Prints too dark

Take the mystery and headache out of dark prints with this in-depth investigation of the lab and inkjet printing processes and the points at which mistakes are made that lead to prints coming out too dark.

Prints too dark? This is one of the most common issues we hear from our customers, and it’s a tough one to troubleshoot because of the variety of factors that can cause it.

As such, we want to devote some time to educating our blog readers on the many missteps in the formatting, proofing, and printing processes that can lead to prints coming out too dark.

In this episode, professional printmaker Renee Besta walks through the printing process from start to end, noting the key points that could lead to dark prints – first for digital c-prints ordered from a lab, and then for inkjet prints done at home.

Also be sure to download Renee’s additional resources PDF – find it in the show notes below!

  • What looking at a lab’s ICC profile can tell you about the quality of prints they produce
  • Paying attention to your viewing environment
  • Troubleshooting dark photos in Windows Photo Viewer
  • Changing the default ICC Profiles Version from 4.0 to 2.0
  • ColorMunki Profiles
  • Media settings and prints that are too dark
  • Setting display luminance (brightness) value correctly
  • Paper types and prints that are too dark
  • Checking the histogram
  • Much more!

Listen in to learn about why lab and inkjet prints can come out too dark

Show Notes

  • Listeners featured in this episode include Albert from K & D Photography, and Chuck.
  • For a bit of bonus talk on dark prints, we also covered the issue on Episode 16 of #AskBC.
  • For Renee’s additional resources and information from this episode, including a checklist for troubleshooting dark prints and a visual demonstration of the ICC profile mentioned in Question #1, click here.
  • Check out Renee’s website at
  • Love the show? Have some feedback for us? Leave us a review on iTunes.

Audio Transcription

Prefer to read over listen? Want to save this conversation for reference later? We transcribe all of our shows for these reasons! Download this episode’s transcription below:

Or, to view a web version of the transcript:

Thanks for listening! For more free episodes of #AskBC, check out the full archive!