Old 10-23-2006, 06:07 AM   #1
Wonka001
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Default Prints of your pictures.

Have any of you printed out your train photos? how did they turn out? which one's have you printed out, and what size? What did you print them on?

For me, I've printed out only one railroading picture, it turned out to be about 9" tall by 36" wide on a banner printer we have at work. A very good printer at that. I haven't framed it it still looks like a poster sitting on top of my white board right now, but the image quality is good.

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Old 10-23-2006, 07:47 AM   #2
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Ive printed quite a few of my shots on paper. If Im going to bother printing them, I do it on 8.5"x11" glossy photo paper. I either print them my HP OfficeJet K550 Pro or on an Epson CX6400 AIO.

I also have a 34"x110" SD40-2 poster on my wall that was stitched together from 6 digital pictures. It was printed on 40 8.5"x11" pieces of paper and very carefully assembled and laminated.
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Old 10-23-2006, 10:43 AM   #3
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Default Big Prints?

If you want to do big prints stitched together then try this:

http://posterazor.sourceforge.net/

I've done some A1 size shots and they look pretty good.

For normal prints up to A3 I print on an Epson 1290 using Ilford paper, Epson Inks, from PS using a Gretag Profile to match the colours.

If I want small prints, say up to 6"x9" then I use my local Fuji minilab, again with Gretag Profile. At 25P a go thtas cheaper than any inkjet and continuous tonal range too.

I carry a small folder of 6"x9" prints in my camera bag, always useful for showing your work to other railfans, AND good to show railstaff what you do, some will then co-operate in helping you get the shot you want.

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Old 10-23-2006, 05:06 PM   #4
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I make a "file" print of most of my favorite stuff, usually a 300 dpi 10x7 inch image printed on Epson letter (8.5x11) size heavyweight matte paper using an Epson 1280 (I like the wide margins around the image). As Alan noted above, a few extra copies come in handy to share on trips and to give train crews (especially on foreign trips).

On a few favorites I'll do a 300 dpi 11x14 inch borderless print on heavyweight matte for framing....don't do much of that any more since I've filled up every wall the good wife will contribute to train pix.

Obviously I like the matte finish, but that is a matter of personal taste.

The quality of even cheap printers these days is amazing. Paper is pretty cheap....ink is the big expense. Color management can sometimes be challenging, especially since monitors and printers are not easy to color balance. But just like working in a darkroom these differences can usually be handled with some experimentation and good judgement.

There is a potential issue about fading, but the ink makers are making increasingly optimistic claims about fade resistance, and might even be right. But only time will tell. So far I have had no problem with fading, but my oldest inkjet prints are only about three maybe four years old.

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Old 10-23-2006, 06:13 PM   #5
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I have taken some of my photos down to Ritz and had 4x6 prints made. I am very happy with the quality they produce, and they are cheap enough for me at a modest 30 cents each. I put them in a binder with pages that I purchased from B&H. This gives me something to physically take around and show people my work.
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Old 10-23-2006, 11:52 PM   #6
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I usually print 8 1/2 by 11 on an Office Jet on glossy paper. Though if I wanted to make salable prints that wouldn't be my choice.
I have noted that some shots look better on paper than a monitor. Probably due to the blacks.
If you turn off your monitor, that's as black as it gets. But a good paper with a good black can look bottomless.
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Old 10-24-2006, 01:30 AM   #7
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For 8.5x11 I print them at home on a Canon Pixma 6600D with very good results. My railfanning partner is the manager of a local Kinko's, so he hooks me up with any poster prints.
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Old 10-24-2006, 02:36 AM   #8
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Image printing is something I know nothing about was actually going to start a thread about it and ask for help. Since this came up, I'll ask away in here.

I don't have a printer at home, but I've heard of folks sending their stuff away to get prints made. Does anyone have any advice or info?

Also, according to the XT manual, a RAW image can be made into an A3 or larger print size. Great. What's A3?

Also, what tips can anyone share when printing an image versus processing an image for the web (i.e. file size, dimensions, dpi, etc.)?

I have some shots I'd like to see in print format, but I'm not sure where to start. Thanks for any help!
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Old 10-24-2006, 10:38 AM   #9
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Default What's A3

Good Morning Ween,

A3 is a European standard size for paper and card. There is a whole series of A sizes, see:

http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~mgk25/iso-paper.html

A3 is 420mmx297mm or for our Transatlantic Cousins about 16.5"x11.7".

That quite a good size print.

To print that size from a digital file you need to have an image output to the printer of at least 210 Dots Per Inch (DPI), it won't matter if you have more, in fact it will be better.

So, when you process your image from your XT which I think has an 8 Mega Pixel sensor you should end up with a file size of about 23Mb. That's assuming you shoot at full resolution.

In Photo Shop, select image size, make sure re sample image is unchecked, and constrain proportions is checked.

Enter the print size you want in the dialogue box, say 12"x8" and hit ok.

You'll see that you image that you image size becomes 12"x8" at 292DPI.

If you vary the size of the image you'll see that the DPI decreases as the size increases and vv. This is because you'r spreading the available pixels over different distances.

If you end up with images under 210DPI you'll see a decrease in print quality.

When you print out to an ink jet type home printer you must use good quality photo paper, gloss or matt, your choice, else the results will be poor.

Set the printer to use premium photo paper and the PRINTER DPI to 1440. THE PRINTER DPI AND PRINT dpi HAVE NO DIRECT CORELATION. Printer dpi tells the printer how much ink to lay down, 1440DPI is enough for up to A3.

As for web publishing this needs much smaller files, only 1024x768pixels, about a tenth of that need for printing.

The Alternative to ink jet printing, and much easier is using a local or Internet based mini lab. My experience is that mini labs give great results and are cheaper than ink jet printing.

File sizes for output via a mini lab are about the same as that required for ink jet.

So if you needed a 6"x4" print then the file size should be about 3.3Mb at 210 DPI, again it won't matter if your file size is larger, but don't go smaller or your quality will reduce.

There is good guidance here on file sizing for mini lab:

http://www.peak-imaging.com/htmls/digital.htm

I know its a UK lab, but the principle holds good.

Note that even in the UK photos are still sized in INCHES, not A series paper?

Hope this helps

Alan
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Old 10-24-2006, 09:04 PM   #10
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Alan,

Thanks much for all the info! A couple more questions: do you upsize your photo (the example was 8"x12") after you've processed it (i.e. levels, saturation, contrast, unsharp mask) or do you do it after it's blown up? Or is it a combination of both?

Also, does anyone know of any internet-based mini-labs or have any experience using them in the States? Thanks again...
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Old 10-24-2006, 09:37 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonka001
Have any of you printed out your train photos?
Yes I have.
Quote:
how did they turn out?
Ranging from very good to excellent I'd say.
Quote:
which one's have you printed out, and what size?
Dave Palmer, a member of the URHS asked to use these photos at their convention in Jim Thorpe last year and printed them out as 8X10's.
Image © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
PhotoID: 129285
Photograph © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
Image © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
PhotoID: 118691
Photograph © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
Image © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
PhotoID: 118686
Photograph © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
They came out great except for a tiny area on the first shot where I photoshopped out the pole over the engine. The printed ones have much better quality than the RP versions and the color is a little more accurate. Those were taken with my Fuji Finepix S7000 and I was pleasantly suprised I could get quality prints from it.
Image © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
PhotoID: 162168
Photograph © Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
I was playing around with my EPSON Stylus C4 printed at home and this photo came out excellent using the "Best Photo" option on Microsoft Word.
Quote:
What did you print them on?
I am unsure about the CNJ photos. They were printed at a Ritz Camera store for $1.19 (total). The PRR shto was printed on HP Premium Glossy Photo Paper also at 8X10.
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Old 10-25-2006, 12:44 AM   #12
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From the digital camera pictures I duplicate them in Photo Shop; crop one to RP size, the other to print size (8x10). Depending on the quality of the picture I will print lesser quality to 4x6 off my inkjet (Pixma 500), and send the better ones to a photo lab for printing. I don't print from a kiosk!
From my film camera, when it is developed, I have them also put the prints to CD so I can put them on my computer, and if desired, prep them for RP.
I'm still a newbie at all this so my photo album of prints only has about 20 pictures.

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Old 10-25-2006, 12:56 AM   #13
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I print a fair amount because I'm in AP Photo at school and have access to our high quality laserjet printer.

Also, I occasionally get 4"x6"'s from Walgreens and I've always been satisfied with them.
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Old 10-25-2006, 01:53 AM   #14
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Quote:
send the better ones to a photo lab for printing.
Is it internet-based or is it a local place where you live?

I'm still looking for a place to make prints...
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Old 10-25-2006, 02:13 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
I'm still looking for a place to make prints...
I'm not sure how many "connections" you have where you live, but some of the best large prints can be made at places that'd you'd least expect. An example would be a large company that is headquartered near you, that needs large printers for brochures, annual reports, etc. These machines they use can get up to a few $100,000 and even close to a $1 million. If you know anyone who has access to these machines you can get them done for free (unless you tip them for the favor) or pay for the materials used up if inventory is taken. Another option is a local camera store such as Ritz or any other "local" photo shop(dunno if they have them out there). I'm sure studio photographers do their own printing or know very good places to get it done. Also, document printing companies (Kinkos, etc.) should be able to do high quality photo printing now-a-days too. For smaller printing such as 4X6, a decent Epson or HP printer would do just fine with high quality photo paper by any BIG company (Kodak, HP or even Canon (I believe they make paper).

Hope this helped at least a little. I'll keep thinking bout it though as I am very close to making prints of my photos available.
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Old 10-25-2006, 02:19 AM   #16
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Thanks, Andrew, but connections like that I do not have. There is an audio/visual lab where I work, but I'm not sure if they'll do personal stuff. As far as any local camera shops...Bwa ha ha ha ha ha!! Yeah, right.

I have heard folks talk about places online where you send your JPG or TIFF, and they'll print it out and mail it back.

I'll keep searching and keep asking though!
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Old 10-25-2006, 03:48 AM   #17
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I'll have to revisit this thread in time, but I will add and highly recommend M-Pix online for prints of all sizes. They are easy to work with, open 24 hours (so to speak), offer Illford paper for your B&W photos - no more purple and white photos, and they even offer metallic paper which does wonders for glint and sunrise /set subjects. Also, they offer many sizes - not restricted to 8X12, for instance, you can get an 8X10 if you want.

You can upload your photos (a good place to keep your backups) and recieve them in the mail in about 2 days!!!

Top notch outfit.

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Old 10-25-2006, 03:54 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman
I'll have to revisit this thread in time, but I will add and highly recommend M-Pix online for prints of all sizes. They are easy to work with, open 24 hours (so to speak), offer Illford paper for your B&W photos - no more purple and white photos, and they even offer metallic paper which does wonders for glint and sunrise /set subjects. Also, they offer many sizes - not restricted to 8X12, for instance, you can get an 8X10 if you want.

You can upload your photos (a good place to keep your backups) and recieve them in the mail in about 2 days!!!

Top notch outfit.

/Mitch
Thanks for the info, Mitch. Once again these forums save me a few hours of research!
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Old 10-25-2006, 10:15 AM   #19
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Default Up Sizing ?

Good Morning Ween,

"Alan,

Thanks much for all the info! A couple more questions: do you upsize your photo (the example was 8"x12") after you've processed it (i.e. levels, saturation, contrast, unsharp mask) or do you do it after it's blown up? Or is it a combination of both?"

I do not generally have to up size my photos for printing, at 8"x12" I get a 292dpi image, so that's plenty for a print that size.

See attached screen grab.

At A3 16."x11.6" it's 211dpi, just enough to make a good print.

You'll see that "industry standards" for printing ask for 300dpi, but you can work with less.

If I need to do a really big prints, say A1 (23.3"x33.1") then I upsize using PhotoZoom Pro:

http://www.sspline.com/

This does a far better job than PS can ever do, but there will ALWAYS be a drop in quality.

If I'm going to upsize I always do it before any other post processing, as sharpening etc. does effect the quality of upsizing.



Alan
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Old 10-25-2006, 01:57 PM   #20
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Thanks, Alan. For the present, I don't have PS available to me to see what a full size RAW image works out to be in inches, but from your post, I'm guessing I'm never going to have to go up in size to make the type of prints I want.

Thanks, again!
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Old 10-25-2006, 04:30 PM   #21
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Default No PhotoShop?

Hi Ween,

If you don't have PS then try Adobe Photoshop Elements 5, does almost all the things that Full PS does. Also has a rather handy cataloging system.

Alan
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Old 10-25-2006, 05:51 PM   #22
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At one point I thought I should get a photo printer and print my own images... bad idea. Not only was the paper way too expensive, it sucked ink too. I know that they have come a long way in the last five years (from when I bought mine). When I do print (which is very rarely) I take it to a local photo store (not a chain place, so they have great service/friendly staff, Kenmore Camera if you're in the greater Seattle area). I end up paying like $0.20 for 4x6 and something like $2.00 for an 8x10. They have some super high quality photo printers, the kind that cost as much as a small car!

Anyhow, my advice is if you want high quality prints and don't feel like shelling out $300+ for the latest in photo printing technology, try to find a local camera shop that has printing capabilities, they often have tech that's better than what you can get at home.
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Old 10-25-2006, 06:51 PM   #23
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I notice that a lot of younger posters and even some not so young posters are getting along with various share-ware image processing programs. This is probably not bad for internet posting, but as you get more and more into printing, I think you really need to get a high quality photo editing program. Photo Shop is expensive, but Elements is not and it offers most of what Photo Shop does for non pros. If you want to find out what Photo Shop CS2 can do for you, you can get a free 30 day trial version mailed to you on a DVD by visiting the Adobe website. I already had an older version of Photo Shop, so the demo convinced me to spend the $149 for the upgrade to CS2.

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Old 10-25-2006, 07:08 PM   #24
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Photoshop is incredibly powerful, I wouldn't accept any other for editing my pictures. Although, there is a highly powerful open source alternative exists. I have used GIMP on several occasions and I think it is more than enough for processing photos, it has a rather large following in the open source crowd and can be downloaded for FREE from http://www.gimp.org/
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Old 10-26-2006, 01:29 AM   #25
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Let me clarify: I do have PS CS2, but it and the computer it's on (and any trains I like to chase for that matter) are 6000 miles away from me. But we shall be reunited in a month or so. Hopefully...
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