Printing software

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weese237
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Printing software

Post by weese237 »

HI,
Can anyone recommend a good standalone software for Windows whose only purpose is to print photos? No editing needed. Just print.

Thanks!
Louise     :smile:

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HansV
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Re: Printing software

Post by HansV »

You can print photos directly from Windows Explorer. In Windows 11: select a photo, then press Shift+F10. Print will be the first option in the popup menu.

The Photos app that comes with Windows is easy to use. It offers more printing options.
Regards,
Hans

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stuck
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Re: Printing software

Post by stuck »

weese237 wrote:
15 Jan 2023, 23:48
HI,
Can anyone recommend a good standalone software for Windows whose only purpose is to print photos? No editing needed. Just print.

Thanks!
Except if you want your prints to look like they do on screen then editing is a must. Most people are disappointed by what comes out of their printer because they fail to take account of the fact that a screen is transmissive but a print is reflective and so they complain that their prints are too dark. And that's before you get into a properly colour managed workflow, to prevent colours coming out dull / over saturated.

I take a long time editing my photos before I print them (ask the wife how long :grin: ) but for prints from my wife's camera I use a commercial (UK) printing service. From a photo forum I frequent, I believe that on your side of the pond your local Costco will do you decent prints at a sensible price.

Ken

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weese237
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Re: Printing software

Post by weese237 »

Hi,
You both are correct! I also spend a tremendous amount of time post processing / editing my photos. I do like and use the Windows Photo app. I tried to print a couple photos and found that they were not the same as on the screen. You are right, they were too dark and the person's face was red. I had to really lighten them to make them print almost perfect. I recently used Google Photos to print a 2023 Calendar and it was beautiful. I've gone to Walmart and Walgreens to print a couple of photos in the past. You need a membership to use Costco.
I think at this point, I probably should try to calibrate my printer with my laptop so they can be similar. I'll have to find out how to do that.

Thanks again,
Louise     :smile:

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stuck
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Re: Printing software

Post by stuck »

weese237 wrote:
16 Jan 2023, 22:50
...I probably should try to calibrate my printer with my laptop so they can be similar. I'll have to find out how to do that...
Try these tutorials as a starting point:
    https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/color ... inting.htm

Ken

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stuck
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Re: Printing software

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weese237
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Re: Printing software

Post by weese237 »

Thank you! Will give it a look.
Louise     :smile:

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stuck
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Re: Printing software

Post by stuck »

weese237 wrote:
16 Jan 2023, 22:50
...I also spend a tremendous amount of time post processing / editing my photos...
So why can't / don't you use the printing option in your photo editing software? Why do you need a separate application for printing?

Another common trap when printing photos is 'double colour management'. This happens when the printing application sends colour managed data to the printer and then the printer also colour manages the data. End result is that the colours that are printed don't match those you see on screen. Any decent photo editing application will have an option in the print feature to turn on / of colour management. Similarly, the printer driver for any decent photo printer will have an option to turn on / off colour management.

The simple rule is, if the application is set to manage the colours then colour management by the printer should be turned off - and vice versa. Also, it seems to be generally accepted that it's 'better' to let the application manage the colours if you are printing a colour photo but to let the printer mange the colours if you are printing a black and white photo.

I get reasonable prints as follows:

The brightness of my monitor is turned down to only a quarter of it maximum. It is a wide gamut monitor, i.e. it is capable of displaying the wider range of colours in the Adobe RGB colour space and not just those in the standard RGB colour space. The driver software for the monitor automatically switches it from sRGB to Adobe RGB when I open my photo editing software. All of my photo editing applications are set to use Abobe RGB as their 'working colour space'.

I process the RAW files from my DSLR using either DxO Photolab or Affinity Photo. The output from these applications is a TIFF. The printing feature in DxO Photolab is rubbish, I never use that. The printing feature in Affinity Photo is much better but as yet I'm not that familiar with it. Instead, I open my TIFFs in an ancient version of Photoshop and print from there.

In Photoshop I apply a couple of standard tweaks, ones that I've learnt by experience are needed to get a good match to what I see on screen. |typically a bit more brightness, a tiny bit more contrast and some 'smart sharpening'. I then set Photoshop to mange the colours and check that the correct photo paper type is set, so that Photoshop is reading the correct colour management profile for the paper that is in the printer. In the printer driver I turn off colour management. My printer is an Epson photo printer and to date I've only ever used Epson branded paper. If I ever do try other brands I will ensure I also download and install that paper's colour management profile.

Ken

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weese237
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Re: Printing software

Post by weese237 »

Thanks for the reply. I use Topaz Labs. They do a wonderful job of editing but do not have the printing capability. Then I use Luminar Neo. I can not afford Photoshop so I don't have it. I do not have a separate monitor as I use a laptop and an inexpensive printer. I do not have a lot of money so I don't have all the bells and whistles you do. I also do not shoot in Raw. I just started shooting photos of wildlife and they are coming out great, so if I want to print a large quantity of my work, I will not do it myself, I will probably go with Google. I only wanted to print one photo to give to someone. I managed to print it ok. I was just curious of what could be out there. I'll stick with what I have.
Thanks
Louise     :smile: