Re: Digital Negs - RGB vs CMYK

From: Judy Seigel ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 12/01/04-10:14:36 PM Z
Message-id: <>

On Wed, 1 Dec 2004, Michael Healy wrote:
> ....Dan I got this from, in his book, that even when printing b&w, you
> may want to use color inks instead of "black only". The rationale is that you get better
> prints because as soon as it sees "black only", the printer, smart dude that it is, goes
> and drops your dpi by half or more.

Let me suggest that that depends on your printer. In my experience with
the Epson 1160, printing negatives in "color," which had a kind of bluish
cast, gave significantly less density (or maybe that's opacity) than just
black. Also, and even more important, each printer has its own notions of
what colors to use to make "black" -- and those colors have different
response to UV -- and the mix may well change with the settings, as well
as the model and its ink supply....

> This past week, I sat down and experimented to see whether this is true of my Epson. It
> certainly was. My "all inks" neg - b&w - is vastly superior to the "black only" version. It's
> so bad that it's evident to the naked eye.

As noted... not necessarily. Plus, I found that the substrate is another
variable. If that changes, density may/will change

On the 3rd hand, this is all probably overkill -- does anyone print gum
for exact "photographic" color repro? Not to mention that the process
itself is so extraordinarily, infinitely flexible -- in coats, mixes,
choice of colors, development, repeats, additions, etc. etc. -- that the
negative is in a sense academic -- in the sense of being theoretical
rather than definitive.

And, for what it's worth I'll add that I printed my negatives by CMYK in
black, because (a) at the time I didn't know there were alternatives & my
laser printer didn't speak RGB, and (b), I was familiar with CMYK from dye
transfer, but that (c), the prints were, if anything, TOO realistically
"photographic," which was one reason I lost interest in that particular

Received on Wed Dec 1 22:14:56 2004

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