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Old 03-03-2006, 02:10 PM   #1
marlene
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Default Dealing with diminutive digital images

I've got a digital photo that's about 5.5" wide. I need to use it about 8.5" wide on a magazine cover. Ouch.

How do I determine the best course of action -- upsample to keep it 300 dpi, or just enlarge it and let the resolution drop to 195 dpi?

It will be offset printed. I normally insist on 300 dpi, although I don't always get it, but I don't think I've ever run a cover image at less than 230 dpi, if that.

(This is one of the images that has the chromatic aberration discussed in another thread, but the client is going to live with it.)

If upsampling is what I need to do, what's the best way? I'm using Photoshop 7, out of force of habit, but also have PS CS2 installed. If there's a plug-in that works better than whatever's in PS CS2, I'd consider it.

Or is PSP better for upsampling?

And if I upsample, should I avoid sharpening? Will that make it look worse? What's the best tool to use for sharpening?

FWIW, after I do whatever I do (which has to be done in the next couple of days), we are going to get an Epson proof from the local service bureau, so if it looks horrible (either because of the size/resolution issue or the chromatic aberration) my client might opt not to use it after all.

mxh
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Old 03-03-2006, 02:39 PM   #2
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marlene: I've got a digital photo that's about 5.5" wide. I need to use it about 8.5" wide on a magazine cover. Ouch.
Sounds painful but what's the pixel count?


>>How do I determine the best course of action -- upsample to keep it 300 dpi, or just enlarge it and let the resolution drop to 195 dpi?

I'm still using Photoshop 7 too...how does it look when you resize up at 300dpi--given my monitor res (1152x864), I know that if I zoom to 33%, I see what I will see when I print. (This is really easy to do if you've never done it...basically, you turn on rulers in Photoshop and then zoom to say 100% and hold up a ruler to the screen and start adjusting the zoom level (down) until the screen ruler and the physical ruler match.)


>>but I don't think I've ever run a cover image at less than 230 dpi, if that.

Sooo...does it look better at 230dpi than at 300???


>>If upsampling is what I need to do, what's the best way? I'm using Photoshop 7, out of force of habit, but also have PS CS2 installed. If there's a plug-in that works better than whatever's in PS CS2, I'd consider it.

I *think* CS2 has more options for upsampling but I don't know for sure since my CS2 is still deskware...'-}}


>>And if I upsample, should I avoid sharpening? Will that make it look worse? What's the best tool to use for sharpening?

Do a Unsharp Mask AFTER you resize. Again, I do my USM at 33% zoom so I can see whether the USM does anything useful (or bad). Try playing with ther Radius setting on the USM--I usually have Radius set to 1.2 - 1.5 but I've found that sometimes bumping it up to 3 - 5 can be useful but also play with the Threshold setting too...


>>FWIW, after I do whatever I do (which has to be done in the next couple of days), we are going to get an Epson proof from the local service bureau,

Do you know which Epson printer (and what proofing paper) they will be using?

Do keep me posted...

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Old 03-03-2006, 03:21 PM   #3
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Marlene, here's a free action action that I use with Photoshop 7.

Works very well for me. http://www.interpolatethis.com/actions.html

   
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Old 03-03-2006, 11:07 PM   #4
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Thanks, Mick! The price is right, so I'll certainly try it out.

mxh
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Old 03-03-2006, 11:05 PM   #5
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Pixel count is 1662 x 2078.

I can't trust what I see on the monitor. I rely on the color proof. I don't know exactly which Epson printer the service bureau uses, but it replaced their Iris, so it's a high-end model.

I always do USM after resizing and adjusting images, but I always zoom up to 100% -- I don't trust what I see at a smaller size -- to make sure I'm not oversharpening. Sometimes an image looks great at 50% after USM, but when I check it at 100%, I can see the tell-tale white edges of oversharpening.

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Old 03-04-2006, 02:25 PM   #6
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marlene: I can't trust what I see on the monitor.
Surely you can at least rely on your screen view (at an appropriate zoom level as I mentioned) to at least see if the image is pixelated due to upsizing?

If you hardware calibrated your screen and if the sb will tell you what profile they are using you should be able to soft proof on your screen with a reasonable degree of accuracy...


>>I rely on the color proof. I don't know exactly which Epson printer the service bureau uses, but it replaced their Iris, so it's a high-end model.

If you have a chance to ask them, I'm curious. I'm sure they replaced their Iris many moons ago...I'd bet it's either the Epson 4000 (maybe the 4800) or the 7800 (24" wide vs. 17" on the 4000/4800).


>>I always do USM after resizing and adjusting images, but I always zoom up to 100% -- I don't trust what I see at a smaller size -- to make sure I'm not oversharpening. Sometimes an image looks great at 50% after USM, but when I check it at 100%, I can see the tell-tale white edges of oversharpening.

If you know what zoom level corresponds to print size, then you'd be able to see the USM effects more accurately...100% zoom is not reality...

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Old 03-05-2006, 12:57 PM   #7
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I've never calibrated my monitor, because it's too complicated for me.

I always "proof" on screen at 100%, because at a lower size, everything looks fine, which always makes me suspicious. <g>

I can't see artifacts at less than 100%.

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Old 03-06-2006, 12:43 PM   #8
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marlene: I've never calibrated my monitor, because it's too complicated for me.
If I'm remembering, the last time we discussed this was quite a while ago and your Mits monitor came with some sort of calibrator that was complicated (if I'm remembering correctly)...

It ain't that difficult now as the technology has come quite a long way...

I'd recommend the Spyder2 Express at $99...the entire process takes about 5 minutes...repeat once a month...


>>I always "proof" on screen at 100%, because at a lower size, everything looks fine, which always makes me suspicious. <g>

ROFL!!! You really are tooo funny! Really and truly figuring out which zoom percentage matches your print reality is worth doing...it will save you lots of aggravation in the end and it's sooo easy to do--find a ruler, open and image, turn on rulers, zoom to 100%, ctrl - (or +) until the on screen rulers match your physical ruler.

Shouldn't take you more than 3 minutes and you never have to do it again (as long as you don't forget the zoom percentage)


>>I can't see artifacts at less than 100%.

Right but the image is printed at way less than 100% in probably 99.99999% of most users environment (if not, then 100% is your screen to print zoom percentage and what you see is indeed what you get)...

Basically, it seems to me (and wtfdik) that you are making more work for yourself...

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Old 03-07-2006, 07:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terrie
It ain't that difficult now as the technology has come quite a long way...

I'd recommend the Spyder2 Express at $99...the entire process takes about 5 minutes...repeat once a month...
I wonder if that Basic package's "fixed" monitor gamma/temp choices would be right for most pro users or whether they really must pony up for one of the other two packages. Have any idea?

What I'm most interested in at the moment is a way to simulate on screen what images will probably look like when printed to newsprint. Color that would work for regular printing stock turns to mud in newsprint. Doesn't make for happy customers.

   
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Old 03-07-2006, 12:13 PM   #10
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elysec: I wonder if that Basic package's "fixed" monitor gamma/temp choices would be right for most pro users or whether they really must pony up for one of the other two packages. Have any idea?
Hmmm...good question...best guess is...I don't think it would be a problem. I think most people are using a gamma of 2.2 these days (even on the mac side which has traditionally used 1.8) and color temps of either 5000 or 6500--I use 6500 myself as I find 5000 way too yellow and 5000 seems to be used more on the print production side. I don't think anyone uses 9300...


>>What I'm most interested in at the moment is a way to simulate on screen what images will probably look like when printed to newsprint. Color that would work for regular printing stock turns to mud in newsprint. Doesn't make for happy customers.

Hmmm...the only work I've done is with b/w on newsprint not color so I'm not sure what to advise...

I'd suggest sub'ing (if you don't already) to the ColorSync Users list as there are a lot of extremely well informed users on the list that should be able to advise you better...

That said, you want all monitors calibrated so that each monitor is working from a known point--what you see on one calibrated monitor will be seen the same on another calibrated monitor bypassing the vagarities of individual hardware.

Basically you are establishing a known point for the monitor--the first step in using color management--and you combine that with your (Photoshop) working space--monitor space is NOT working space. The working space is then used in conjunction with the printer (space) profiles to give you screen to print match.

I think the easiest way to think about it is the color management is series of dictionaries translating between languages (hardware)--monitor > working space > printer.

Without the dictionary there is no way to know what language is being spoken--what hardware is being used.

Hope that helps...

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