Fancy yourself as the next David Bailey? If you are heading off on your summer holiday, you are more than likely to take a photo or two whilst sunning yourself on the beach. Whether it’s on your mobile phone, tablet or digital camera, it is now easier than ever to take pictures; but how do you get top quality prints?
With help from Printernet you can learn how to print top quality holiday snaps from the comfort of your own home. Boasting a fantastic range of photo printers to help make your life a little easier, we thought it about time we told you how to get the most out of your printer.
From Smartphone to Photo Album
In our previous blog post we discussed how to find the perfect photo printer (we won’t tell if you haven’t taken it out the box yet!). Designed specifically for printing high quality photos, they boast excellent resolution; printing up to 9600 x 2400 dpi.
Here’s the scenario. You have just taken an award winning photo worthy of a place in the National Portrait Gallery. Whilst previously photo printing was left to the professionals who knew how to develop film , digital has now made it easier for everyone to print their own snaps.
The hard work has been taken out for you as there is no longer a need to adjust exposure time, filters and contrast in the depths of the darkroom. From the comfort of your own home or desk, you can now print fantastic quality digital prints with minimal effort.
1. Print Size
Recognise the limits of your camera or device. If you’re image file doesn’t have enough pixels, you won’t be able to print it out large. For an acceptable print quality, we recommend at least 300 dpi. To determine the maximum print size for your photo simply divide the photo’s pixel size by 300 (or higher depending on the required quality).
Right-click on the photo, select Properties and then choose the Details tab. You will then be able to see the width and height of your photo. If your photo is 5184 by 3450 pixels, to print at 300 dpi divide these by 300. This gives 17 by 12. That means that you could print this photo at a maximum size of 17 inches by 12 for a high quality result. This is not the only contributing factor to quality, but is a good rule of thumb.
Whilst you can achieve stunning results with photo printers from Canon for example, paper quality has a massive impact on the finished product. Standard plain paper absorbs the ink so will result in a dull, flat image with minimal fine detail. For the best results it is best to print using the manufacturers recommended paper. Developed in line with their printers and inks, there are a variety of different options available.
Image Credit: prophotosupply.com
Generally speaking, photo paper comes in Gloss, Matte and Lustre. Gloss is very reflective and will give you strong bold colours. Matte and pearl are much less shiny, giving a more subtle and professional look.
- Gloss photo paper is fine for landscapes and still life as it will give you a very fine detail.
- Matte and Pearl is ideal for portraits as it provides a softer finish
As with paper, it is recommended to stick with the manufacturers inks. The ink is like the oil in a car’s engine. Whilst it will work with a remanufactured brand, the printer has been engineered to work with a specific formula. At Printernet we have a wide range of manufacturer inks for you to choose including Canon and Kodak.
4. Print Settings
When printing your photos it is important to adjust your printer’s paper specifications. This will adjust the amount of ink placed onto the page whilst printing, resulting in a better quality print. Most printer software comes with a variety of paper settings, so make sure you select the right one!
It might sound ridiculous, but make sure to check that your paper is loaded correctly. If you printer feeds right side up, make sure that your paper is inserted that way. Similarly, if your paper hasn’t been inserted square, your photo could end up printing at jaunty angle.
5. Image Editing
If you are inexperienced in editing images, it is best to keep it to the minimum. Excessing editing can reduce the resolution and quality of your original print. If using your printer’s photo editing software, stick with just red eye removal and contrast.
If you want to crop your photo or do any amount of adjustment to the colour we would recommend using a photo editing software such as Photoshop. This should help maintain your image quality helping you to achieve the best results. If your printer uses CMYK or RGB, make sure that your editing software is set to the correct mode for printing.
How to Make the Most of Your Photos
Photo printers are much more advanced than they used to be. Here at Printernet we have a fantastic range of different models for you to choose from which makes it even easier for you to find the perfect printer for your requirements.
- Canon MG7150 – A six ink all-in-one photo printers, this compact device will enable you to achieve premium results at home. Print from the cloud or via your computer, tablet or smartphone.
- Canon IP8750 A3 Printer – This photo lab quality printer will enable you to print stunning A3 photos wirelessly. Superfast, this 6 single ink printer is capable of 9600 x 2400 dpi prints.
Want to find out more about a photo printer? Call today on 01344 354944