The Proof of the Soft Proof

The risk of a color monitor

I recently added a color monitor to my laptop workstation.  The monitor allows me to spread my information across a larger area…and that is very nice for my work environment.

As I worked with this I noticed that, as I moved things over to the new screen, they changed color!  Drastically!  I took a photo of this phenomenon and, as you can see, the colors and brightnesses shift dramatically from one screen to the next:

Look at those colors!

I am showing this to you as I want to demonstrate the danger of “proofing” a CMYK project on line.  If I would proof a project on my laptop screen, the images would appear much darker.  Adjusting the file so it is brighter/pleasing on my screen may make it LOOK nice (to me) but would dramatically change the builds that we actually print.  Of course, the same problem presents itself if I build or proof the project on my NEW screen.

SO, what good is a soft proof?  There are quite a few:

1) A soft proof saves time.  We post a proof and, within minutes, you are reviewing and approving if on line.
2) There are no shipping charges for you to encour to retunen physical proofs to us.
3) They are GREAT for involving colleagues in the proofing of text, lay outs, etc. as you can send them links to the proofing site and corroborate over the phone.
4) They are fine for approving color IF you have a job that repeats and has, historically, looked good on your screen and on your project as it retruns to you from our presses.

In general, “Pleasing Color” is a good rule of thumb for soft proofing COLOR.  Green Grass, Blue Skies…let’s print!

One response to “The Proof of the Soft Proof

  1. Pingback: A simple lighting truth |

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