In Photoshop you can make best use of your custom color profiles by allowing Photoshop to handle color management. You can also choose to let your printer(s) manage color.

Note:

To better understand color management concepts and workflows, see Understanding Color Management.

Let Photoshop determine printed colors

If you have a custom color profile for a specific printer, ink, and paper combination, letting Photoshop manage colors often produces better results than letting the printer manage colors. 

  1. Choose File > Print.

  2. Expand the Color Management section at right.

  3. For Color Handling, choose Photoshop Manages Colors.
  4. For Printer Profile, select the profile that best matches your output device and paper type. If there are any profiles associated with the current printer, they are placed at the top of the menu, with the default profile selected.

    The more accurately the profile describes the behavior of the output device and printing conditions (such as paper type), the more accurately the color management system can translate the numeric values of the actual colors in a document. (See Install a color profile.)

  5. (Optional) Set any of the following options:

    Rendering Intent

    Specifies how Photoshop converts colors to the destination color space. (See About rendering intents.)

    Black Point Compensation

    Preserves the shadow detail in the image by simulating the full dynamic range of the output device.

  6. (Optional) Below the print preview, select any of the following:

    Match Print Colors

    Select to view image colors in the preview area as they will actually print.

    Gamut Warning

    Enabled when Match Print Colors is selected. Select to highlight out-of-gamut colors in the image, as determined by the selected printer profile. A gamut is the range of colors that a color system can display or print. A color that can be displayed in RGB may be out of gamut for your current printer profile.

    Show Paper White

    Sets the color white in the preview to the color of the paper in the selected printer profile. This produces a more accurate print preview if you're printing on off-white paper such as newsprint or art papers that are more beige than white. Since absolute white and black create contrast, less white in the paper will lower the overall contrast of your image. Off-white paper can also change the overall color cast of the image, so yellows printed on beige paper may appear more brown.

  7. Access the color management options for the printer driver from the Print Settings dialog box, which automatically appears after you click Print.

    • In Windows, click the Print Settings button to access the printer driver options.
    • In Mac OS, use the pop-up menu from the Print Settings dialog box to access the printer driver options.
  8. Turn off color management for the printer, so the printer profile settings won’t override your profile settings.

    Every printer driver has different color management options. If it’s not clear how to turn off color management, consult your printer documentation.

  9. Click Print.

Let printer determine printed colors

If you don’t have a custom profile for your printer and paper type, you can let the printer driver handle the color conversion. 

  1. Choose File > Print.
  2. Expand the Color Management section at right.

    Note:

    The Document Profile entry shows the profile embedded in the image.

  3. For Color Handling, choose Printer Manages Colors.
  4. (Optional) For Rendering Intent, specify how to convert colors to the destination color space. A summary of each option appears in the Description area at bottom.

    Many non-PostScript printer drivers ignore this option and use the Perceptual rendering intent. (For more information, see About rendering intents.)

  5. Access the color management options for the printer driver from the Print Settings dialog box, which automatically appears after you click Print:

    • In Windows, click Print Settings to access the printer driver options.
    • In Mac OS, use the pop-up menu from the Print Settings dialog box to access the printer driver options.

    Every printer driver has different color management options. If it’s not clear how to turn on color management, consult your printer documentation.

  6. Click Print.

A hard proof (sometimes called a proof print or match print) is a printed simulation of your final output on a printing press. A hard proof is produced on an output device that’s less expensive than a printing press. Some inkjet printers have the resolution necessary to produce inexpensive prints that can be used as hard proofs.

  1. Choose View > Proof Setup, and select the output conditions you want to simulate. You can do this using a preset or by creating a custom proof setup. See Soft-proof colors.

    The view changes automatically according to the proof you choose. Choose Custom to create custom proof settings, which you must save so you can select them in the Proof Setup menu of the Print dialog box.

  2. After you select a proof, choose File > Print.
  3. Expand the Color Management section at right.

  4. For Color Handling, choose Photoshop Manages Colors.
  5. For Printer Profile, select the profile for your output device.
  6. From the menu above the Proof Setup menu or Rendering Intent menu, select Hard Proofing.

    The Proofing Profile entry below should match the proof setup you selected earlier.

  7. (Optional) Set any of the following options:

    Proof Setup

    Choose any customized proofs that exist locally on your hard drive.

    Simulate Paper Color

    Simulates what colors look like on the paper of the simulated device. Using this option produces the most accurate proof, but it is not available for all profiles.

    Simulate Black Ink

    Simulates the brightness of dark colors for the simulated device. Using this option results in more accurate proofs of dark colors, but it is not available for all profiles.

  8. Access the color management options for the printer driver from the Print Settings dialog box, which automatically appears after you click Print.

    • In Windows, click the Preferences button to access the printer driver options.
    • In Mac OS, use the pop-up menu from the Print Settings dialog box to access the printer driver options.
  9. Turn off color management for the printer so that the printer profile settings don’t override your profile settings.

    Every printer driver has different color management options. If it’s not clear how to turn off color management, consult your printer documentation.

  10. Click Print.

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