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zimmt

Color Variance when Printing Vector vs Raster

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I've noticed that a vector and raster square with identical colors print differently. Is this an expected behavior?

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No.


MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012) Mac OS 10.12.6 || Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 10.14.6

Affinity Designer 1.8.3 | Affinity Photo 1.8.3 | Affinity Publisher 1.8.3 | Affinity Designer Beta 1.8.4.2 | Affinity Photo Beta 1.8.4.183 | Affinity Publisher Beta 1.8.4.663

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I've tested this on 3 different printers with all producing the same effect. I assume this is an Affinity bug then. Can anyone confirm this is the case on their end as well?

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6 minutes ago, zimmt said:

I've tested this on 3 different printers with all producing the same effect. I assume this is an Affinity bug then. Can anyone confirm this is the case on their end as well?

It might be easiest if you uploaded a sample .afdesign file, so (a) we don't have to provide our own and (b) we can see if it's something you did in your file.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
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Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.674 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.674 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.663 Beta.

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Of course... here is the test file.

What brought this to my attention in the first place was I have a color palette of colors used for text, and with certain text the colors print lighter than with others. What is causing this is when an FX effect is applied to the text it must get rasterized (similarly to exporting to PDF where unsupported properties are rasterized). And thus the text with an FX applied prints brighter than the regular vector-based text.

I replicated this by applying a color to a simple vector square and printing it alongside its rasterized version. There too the raster prints brighter. Within Affinity, using the color picker, the colors are identical. And they are to the eye as well... just not on the printed version.

I assume it is simply a printer driver quirk on how vector and raster graphics are handled. I tried this on 3 printers: a Pixma Pro 100, PageWide 452dw, and LaserJet M553. All exhibit this behavior. This is using OEM, Air Print and Third Party drivers.

NOTE: Before submitting I printed the test file and noticed it printed fine. After a little tinkering I figured out the issue only occurs when there is 1 or more artboards. So I added an artboard to the test file. I have another forum post on another issue with printing which is related to artboards as well. The other issue is not quite as severe as this one as I've spent a lot of time trying to get my color palette and this has created a lot of headaches and time and material wasted.

Test.afdesign

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Have you tried selecting the documents colour profile in the colour matching section of the print dialog? worth a try, although I find Affinitys print capability is not good and needs to be able to handle CMYK output a lot better, at the moment you can save yourself grief by creating a PDF and printing from Acrobat - just wish there was another option as we are back to Adobe again


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Affinity Designer, Photo and Publisher 1.8.3 + Betas when available

Binger.jpg.1f81574106cc2dea8ae65d0a572b9ef9.jpg
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Hi Zimmt,

Do you have an photo of an example print out at all please? Along with a screenshot of the different printer settings you're using? 

I've tried it using my HP Deskjet 3050a using default Mac Drivers and cannot reproduce it. Unfortunately I don't currently have access to any other printers. See attached photo (excuse the cut out - it was some scrap paper).

IMG_0393.jpg

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I've come to the conclusion that Affinity print output is a real mess, especially for those of us that want to print to postscript printers who want CMYK colour accuracy and decent vector reproduction, this seriously needs looking at


Mac Pro Cheese-grater (Early 2009)
2.93 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon
48 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 ECC Ram
NVIDIA GeForce GT 630 - 2 GB
Ugee 19" Graphics Tablet Monitor
Mac OS Mojave 10.14.6

Affinity Designer, Photo and Publisher 1.8.3 + Betas when available

Binger.jpg.1f81574106cc2dea8ae65d0a572b9ef9.jpg
www.bingercreative.co.uk

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Tried it on 3 printers:

- Canon Pixma 100 Pro with Canon Drivers

- PageWide 452dw with PrintFab drivers

- HP M553 LaserJet with AirPrint drivers.

 

Inkjets have the problem. The laser seems to be fine.

Also tried another Mac, the Canon had the same issue but the PageWide using AirPrint didn't.

It seems then AirPrint may not have this problem but all other drivers do.

Pixma.jpeg

PageWide.jpeg

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It would be great if there was an option in Affinity to rasterize the entire print job before sending it to the printer. Sure one could export first but that complicates the workflow if a lot of prints are made. It particularly doesn't work if one relies on the Document Layout (N-Up) function which other programs such as Mac Preview do not have.

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I've removed all FX from my fonts. Thought that would finally give me peace of mind. Turns out even having raster elements close by will cause the same effect of the color printing lighter.

Are the developers active during this time?

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I'm trying to jerry-rig together a workflow to avoid this issue. Right now the best bet would be exporting each design to a TIFF. Unfortunately I can't do that as I rely on N-Up to print my files. I am also too heavily invested in Affinity Designer with over 1000 files. So switching to Photoshop is not an option plus Affinity blows it out of the water in pretty much every way.

Again, the best solution in my estimation is to built in a function that completed rasterizes the file before sending it to the printing. This bypasses all the issues with having vectors and raster elements in the same file.

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