Printing on matte or glossy digital photo printing paper


03 November 2020

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When printing digital photos, you can choose between glossy and matte photo prints. Glossy photo prints have a glossy finish, while matte ones have a more subtle neutral finish. So which one should you choose? There is no right answer, there are pros and cons to both.

Matte and glossy are two different finishes of the photo paper that digital photos are printed on. Using different chemicals and processes, photo paper can have a glossy or matte finish. The glossy finish looks shiny, reflects light very well, and looks vibrant and rich in color. The matte finish, on the other hand, doesn't reflect much light and looks "darker" and duller.

There are advantages and disadvantages to choosing glossy or printed digital photographic prints. Here are some of them:

Glossy Photo Prints - Glossy photo prints are glossy and more attractive to the eye. They look stylish and convey a high-quality feel. Glossy photographic prints have vibrant colors. Colors also look rich and deep on glossy photographic prints. On the downside, the "bright" attribute of glossy photographic prints can be a problem when photos are viewed using strong light sources, such as sunlight or strong light bulbs. Light reflected off the printed photo can blind the viewer and make it difficult to view the photo. Glossy paper is also more likely to attract dust and fingerprints, and is therefore more likely to get dirty over time. Glossy black and white photographic prints don't look as good as matte ones.

Matte Finish - Matte photographic prints do not reflect light and are therefore easier to see in almost any light condition. Matte photographic prints are also less likely to attract dust and fingerprints and are less likely to get dirty over time. Matte black and white photo prints look better than glossy black and white photo prints. On the downside, matte photo prints don't have the high-quality sleek look that glossy photo prints do. Colors in matte photographic prints are less vibrant and less rich than glossy photographic prints.

So which one to choose: matte or glossy? It really depends on your needs and what you are going to do with the photo prints. As a general rule of thumb, use glossy photo prints for color prints and matte photo prints for black and white prints. If your photo prints are going to be touched by a lot of people and used a lot, matte is a better option, unless you don't mind spending time cleaning your glossy photo prints every now and then. Also, if you plan to print large photos (for example, to hang on the wall or in a frame and place on your desk), matte is a better choice, as a large glossy print would act as a reflector of bright, shiny light.

As with many other options, a brilliant choice or affair is a matter of personal preference. To make an informed decision, you should have experienced both. If you don't have that experience, you can choose some color photos and others in black and white and print them on both matte and satin paper and in different sizes. Look at the prints and see what you like and what you don't like about them. In the future, you can make better decisions by applying that experience.


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