Trying to print in Adobe RGB on my Canon Pixma Pro 100

Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Messages
26
Okay this is probably going to be a fairly long post so bear with me (I'll to a tl,dr at the end :D )

So as a side hobby / business I make custom stickers for Lego sets. I design them using Inkscape, export the images as .png and then import them into a package called Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL for short). SCAL is used for laying out the stickers but most importantly is the key software connected to my vinyl cutting machine, so I can pre-cut the stickers. I can't just print from Inkscape as the SCAL software controls the cut lines and also has to print the registration marks, which are L-shaped guides in the top left, top right, bottom left and bottom right of the page. The vinyl cutter scans these so it know's where it's supposed to be cutting.

One issue I noticed is that it's hard to get the primary colours of the stickers to match the Lego bricks. Blue is particularly troublesome, then green, red maybe not so bad but not perfect. At first I thought the printer just couldn't print in a wide enough gamut but then I decided to have a custom ICC profile made. As part of the process the company making the profile sent me an app that forces the printer to create a large colour matrix - basically printing out its entire gamut (in steps) so they can use a machine to scan the colour matrix and make the ICC profile for the printer / paper combo I'm using.

On printing out the colour matrix, this is when I first noticed that the colours I'm looking for are actually achievable by the printer and the app. the company had sent me had actually got the printer to create the much more saturated blues, greens and reds I was after.

I then got the ICC profile but even with that controlling the colour, I still can't get the SCAL (vinyl cutting software) to create the colours I need. The problem is that it just doesn't have any colour management options so it just goes through the printer driver. Either that or it's just using the sRGB range so the gamut is pretty limited?

Again I was going to give up but I was tinkering around in Adobe Illustrator (free month long trial) and noticed that I can get much more saturated colours if I switch to the Adobe RGB colour space. On printing these out they were much closer to the blue, green and red colours on the actual Lego bricks.

Next step, I figured out I can export the to-be-printed sticker sheet from SCAL (vinyl cutting software) as a pdf file (including the all important registration marks needed by the vinyl cutter), import this into Illustrator and switch the colour space to Adobe RGB. Once printed on vinyl sticker paper, this then gives the colours I need. HOWEVER - I don't want to pay £25 a month for Illustrator just to print the occasional sticker sheet just to get better colours.

I only have the free version of Adobe reader and that also seems to have no way to select a different colour space to print with.

My question therefore is: I have a pdf file that I want to print in the Adobe RGB colour space - is there a way doing this without having to buy a subscription to a program such as Illustrator? Is there a way to print from Adobe reader? Is there a way to "force" my printer to print using Adobe RGB colour space?

tl,dr I want to force my Canon Pixma Pro 100 to print more saturated colours and printing using Adobe RGB colour space seems to work, but I want a method that is free or cheap compared to a monthly subscription to an Adobe app that can do this e.g. Illustrator
 
Joined
Mar 16, 2020
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65
tl,dr I want to force my Canon Pixma Pro 100 to print more saturated colours and printing using Adobe RGB colour space seems to work, but I want a method that is free or cheap compared to a monthly subscription to an Adobe app that can do this e.g. Illustrator
Yes I read the whole post, it's just that today I remembered something, and along that, your questions about color. Perhaps you already tried this, I don't know.

1. Canon printer driver allows manual adjustments, I remember telling you something about this in the past, but not specifically about ICC there. You can explore "matching" (driver matching / ICM / nothing), ICM will let you choose an ICC profile. Just keep in mind it depends on your setup, Windows version, printer, drivers, etc, as sometimes you can see there all your installed ICC profiles, and other times you won't see any. I don't know the specific to why, I guess it's the Windows version.

2. Adobe Acrobat pro has some color management options under "advanced", you can choose:
- treat grays as only K ink grays
- preserve black (CMYK blacks become pure K black)
- preserve CMYK primaries (it affects them, not RGB colors I guess)

And mostly, under color management you can choose the color handling, and the output profile: "Color Handling determines if color management will be used, and if so, whether it happens in the application or at the printing device. When 'Acrobat Color Management' is selected, select an ICC Profile that describes the target output device."

Supposedly, Photoshop allows the same, enabling the app to perform the color management, specifying PS to do it for you, and then choosing both your printer ICC profile and the rendering intent.
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Messages
26
Thanks the reply! I actually managed to get something working but not exactly sure what I did. I think I installed something from the Adobe website, some sort of profile which is accessible from the printer driver, via the following menus:

Matching > ICM > Input Profile

Previously in the Input Profile drop-down there was only one option which was "standard". Now somehow there's also "Adobe RGB (1998)". I selected this found that the colours are now more saturated. Again I don't know what installed as I was trying lots of different things, I just know this option wasn't there before for the input profile.

Regarding what you said about the ICC profiles...I've noticed this is a problem. I've downloaded and installed the AdobeRGB .icc file and placed it in the correct place in the Windows folder, but it never shows up in the Printer Profile list for some reason. Also the AdobeRGB profile .icc file itself is only 1kb in size (and it's the official version from the Adobe site!). I was told that you can't actually get hold of the file anymore and the one you get from Adobe is actually some sort of dummy file. I was told that they don't want you to be able to download it for free anymore as they want you to have to pay for one of their software packages in order to access it. Anyway whatever the file is, it doesn't seem to work as an .icc profile, and I seem to have found a workaround in the Input File but I don't know how I actually got that to work! :D
 

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