Image quality with Blurb Photo Books

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Jim Ruse

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I am working on my first Photo Book through Lightroom. I have done about a dozen books with Apple through the Photos App, but changes in the App has made it more cumbersome. So, I want to try Lightroom's Book Module. So far, it is super easy and I love it. But before I send it to the printer, I would like for some folks who have actually printed some Blurb photo books to tell me what the print quality is with the books. I edit my work on a calibrated monitor and the images look great on my computer. But, as we all know, printing images can be a very different story. Any experience with these books?
 

Jimmsp

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....... Any experience with these books?
I have probably printed 4 or 5 books, and I couldn't be happier.
Personally, I'd like a little more flexibility in sizing the photos (as they once had with their resident software) but I like the ease of use and the final product.
 

Jim Ruse

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Welcome to the forum! Are you concerned about their printing quality, or the quality of your files being sent off to be printed in a book?

--Ken
Printing quality. I'm wondering if the prints in the book come out relatively close to how they look in LR, or do they need to boost exposure or contrast before sending to print.
 

Jim Ruse

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I have probably printed 4 or 5 books, and I couldn't be happier.
Personally, I'd like a little more flexibility in sizing the photos (as they once had with their resident software) but I like the ease of use and the final product.
Thank you!
 

Jimmsp

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Printing quality. I'm wondering if the prints in the book come out relatively close to how they look in LR, or do they need to boost exposure or contrast before sending to print.

I would say that they come out like they look in Lightroom, but with a proviso. Remember, your see them in LR on a backlit monitor, not paper. They will "look" different on paper, they have to. Try printing a few on a good matte paper and see if you are happy.
 

Jim Ruse

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I would say that they come out like they look in Lightroom, but with a proviso. Remember, your see them in LR on a backlit monitor, not paper. They will "look" different on paper, they have to. Try printing a few on a good matte paper and see if you are happy.
I do understand the whole printing challenge...I process many of my images for print and use pro labs with icc print profiles and soft proofing. But you don't have that option with photo books. So, I just wanted some advice from people who have printed books with Blurb. You have helped. Thanks.
 

Jimmsp

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I do understand the whole printing challenge...I process many of my images for print and use pro labs with icc print profiles and soft proofing. But you don't have that option with photo books. So, I just wanted some advice from people who have printed books with Blurb. You have helped. Thanks.

I didn't mean to insult you. But I have dealt with a lot of folks who are really surprised when the "look" of their photo in print is so much different that on their pc monitor. Generally, they have never profiled their monitor; and even when they have many are still surprised.
 

Jim Ruse

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I didn't mean to insult you. But I have dealt with a lot of folks who are really surprised when the "look" of their photo in print is so much different that on their pc monitor. Generally, they have never profiled their monitor; and even when they have many are still surprised.
OMG! Don't be silly! You didn't insult me at all. I spent over 3 years researching and studying how to process a file for printing. It is a difficult and involved process if you want consistent results. You need a pro lab, icc profiles for the printer being used, and special processing techniques. But you just don't have that option with most companies who print photo books. I do appreciate your feedback!
 
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While you seem to have a good handle on printing and Jim provided goo advice on Blurb, I would also like to mention that some labs also make books with photographic paper. I believe that Adoramapix was one such lab in case you are interested.

Good luck,

--Ken
 

Jim Ruse

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While you seem to have a good handle on printing and Jim provided goo advice on Blurb, I would also like to mention that some labs also make books with photographic paper. I believe that Adoramapix was one such lab in case you are interested.

Good luck,

--Ken
Thanks, Ken. I'll keep that in mind. I've used Adoramapix for a small print job in the past. They do good work.
 

Jim Ruse

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Hey folks, after some diligent research, I found just what I was looking for. I'm sure many LR users know this, but I think it bears posting what I learned for those who might be searching for answers like I was. I have written a short HOW TO for adding some brightness to all photos used in a Blurb Photo Book created in Lightroom. I have done this, and ordered my first book, but I haven't received it. So, we'll see how this works. Attached is an essay on what I learned and what I just did with my Book. It is in PDF format. Hope it might help someone.
 

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cgbjr67

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I have done a few Blurb books and am satisfied. The print quality is good, but it's not inkjet printing, so be ready for tiny dots. From a normal reading distance you can't see them anyway.
The main reason I tried Blurb is they have templates for InDesign. This allows you to have any layout you want - no restrictions of any kind. I never have found a layout program that allows me this kind of flexibility.
That said, Blurb ain't cheap. Nor are most of the good quality printers. For my last few books I self-published with double-sided Red River paper, a 3-color Canon printer, and bind (bound? binded?) with Fellowes plastic combs. Since I am doing this just for home use, the relative looseness of a comb binding doesn't affect 'sales'. But if I ever wanted to do a large-format book I'd probably spring for Blurb again.
 

David Chapin

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Thanks for the reply . I'm just getting into books, so this is all good info. As for binding, I like coil binding over the plastic combs. I think FedEx-Kinkos has that service.
 
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