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Color in Process Printing
You can improve the color accuracy of your monitor through a process called calibration. If you have critical color concerns, consider consulting a Pantone Process Color Guide or a hard copy proof. Be aware that:
Video about RGB and CMYK color
RGB - CMYK Conversion
To be able to print on a four-color press, all RGB files must be translated into CMYK. This conversion can be easily done in most image editing or graphic arts programs.
You can improve the color accuracy of your monitor through a process called calibration. By adjusting your monitor settings to match our press output as closely as possible, you will be able to see which colors match, which don't and how they vary. Due to inherent differences between RGB light and CMYK ink, images on your monitor will always look somewhat different than the final printed piece.
Even a perfectly calibrated monitor has limitations. Monitors display color with light, while presses print with ink. There are some inherent differences in the visual results. Paper brightness, paper type, applied coatings and ambient light will also affect the final look of your printed piece. If you have critical color concerns, consider consulting a Pantone Process Color Guide or a hard copy proof.
Can I order 2-color printing from you?We suggest you get the best value for your dollar and go for full color, instead of two-color! Nonetheless, you may use any of our product pages (with the exception of postcards, business cards, presentation folders, catalogs and calendars) to order two-color printing. Simply place your order as usual, then specify in the comments section that it's a two-color job and what PMS colors you have selected. Since we are so efficient at producing high-quality four-color work, two-color pieces will be priced the same as four-color pieces. Two-color postcards, business cards, presentation folders, catalogs and calendars will generally be converted to four-color process equivalents before printing. If you need to produce 2-color business cards or postcards using spot inks, you can request custom printing prices online. Learn more about 2 Color Printing.
How well will my job match what I see on my monitor?Most people are surprised at how well their job matches what they see. But because of wide differences in monitor calibration and the different technologies used, some printed colors may not exactly match the colors on your specific monitor. Please see our RGB - CMYK Information page for important instructions on getting the results you want. Our Design Hints page has additional information and illustrations.
Will the colors match a sample I print out on my own printer, or a previously printed sample?At PrintingForLess.com, part of the way we offer fast turnaround and low pricing is by printing to a "pleasing color" standard, using standard ink densities. Therefore, there is no guarantee that your finished piece will approximate your printed sample. This is due in part to the widely varying results from different output devices including inkjet and laser printers, continuous tone proofing devices, high-resolution film-based proofs, and different than true offset lithography. Even from one commercial printing firm to another, there can be significant differences in results. In particular, inkjet and laser prints are known to look substantially different than true offset lithography.
If you require precise color match, please contact us to arrange for a digital color proof. Once you approve the additional fees (starting at $40), we will produce and send you a hard proof via overnight delivery. When you approve and return the proof, we will strive to match the color of the proof when printing your final piece.
There can be substantial additional charges for precise color match services. Also, if you request color correction or other changes after you see your proof, there could be charges for color correction time and a new proof.
Bottom line: the final product we produce for you is unlikely to match the output from your inkjet -- it will look more professional!
What is the difference between the RGB and CMYK color space and why does it matter?RGB refers to the primary colors of light, Red, Green and Blue, that are used in monitors, television screens, digital cameras and scanners. CMYK refers to the primary colors of pigment: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. These are the inks used on the press in "4-color process printing", commonly referred to as "full color printing" or "four color printing".
The combination of RGB light creates white, while the combination of CMYK inks creates black. Therefore, it is physically impossible for the printing press to exactly reproduce colors as we see them on our monitors.
Many programs have the capability to convert the layout/images from the RGB color space to the CMYK color space. We request that you convert your colors from RGB to CMYK if your tools allow you to. By doing it yourself, you have maximum control over the results. You may notice a shift in color when converting from RGB to CMYK. If you do not like the appearance in CMYK, we recommend that you make adjustments while working in CMYK (usually lightening). Generally, you should specify CMYK color builds that look a little lighter than you want, since the dots of ink "fatten up" on press, giving you more pigment on paper than you see on your monitor. Be especially careful to keep backgrounds light if there is black or dark colored text over it, so that the text remains readable. See our RGB and CMYK Information page for more details.
How can I know what a particular CMYK color combination will look like?To purchase a color guide with over 3,000 process colors with their CMYK screen percentages, please visit CreativePro.