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Old Jan 2, 2015, 2:57 PM   #1
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Default Color Management Using Photoshop Elements or HP Photosmart 7520 Printer

Hello all. As this is my fist post, please let me apologize in advance if this is in the incorrect section (could have also gone in printer sectin). I have been surfing the web for the past few days trying to understand color management and the relationship between camera, editing software and printer. While there is a plethora of information out there, I have not been able to come up with the specific answers I am looking for - which simply put is do I use my editing software or my printer to do the color management for printing and what settings for each?

My camera is Nikon D90 and is set to use Adobe RGB (1998). For editing, I use Photoshop Elements 12 and to print, an HP Photosmart 7520. If I chose to use PE 12 to manage color (with management disabled in my HP printer), I can choose a printer profile and rendering intent. For printer profiles, I have a number I can choose from - but I normally choose Adobe RGB (1998) D65 WP 2.2 Gamma.icc as that is 1 of 2 options I have on my HP printer. I have many other profile options such as Adobe RGB (1998), ColorMatch RGB, sRGB etc. etc. etc. (still not sure what the difference is between Adobe RGB (1998) D65 WP 2.2 Gamma and Adobe RGB (1998) if there is one.

For rendering intent - and from reading I have done - I believe the most relevant choices are 'relative colorimetric' and 'perceptual' and not the other 2 choices of 'saturation' and 'absolute colorimetric'. I believe the one I should most often use is relative colorimetric but that's a bit of a guess.

If I disable color management in PE 12, can still choose a rendering intent but am not sure if these settings actually do anything if color management is disabled. I can no longer select a printer profile (it sets auto to Adobe RGB (1998)) but I can still change the rendering intent.

On the HP printer, I mainly have 2 choices - Color Management and HP Real Life Technologies. For Color management I can choose 'ColorSmart/sRGB' or 'Adobe RGB (1998) D65 WP 2.2 Gamma'. I find the latter provides the best color and believe the former is mainly used for display on monitors and web pages but not completely certain. HP Real Life Technologies is a mystery to me and I only have the choice of On or Off. No description came with the printer manual as to what it actually does.

From test prints, I believe the best options without really understanding the technologies involved are to use either PE 12 or HP 7520 to do the color management using Adobe RGB (1998) D65 WP 2.2 Gamma in either one. I am still unclear on the rendering intent but I 'think' relative colorimetric produces the better color of the 2. No idea if HP Real Life Technologies makes any difference or not.

If anyone thinks I am going down an incorrect path and I should be considering other options or settings, please let me know. Thanks in advance for your input.

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Old Jan 3, 2015, 1:52 AM   #2
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No expert in these matters by a long way, but its my understanding that if using Photoshop/Elements to manage colour you need to have a paper specific profile to load and Adobe1998 is not a Paper Specific profile, A Paper profile is either provided by The Papers Maker, Loaded on the system when the printer was installed or Custom built by yourself or a third party.

Without that profile you may well find you better results letting the printer do the colour management.

Also don't forget you will also need to profile and colour manage your monitor otherwise you will never know what you are printing until it comes out of the printer and you say to yourself why does that not look like it does on the screen.

Leave it all in auto until you understand colour management and have the additional tools to colour manage.

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Old Jan 4, 2015, 1:24 AM   #3
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There was a day when I tried to sort out my printer color as you are. Equipment I used;

Photoshop Elements occasionally.
Apple Aperture mostly.
HP Photosmart 8180- It uses 6-02 ink cartridges and I always use HP ink
HP Premium Plus photo paper, I prefer soft gloss
Sony A900 set to RGB

For electronic viewing (computer, phone or tablet) RGB gives you all you really need.

For printing Adobe RGB expands the color gamut and is supposed to improve the color gradient to improve prints.

It also increases the possibility to really screw things up.

I finally let the printer decide (vendor matching) and the prints come out better then I could get by playing around with the settings. I tried color sync option (apple's color management driver) and I couldn't get it to look better as consistently as the the vendor matching option (HP's driver). There's a lot of things to consider when you start using adobe RGB.

Your probably going to have to waste a lot of ink and paper to figure things out.
Try to keep track of all the settings used for each print so you don't have to do it more then once.
Good Luck.
Canon S95
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