Colour Management

We occasionally get asked why printed matter doesn’t exactly match an original?

Much has been published on the web with pro’s and con’s of different equipment, software and technology.
Here at Judges we aim to explain in easy to understand terms, but more importantly achieve what you are after.
Alternatively why not give us a ring (not a premium rate number!) and talk to a friendly voice who can go through any questions you might have.
Lets look at some of the issues that effect printed colour.


Appreciate the difference

What your eyes see?
What your computer screen shows?
What your home computer prints (does this vary as ink levels change)?
What information the electronic file you sends us contains?
What our computer screen shows?
What our proofing printers print out?
What final comes out of the main printing press?

At each of these stage there is an element of non calibration and colour variance.

We are able to calibrate or screens to the proofing press to our main press, thus being fairly confident that what we see on screen we will achieve on the final print.


Think of difference between the following

The full colour spectrum.
The breadth of colour achievable on a paint palette.
Computer screen colours – R (red) G (green) B (blue).
Digital printers – These use toners. Some have 4 ink cartridges (Black, Blue, Yellow and Red). Others have 6 or 8 with the introduction of other colour cartridges such as light blue, grey or green.

We print using the inks C (cyan, a blue) M (magenta, a red) Y (yellow) and K ( black).

Screen Colours

Think about going into an electrically superstore to buy a TV. If a sports match is being shown on the bank of TV’s on display, you can be sure that the grass will be a different colour green on each of the screens.

Colour adjustment

When asking for colour to be adjusted think how an instruction can be interpreted? Please lighten slightly, please brighten or please make the sky bluer. How far should we go?

Printing is an art, not a science.

Colour can easily be adjusted by a designer or a printer, now a days with just a quick touch of a button.

Limited edition printing versus variable full sheet printing

Quite often we don’t have the benefit of just printing the one design in the middle of the sheet and adjust all the settings to suit. More often images are planned alongside each other (could be up to 18 different designs to fill a sheet) We therefore have to compromise a balance of ink weights to suit all.



So with all these technological hurdles to over come, what is the best way forward?

Send us a print of the image in question where you are fairly happy with the colour.
Send us the electronic file of the image. The bigger the better, please be aware that when you edit/photo shop images or indeed attachment for emailing, some software programs automatically reduce the file sizes for ease of sending.

We in turn can send you a proof of the image using the calibrated proofing press. (This may incur a small one of charge in the region of £8.00).


For further information please call 01424 420919 and ask to speak to a member of customer care or the design team.