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Old 11-05-2010, 02:02 PM   #1
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Default Label printing question

This is going to be hard to explain, but hopefully someone that knows photoshop can help me figure something out.

I recently bought the OL500 (kraft brown) labels from Onlinelabels.com I'm wanting to print a design I created in Illustrator, but can't seem to find a label printing program that will accept AI files or Photoshop files. Onlinelabels provides a pretty cool program called maestro when you purchase labels, but it only accepts gifs, jpegs, and a few other file formats that I don't like to deal with.

When I save my label as a jpeg through photoshop, I lose a ton of image quality, and it's making my label look like crap.

Another thing I'm concerned about is...will it print a transparent background? I want the craft brown print to show up in the background, but I'm not sure if it will save my transparent background when going to another file format.

Anyone understand what I'm saying and think they can help? Maybe just point me to some good label printing software? I've got the whole Adobe Master Collection CS4, but I don't know what some of the programs do. Maybe one will print labels nicely for me?

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Old 11-05-2010, 03:20 PM   #2
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When I save my label as a jpeg through photoshop, I lose a ton of image quality, and it's making my label look like crap.
There should be a option for the compression rate of the jpeg when you save it. Jpeg is a type of compression that you can adjust the amount of "image loss" on. You should be able to tell it to save as a lossless jpeg and preserve your image quality.

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Another thing I'm concerned about is...will it print a transparent background? I want the craft brown print to show up in the background, but I'm not sure if it will save my transparent background when going to another file format.
Your printer has no idea what kind of paper is in it, but I have never seen a program that didn't just assume "white". Printers don't have white ink in them, so anything that is white in your image will end up being left as the color of the paper when you print.

So, just make the background white. It will end up craft brown color when you print.
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Old 11-05-2010, 05:35 PM   #3
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It may be the quality of the jpg after compression that is the issue, but more likely it is the image resolution that is the issue. If your resolution is too low you will appear to lose quality when you go to print your image. Most printers print at 300 DPI, while the default for most applications is 70 DPI.

Transparent backgrounds are not allowed in Jpeg BTW - you will need a gif/png/tiff. If your transparency is actually white, then it wont matter printing on white paper.

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Old 11-05-2010, 07:17 PM   #4
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There should be a option for the compression rate of the jpeg when you save it. Jpeg is a type of compression that you can adjust the amount of "image loss" on. You should be able to tell it to save as a lossless jpeg and preserve your image quality.



Your printer has no idea what kind of paper is in it, but I have never seen a program that didn't just assume "white". Printers don't have white ink in them, so anything that is white in your image will end up being left as the color of the paper when you print.

So, just make the background white. It will end up craft brown color when you print.
Thanks. I completely spaced that most printers don't have white ink. As for the compression...there was a slider for image quality that I put all the way up. I was hoping that would help. Well, I guess I'll try again when I get home.

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Originally Posted by adhomebrew10 View Post
It may be the quality of the jpg after compression that is the issue, but more likely it is the image resolution that is the issue. If your resolution is too low you will appear to lose quality when you go to print your image. Most printers print at 300 DPI, while the default for most applications is 70 DPI.

Transparent backgrounds are not allowed in Jpeg BTW - you will need a gif/png/tiff. If your transparency is actually white, then it wont matter printing on white paper.
Well, transparency in Illustrator is that checkered background, not white. And my label paper is kraft brown...it basically looks like cardboard. So...I just didn't want it to print white.
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Old 11-05-2010, 07:23 PM   #5
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Well, transparency in Illustrator is that checkered background, not white. And my label paper is kraft brown...it basically looks like cardboard. So...I just didn't want it to print white.
Unless you have some crazy advanced printer, you do not have white ink. I have never seen a printer with white ink in my life. The printer will take any white in the image and simply not print anything at those locations.

Whatever you see as white or checkered 'transparent' in your image will end up brown when you print it on that paper.

I suggest a test print. Printers assume white paper. If you are using brown, the colors you see on photoshop will NOT come out looking the same on brown paper. Example: Anything gray in photoshop will be dark brown on your paper. Basically, look at your image in photoshop and imaging it all being mixed with brown.
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Old 11-05-2010, 07:26 PM   #6
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Unless you have some crazy advanced printer, you do not have white ink. I have never seen a printer with white ink in my life. The printer will take any white in the image and simply not print anything at those locations.

Whatever you see as white or checkered 'transparent' in your image will end up brown when you print it on that paper.

I suggest a test print. Printers assume white paper. If you are using brown, the colors you see on photoshop will NOT come out looking the same on brown paper. Example: Anything gray in photoshop will be dark brown on your paper. Basically, look at your image in photoshop and imaging it all being mixed with brown.
I understand the white ink in printers. I had a complete brain fart and didn't think about that. I actually have a printer at work that does white ink, but it's for graphic design. I won't be using that for labels.

The colors don't bother me so much either. As long as I get the design on the label, I'll be happy.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:31 AM   #7
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Save all jpegs at a compression of 12. You have to manually enter this when you save. Then print through photoshop so that PS can control all of the print values. Also there is a big difference between what you see on your screen and what actually prints color wise. There are a few ways to correct this but it can be difficult.

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