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Do you use Print Sharpening in the Print Module?

Bob_B

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I'm curious to know how many use this feature. To my way of thinking it adds an "undefined" attribute to the finished print, i.e., sharpening that I really don't see before the final printing. Also in the same vein, is print sharpening different than the sharpening tool in the Develop module?

Bob
 
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Here is a two part article on Develop and Export sharpening. It explains why you need both.
This article has been fundamental in helping me understand the principles of LR Sharpening. it discusses LR3 but the basic sharpening concepts are valid for LR 4 & 5.
Sharpening actually is applied at three stages of the workflow. The first occurs when the RAW image is demosaic'd and converted to RGB on import. The other two instances are in Develop and on Export.
http://x-equals.com/blog/sharpening-in-lightroom-part-1-of-2/
http://x-equals.com/blog/sharpening-in-lightroom-part-2-of-2/
 
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Jimmsp

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I'm curious to know how many use this feature. To my way of thinking it adds an "undefined" attribute to the finished print, i.e., sharpening that I really don't see before the final printing. Also in the same vein, is print sharpening different than the sharpening tool in the Develop module?

Bob
I use it about half the time. This is primarily when I am sharpening for the screen.
The other half, I'll actually sharpen the re-sized file to be be printed with Topaz Detail.
 
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Without actually looking at the links the Cletus has usggested I still think a small primer on sharpening is appropriate.

What you think of as a global concept - sharpening - is actually a very distinct three-step process.

Capture sharpening comes first and is what you currently think of a 'sharpening'.
This is necessary as an antidote to the demosaicing process that occurs in processing a RAW file as well as the effect of the anti-aliasing filter that sits in front of nearly all sensors of digital cameras.
All capture sharpening does is deal with those effects.

Creative sharpening is just that.
There may be areas in your image that benefit from a bit more sharpening, such as eyes in a portrait, where more extensive sharpening would be counterproductive (who wants to highlight skin blemishes).
Creative sharpening then is applied regionally.
Not so long ago one could only do this in Ps using layers but now is easily accomplished in Lr.

Output sharpening is the last part of the sharpening process and also the most difficult (historically anyway) to do well.
The process is completely different depending on whether the output is meant for the web and digital display or for print.
With regards to print there are also differences between printing to gloss (or semi-gloss) papers compared to matte papers or canvas.
White knight to the rescue - Photokit Sharpener.
Photokit Sharpener became a staple for almost everbody printing extensively out of Ps because it was so difficult to otherwise judge how to output sharpen for such diverse circumstances.
Latter versions of Lr have incorporated the algorithms of Photokit Sharpener.
In the Web and Slideshow modules it is completely hidden away under the hood and so many individuals do not recognize that those images have been sharpened.
It is most obvious in the Print module where several decisions need to be made for the algorithm to do its thing.
I guarantee that using the output sharpening in the Print module will much improve the resultant prints.
The export module also has facility for output sharpening to be applied.
Key to how Photokit Sharpener works is that it needs to know the dimensions of the image as well as its resolution on output (Lightroom easily works this out once certain simple information is supplied by the user), and, in the case of printing what kind of paper or canvas is to be used.
In the Print module the only subjective judgement required is to decide on the strength of effect finally applied.
The rule-of-thumb generally applied is: if one is heavy-handed with the capture sharpening then back off a bit with the output sharpening and vica-versa.
Nonetheless a few test prints to check the effect of different settings is useful becauswe the end effect is always an aesthetic one and not a technical one.

In summary: output sharpening is a natural and important part of the sharpening process and should never be thought of as discretionary.

Tony Jay
 
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Bob_B

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Cletus, Tony: Thank you! So much useful information. Of course, now I feel compelled to reprint a few hundred prints, but what the hey. It's only inkjet ink. :) Thanks!, Bob
 
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Thanks also. I just found this looking for "Develop Module Sharpening versus Print Module Sharpening". Very useful.
 
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