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Soft proofing opinions


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I had the debate with my friend the other day,

is soft proofing necessary or is it just a gimmick?

Personally I believe it can be useful with certain pictures...



Well-Known Member
Before using it, black and dark grays would look the same when I printed, especially when you have a high quality screen computer. So I do use it, when I want the colors to be as I expect. Pretty sure it's not a gimmick.


Hi 28daysbefore

Soft Proofing is definitely not a gimmick, just a tool to better predict tones/colors for the target output and make adjustments in advance for a better result.

How valuable it is depends:

First, you need a color managed system with your monitor calibrated and profiled along with using software/viewers/printers that are also color aware/managed. Without this condition all bets are off on being able to get good results with soft proofing or not.

Under the above assumption, soft proofing will be less useful if the image you are viewing has all colors/tones inside the gamut of your printer you will be using. In those cases, the print should come out as it looks on your monitor.

However, if you have colors/tones in your image that are outside of gamut of your the target printer, then those tones/colors will rendered to be within the gamut of the target printer i.e. what you see on the monitor will not match the print. By soft proofing (if used correctly) it can help visuaslize on your monitor how it will look different and you then have the opportunity to do additional post processing for a better result on the print.

Is it a must to use soft proofing as its not necessary to use any post processing tool. It just gives you the opportunity to have a bit more control of the final output before you actually do the print (and maybe have to go back for a redo).

Just my opinion of course

John Wheeler