New iMac and Print Results Issue

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Name
Tony
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#1
I have just upgraded to a new iMac with Retina 5K display. I have processed a few photographs on it using Lightroom and Photoshop just to test things out. So far happy. However, I did a quick test by taking a couple of images that I had processed to Jessops to test the printing, and to say I was disappointed was an understatement. The colours were abysmal and had little resemblance to the colours on the screen.

So I took the same images to the print room at my work, and tried on their printers. Only a slight improvement. The lady in the print room suggested I tried loading the ‘.icc’ file for the print room printers on my iMac to see if that made a difference. So I saved the ‘icc’ file on the iMac and then saved the images with that colour profile.

I then reprinted them in my work print room and it made a big difference. The colours almost matched the screen colours at every level.

My question is, if I want to use one of the many online print companies, I.e. Loxley, Photobox, Dunnes etc., how can I be sure that the prints they produce will be what I expect? Do I have to get the ‘.icc’ files from each of these companies to ensure that what I send them is accurate for their printers, Or is there something I need to do at my end in terms of calibrating my screen to ensure that any print supplier will produce the expected matched colours.

Any advice would be appreciated.
 
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#4
Just thinking out loud.

Almost all such high street and many Pro Lab printers (unless specified by them) will expect to 'see' an sRGB profile embedded on the files they are printing. If your new Mac is by default embedding aRGB or ProPhoto their printers will not correctly interpret it!

When printing at Jessops do they have a default setting of 'make auto corrections' to the exposure etc.....if so ask them to turn that setting off?

Your experience with your works printer shows the need to have an anticipated "end to end" settings protocol ;) Such as the sRGB one I mention above.
 
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1,534
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#5
I use .icc profile when I print my files via Lightroom. I wasn't aware that you could save an image with a .icc profile embedded.

Is your display calibrated? I think unless it is you don't know how the colours will print up. My MacBook Pro screen was decidedly cooler before I calibrated it. I also have to turn the brightness down, otherwise I get a false sense of how bright my photos are.
 
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#6
@WelshTony There's quite a lot of info in this link https://www.color-management-guide.com/site-map.html and particularly about colour space here https://www.color-management-guide.com/how-to-choose-between-srgb-adobe-rgb-prophoto.html

I've never sent anything off to a lab as I print myself, but I think you do need to know what colour space they are expecting as @Box Brownie mentioned.

I always understood that the .icc profile tells the printer how to lay down the ink for the particular paper that you are using, so it's specific to a particular paper and printer. However in the second of those links it does call the embedded colour profile a .icc profile, so I must be wrong.

If I were going to send an image off to a lab, I would contact them to find out what they are expecting to receive - what colour space... and I would definitely calibrate my monitor
 
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Name
John
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#7
Calibrating the screen is a good step. I would also suggest you contact the lab to see how they expect to receive the images. I would suggest converting your images to sRGB colourspace for printing. Most labs tend to expect this as standard. Most importantly find out from your desired lab how they ant the file. This will probably be in the faq'a. If not a short phone call usually provides the information.
 
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droj
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#8
Calibrating the screen is a good step. I would also suggest you contact the lab to see how they expect to receive the images. I would suggest converting your images to sRGB colourspace for printing. Most labs tend to expect this as standard. Most importantly find out from your desired lab how they ant the file. This will probably be in the faq'a. If not a short phone call usually provides the information.
As above.

Overall screen brightness is the first thing to address - try a brightness setting of 45 - 50%.

Screen colour balance next.

sRGB seems to be the normal default for lab printing, so regardless of what you've set as your camera / processing app defaults, you need to convert an image to and output it as sRGB, whilst also sizing its pixel dimensions to the print size usually at 300ppi. Thus you might like to 'save as a copy' for print purposes, perhaps even in a dedicated folder - keeping your originals as they were?

Print profiles are most often used for 'soft-proofing' without being embedded, and give a foretaste of the look so that you can compensate accordingly. But each lab will specify their own protocols for file management before saving for print.
 
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WelshTony
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102
Name
Tony
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#9
Calibrating the screen is a good step. I would also suggest you contact the lab to see how they expect to receive the images. I would suggest converting your images to sRGB colourspace for printing. Most labs tend to expect this as standard. Most importantly find out from your desired lab how they ant the file. This will probably be in the faq'a. If not a short phone call usually provides the information.
My original images that I took to Jessops were sRGB, but as stated the results were terrible. I will try calibrating my screen and try saving an image in different colourspaces to see which works best.
 
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