Inkjet printers have been used to produce photographic prints for quite some time now and, while there have been a lot of technological advancements, this one probably takes the cake.
What is Chroma Optimizer?
It is a clear coating which is applied onto prints when using the latest range of Canon professional photo printers. This coating creates images with deep black density and prevents bronzing and gloss differential, which have been ever-present in inkjet printing. These properties make it an invaluable tool in achieving the look you want for your prints.
As mentioned above, bronzing is a phenomenon which has been around ever since the dawn of inkjet photo printing. This is noticeable mainly when the print is viewed at an angle and parts of the image can be seen to take on a bronze tone. It occurs mainly due to “unevenness” in the printing surface caused by multiple pigments sitting on top of eachother.
This phenomenon prompted media manufacturers to create products such as sprays and other types of coating which are applied on finished prints.
Gloss differential is the visible difference in the areas with ink coverage versus the areas with no ink coverage (i.e. the white parts). It only occurs when printing on gloss or semi-gloss media, matt finishes obviously do not give off this printing defect. This phenomenon is not hugely visible for the man in the street but it will surely bother anyone who knows anything about photo printing.
When should you use it?
If you are using a Canon professional photo printer (such as the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000), chroma optimizer is automatically applied to inked areas when printing on gloss/semi-gloss. This will work wonders when it comes to bronzing however it will not solve the gloss differential issue, fret not however as all you need to do is to select the “Clear coat the entire page” option.
This all boils down to on one point; how the image is finished. Will it be framed, laminated or mounted? Some finishes, such as lamination, cover over gloss differential, whereas other types of finishes, like mounting, will still show a visible difference between the inked area and the paper.
Chroma optimizer greatly enhances the final appearance of prints on glossy media, adding depth, saturation and an overall captivating effect. This valuable feature helps you create true-to-life, vibrant prints on a variety of materials.