Many of you have mentioned printer profiles as a part of your digital photo workflow. Sometimes it is a problem that you find you have to work around. And most of you have a computer with a calibrated and profiled display, as well as often one of the many flatbed scanners I have reported on in recent years. You may even have Lasersoft Silverfast software to run your scanner. That’s all to the positive side towards getting a way to profile your printer, you are part way there already. That includes the Epson Perfection photo scanners, the Canon Canoscan photo scanners and all the recent Microtek photo scanners as well as the Artixscan M1.

That’s right Lasersoft SilverFast scanner software for all kinds of flatbed scanners can be upgraded to a SilverFast Ai IT8 version with Printer Calibration. I covered this briefly as part of my test and report on the Epson Perfection V500 flatbed scanner. I purchased that scanner, so now I upgraded the SilverFast Ai IT8 Printer Calibration software to the latest version and did some more printer (Epson R1900) calibrations and profiled with Premier Watercolor and Hot Press Fine Art papers - and then lots of prints to test the results. The Pinter Calibration is really quick and easy to do as the instructions in a Acrobat .PDF file on the SilverFast web site are simple to follow. And you get a lot more than just printer profiling with the software, as the IT8 version provides the ability to custom profile your scanner, which you can extend to film scanning by getting a 35mm IT8 target slide.

Because I really don’t have the room to detail and explain all the instructions, and Lasersoft’s are very good, I’ll just list the web site addresses below: For basic information about Printer Calibration: For Instructions on how to use Printer Calibration: For the full details on Printer Calibration:

If you do not have any Lasersoft SilverFast software for your scanner, the Silverfast Ai IT8 Printer Calibration version will provide the best and most effective scanner driver for your flatbed supporting both reflective and if the scanner has it, film scanning control and scan editing, with IT8 scanner calibration and profiling as well as Printer Calibration. For most of the scanners I have reviewed and some others too, the list cost of the software is $317.00 to get all the capabilities in a new package. For those who have a version of SilverFast for your flatbed scanner, the upgrade cost varies, so you will have to check into it. Many readers have remarked the web site is complicated. Yes there is a lot on it, but once you log on, just goto the “Products” tab and then to Scanners. To get the specifics for any make and model flatbed scanner, click on the brand and the model and a box of all the details will appear at the bottom of the page, including features, versions of SilverFast and their cost for a new purchase or an upgrade.

It is not cheap, but SilverFast is good and much easier to use and more efficient than Photoshop. So don’t be afraid to learn new software. Once you have you will appreciate the advantages. Personally, I just wish Adobe would learn something from Lasersoft or better still SilverFast would become a full replacement of Photoshop. For me proof of that is something from Lasersoft that is worth adding to the package. Lasersoft has a SilverFast Print Tao printing utility that’s so much easier and efficient to make color managed prints with compared to Photoshop. On just go to the Printer Software tab, there is all the information you’ll need to be convinced at $49 SilverFast Print Tao is a wonder.