Signature Book Printing - Book Printer


Color Matching

Colors are DEVICE DEPENDENT.  That means a color described in a file will look different when displayed on different devices or printed on different printers or presses.  You can see this easily if you view a color image on several different computers or digital devices, and if  you print the image out on several printers.

Your color file does not contain colors. It contains numbers. The viewing device (monitor, iPad, printer, printing press, etc) uses these numbers to produce the colors you see. Different devices (and different calibrations of a single device) can translate the same numbers into different visual colors.

There are major and continuing efforts in the printing, photography, and output device industries to standardize the description of colors and provide a reliable way to convert a file so it shows the same color (as judged by your eyes) on two different devices.  The technical solution uses ICC profiles which describe the characteristics of a particular device. In this approach, all devices are calibrated, and their ICC profiles are known and consistent.  Then a color management system is used to convert a file so it appears the same on a second calibrated system.

In our experience, the ICC approach provides at most an approximate equivalency.  It is, of course, good to do the best possible calibration of devices involved with color. But that alone is not enough to assure that a printed book will look the same as it does on your computer monitor.

For non-critical color situations, where the result just needs to look good (so-called pleasing color) it is generally not necessary to take any further steps.

The approach we use is based on color match proofs.  These proofs are calibrated to the press that will be printing your book. The proof looks the same (from the point of view of colors) as the printed book will look. With color match proofs you can see how your colors will come out in print.

Our normal quotes include color match proofs of covers and dust jackets.  For inside pages, we include color laser proofs in the quotes. While the color lasers may not be color accurate as the color match proofs are, they give a good general idea of colors, and precise proofing of all other aspects of the page.

We then offer color match proofs of selected pages if you want them; the cost is $24 per page. Our customers never have color match proofs made for all pages; they're too expensive and they're not necessary. In very many cases, the color match proofs provided for covers (and dust jackets) show enough information so you can see how well the printed final colors will match your expectations. For tighter control, you might want to have color match proofs made for 2-4 typical pages to further sharpen your understanding of how well the printed colors will match your expectations. Only very rarely do our customers want more than this hand-full of color match proofs.

We have found that this color match proof system works very well in practice, and our customers are very happy with the results.


Signature Book Printing   has been a Book Printer   of choice for the past 25 years. We have been on the web since 1997. From the beginning, we have focused not only on Book Printing   but also on smooth, easy customer service, excellent quality, and very competitive prices .  We have broadened our Book Printing offerings significantly from the beginning. Check out Signature Book Printing  as your Book Printer . As a Book Printer , we have earned the confidence and recommendations of a wide variety of customers nationwide to support their Publishing . Our capabilities include Hard Cover Book Printing , Full Color Book Printing , Case Bound Book Printing , Perfect Bound Book Printing , Smythe Sewn Binding , Soft Cover Book Printing , and Web Book Printing for longer runs.

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Dyn 1 - ver   1997 - 2015  Signature Book Printing, Inc.           Updated 06/06/21 11:32   301-258-8303