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Do you let InDesign do colour management or the printer driver? Maybe your printer driver does CMYK to CMYK colour management. We need to know your settings: used profiles, used colour management policies, used printer settings before we can help you with a fix...
Just to add my thoughts here...
There is more of a colour shift than I would expect (however this is hard to judge as we are viewing a re-created output of the error colour than the actual original erroneous result).
Having said that I would expect print runs to potentially vary from printer to printer:
- especially as each printer will interpret those percentages differently
- Colour mixing by a standard/office printer isn't a precise system
- Your printer (as pointed out) may have different print management settings to that of the OS.
- Printers by their very nature are complex beasts
- Hence why you see videos of people beating/breaking/growing annoyed with them.
If you are really concerned about the colour variation then I strongly suggest that you convert that colour into a spot colour and use a proximity match pantone etc.
May I ask why you need to print from different printers in the first place?
In addition, you should (always in my opinion - especially if you haven't used that printer or done a run of that file before) request a hard copy proof from the Printer... Normally around £20-30 in the UK.
This may save you the additional cost of using a spot/pantone colour.
That's what concerned me - I expect a little differentiation between screen and print, but this is quite a lot. The example I posted was as close as I could get to the printed examples I had in front of me.
I may try the spot colour method to help ensure accuracy.
I don't actually need to print from different printers, but having printed test pages I noticed the difference and so was trying to correct it (if possible) before sending it to our preferred printer for the final run. I used different printers here as a test, to see if it was a universal or printer specific issue.
Yes, I would normally request a proof, and we have done, but as the file features spot uv on the cover and tab cutting inside, the best option we've been given is a digitally printed proof coming it at just under £200!
Go back to them and demand a hard copy proof without the spot UV or Tab cutting... that is for a finished piece.
As nice as it is to see a "complete" hard copy proof you just need to make sure the colours match up to what you want.
Your company owns the work. You're paying them to do it.
To a point, they aren't actually a "consultant" they are a service provider... pure and simple.
How can you trust your future and potentially that of your company's reputation if they can't alleviate your concerns?
I'm exaggerating here but if your company was Coca-Cola and you trusted the colours to be right and they came out wrong... how much longer would you have the job?
In summary... office printers should be taken with a relatively large pinch of salt. If you're going to print professionally then you want to really worry about the printers the professionals are using as that's what REALLY matters.
Also if people are viewing things independently of other runs/copies of the run, unfortunately, most of them won't even likely notice a colour shift of less than say 5-10%. So whilst you should always care about colour shifts and be passionate - Just remember you won't always get exacts. Especially if you allow customers to print from home printers....
Personal opinions only - not teaching you to suck eggs as they say.
Ok... perhaps I got a little carried away... hopefully you got the point I was trying to make..
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I experienced similar issues in the past.
I used Photoshop colour settings to select the first printer, then the second so the colour management worked for each print.
I know it sounds weird to do this through Photoshop when using InDesign, but the result was a bit more stable.
As mentioned above and as per Adobe documentation, the printer drivers are to be more trusted than standard ones.
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When I print it however, on one of my printers (a CMYK A4 printer) it prints fine, but on another (a CMYK A3 printer) the blue shifts to a more purple-ish tone.
In almost all cases inexpensive composite color printers do not print document CMYK values, but make color managed conversions from the document's CMYK source profile into the printer's destination CMYK. How accurate the conversion is depends on the printer software, so it's not unusual to see different color when you switch printers.
Even if the RIP or print driver is capable of outputting CMYK values unchanged the results would not be an accurate prediction of the press color because an offset presses' profile (i.e., US SWOP Coated) would be significantly different than an inkjet printer's profile and printing the same CMYK values on the two devices could result in very different appearances. Most low-end composite color printers are not capable of printing accurate contract proofs, so unless you want to invest in a RIP that can proof to a press standard (i.e., Fiery), you'll have to pay for the printer's contract proof.
and an imported image, both of the same blue colour, the imported asset prints correctly and it's only the native inDesign elements that have a colour shift.
Use InDesign's Separation Preview to check that the output values are the same. It may be that the print driver is color managing vector and raster objects differently.