Enlarging for Print
/forum/topic/1155739/0



buckeyeguy1
Registered: Jan 23, 2012
Total Posts: 157
Country: United States

I would love to hear your guys'/gals' workflow for enlarging images for print. I don't have any experience in the matter, but have three images that I would like to enlarge to 20x30.

From what I have read so far is that to enlarge a 12MP (RAW, 14-bit Uncompressed at base ISO) image from my D700 to 20x30, the image needs to be as close to perfect as possible straight out of camera as far as exposure and cropping are concerned. I do understand, that viewing distance does play a role in the perceived quality of the print. My intent is for the three images I have to be viewed from around 4-5 feet.

I have Lightroom 4 and CS6 and am doing my work on a calibrated Dell Ultrasharp 24" monitor. I am new to Photoshop, but am starting to get to know my way around it pretty well.

Thanks ahead of time for any help!



Kittyk
Registered: Apr 29, 2009
Total Posts: 4405
Country: Germany

makes no sense to enlarge it unless you are using some wicked smart enlarging plugin. printer driver will adapt it and dither it about as good as photoshop will.
quality of the print is given by content. sharpness is always perceived relatively so as long as the photo is not sharp on wrong places and unsharp elsewhere it will look good.
if you have photo with lots of small detail you should not go under 60dpi for normal wall installation but again, depends on content.



egd5
Registered: Feb 08, 2005
Total Posts: 1027
Country: United States

I have been amazed at what Lightroom will do. I really think all you need to do is print it through Lightroom. It will take care of everything.
If you're sending it out for print then I'm not positive, but I think any of the good print places (mpix,whcc, etc.) will do what's necessary to get a good print. It does somewhat depend on content, and it needs to be sharp and well exposed.



Bernie
Registered: Aug 24, 2002
Total Posts: 4126
Country: United States

See Fred's Stair Interpolation Pro if you don't want the printer driver or lab to do it for you. See the "software" link above.

I have found Photoshop's bicubic works great.



RDKirk
Registered: Apr 11, 2004
Total Posts: 8976
Country: United States

Today's Photoshop bicubic is not your grandfather's Photoshop bicubic. I don't believe fancy techniques and costly plug-ins are necesssary anymore.

I prefer to do the upsampling myself because I find that sharpening the output at final display size to my own tastes to be an important factor.



Steve Beck
Registered: Sep 22, 2006
Total Posts: 932
Country: United States

I have used genuine fractal print pro and now it is called resize pro made by onone software since it first came out. The quality and ease for enlarging photos and to specific aspect ratios is great.



buckeyeguy1
Registered: Jan 23, 2012
Total Posts: 157
Country: United States

Thanks for the replies. I didn't know that the printer would modify the file to print larger.

I have read several articles that all have different workflows of enlarging. One says to resample to your final document size in one step. Another says to resample in 10% incraments. One even had a method of sharpen, resample for a print larger than you want to print, sharpen again, resample again for your print size and sharpen again.

I have seen a couple of articles that talked about the Resize Pro software, but at this point in time I don't want to spend the $200 for it.

Another question for those who use the Bicubic Smoother. My original image is roughly 10x15 at 300ppi. When you enlarge, do you lower the resolution at all?



RDKirk
Registered: Apr 11, 2004
Total Posts: 8976
Country: United States

buckeyeguy1 wrote:
Another question for those who use the Bicubic Smoother. My original image is roughly 10x15 at 300ppi. When you enlarge, do you lower the resolution at all?


No, I don't. The theory is that people view a larger print from a farther distance so the resolution can be lower. My experience observing the viewers of my work is that viewers of photographs will tend to move as close to a photograph as physically possible if it engages them. Unless the photograph is deliberately aping a painterly medium, the realistic detail of a photograph is part of its uniqueness. Unlike the case with a painting or a lithograph, people expect a photograph to reveal more detail to them as they move closer.

And they certainly do not expect to ever see pixellation. So I give my work every opportunity to reveal all the detail it has and avoid pixellation because any piece is likely to get reading-distance scrutiny no matter what its size.



JaneG
Registered: Sep 03, 2005
Total Posts: 2012
Country: United Kingdom

I use Qimage

cant be beaten .. but not any good for MAC users

when I am getting 1 metre + prints made.. I use Qimage to resize to the exact size I want and print sharpen . I do test prints of crops that I print at full size with different sharpening amounts so i can get it right for the large print ... finally I get a test strip produced (cropped at full size from the finalised output file) with the company who are going to produce the large print to make sure things are exactly right.

Jane



JimKied
Registered: May 20, 2012
Total Posts: 595
Country: United States

If you are not going to do the printing yourself do you let the lab do the uprezzing? Or do you do it yourself before sending to the lab? If you use a product like Qimage, do you up size it in Qimage and save the up sized image to send to the lab?