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Photoshop and Printing larger prints. Speed up Photoshop for large files!

New Here ,
Sep 18, 2020

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Hi! 
I have been working with PS for about a year and have started to create digital artwork that I am now looking to print and sell. I am a newbie to this, have no prior experience with printing, and I have previously had my settings "wrong".. So I am currently trying to learn how it works! 

 

According to the photo/printing lab I have talked with, I should have the settings to;

maximum size I want to print the piece in (this will be 140x175cm - which will be around 16.000x20.000px), 300dpi, Adobe RGB, and preferably RGB 16bit if that works for my computer. 

 

My new Macbook Pro 16' is about a month old, it is the best MacBook laptop currently on the market. After applying and trying out these new settings Photoshop is extremely slow (saving and turning layers into smart objects mostly). The file size on my current project (first time doing with these settings) is already up to 15 Gb (around 100-150 layers) and I am not anywhere near done. It is completely removing the fun of it, having to sit and wait for so long all the time. Currently saving in .psb.

 

What can I do to speed up the process? Is it necessary with 16bit? I am only going to use the pieces on screen (uploading on social media) and for printing.

 

The type of art pieces that I am creating are photo composites. I either take my own photos or use stock photos from sites like Shutterstock to create a final image. The images I use from Shutterstock etc, is always 300dpi and ranges from around 3000-7000 px. I am not sure what .bit format they are but since they are in jpegs I assume 8bit.

 

Since I am new to all this I am not sure how this works but there might be unnecessary to use 16bit in the settings if the images I am using are 8bit? Then it will even not be 16bit or??

From what I can find about printing a lot of people say that they can't even see a difference in 8bit or 16bit prints. 

 

Same with the resolution. Currently, I have to enlarge most of the stock photos (turn into smart objects first). I am wondering if I might as well just create stuff in around 10.000x10.000 and then just enlarge everything since I am still enlarging almost every object seperately... I don't know.

 

- Also, is there anything I need to know more/think about when it comes to printing larger quality prints?

I also just found out that I need to calibrate my screen so currently learning about that as well. I am thinking of Spyder5EXPRESS and Xrite ColorMunki since I do not want to spend too much. Please let me know your thoughts! 

Thanks so much in advance for the help! 

All the best,

Karin S

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FAQ, How to, Import and export, Mac

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Photoshop and Printing larger prints. Speed up Photoshop for large files!

New Here ,
Sep 18, 2020

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Hi! 
I have been working with PS for about a year and have started to create digital artwork that I am now looking to print and sell. I am a newbie to this, have no prior experience with printing, and I have previously had my settings "wrong".. So I am currently trying to learn how it works! 

 

According to the photo/printing lab I have talked with, I should have the settings to;

maximum size I want to print the piece in (this will be 140x175cm - which will be around 16.000x20.000px), 300dpi, Adobe RGB, and preferably RGB 16bit if that works for my computer. 

 

My new Macbook Pro 16' is about a month old, it is the best MacBook laptop currently on the market. After applying and trying out these new settings Photoshop is extremely slow (saving and turning layers into smart objects mostly). The file size on my current project (first time doing with these settings) is already up to 15 Gb (around 100-150 layers) and I am not anywhere near done. It is completely removing the fun of it, having to sit and wait for so long all the time. Currently saving in .psb.

 

What can I do to speed up the process? Is it necessary with 16bit? I am only going to use the pieces on screen (uploading on social media) and for printing.

 

The type of art pieces that I am creating are photo composites. I either take my own photos or use stock photos from sites like Shutterstock to create a final image. The images I use from Shutterstock etc, is always 300dpi and ranges from around 3000-7000 px. I am not sure what .bit format they are but since they are in jpegs I assume 8bit.

 

Since I am new to all this I am not sure how this works but there might be unnecessary to use 16bit in the settings if the images I am using are 8bit? Then it will even not be 16bit or??

From what I can find about printing a lot of people say that they can't even see a difference in 8bit or 16bit prints. 

 

Same with the resolution. Currently, I have to enlarge most of the stock photos (turn into smart objects first). I am wondering if I might as well just create stuff in around 10.000x10.000 and then just enlarge everything since I am still enlarging almost every object seperately... I don't know.

 

- Also, is there anything I need to know more/think about when it comes to printing larger quality prints?

I also just found out that I need to calibrate my screen so currently learning about that as well. I am thinking of Spyder5EXPRESS and Xrite ColorMunki since I do not want to spend too much. Please let me know your thoughts! 

Thanks so much in advance for the help! 

All the best,

Karin S

TOPICS
FAQ, How to, Import and export, Mac

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Sep 18, 2020 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 18, 2020

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Most photo labs only take sRGB colour space images in 8bit  – check the spec with yours.

Screen resolution is measured in Pixels Per Inch (PPI), Dots Per Inch (DPI) is used for desk-top type printers.

(And make regular internal and external back-up copies of your work)

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Sep 18, 2020 1
New Here ,
Sep 18, 2020

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Thanks a lot Derek! 
I will check and have talked with two but they are saying different things so a bit confused.

So changing to srgb would also increase speed and decrease file size, good to know! 

Basically I should be able to stick with srgb and 8 bit.. and then keep the pixel size and dpi. I will check with them but let me know if you have other info! Thanks! 

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Sep 18, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 18, 2020

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You don't need 300 ppi at those sizes! Whoever told you that doesn't know what he's talking about.

 

The reason you often hear "300 ppi for print" is that for a standard offset book and magazine print process, this is a theoretical number beyond which no improvement is possible. So anything above 300 ppi is wasted, there is no improvement. For inkjet 300 ppi has no particular significance, any more than any other number. The main factor is viewing distance.

 

The original file is just pixels. Pixels per inch is not a property of the file. Ppi is just a measure of pixel density on paper. You need a minimum pixel density for any print to look crisp and sharp. So that puts a limit to how big any particular file can be printed and still look good. But what that number is, depends on the purpose and process and not the least - the viewing distance. The further away, the lower the required ppi for the same visual result. I just finished a wall-sized banner at 10 ppi. It will look smashing, because it's high up on a wall.

 

Ppi is perhaps the most myth-shrouded and misunderstood concept in all of digital image processing. It becomes a lot simpler if you read it literally, word for word: pixels per inch. That's all it means, and that's exactly what it means.

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Sep 18, 2020 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 18, 2020

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here is a useful formula for calclating ppi required, based on viewing distance. Any higher than that and it is wasted - our eyes can't resolve it. :

ppi required = 6878/Viewing distance in inches

 

That is not plucked out of nowhere. It comes from this:

A good human eye can resolve 60 line pairs per degree i.e. pairs of black and white lines.  So in half a degree we would have 60 single lines.

ppi.png

Simple trigonometry means that the width containing those 60 lines can be calculated by:
               Width of 60 lines = Viewing distance x tan(0.5°)

Once we know the width for 60 lines (or pixels) we can calculate how many lines per inch can be seen by using 60/Width of 60 lines.

 

So putting those together gives us

ppi Required = 60/(Viewing distance x tan(0.5°))

= 60/(Viewing distance x 0.0087269)

= 2/(Viewing distance x 0.000291) 

= 1/(Viewing distance x .0001454)

= 6878/Viewing distance

 

Dave

 

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Sep 18, 2020 1
D Fosse LATEST
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 18, 2020

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As for calibrator. The instant you start sending out work to be processed by others, a calibrator becomes an essential piece of equipment. You need to know that you are on the same page as the person on the receiving end.

 

Don't make the common mistake of assuming that calibration and profiling a monitor is just about hitting a color balance so that grays are neutral. It goes way beyond that. It's about tone and contrast, highlights and shadows, how any individual color looks. Is that blue leaning towards cyan or purple? You need to know.

 

There's no more reason to save money on the calibrator than any other equipment. The calibrator is important! It's your insurance that you're getting back what you sent out. Nothing could be more important if you rely on others to process your work.

 

I would emphatically not recommend the Spyder Express. It's way too limited in too many ways, to the point where it's basically useless. The best deal on the market is the i1 Display Pro. No, it is not expensive. The sensor alone is worth the price, and every high-end calibrator on the planet supports it, so that if you later upgrade your equipment, you can still use it.

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