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Printing with Photoshop CS4.


by eduardoangel – July 7th, 2009

by Eduardo Angel

We now know how and where to install ICC Printer Profiles, so lets see how to use them within Photoshop. The dialog below is for Photoshop CS4, but the steps for Cs3 and CS2 are pretty much identical.

Go to File, the Print. The Print dialog opens. Step#1: Select the Printer you will be using.


Step#2: Click on Page Setup. You need to select the printer (again!) and the paper size. Here you can also change the orientation and the scale.


Step#3: Make sure Color Management and Document are selected.


Step#4: There’s a huge debate about this critical step; you can let your printer or the software manage your colors. Think about it for a second, who is “smarter” the hardware or a monster application like Photoshop. Right? So, make sure Photoshop Manages Colors is selected.


Step#5: Another critical step and often the source to most problems I see. Here you need to select the Printer Profile.


What is a Printer Profile? It is a combination of a specific printer with a specific paper with a specific ink set. Therefore you need to select the profile for a)  the HPZ3100 (the printer I am using for this example) and  b) the exact paper you are using  and c) the exact ink set.

When you see PK at the end of a profile name it means that you will need to use Photo Black, if it says MK you will need to use Matte Black.

Notice all the different ICC printer profiles I have available. Only the highlighted Profile is the correct one for the settings I want to use.


Step#6: Rendering Intent. I generally get excellent results using Relative Colorimetric. Some people prefer Perceptual. We will talk about rendering intents on a later post, but I’m curious to know what you are using and how is it working for you. Please leave a comment and I’ll reply.


Step #7: Make sure all the settings are correct and hit Print. As soon as you do this you will exit Photoshop and the printer dialog will open.


I will cover how to set the printer dialog settings on the next post, but so far we covered all the proper steps in Photoshop CS4.

Categories: Education, How-To, ICC, Printers, Profiles | Tags: , , , , ,

8 responses to “Printing with Photoshop CS4.”

  1. Irv Freedman says:

    I generally use perceptual and let the printer (HP9180) manage the printing. I find the results are excellent and very closely match the screen iMac 20″ (non-intel)

    • eduardoangel says:

      Hi Irv. I find very interesting that you are getting good results letting the printer manage the colors. Have you tried the workflow I described using HP’s ICC profiles?

  2. Glenys says:

    Thank you for a very informative article. I realise that I am already on the right track but it took me an awfully long time to arrive.

    • eduardoangel says:

      Hi Glenys. Thank you for the feedback. I really think that short tutorials like this will save time to many people. Keep checking the blog, there are a lot of useful tutorials coming soon!

  3. Howard Part says:

    Very clear and concise article. One question however……In order to send 16 bit data to your printer do you need to select “output” (selected by clicking the color management pull down menu) and then checking “send 16 bit data” or is a 16 bit file sent automatically?



  4. phyllis says:

    I am having difficulty. I had already followed the steps shown. I have a 10X7 inch photograph that will not print out the correct size- none from photoshop cs4 will. My printer is an HP officejet 6500 wireless. Everything shows a full scaled photo will print, but it never does; only a tiny 2″ wide (if that) image appears. I did have document and not proof chosen. Any suggestions?

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