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Thread: What's your favourite photo paper

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    Default What's your favourite photo paper

    What's your favourite photo paper? Love to know what you like to use in general or for specific types of images (e.g., B&W, portraits, etc.)

    Would be helpful to know the printer and if you are using specific profiles, inks, or RIPs.

    Feel free to use the following categories as a template if you feel they would help get you started, but by no means should you feel obligated to use it...

    Printer: Epson R1800
    Inkset: Epson OEM

    Glossy/Baryta

    • Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Baryta with my own profiles generated from PrintFIX PRO for presentation
    • Kodak Endura Metallic (sent to a lab, haven't used it yet, but looks promising from various collections)
    • Epson Prem Glossy with my own profiles for regular glossy prints

    Semi/Luster/Pearl

    • Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Pearl with my own profiles for presentation
    • Epson Ultra Prem Luster w/ my own profiles if max resolution is called for
    • Epson Prof Semigloss w/ my own profiles for most regular prints
    • Moab Lasal Photo Luster w/ my own profiles if a softer look is desired
    • Harmann Matt FB Mp (haven't used it yet, but looks promising in the store)

    Matte/Fine Art

    • Hahnemuhle William Turner 310 gsm (haven't used it yet, but looks promising in the store)
    • Epson Ultra Prem Presentation Matte for proofing, lower contrast, and some people pics

    B&W

    • Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Baryta if more contrast is desired
    • Epson Ultra Prem Presentation Matte for regular prints
    4/3: Oly E-3, E-1, E-520, 9-18, 11-22, 14-54, 50-200, 70-300, 25/2.8, 35/3.5 | Leica 14-50, 14-150, 25/1.4
    m4/3: E-P3 | G1 | 14/2.5 | 20/1.7 | 14-42 IIR | 17/2.8 | 45/1.8 | Nik 20/3.5
    Nikon: D90, D700, 70-300/VR, 24/2.8, 35/1.8, 35/2, CV 40/2, 50/1.4G, 60/2.8, 85/1.8, 180/2.8 | f/2.8 zooms | Zeiss 25/2.8
    Sony: A55, A900, 24-85, 70-210/4, 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 30/2.8, 35/1.4G, 50/1.7, Zeiss 85/1.4
    P&S: Canon S90

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    Cool Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Quote Originally Posted by e_dawg View Post
    What's your favourite photo paper? Love to know what you like to use in general or for specific types of images (e.g., B&W, portraits, etc.)

    Would be helpful to know the printer and if you are using specific profiles, inks, or RIPs.

    Feel free to use the following categories as a template if you feel they would help get you started, but by no means should you feel obligated to use it...
    For stuff I print myself, Ilford Gallerie Classic Pearl is my favorite paper, printed on an HP 2510 printer (and HP 6122 before that). After experimenting with 3rd party inks, I stick with HP inks. I should mention, I only buy the Ilford papers from camera stores, as Ilford sells similar papers to big box stores, but it is thinner than the paper you get at the speciality stores.

    Kodak used to make a paper that was similar, but they stopped making it about 2 years ago.

    I find the HP premium plus paper to be a little blue for my tastes.

    For pictures that I give to people, I tend to use mpix.com with their Kodak E-surface paper. Mpix is the first photo printer on Kodak papers that I like the colors of. When I was shooting film, I tended towards Fuji papers and film.

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Interesting Question!

    I have recently purchased an Epson R290 (A4) Printer and been playing around with it and have been using some no-name semi-gloss "photo quality" paper. I have done a few Black&White prints with it and Really love it on that paper.

    I actually did a print a little while ago on Epson Premium Glossy paper using Geniune Inks and It looks great! I know I'll be printing more and more now. If I didn't know, I would swear it was a wet processed print.

    Printed from LR using the supplied Paper profiles.

    I have some 3rd party Inks I'll be trying in a few days and I hope it is somewhere close using them.

    I will be buying some more (different) papers and making some test prints to get the best I can.
    About Bob

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    E-3, HLD4, E300, HLD3, ZD11-22, ZD 14-45, ZD14-54, Sigma 30 f1.4, ZD35 Macro, ZD40-150(orig), ZD50-200, EC-14 and EX-25, fl-36.

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Printer: Epson R1800
    Inks: Epson
    Papers: Epson or Ilford
    Printing Software: Qimage

    Question for e dawg:

    I just purchased a printer profiling package and will receive it next week (shipped from US). You indicate that you have profiled most of your papers. In particular how different was the before/after profile with Epson Premium Lustre? Do you feel the colors are better and do you feel that you might use less ink (this is what many printer profile software products claim)?
    E-5 + Grip, E-1 + Grip, E500, E330, 7-14, 35 Macro, 14-54, 14-35 SWD, 35-100, 150 f2.0, 50-200SWD, Sigma 30mm f1.4, Sigma 150 Macro, Sigma 50-500 Bigma, 14-45, 40-150, EX-25,EC-20, FL-50, FL-50R, EPL-5, m14-42, m40-150, Benro C-357M8 Tripod, Gitzo G2220 Tripod, Acratech Ultimate Ballhead, Lowpro CompuTrekker, Pelican 1600

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Quote Originally Posted by Alevan View Post
    I just purchased a printer profiling package and will receive it next week (shipped from US). You indicate that you have profiled most of your papers. In particular how different was the before/after profile with Epson Premium Lustre? Do you feel the colors are better and do you feel that you might use less ink (this is what many printer profile software products claim)?
    I'm not sure if it's a problem unique to my setup, but I found that for some reason or another (possibly a colour management snafu somewhere in the chain that i haven't been able to figure out) that the canned Epson (and other paper mfr's) profiles are rarely that accurate, especially in terms of colour casts.

    The result has historically (before I switched to Vista 64 + 64-bit LR 2.3RC) had a bit of yellow shift (sometimes a bit of green or orange). Part of the problem might have been just that the profiles were created specifically for D50 illuminant conditions, which are not typically what people view photos in indoors (think incandescent or fluorescent lighting).

    After I switched to Vista 64 + LR 2.3RC, I started getting a darker prints with a magenta shift. Whatever the cause, it doesn't matter. With custom profiles, everything is good. You close the loop, so to speak, so that what you see is what you get. Not only in terms of colour cast, but also in terms of contrast, brightness, shadow detail, and improving the grayscale and B&W performance so that there aren't colour casts in your B&W prints.

    If it isn't apparent already, I think custom profiling is absolutely critical to getting the best quality prints from any printer. I even profiled my colour laser printer so that I get decent looking proofs when I want something quick but don't want to waste ink and paper for my Epson R1800. Colour toner is not cheap, but it is still cheaper than Epson ink, and plain photocopy paper is obviously cheaper than inkjet paper.

    One thing to keep in mind is to have print profiling software that can fine-tune profiles after you've created them. PrintFIX PRO with the Spyder 3 PRINT software is fantastic at tweaking the profiles you just created to not only fine-tune the contrast & brightness, shadow and highlight colour balance separately, but also the amount of shadow detail vs deepness of the blacks, how much pop vs subtlety you want in your highlights.

    Another thing that I like is being able to adjust for the lighting conditions that the prints will be viewed in. As I mentioned, since the prints are often viewed indoors under incandescent or fluorescent lighting, I shift the colour balance to be optimized for warmer lighting... somewhere around D35 so that it's optimized for incandescent (3000 K) and can be viewed under soft white and cool white fluorescent (3000 and 4100 K). There is a slider just for the colour temperature of the illuminant source.

    Viewing prints indoors also typically means viewing them under darker conditions unless you have a gallery and put them under lights. This causes your prints to look dark and the shadows to look blocked. There is a slider dedicated to adjusting for the brightness of the viewing conditions.

    Very cool and very useful adjustment capabilities. It's not cheap, but IMO, absolutely critical to improving the quality of one's prints.

    People are always amazed at the quality of my prints. Sometimes friends will spend a lot of money on a shiny new printer and then say it was a waste of money... that they can get better prints at Wal-Mart. I always ask them what paper did they use and what colour management and profiling setup do you have. I usually get a blank look with "I just bought some photo paper at Staples. What do you mean about colour management?" I say "that's your problem right there. It's not the printer."
    4/3: Oly E-3, E-1, E-520, 9-18, 11-22, 14-54, 50-200, 70-300, 25/2.8, 35/3.5 | Leica 14-50, 14-150, 25/1.4
    m4/3: E-P3 | G1 | 14/2.5 | 20/1.7 | 14-42 IIR | 17/2.8 | 45/1.8 | Nik 20/3.5
    Nikon: D90, D700, 70-300/VR, 24/2.8, 35/1.8, 35/2, CV 40/2, 50/1.4G, 60/2.8, 85/1.8, 180/2.8 | f/2.8 zooms | Zeiss 25/2.8
    Sony: A55, A900, 24-85, 70-210/4, 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 30/2.8, 35/1.4G, 50/1.7, Zeiss 85/1.4
    P&S: Canon S90

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Good to hear, because I purchased the same printer/monitor set-up (PrintFix Pro and Spyder 3). The one issue I have is the brightness of the print or rather darkness. I have adjusted the bightness of the monitor down but it is still not perfect. Some photos colors are bang on with the screen other times not. I am looking forward to getting the monitor/printer calibration done.
    E-5 + Grip, E-1 + Grip, E500, E330, 7-14, 35 Macro, 14-54, 14-35 SWD, 35-100, 150 f2.0, 50-200SWD, Sigma 30mm f1.4, Sigma 150 Macro, Sigma 50-500 Bigma, 14-45, 40-150, EX-25,EC-20, FL-50, FL-50R, EPL-5, m14-42, m40-150, Benro C-357M8 Tripod, Gitzo G2220 Tripod, Acratech Ultimate Ballhead, Lowpro CompuTrekker, Pelican 1600

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    I think you'll be very happy with the results, although you probably won't like sitting there scanning 980 patches every time you profile a paper (which I would recommend along with the 16-bit high bit depth option; the 150-225 patch targets don't result in enough data points to create a truly accurate profile). The good thing about the new Spyder 3 Print package is that it includes a slider bar that makes it easier to just slide the spectrophotometer across each row of patches instead of having to make sure it is aligned with every patch.

    As for your question about saving ink, it depends... if your prints were generally too dark and after calibration your prints are lighter, then you will indeed be saving a bit of ink. Calibration and profiling doesn't automatically save you ink; it is possible, however, that very generally, the typical standard profile prints a little on the dark side compared to tge typcical custom profile.
    4/3: Oly E-3, E-1, E-520, 9-18, 11-22, 14-54, 50-200, 70-300, 25/2.8, 35/3.5 | Leica 14-50, 14-150, 25/1.4
    m4/3: E-P3 | G1 | 14/2.5 | 20/1.7 | 14-42 IIR | 17/2.8 | 45/1.8 | Nik 20/3.5
    Nikon: D90, D700, 70-300/VR, 24/2.8, 35/1.8, 35/2, CV 40/2, 50/1.4G, 60/2.8, 85/1.8, 180/2.8 | f/2.8 zooms | Zeiss 25/2.8
    Sony: A55, A900, 24-85, 70-210/4, 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 30/2.8, 35/1.4G, 50/1.7, Zeiss 85/1.4
    P&S: Canon S90

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    off my R800/R1800 I usually print w/ RRS Satin paper. Off the 2000 series I usually use Breathing color or Moab Matte/Fiber paper.

    Anymore I think that the Satin paper does a very fine job for just about everything.

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    Currently running Mac OS X v10.5.6, Epson R2400 printer. I print from both Lightroom 2 and Photoshop CS2, depending on need and what I'm printing.

    Display calibrated with Eye One Display 2 colorimeter to 120 L, 1.8g, 5500K WP targets. Current Epson driver is v6.12.

    All my printing is done using a color managed print workflow. I use the Epson premium profiles, supplementary to the standard install for the R2400, except as noted below.

    My standard papers:

    Epson Ultra Premium Presentation Matte - for proofing and some exhibition work. This paper is best when very fine detailing and a relatively limited gamut describes the scene, and works best on matted, framed prints under glass.

    Epson Velvet Fine Art - my standard exhibition and fine art print paper. Very high "presence", excellent with color and most B&W work with crisp detailed rendering and lots of saturation. The surface has some texture so depending on the print size it might not prove to be best for some kinds of finely detailed images. Contrast can go a little heavy for some scene types.

    Hahnemühle Bamboo - A lovely, warm paper with a very long toe and a very smooth surface. This paper is beautiful to the touch and renders warmtone BW and reduced gamut color work exquisitely. It's uncoated so the surface has a slight softness to it compared to the Velvet Fine Art. I use the provided ICC profile with it and find that in the Epson driver the Epson Watercolor paper setting seems to work best.

    Hahnemühle Photo Rag Smooth 308gsm - Similar to the Velvet Fine Art but a touch warmer and softer in rendering appearance.

    Epson Exhibition Fiber Paper - The only 'gloss' surface I use, similar in look to an unferrotyped glossy paper out of a wet darkroom. Great depth and detailing, give a look unmistakably like glossy darkroom prints from the 1960s/70s. I understand there's a Harman paper which is very similar and just a hair warmer toned.

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    I use Inova fibaprint matt 280gsm for all prints and Chromajet water resistant canvas. I'm using an epson 7600 pro so it's not so good for gloss so I don't even bother trying. I Only use genuine epson ink. I also use a cheaper chromajet hires 180 for proofing only.
    Dave

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    I use only Epson paper made for my RX620. I usually print with gloss paper. On occasion, a matte finish depending on the picture.

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    Default Re: What's your favourite photo paper

    With my Canon Pro9000 I use the following papers:

    Ilford:
    1. Smooth Pearl
    2. Smooth Gloss
    3. Classic Pearl

    I'm also using InkPress Luster and it works well for me. A local camera shop recently closed their store in my area and I got a great buy on two 13x19 50 sheet boxes.

    I have the ColorMunki and use my own profiles for all of the above.
    Jim
    E-5, E-30, E-330 IR, 12-60mm, 50mm Macro, 70-300mm, 9-18mm, 40-150mm, FL-50R
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