Q&A For Digital Photography

Digital Help is designed to aid you in getting the most from your digital photography, printing, scanning, and image creation. Each month, David Brooks provides solutions to problems you might encounter with matters such as color calibration and management, digital printer and scanner settings, and working with digital photographic images with many different kinds of cameras and software. All questions sent to him will be answered with the most appropriate information he can access and provide. However, not all questions and answers will appear in this department. Readers can send questions to David Brooks addressed to Shutterbug magazine, through the Shutterbug website (www.shutterbug.com), directly via e-mail to: editorial@shutterbug.com or goofotografx@gmail.com or by US Mail to: David Brooks, PO Box 2830, Lompoc, CA 93438.

To aid us in making Digital Help as helpful as possible, please be specific in your query and include components, including software, that you use. David says, “Make me guess the problem and I might guess wrong.”—Editor

Virus And Malware Infections
Q. What is your recommendation for Mac Internet security? I love my Mac mini in all respects, except for choosing an Internet malware averter. I have installed Norton Internet Security 5 for Mac, which I purchased directly for $63.74. I don’t know if it works or if I really needed it, but my attitude is, better safe than sorry.
I hate it. It slows my Mac to a crawl. At best, it takes a few seconds to open any file or website, and at worst it gives me the “whirly rainbow ball” for a good chunk of a minute, and lots longer if it’s indulging in a scheduled scan.
John Roe
via e-mail

A. I have a similar situation. And yes, I find Norton provides little but a headache waiting for it to review everything coming in, and it never finds anything, so I am also dubious that it is of much value.
When the Flashback malware attack happened recently both Macworld and Apple published instructions on how to query your Terminal Utility to see if your computer was infected, and fix it if anything was found. Fortunately for me, the result of that inspection, which took only a few minutes, indicated my system was not infected by the malware.
My opinion is that the best security is provided by the user. Fortunately, with Apple Macs attacks are rare compared to what PC Windows users encounter. So, keeping informed on what is going on is not too difficult. And keeping up to date with system upgrades also helps. Apple had an upgrade for Java shortly after the attack was noticed, so I have upgraded my Macs with it and I feel that this type of “plugging of holes” is the best security I can obtain. In the end, awareness is the best kind of security.

Are Supplied Printer Profiles The Best?
Q. I have an Epson 3000 printer, an EIZO monitor and color manage using EIZO ColorNavigator software and a Spyder3. I was recently told that there is one more step in this process. I should also be profiling my paper to better coordinate my printer and monitor as they interpret colors differently. I use Epson papers and have their profiles. For other papers, I download a profile. My friend does paper profiling himself for each paper using a ColorMunki. Is this step necessary, or are the paper profiles provided by the manufacturer just as good?
Louis Kravitz
via e-mail

A. A few years back, when paper/printer profiling first became affordable to individual photographers I worked with doing it myself. Since then, most of the paper suppliers have greatly improved the quality of the profiles they provide for their papers. So I think you have to be very persnickety or use papers that have not been well profiled to get a better print result yourself. I cannot suggest that if you are using Epson brand papers with an Epson R3000 that a very significant advantage can be obtained by doing the profiling yourself, unless you switch to a paper Epson does not sell.

Is Bigger Better?
Q. I’ve been waiting on the new model Canon EOS 5D Mark III to arrive and it finally has, except they boosted up the price by about $1000 over the Mark II model. It seems to me that the 5D Mark III and the 7D are about the same feature-wise, except of course the 5D has the full-frame-sized sensor. Is there really a noticeable difference in resolution and sharpness, or is it just a matter of a little bit larger file size from the 5D? They really didn’t enlarge the megapixel count by much with the Mark III, and it is only about 4 megapixels larger than the 7D. I’m trying to decide if the $3000 difference in price between the two is really worth it.
Randy Bradley
via e-mail

A. The larger full-frame image sensor is an advantage because the sensor site size for the given pixel count is larger and therefore collects more light than the smaller sensors. Also, the optics designed for film 35mm SLRs provide the same angle of view as they did with the film cameras. When the Canon 5D first came out I switched to it, replacing smaller sensor D-SLR bodies. One of the greatest benefits was that I could use my wide-angle lenses just as effectively as I could before. In addition, the viewfinder image was much better in brightness, contrast, and quality compared to APS-C D-SLRs. As to image quality, I found I obtained better shadow detail information and less noise in dark image areas.

Multiple Monitors And Resolution
Q. This is regarding the Dell U2410 monitor and my MacBook Pro. I am frustrated with the monitor’s (seeming) inability to sync up at its native resolution. I have been on the phone with Dell support, have gone to the Apple Store to see if my LT is putting out what it should, etc.
So, my question is: should the monitor sync up to 1920x1200, which I assume is the “native” resolution? The highest resolution I can get it to operate at is 1280x1024. I hope you can tell me I have been using the wrong cable, or have my settings wrong.
I had Dell send me another monitor, on the unlikely chance that it was a “lemon,” but the same problems were encountered. I thank you profusely in advance for any information that can get me on the right path. I have tried everything else and don’t know where to turn next.
Rick Herbert
via e-mail

A. Yes, the monitor resolution should be 1920x1200 pixels. Apple sells an adapter to connect to the Display Port using the standard DVI cable supplied with the Dell UltraSharp U2410.
I have heard from a lot of users connecting this display to MacBook Pro and iMac computers, but have not heard of a resolution problem like you are describing. It may be the particular display you have or the model of MacBook Pro. So I would first find out if your MacBook Pro does support 1920x1200 pixels in a desktop display, and if there is anything in your computer setup that has to be done. Be sure, in the Display part of System Preferences, that with two displays Mirroring is turned Off. If it is turned on, the second display, your Dell UltraSharp, will be set to the same resolution as your MacBook Pro display.

I am pleased to announce the latest 4.3 Edition to my eBook Digital Darkroom Resource CD. The CD now contains 33 chapters totaling 399 pages in Adobe Acrobat .PDF format, providing easy-to-read text and large high-quality illustration. The CD is available for $20 plus $5 shipping and handling (US Mail if available). Ordering is as simple as sending a check or money order for $25 made out to me, David B. Brooks, and mailed to PO Box 2830, Lompoc, CA 93438.

Mukesh Doshi's picture

Thanks for the post its really good.

Lalit Ranka's picture

Nicely Written , Great Work.