6 Tips for Printing Great Photos

If you've tried your hand at printing your own photos and been disappointed in the results, you may be making some mistakes that are easy to correct. Most inkjet and thermal dye printers today can print photos at Commercial press quality or better with little or no work on your part.

  1. Choose between direct printing options. If your combination of printer and camera gives you a choice between printing directly from the camera and from memory—which includes cards and USB keys in this context—be sure to experiment with both. The two choices can yield significantly different output quality for the same file, with noticeably different colors and retention of detail based on shading in dark and light areas. It's well worth investing a little time and effort to print several photos both ways to see how great the differences are and which one you like better.
  2. Get familiar with your printer's auto fix feature. Most current dedicated photo printers, and some standard inkjets, include some variation of an automatic fix feature that analyzes the image and may adjust several settings at once. These may include anything from contrast, brightness, and gamma (which changes contrast differently at different levels of brightness), to automatically deciding whether to apply red-eye reduction.
  3. Use paper that's appropriate for the task. Better-quality paper yields better-quality prints, but it costs more too. If you're printing a photo to frame and hang on a wall, by all means use the highest-quality paper available for the printer. If you're printing a photo to post on the office bulletin board or stick under a refrigerator magnet, however, consider using plain paper, inkjet paper, or a less expensive photo paper
  4. Print from an editing program. For the best-quality prints, move your photos to your computer and print from a photo-editing program. Photo printers aimed at professionals generally don't offer direct printing, because professionals—and serious amateurs—know that they get much better control over basic features like cropping, resizing, and color management, as well as far more sophisticated editing tools, with a photo-editing program.
  5. Avoid compression woes. Most cameras default to—or are even limited to—saving pictures in a compressed JPG format. It's always a good idea to turn off compression (if you can) when you want the best possible photo quality. Even more important, however, is that you should never edit a compressed photo on your computer and then save it back to a compressed format. JPG is a lossy compression scheme, which means it loses information every time you save the file and recompress it. If you edit a compressed file, save it in the editor's native format or a format like TIF, without compression, to avoid degrading the image further.
  6. Explore your printer driver. Virtually every printer's driver offers settings that affect picture quality. The choices may be limited to choosing between good, better, and best quality, or you may be able to adjust brightness; contrast; red, green, and blue levels; and more. If you want the best possible output, it's worth investing the time to explore your driver. At the very least, experiment with each of the quality settings to see the effect on the output quality and speed, so you can decide whether the improved output at high-quality modes is worth the extra time it takes to print.

How to Buy a Printer

Picking the right printer can be tough, with so many features to choose from, and individual printers with almost any possible combination of those variations available. Here are some pointers to help you find both the right category of printer and the right model within that type.

  • What Category of Printer Do You Need?
    The three most useful ways to categorize printers are by purpose (general or special), intended use (home or office), and technology. Define your needs by all three categories, and you're well on your way to finding the right printer.
  • Do You Need a Single-Function Printer or an MFP?
    Consider whether you simply need to print or need something more. For a photo printer, for example, additional capability could be enough memory to store hundreds of photos, so you can bring the printer with you, show your photos, and then print them. (For more possibilities.) For general-purpose printing, additional capability means choosing an MFP, also known as an all-in-one or AIO.
  • Do You Really Need Color?
    For a home printer, you probably need color, but for an office model, if you never print anything except letters and monochrome documents, there's no reason to spend money on color. Keep in mind, however, that many color lasers can print at high enough quality to make your own advertising handouts and trifold brochures, which could save you money compared with printing small quantities at your local print shop.
  • How Big a Printer are You Looking For?
    Be sure to look into the printer's size. Even some home models can be uncomfortably large to share a desk with, and even a printer with a small footprint can be tall enough to feel like it's towering over you. At the other extreme, we're seeing a growing number of compact versions that can fit in tight spaces in apartments, home offices, and dorm rooms.
  • How are You Going to Connect?
    In addition to a USB port, most office printers and an increasing number of home printers include Ethernet ports, so you can share the printer easily. Many also include Wi-Fi capability. Even if they don't, if you have a wireless access point on your network, you can print wirelessly to any printer on that network, whether the printer itself offers a wireless connection or not. Printers that support Wi-Fi Direct (or its equivalent) can connect directly to most Wi-Fi-enabled devices, even if your computer or handheld isn't designed to support Wi-Fi Direct. We're also seeing printers that can connect to and print from a mobile device via NFC merely by tapping the phone or tablet to a particular spot on the printer
  • What Level of Output Quality Do You Need?
    Printers vary significantly in output quality. Check out text, graphics, and photos separately, since high quality for one kind of output doesn't necessarily mean high quality for the others.
  • How Much Speed Do You Need?
    If almost everything you print is one or two pages, you probably don't need a fast printer. If you output a lot of longer documents, speed is more important, which means you probably want a laser printer. As a rule, laser printers will be close to their claimed speeds for text documents, which don't need much processing time. Inkjets often claim faster speeds than more expensive lasers, but usually don't live up to these claims. Inkjet printers have been getting faster, however, and a few recent high-end models can hold their own speed-wise against comparably priced lasers.
  • How Much Do You Print?
    If you print only a few pages a day, you don't have to worry about how much a printer is designed to print, as defined by its recommended (not maximum) monthly duty cycle. If you print enough for the duty cycle to matter, however, don't buy a printer that doesn't include that information in its specifications. Figure out how much you print by how often you buy paper and in what amounts. Then pick a printer designed to print at least that much. Also consider minimum and maximum paper size and whether you need a duplexer to print on both sides of the page. For input capacity, a useful rule of thumb is to get enough capacity so you should need to add paper no more than once a week.
  • How Much Does it Cost?
    Finally, be sure to check out the total cost of ownership. Most manufacturers will tell you the cost per page, and many give a cost per photo. To get the total cost of ownership, calculate the cost per year for each kind of output (monochrome, color document, photo) by multiplying the cost per page for that kind of output by the number of those pages you print per year. Add the three amounts together to get the total cost per year. Then multiply that by the number of years you expect to own the printer, and add the initial cost of the printer. Compare the total cost of ownership figures between printers to find out which model will be cheapest in the long run. For a head-start on finding the best out there, check out our roundup of our top printer picks, as well as our favorite wireless models

How to choose a desktop PC

Components to Consider

Now, what’s actually inside a desktop PC is what you should be looking out for. Knowing the hardware specifications of any desktop computer will help determine the product’s final price. The latest and greatest components will cost you a pretty penny, but will provide you with the best power and computing capabilities on the market. On the other hand, being cost-effective will save you money but may limit what you can get done with your machine.

  1. CPU
    The three most useful ways to categorize printers are by purpose (general or special), intended use (home or office), and technology. Define your needs by all three categories, and you're well on your way to finding the right printer.
  2. Integrated graphics & Graphic cards
    Now that we’ve covered the most important component in a desktop PC, it’s time to move on to the next important unit: GPUs (graphics processing units)! Similar to CPUs, GPUs are components dedicated to accelerating the manipulation and creation of computer graphics and visual images.
  3. Do You Really Need Color?
    For a home printer, you probably need color, but for an office model, if you never print anything except letters and monochrome documents, there's no reason to spend money on color. Keep in mind, however, that many color lasers can print at high enough quality to make your own advertising handouts and trifold brochures, which could save you money compared with printing small quantities at your local print shop.
  4. RAM
    Random-access memory (otherwise known as RAM or desktop memory) helps speed up your computing experience by storing system info for in-the-moment and follow-up functions you request. As software like games and applications become more advanced, the need for larger-sized desktop memory is needed in order to efficiently run your PC. As of writing, you’ll need at least 8GB of memory to run video-editing software like Adobe Premiere. The latest games currently vary from a 2GB-8GB RAM minimum, but the safest current bet is to go with 8GB. Of course, if you’re just trying to run Microsoft Office programs, 2GB will work just fine. For most manufacturers’ pre-built desktop PCs, desktop memory is one of the components that can easily be changed out down the line. But you have to be wary of maintaining both type and speed.
  5. Storage
    Use a large-capacity HDD to store your large collection of media files such as movies, music, pictures, important documents, etc. Use a small to medium-sized SSD to house your operating system (OS) and essential programs. This common, useful configuration involves both an SSD and an HDD in a single system, though options with only HDDs or only SSDs are both available as well, depending on your needs.
  6. Ports
    Internal storage devices aren’t the only way to store or access files. Like any computer, desktop PCs come with a plethora of ports that provide you with plenty of expansive options, including external storage..
  7. Monitor
    Monitors are the standard output video source for desktop PCs. Whether you’re gaming, working on graphic design, or need multiple monitors for running an efficient multi-tasking workload, you should note not all monitors are built the same. Generally speaking, if you’re looking to do some high-end gaming, you’ll need a monitor that has a high refresh rate (for example, 240Hz) and a low response time (1ms). Graphic designers will need a monitor that shoots for a 99% sRGB color-reproduction value to ensure their works look great across any other monitor. As mentioned before, the standard ports on your pre-built desktop computers that connect to the latest monitors are DVI, DisplayPort and HDMI (unless you have an older monitor that only uses a VGA port).
  8. Audio Devices
    Any Bluetooth or RF audio devices will need to be set up as described in the previous section. If you have a wired headset or headphones, simply plug them in to their respective ports on the front or back of your desktop computer. The front panel will have relatable icons for your mic or headphones while the back panel may have a pink-colored 8mm jack for microphones and a lime-green jack for headphones.
  9. Choose the system that’s right for you
    Technology is always advancing, so make sure to check back frequently for the latest updates on pre-built desktop PCs. As you can see, there are a variety of flavors when it comes to these systems, so if you need a little push in determining what kind of system you need, you can start by browsing Alhasoob Desktop main categories

How to buy laptop

Components to Consider

Now, what’s actually inside a laptop is what you should be looking out for. Knowing the hardware specifications of any laptop computer will help determine the product’s final price. The latest and greatest components will cost you a pretty penny, but will provide you with the best power and computing capabilities on the market. On the other hand, being cost-effective will save you money but may limit what you can get done with your machine.

  1. Processors
    Your laptop's processor is like its brain. Working in combination with system memory, the power of the processor determines the complexity of software you can run, how many programs you can have open at the same time, and how fast those programs will run. Most laptops feature an Intel® or AMD processor. Variances exist within processor classes. Laptops designed for exceptional battery life often incorporate an ultra-low-voltage version of the listed processor, which usually sacrifices processing speed. For heavy graphics work or gaming, choose a laptop with a dedicated graphics card and video memory. Having separate resources for your graphics allows for faster, smoother processing while you're watching movies, playing games or multitasking. .
  2. Memory
    Random-access memory, or RAM, is important because it helps your processor tackle multiple tasks at once. A minimum of 2GB is required for basic computing, but 8GB or more is recommended if you're into graphics and advanced photo or video editing. Most laptops have 4GB–8GB pre-installed, and some have up to 64GB. If you think you might need more memory later, choose a model that lets you expand the RAM
  3. Internal storage.
    Traditional hard disk drives offer larger storage capacities, but add to a laptop's weight and thickness while generating heat and noise. Alternatively, solid state drives (also known as SSDs or flash storage) are much lighter, faster, cooler and quieter than hard drives — but they're also much more expensive per GB, so typically provide less storage space. Some laptops feature a hybrid drive, which combines a hard drive with a solid state drive for the benefits of both.
  4. Battery life
    Manufacturers' battery-life claims range from just a few hours up to 12 hours or more. Laptop enhancements — such as increased processing power, larger and higher resolution screens, faster hard drives, or the addition of an optical drive — will drain your battery more quickly
  5. Ports and connectivity.
    Laptops typically provide several options for staying connected to the internet as well as to other devices. Most laptops provide the latest 802.11 wireless networking standards plus Bluetooth capabilities, so you can easily sync your smartphone, speakers and other portable devices. Gaming laptops. Designed specifically for high-performance games and tasks on the go, gaming laptops provide boosted power and beefed-up features. Advanced processors and graphics cards allow for faster, smoother gameplay, while enhanced speakers and larger screen sizes help bring the game to life. Laptops labeled "VR Ready" fulfill system requirements to add a virtual reality headset and lose yourself in 360° experiences. Some gaming laptops also include programmable keys, color-coded backlit keyboards and additional ports for convenient connectivity. However, these resource-intensive features often heat up the laptop while cutting down on battery life and portability. Consider how often you'll be taking your gaming on the road, and choose a laptop with a cooling system that leaves your hands comfortable and your graphics smooth
  6. in-1 laptops.
    For maximum versatility, 2-in-1s combine a powerful laptop and a go-anywhere tablet in one lightweight, portable device. (They're also known as "convertible" or "hybrid" laptops.) These models feature either a detachable keyboard or a flip-and-fold display on a 360° hinge, letting you adjust the laptop to best suit your activity — whether typing documents, watching movies, reading e-books, playing games or browsing online. And compared to a separate tablet, 2-in-1s typically include more USB ports and other connectivity options, making it easier for you to transfer files and photos.
Choose the system that’s right for you

Technology is always advancing, so make sure to check back frequently for the latest updates on laptop. As you can see, there are a variety of flavors when it comes to these systems, so if you need a little push in determining what kind of system you need, you can start by browsing Alhasoob`s Laptops .

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