Printer Cartridges - How to Print Great Photos

 By: Kathryn Dawson
Digital photography gives even the most amateur of photographers the ability to take great looking photos. Gone are the days of packs of photos consisting of mostly poor printing or blurred and overexposed shots. Digital photos mean not only is there no limit on the number of pictures that can be taken, but any bad photos can be deleted immediately with no money wasted on printing. Now single photos can be printed quickly and easily for display in a frame. Although there is not nearly as much skill involved in printing the photo as there is in taking it, needless to say it is an important step in the overall successful outcome of the photo. This article provides the necessary information in how to print great looking pictures at home.

The first step is to provide yourself with a benchmark. Use the photo paper that comes with the printer to print out one or two photos. With these as your benchmark, you will now be able to see any changes or improvements from changing the paper or changing the ink or even changing the software on your computer. Keep this original somewhere safe with a note on the back containing details of the paper and equipment used to print it. You can then refer to this later when you have changed one of the variables such as paper or ink.

Keeping your printer in top working order may sound like common sense, but it is amazing how often neglect of the printer leads to poor printing quality. Maintenance should include regular cleaning and removing of dust. The printer should also be covered when not in use. If the printer is rarely used, every week or so print something out as this keeps the ink from drying out and ensures the parts of the machine continue to work well. An annual service is a good idea too in order to keep it working well and for longer.

Using the right paper is important too. You will need a specific type depending on the printer that is being used. Inkjet photo is required for inkjet printers, laser photo paper for laser printers. As a rule of thumb, paper of weight 300gsm or above should be used for portraits or artistic photos with a lower 250gsm weight used for general photo prints.

When preparing to send a photo to the printer, make sure it has been set up correctly. Page orientation often catches people out as does paper size. In order to see if the layout is as you would like it, always view it as a preview before sending, and make sure the paper is correctly loaded into the printer tray. Nothing is more frustrating than printing a photo on the wrong side of the page. Not only is the paper wasted but so too is the ink.

Avoid handling the photo or touching the ink for a while after it has come out of the printer. This could smudge it whilst it is still wet. Leave the photo on a flat service for at least 5 minutes before handling.

There is plenty of fun to be had with photography and printing your own photos. There is not a lot to learn when it comes to printing at home, but it is important that you remember the key steps outlined above. If you do want to dabble with different papers, inks or software programmes then change just one thing at a time. By changing everything at once it will be impossible to know what any improvement to the photos can be attributed to.

Because of the high quality photo printers and printer cartridges available for the home, these days anyone from amateurs to hobbyists to professionals can print excellent photos with ease. To get the very best, try using a specialist photo ink such as hp photosmart c3180 ink cartridges or hp photosmart c6380 ink cartridges. The results will really stand out.
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