I am trying to setup my Cannon mp280 printer to get an idea of how artwork will print at a commercial printer.

When I print a document I can set the quality to low/medium/high. I presume it's best to set this to high. I can use photo paper and set the paper type accordingly, so I would do this too. There's also a photo print option which I find if I don't set I do not get a very good print ... so I set this option on too, but what exactly does it do and does it provide a truer representation of what would happen at a commercial printers or not. I wonder does it manipulate the amount of ink used or some other technique which might not happen at the commercial printers.

I am mainly asking about this photo print option but I would also like to confirm what I am doing about the other two options, and whether there are any other things which I should do.

1 Answer 1


Photoprints are for printing on glossy photo paper. That's not typically what you'd be doing on an offset printer. Some desktop printers will also use a different dot pattern when photo printing that wouldn't be the same as your typical line screen on an offset press. Furthermore, some photoprinting printers use more than 4 inks...something your offset printer wouldn't be using either in most cases.

In summary, the photo-printing option in your desktop printer, while great for printing photos, isn't necessarily a tool for commercial printer proofing.

  • Thanks ... as I suspected. I suppose I shouldn't be using photo paper at all. Trouble is if I print on regular paper without the photo setting everything appears extremely dull. Commented Jun 4, 2014 at 15:16
  • Note that office paper is typically a much lower quality stock than what you'd typically choose to get a job printed on...even if it's still uncoated.
    – DA01
    Commented Jun 4, 2014 at 15:17

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