutral greys right through
the range.

You have a few options:
- careful manipulation of the color balance may help (eg if it's blue
in the midtones, add yellow to the midtones), but you will most
probably simply shift the color problem elsewhere.

- try different papers, some of the matte papers seem to be better

- print everything in sepia tones!

- put printer into monochrome mode too, but then your image will suffer
and grey shades will dither

- if you're willing to dedicate your printer to b&w, get a third party
ink system (they use various shades of grey ink to get nice neutral
greys)

- just accept that these printers are good for colour, not so good for
b&w.


The second last one is the only real solution.

 
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graciette belform
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      12-12-2004
You just need to go into printer properties and ensure it is black ink only


 
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Bill Hilton
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      12-12-2004
>From: "embee" http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)

>I've been experimenting with black and white printing using my Epson
>1280 printer and I am unhappy with the results. I've noticed my prints have
>a distinct blue tinge in grey areas
>
>Is the blueness due to the limitations of my printer for Black and White
>printing?


This printer doesn't do a very good job of printing a gray scale with the color
inks, the profiles aren't especially accurate. If you want to check this then
create a white to black gradient and print it ... on mine I get a bit of a
magenta cast (with PGPP anyway ... will vary with paper because of the ICC
profiles) over part (not all) of the image. If you do this test (print a
gradient) you can see where the problems are and then open a curves adjustment
layer (assuming you have Photoshop) and add a curve to try to correct for this,
save the curve and apply it to other b/w images before printing. This should
get you much closer to true grayscale. On one paper I tried there was a slight
magenta cast in the dark gray areas and a slight green cast in the light gray
areas so you may need to cycle through this a couple of times to get it close
to neutral.

You can also just print at 2880 dpi using only the black ink but you'll
probably find this is too contrasty.

If you really want to print grayscale I'd recommend the 2200 printer instead
since the gray balance is better (more accurate) with the Epson profiles and
the extra 'light black' ink seems to help as well.

Bill


 
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Dick Frederick
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      12-12-2004
1. Going to black ink only (as suggested in another post) may cure the color
problem but it will result in a grainy print. These printers are designed
to print using all colors to obtain smooth tonality. That said, it is
difficult to obtain a true neutral black on these printers.
2. Don't confuse the ratio of colors in channel mixer with the shade of
black (blue, purple or whatever cast) in the print. The color cast in the
print is a result of the printer printing "profile". Worse, the color inks,
when mixed to produce black and white, tend to exhibit "metamerism", which
mean that the color cast changes depending on the light source used to view
the print.
3. If you want to continue to use the1280. it may be best to convert it to
B & W inks exclusively, as suggested in another post.
4. Perhaps the best option, if you don't mind spending the money, is to get
a printer that handles B & W better. I use an Epson 2200, and print using
Colorbyte Software's "ImagePrint" product. This is a Raster Image Processor
(RIP) that does produce outstanding B & W prints without metamerism, and
excellent color as well. The down side is cost. The printer is > $500, and
the RIP is about $500 for the lite version (which is all you need). There
is also another product available (basically a profile, I believe) that is
much cheaper and can produce good B & W from the 2200 but does not address
color.

Good luck.

"embee" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) t...
> Hi, I've been experimenting with black and white printing using my Epson
> 1280 printer and I am unhappy with the results. I've noticed my prints

have
> a distinct blue tinge in grey areas and I recently printed an A3 sized
> mozaic of more than 160 BW crops from pictures of a recent holiday which
> really is very blue when viewed under daylight (although it's not as
> noticable under tungsten light).
>
> I made the pictures black and white using the Monochrome option under the
> Channel Mixer in Photoshop 7. I kept the Blue Channel input to a minimum
> because looking at the Channels, blue is the worst channel. A typical
> picture would be about 40 per cent red, 50 per cent Green and 10 per cent
> blue and they look fine on the screen.
>
> Is the blueness due to the limitations of my printer for Black and White
> printing? I'm happy with my colour prints, but Black and White just lacks
> any impact and is too blue. Before I give up completely and take my black
> and whites to a printing lab in future, can anybody explain what is going
> on?
>
> Thanks
>
>



 
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Roland Karlsson
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      12-12-2004
"graciette belform" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in
news:BtXud.512$(E-Mail Removed):

> You just need to go into printer properties and ensure it is black ink
> only


Does not really work. Using black ink only will not
get enough richness in the print. Maximum density,
evenness and fineness in the grey scale all will suffer.

There are special monochrome or low gamut inks you
can use in your printer if you want to print high
quality B&W.


/Roland
 
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David Zou
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      12-12-2004
I have seen from steven digital cameras that some HP comes with dedicated
grey scale cartilage and does a decent job.
It's on the slow end but any one has any idea about the printing qualities
from HP inkjet?
"embee" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) t...
> Hi, I've been experimenting with black and white printing using my Epson
> 1280 printer and I am unhappy with the results. I've noticed my prints
> have a distinct blue tinge in grey areas and I recently printed an A3
> sized mozaic of more than 160 BW crops from pictures of a recent holiday
> which really is very blue when viewed under daylight (although it's not as
> noticable under tungsten light).
>
> I made the pictures black and white using the Monochrome option under the
> Channel Mixer in Photoshop 7. I kept the Blue Channel input to a minimum
> because looking at the Channels, blue is the worst channel. A typical
> picture would be about 40 per cent red, 50 per cent Green and 10 per cent
> blue and they look fine on the screen.
>
> Is the blueness due to the limitations of my printer for Black and White
> printing? I'm happy with my colour prints, but Black and White just lacks
> any impact and is too blue. Before I give up completely and take my black
> and whites to a printing lab in future, can anybody explain what is going
> on?
>
> Thanks
>



 
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bob
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      12-13-2004
"embee" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in news:1102845140.20569.0
@spandrell.news.uk.clara.net:

> Hi, I've been experimenting with black and white printing using my Epson
> 1280 printer and I am unhappy with the results


Something you might want to experiment with, since you are using PS, is
duotone. After you convert the image to grayscale, the Duotone mode will
become available. It converts the image into a slightly colored image,
similar to toned images in the traditional sense. But you can use different
tones for highlight and shadow.

If you use a slightly warm tone it will probably offset the blue cast you
see.

Bob

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