PSCS4, OsX and Epson…

part 2, not the best news

In my previous blog post about the subject, I mentioned a workaround for the bug, and also said I didn’t like the idea of converting to GenericRGB somewhere in the process since it might clip colors…

Gave it a quick try today, and yeah, it does clip “somewhat”…

Same image as last time. Original is AdobeRGB. In this image, some purples and dark blues are out of gamut for the R2880, using Epson Premium Glossy paper. Admittedly, not your “average” color palette, but one that does show problems if they are there.

Softproofed

Let’s start by showing the original converted to sRGB;
(again: all screenshots converted to sRGB for web display)
Original converted to sRGB

Nice and colorful. Not that big a difference from the AdobeRGB original. (It’s only slightly out of sRGB gamut in the shadow areas.)

When softproofing for the Epson Glossy Paper profile, you see a difference, but about what’s expected. Purples turn a bit blue-ish. Not a huge problem in this case I’d say. Not worth a screenshot. If it were a problem, I’d correct it while softproofing.

Okay, so far so good.

Now apply the workaround: Convert to the paper profile. No change obviously, since I was already softproofing. Then assign Generic RGB. Totally whacked colors. Also to be expected and also not worth a screenshot.

If the workaround were without drawbacks, the image would be sent to the printer and be converted from paper profile to GenericRGB somewhere along the lines. But since we  “compensated” for that by assigning the GenericRGB profile beforehand, you’d expect the results to be the same: The printer gets the right “numbers” sent… But are the numbers the same?

Timeline, step by step.

This is what the image goes through:

  1. Open original in PSCS4. Softproof & edit as needed
  2. Convert to printer profile (workaround step 1)
  3. Assign GenericRGB (workaround step 2)
  4. Press “print” in PSCS4
  5. Convert to printer profile (by PSCS4s print engine)
  6. Convert to GenericRGB (done by OSX because of this bug)
  7. Assume printer profile. (by the R2880, because it knows nothing about color management, and just prints the data it gets)

The problem lies in step 6: (For those interested: It’s easily reproducible by doing the same steps manually in Photoshop.)

The image after step 5 is massively out of the GenericRGB gamut, as shown here:
The funky colors are the result of assigning GenericRGB in step 3 obviously.
Gamut warning to GenericRGB

This results in clipping. Big time.

The result…

…is a print that is way less saturated then it should have been: Top left would be like printed from PSCS4 using the “workaround”, bottom right is the print that PSCS2 would produce:

Difference in print output

I hope that this bug gets fixed pronto. I know I’ll keep using PSCS2 for printing in the meantime… Which sucks is a bit of a drawback quite frankly.
(Again: Apple and Epson: Are you reading this?)

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One Response to “PSCS4, OsX and Epson…”

  1. René Says:
    May 27th, 2010 at 18:40

    For anyone with this issue: The latest Epson driver (Printer Driver v6.62), found here fixes the issue! Yay!

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