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Author Topic: Printing dull colors  (Read 3572 times)

qednick

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Printing dull colors
« on: December 03, 2011, 08:40:12 pm »
Hello all,

I own a printing company in San Antonio, TX and I'm really liking Scribus. As a long time Quark user on Apple machines I would really like to move to Scribus on Linux systems. Quark is much slower and it seems to crash a lot. Scribus opens in a few seconds, does pretty much everything I need, and appears more stable.

When I output client's print jobs I use templates that I have set up in Quark. I output from OS X using the default color profiles for our presses. I recently tried outputting a client's job directly from Scribus (1.38) Ubuntu 10.10 to the same machines and the colors came out dull. I tried a myriad of different combinations in the [somewhat excessive] advanced print dialog settings. I tried different settings with the Scribus color management preferences and document settings. Every print came out dull.

I then printed the exact same high res image directly from Quark on OS X and the colors were perfect and vibrant.

I then tried same with Scribus 1.4 on OS X and they again came out dull - no matter what settings I used.

Perhaps I'm missing something but this issue has been driving me nuts for the last few days. The machines I've tested with are Xerox 550/560's and a Xerox Docucolor 242. I'm pretty sure I have the correct PPD files installed for these machines and have tested them with cupstestpdd utility.

If anyone could throw some light on this I would greatly appreciate it. I'd really like to move to Scribus on Linux pretty much full time.  :)

Meho R.

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2011, 09:31:46 pm »
...
I recently tried outputting a client's job directly from Scribus (1.38) Ubuntu 10.10 to the same machines and the colors came out dull. I tried a myriad of different combinations in the [somewhat excessive] advanced print dialog settings. I tried different settings with the Scribus color management preferences and document settings. Every print came out dull...
Did you try exporting the document to PDF (File > Export > Save as PDF...) and printing it from Adobe Reader? One should avoid printing directly from Scribus, since printing feature isn't entirely reliable: it sometimes works, sometimes doesn't.

qednick

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2011, 09:52:52 pm »
Printing from Adobe Reader on OS X works perfectly. I haven't installed AR on the Linux box yet but I'll give that a shot and try printing from a Scribus generated PDF and see what happens. It's a little discouraging to hear that printing directly from Scribus could be so unreliable.  :o

Meho R.

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2011, 12:06:01 am »
It shouldn't be discouraging: intended output is high-quality PDF which is used as preferred document format by most printers anyway. And why print function is unreliable? a.l.e explained in another thread:
basically:

a/ printers can be very different
b/ drivers can be very different
c/ printing system can difffer
d/ the goal of scribus is the professional press (through pdf)
e/ you can't really share the paper on which the wrong result is printed

... at the end the missing support for every printer and print setup is mostly due to a lack of interest from the developers combined with time needed to implement it and the impossibility to debug it on the users printers :-)

voilĂ ... that's what i know of...

ciao
a.l.e

qednick

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2011, 01:07:59 am »
I understand... it's just that I am one of those printers  :)  I'll post back with some results once I'm back in the office.

a.l.e

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2011, 01:30:35 pm »
printing from scribus is not unreliable.

it works or not depending on your printer and your OS setup.

if it works it is reliable, if it does not you will notice it. i mean: it's not about small hitches which would be hard to catch and cost you money.

and the very simple workaround is to create a pdf (which you can check) and print with the professional pdf printer your prefer.

i understand that people would like to be able to print directly (me too from time to time) but i don't think that the current situation is that bad. we can produce good PDFs from scribus and we can reliably print those PDFs on any printer.

... depending on the pdf reader you can even get it to reload the pdf... for most jobs a few seconds more at the end of the workflow: that's nothing to really worry about! :-)


Meho R.

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2011, 02:35:58 pm »
printing from scribus is not unreliable.

it works or not depending on your printer and your OS setup.

if it works it is reliable, if it does not you will notice it [...]
Doesn't if in "if it works" mean exactly that: it's not reliable, i.e, it's unreliable? If it doesn't work (more or less) uniformly on all platforms and all printers, you can't call it "reliable", even if it works perfectly in some cases.

a.l.e

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2011, 02:14:57 pm »
no, for me unreliable means that one day it is working and the other one not.
or for one job it works but not for the other one.


certainly, you could understand it the other way. it's unreliable because it does not work for each user and each printer. but is it realistic? imo, most of the time you're only interested in knowing if it works for you and your local printer... do you really care if your neighbor can print from scribus?


personally, i tend not to use the word "unreliable" in this context. i want to avoid that people who have a working printing setup get worried and start thinking that some jobs may be printed in the wrong way...
my message is rather: if it works for you, it will be reliable! if it does not work, just give up and go through the PDF workflow.
(and don't forget to double check landscape printouts :-)


not a big issue, but i've seen too many people freak out for nothing, so i tend to avoid terms which scare them :-)


have a nice day!
a.l.e

qednick

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2011, 01:50:36 am »
Well, I tried exporting the Scribus doc to a PDF (formatted for "printer"). I then opened it in Adobe Reader on Linux and printed to one of the Xerox machines. The output was 99% close to the output I originally got from Quark on OS X (I suspect tweaking the print settings a little might get me at a 100% match).

So it seems I can get good prints from Scribus on Linux using this method - though it is an added step until direct printing ability from Scribus has improved.

Thanks for the suggestion!

Nermander

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Re: Printing dull colors
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2011, 09:18:00 am »
Important note:

For printer = CMYK PDF
For screen/web = RGB PDF