Matte or Glossy

Discussion in 'The Digital Darkroom' started by Paul, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. Paul

    Paul Member

    Looking for opinions on what you guys tend to use when printing your photos at such places as CVS, Target, etc. I just got some prints done at CVS today and the only option when you want your prints right away is glossy. The 1-hour version or ordering online allows either matte or glossy. Unfortunately I had used Lightroom's sharpening for matte which I had heard was the default.

    I had some issues with the results overall with some being slightly yellow and some spots which showed up that do not appear when I view them on screen.

    I might try MPIX again since I have used them in the past.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  2. Paul

    Paul Member

    Went back to CVS and had them do over an 8x10 since it had some spots on it. This time used the one-hour service which uses a different machine and it came out better. Not thrilled with the way the blue sky is coming out, almost seems blotchy in the print. The photo looks fine on my monitor. Need to research this a bit.

    Found out that 8x10s and 5x7s are available in glossy only. 4x6s can be either matte or glossy.

    Still might try some other places.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  3. mSummers

    mSummers Member

    I switched to having my prints done online. I've used PhotoWorks for 3 years now with no problems. They'll do glossy or matte on any size print.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  4. Paul

    Paul Member

    How do you deal with the whole color matching issues going from your screen to their prints?
  5. mSummers

    mSummers Member

    Having a properly calibrated monitor is key to getting good prints. I use an i1 Display Calibrator to correct all of my monitors. If you're really serious about it, you can get calibrators that profile both your monitor and your printer, but they are very expensive. I had a lot of trouble with my prints not coming out right before I calibrated my monitor, but since then I've never had a problem.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  6. gary

    gary Member

    2nd that on the monitor calibration, to the point that after someone has a camera, 1-2 lenses and has decided what program they want for post process, next purchase should be a monitor calibrator of some kind
    i use colorvision spyder, and i religiously calibrate every 2 weeks, even have it set up to put up a popup on startup whenever i'm due
    woth every penny to have a calibrated monitor
  7. Craig

    Craig Member Staff Member

    It's also important to find a place that will allow you to choose not to have them color correct or fix your exposure.
    CVS and Walgreens always color correct I think.
    That's what I do to make sure my prints look just like they do on my montior.
  8. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    And if you look hard enough, the better labs will publish their printer profile so you can match your monitor with the printer profile. But the Walgreens et al probably don't do that.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  9. Paul

    Paul Member

    CVS does not offer any printer profile and I am pretty sure does not have the option to not color correct, I will have to verify that. Thanks for the tips everyone.

    On the fence about the monitor calibration since I don't have a printer for one and not sure I totally agree that a calibrated monitor will help me match colors with an external print site. I guess if I found one that I liked and their colors were consistent with my calibrated monitor, then that makes sense. But I agree with Gary, I need more lenses first!!
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2014
  10. gary

    gary Member

    paul i would say that somewhere in the purchase plan, you do need a calibrator, i do not even have a printer, but would never think about not calibrating
    all monitors drift, some less than others, over time what you thin still looks good in your post process program, really does not stay true at all, esp on others monitors
    and with the exception of the photo kiosk at the local walmart, most of the few prints i do have made if i use the service at either target or cvs, look exactly like what i saw on my monitor
    of course i print less than 10 a year, if that, and i get all my large stuff done custom for the wow factor
  11. prettypixie

    prettypixie Member

    Great info. guys - thanks for sharing. I started using a privately owned because I hated the color adjustments at Walgreens and CVS, the only probably with the privately owned is it costs twice as much!

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