Photoshop: Restore halftone screen function for printing separations

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Why has the Screen function in photoshop CS5 print dialogue box been removed. ??
This function is essential for screen print separators for the Apparel industry and has been part of photoshop since the beginning.
It may be irrelevant in certain industries as postscript printers can over ride these settings.
However in the printing of Apparel this function is still essential for multichannel simulated process separations. Bitmaps halftones or Colour halftones are a very inaccurate and tedious workaround for this so called flag ship program. I'm very disappointed with Photoshop CS5. I will now be forced to use CS3. Why did I bother with an upgrade. ?

This shows Adobe has a lack of understanding of how its customers use there products.
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jcc

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Posted 7 years ago

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Yakup Güleş

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My problem is that there is no Screen menu is available in print dialog box in the output section. I am unhappy about the option that i require not being present with the product i have purchased. i could send my work to ECRM as soon as i changed "frequency" and "angle" via "Screen" on "print dialouge" box in PS CS3. I strongly want again this button or i have to downgrade to CS3. I am a representer of crowded PS users who inconvenience about this problem. Thanks for everything

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Photoshop: Screen and Transfer print options are not available in Photoshop CS5.
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Cliff Burks

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Disappointing to see that this hasn't been addressed in 5 months. I just made the upgrade due to a switch to a solid state drive & Windows 7 to improve productivity, only to have it crippled. According to what I was told by CS & Tech support the only option (after upgrading from CS2 to CS5) is to try to find a retailer that has CS4 as that was the last version that supported our needs.
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Cliff Burks

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I just made the jump from CS2 to CS5 where I found Photoshop no longer offers settings for line screen and screen angles for spot color printing. This is a critical feature for me and most others in my industry. Photoshop is the go to program for color separations for garment manufacturers and this is a crippling omission for us. Are there any plans to patch CS5 or to bring this critical feature back in future versions? I have been told by customer & tech support that my only option, while already owning CS2 & CS5, is that I will have to buy CS4 from a third party and go backward. While this may work temporarily, it imposes additional cost, and does not address the long term issue of the removal of these controls. Garment manufacturing is a relatively small, but constant industry among your customer base and Photoshop & Illustrator are our right and left hands.(Oddly enough - these controls are still available in Illustrator). There must be tens of thousands in the US alone. Can we expect this to be addressed?

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Photoshop: Bring back PostScript Line Screen & angle settings - Please - with sugar on top..
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paul michalski

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Put the Screen button back! I'm going to make some shirts, WITHOUT HALFTONES, because I can't print them! We'll all have to go to CS4. Please find a solution! Bring it back.
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PECourtejoie, Champion

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Dave Polaschek, a Photoshop Engineer, explains why the option has been removed from view, and how to create templates in older versions of Photoshop to get screening in Postscript printers: http://forums.adobe.com/message/34381...
This might help you before another solution is implemented in Photoshop.
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jcc

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PE Thanks for adding the link to Daves answer. Not sure why an answer hasn't been more forth coming, this thread has been here ages along with others on the subject.

Those work arounds are not really acceptable for me, having to use an older version of an expensive upgrade to create a file for a template then re-open in new program every single time I change a screen angle, dot, size or shape, is a pain.
I do this for every job and need to make changes and updates to these settings during most separations.
What if I dont have access to older versions of PS. ??

Adobe needs to put in the time and fix this problem ASAP.
So people who spent money on CS5 upgrade can still use a simple function present on all previous versions of PS.

"Sorry we havent had time to upgrade the function yet so we just got rid of it" doesn't really fill me with product satisfaction. So CS5 is a down grade then ? How many other functions have they not had time to fix and removed from CS5.

CS5 has been out for a long time now so time for a FREE screen function patch and upgrade.

Dave Polaschek any news on when adobe will have had the time to do this ?
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Steven McDonald

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Can someone not just come up with a plug-in that can do this?
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Scott

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I am in the garment screen printing industry and I do color separations and sell automated separation software for T-Shirt printer. For YEARS we have all relied on the "Screen" button in the print window to allow us to print "channel separations" directly from Photoshop. We can set the halftone frequency, dot shape and angle with ease and simply print out a channel. This is how T-Shirt printers commonly use Photoshop.

We were all shocked to see it removed in CS5 with the "attitude" that we need to print from Illustrator. I have over 10,000 users of my plugin for Photoshop and my guess is world-wide over 50,000 screen print artists common print this way. We are begging for the Screen button to be re-introduced in CS6. Frankly, I don't really know who to complain to. I get emails every day from my customers who upgrade to CS5 asking "where did the Screen button go?" What seems like a simple change to Adobe has made work harder for the masses who print alpha channels out all day long. Thanks.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Photoshop: Why did Adobe remove the "Screen" button from the Print window?.
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Doug Gibson

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I was all set to upgrade to CS5 when it came out. No "screen" button no upgrade for me. Adobe NEEDS to address this in CS6.
You are alienating a lot of loyal users with the deletion of the "screen" button and don't seem to care judging the way our complaints are all but ignored completely.
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PECourtejoie, Champion

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Here is a discussion that addresses the issue at hand: http://forums.adobe.com/message/43590...
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jcc

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Ive noticed the screen function has still not been added to CS6. Downloaded the free trial from adobe just now

Thanks adobe...... nice to see you will ignore and a whole industry of users.

I will not be buying a license upgrade for the 25 computers at my company and will spread the word not to bother on the many screen-printing forums.

RIP PSD
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paul michalski

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Very upsetting. That totally kills the use of PSD in the screen printing industry. Must be nice to have money, and not care about the people that use their software. RIP PSD.
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ray p

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I love to get the latest software whenever it is available, unfortunately I stopped at Photoshop cs3, since, the later versions do not have the screen functions, which is a must for my screen printing business, I think adobe dose not want to sell the software to screenprinters,
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Bill Yule

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In CS6 and 5 as well. I need to print dots out of photoshop. This has been removed in the newer versions. Is this going to be addressed in the future?

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Halftone Heck.
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Cliff Van Gestel

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At this point it just seems like Adobe is viewing this particular customer base as just a bunch of babies crying because they took away their candy. C'mon Adobe (Engineers). We have all had to deal with changes in Photoshop over the years, the way they changed the airbrush tool from ver 6 and prior to ver 7. That sucked but we were able to work around that and other changes. You are always going to have complaints when changes are made.

This problem is different than key commands, brushes, or a function here and there, it is an integral tool for screen printers who print directly to laser printers especially (or the like). For most screen printers, that print to a laser printer, it is not so much the LPI (which can probably be set on the printer- e.g. Xante or similar), it is all about the line angles, which cannot be set on the printer at least not the ones I've printed from.

You see, screen printers can't use default printing angles such as 15, 45, 90, or 180 degrees. If you are printing on paper these angles might work for you. Not sure, but that is another subject. We, screen printers, have to set our angles in odd positions due to the nature of the mesh we print through. Mesh fibers run 90 and 180 degrees just like any other fabric. Generally, I believe for the most part, many screen printers will use a 22.5 or -22.5 degree angle. For a CMYK image line angle settings might be something like -67.5, -37.5, -7.5, -7.5 degrees.

Why in the world would screen printers use such crazy angles? Do the math. If threads (screen mesh) run 90 and 180 degrees (warp and weft) then what you end up with is a bunch of squares. What do you get when you draw a line from one corner of a square to the opposing corner? A 45 degree angle.

What happens when you try to print through a 65lpi or a 55lpi, 5% dot (at 45 degrees) on a corner of a square? Nothing...that is the problem. We cannot print ink through corners on squares. Then multiply that by how many threads you have per screen. We use mesh that have thread counts as high as 355 threads per inch. That is per inch. Could you imagine what would happen to an image that is 13" wide x 16" high, as a grayscale of 5% or 10%, using 55lpi on a 355TPI mesh? You get a terrible pattern called Moire.

In other words, The image would be jacked up and no customer would want to pay for it. Would Adobe buy subpar t-shirts for their events? I hope whoever you get to print your t-shirts is using something other than Photoshop CS5 or CS6 with a laser printer! They probably updated to CS6 from CS2, thinking they were advancing their Art Dept, only to find out that Adobe screwed them in the process. They probably had to return the supposed latest and greatest Photoshop, because as it turns out Adobe decided to remove a very important tool used by many businesses in the screen printing industry.

Because of driver issues? Really? Is that the best that you can do? We've never had any driver issues using the Print Screen/Transfer function in any versions prior to CS5. Your programs are already over priced and you decide to give us less for our hard earned money.? C'mon guys, we expected more from you. You are a giant in the industry and many of us love your programs. We wouldn't think of using Corel in place of Adobe, that is until now. Are you telling me that a program that costs 1/3 of yours allows you to set screen angles? Really?

I think you guys need to get out of the office and start looking into how many screen printers there are and how big the industry really is. Start locally, then nationwide, then globally. Then ask screen printers how important the Print Screen/Transfer function is to their business.

I can guarantee you that the only reason you haven't heard more people speaking up is because they don't want to take the time to write a lenghty post explaining to you how important this particular tool is to their daily business (lives). So, they return it, cancel their subscription, reinstall their old version of Photoshop, tell all their friends in the industry not to upgrade due to the inability to complete their tasks efficiently, etc., etc.

If this is okay with Adobe, then I guess that is all that really matters. As long as Adobe is pleased with its revenue and doesn't care to increase its own profitability, then who are we to say otherwise?

I can tell you, that I am not alone in this, and that it is not only affecting 20 people. I am truly considering cancelling my subscription to the Creative Cloud. It is a good concept and I like it very much, but I use Photoshop for screen printing. At the moment it is not meeting the needs of my business. If you want to increase your revenue and profitabilty, then you might want to consider bringing this function back.
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Chris Cox

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In your industry maybe - but we work with printers in every industry, and have to support those printers in every industry. And yes, we do tend to talk to the vendors who make up the majority of the RIP industry. There are more printers out there, and more using the custom screens, than just silk screeners.
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Scott

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I will go now and leave this alone. My guess is between me and the other RIP guys I mentioned above that at least 50,000 RIPs are in use in our little industry and we/me and the other guys are not on your vendors list of who to ask. 50,000 is probably not a big number to Adobe but we have our little niche and just wanted to see why Adobe removed a key feature after all these years. It appears this discussion is not going to resolve anything other than make our blood pressure go up. I do appreciate your time to respond. For now, the majority of screeners are and will be staying with CS4 or earlier. Too bad. CS6 has some nice features.
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Cliff Burks

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Is there a more blatant way that you could say you could care less about our industry? Is this your personal stance or Adobe's? I'm not trying to be personal - I just typed another comment below suggesting a more cooperative toned down approach for all of us but I am stunned by some of your comments today.
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Cliff Van Gestel

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@Chris Cox ... as for insulting the engineers, I agree with you. I apologize for insulting you guys and I hope you all can accept my apologies. I'm not usually like that. My intention was not to insult, but to merely portray my frustration.

It really is frustration on my part. From our standpoint, it just seems that nothing is being done to correct this. This problem has existed since CS5 and now we are at CS6 and the problem still exists.

The problem you are going to be running into in the future, is the guys that have been waiting to upgrade are finally going to take the plunge and run into the same problem. It breaks their separation process.

Thanks Cliff Burks for explaining my frustration, and Scott Fresner for your input as well. You are heavy hitter and we need more input from guys like you.

Thanks Chris Cox for putting up with my frustration, and again I do apologize for the rashness of my post.
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Chris Cox

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That is not even remotely what I said.
But when we go talk to RIP vendors about changing their code to help customers, we're going to talk to the ones affecting the most customers.
It's not that we don't care, it's that there's a lot more out there than just yourself.
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Cliff Burks

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Chris,
While Van Gestel's tone may have been a little rant-ish my guess is it's a combination of a desire to continue using your product, frustration that the issue has not been resolved, and a plea for Adobe to do so. His post may not have been a lesson in etiquette, but it's how this issue makes us feel and how we talk among ourselves. I think that's valuable information for a company to have about it's products and client reactions, even if that client/industry only represents a percentage of their base.

I was surprised however at your response after noticing you are an employee. You were defensive and admonished him for his manners rather than giving him, or the rest of us insight on where this is going - if the function will be restored, or if there is any effort or inclination to do so. His explanation albeit expressive of industry wide frustration, was sound. He (and many of us) are "frustrated loyal customers" and anyone following this has almost certainly been through numerous versions of your product over many years. I have been a user since it's inception. Most companies encourage their employees to try to assist and retain repeat customers rather than teach them manners. Your response was simply an unhelpful retort to a loyal user.

The only remotely appropriate comment you made was a dangling carrot: "Just because we haven't said much doesn't mean that nothing is happening. " Well, we'd sure like to know what you're doing. Would you care to elaborate?

I work in both the paper and textile industry and can tell you that I and all of my textile clients who run film in-house share this frustration. It is a significant impedance, negatively affects our productivity, and negates the benefits of upgrading to newer version of your product.

The loss of this feature forces us to pursue other options rather than being eager to see what's new in the next version of Photoshop. We don't want another product - we want "our" Photoshop back, but it makes no sense for us to upgrade to a new product that eliminates a key feature. I love Photoshop and have used it since it came on the market. Now on CS5, I have to go back to previous versions to output separations. These will eventually become incompatible with newer operating systems as they emerge. If this issues is not addressed not only will I not be justified in buying or recommending newer versions of Photoshop but even the old ones and I will have to part ways and I will have to go to a competing product.

Prior to this, Photoshop was a no brainer - don't even think about it upgrade to me and all my clients. While I have a proprietary RIP that can be upgraded to work around this problem, not all of of my clients or your users do. They are not all large offset printers, Ad Agencies etc. Many are small operations in textile printing. While the type of user I'm referring to may not all buy multi-user licenses like the big boys, they far outnumber them, are begging for help, and not getting it.

Even in your email you offered no insight on future developments and clearly sneered down your nose at him. Maybe you're having a bad day - but your response wasn't even directed at me and I was offended.

I want the screen function back so I can keep Photoshop as the hammer in my toolbox. The lack of attention to this offers us little hope for that, and your response suggests more contempt than appreciation for you customers.

A Photoshop user from the beginning.
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Chris Cox

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Adobe is a publicly traded company - we can't give you much, if any, insight into where things are going.

If you want a feature, or want a feature back: tell us why. Don't insult the very people that have to explain this to executives who wouldn't know a screen from a squeegee, and who work weekends to make some of these features happen. Just tell us why you need it, how it'll help, how it's lack hurts, etc. and give us something to help justify the time and effort to our management.

Also, there was no sneering, just corrections to a rather insulting and counter-productive post.
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Cliff Burks

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I think we've offered a pretty thorough explanation. If you need more details I am sure there will be no shortage of the with the people involved in this thread, most specifically, Scott Fresner. He will be the one that speaks closest to your language and has been a product developer for this niche since I got into it.

As for Van Gestel - put yourself in his/our shoes. He's frustrated - we all are. He's not talking to you personally but you respond as if he does. Decaf buddy. Jerry Mcguire here - Help us - help you - help us. Let's all take it down a notch and see if there's something we can do to advance this. The whole reason this conversation is taking place is because for years (and some of us decades) we have all been on the same team. This feature loss is breaking up the team - we're fighting to keep it together.
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Bill Yule

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Yeah, what they said
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jcc

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Thanks Cliff (Burke) very well put.

But I to share Cliff Van Gestels frustration and have had to try very hard not to go off on a rant myself and vent my frustration.

Chris
I was rather surprised at your response and found it rather frustrating. I've been waiting for some kind of input from a engineer on this tread for over a year now, so far Nothing. I was beginning to wonder why I even bothered starting the thread in first place.
Finally when we do hear from one its just to chide an unhappy customer for speaking his mind.

"just because we havent said much doesn't mean nothing is happening" ???

So far due to the lack of input from any adobe PS employees, Ive assumed nothing is happening and nothing will. A Personal message has endorsed this belief.

So any chance of elaborating as to what is happening- if anything at all- ?
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Cliff Burks

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Likewise. I bordered on ranting (ok - I crossed the border numerous times) and had to retype things to keep it in check. I have no criticism for Van Gestel - it was real and true and how we all feel - he just said it without the sugar coated topping.

I don't think Adobe realizes the value of of clients that are passionate enough about their product to bother to reach out and rant to them rather than just switching to another product. I still find the lack of customer appreciation in the employee's reply stunning.

That being said, it could be a really tough problem and maybe their hands are tied by external forces like the OS mfrs etc. Maybe it's like having to buy a new Blu Ray player every few years because Hollywood keeps implementing new codecs and mfrs can't keep up with the codecs on the older players.

I understand that it's obviously a difficult problem. But some straight answers like the following would be nice and allow us to decide if we want to be patient or move on.

We're working on it.

We expect it to be resolved with version X

We're not pursuing it at all.

It can't be done.

I've seen a lot of explanations but no answers.
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Chris Cox

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We are a publicly traded company. We can't say.
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Cliff Burks

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Can you say when the next scheduled release for a new version is?
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Chris Cox

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No, we cannot.
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Cliff Burks

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..... guys like me are just small potatoes compared to the thousand pound gorillas like EFI - who rumor has it are the ones who "asked" you to remove the screen button - because it was hurting their RIP sales. Once I heard that story it all made sense.

I had not heard that. Adobe, would you please comment on this?

I hope if that's the case, or even if it's something else entirely, you will simply step up and tell us it's gone and it's not coming back. We're all long time customers. Is a little straight shooting too much to ask?
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Chris Cox

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I'll comment: I have no idea where he got that rumor, as it's obviously complete B.S.
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David Evans

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Hello,

As a RIP developer (in fact was involved in writing our own PostScript RIP), I don't understand why Adobe removed this in the first place.
According to one link it was because it was using level 1 PostScript, which it wasn't (level 1 didn't have support for color).
But the fact was it worked (I was never aware of any issues or bugs from a RIP point of view), especially for all these users who were printing separates, so all they needed was level 1 PostScript. Screen printers don't use Accurate screens, in fact even in pre press most users who do use these kinds of features do so based on RIP pre defined settings, not based on postscript from the application (and as I am sure you are aware most pre press now work from PDF files instead).

I am pretty sure that the halftone commands from Photoshop were no worse than Illustrator, perhaps someone from Adobe can tell me why Illustrator halftone commands are so much better than Photoshop.....

All these guys want is the same level of support they used to have, it worked and its not rocket science.

My biggest issue with the PostScript from Photoshop was that it didn't include the PostScript comments for the color planes. So if you ever do fix this (which I expect is very unlikely) would be nice if you could add.

We added support for CS5 and CS6 by adding a plugin that sends a DCS-EPS file to our RIP that the user can then specify the halftones in the RIP for each channel. But its amazing how many users still don't want to upgrade as they really want to set the halftones in Photoshop not it the RIP.
Its just the way they work.

I will confirm Scotts numbers that there has to be a good 30000+ users out there.

In all honesty as a programmer who has developed both a RIP and application software, I don't buy into the reason Adobe have so far given on why they removed this, it maybe cynical of me, but I cant help thinking this was simply Adobe trying to get users to have to go out and buy a copy of Illustrator as well. They seem to have an architecture of making you need additional programs, let face it anyone with Illustrator really needs a copy of Acrobat Professional in order to run pre flight tools on the PDF's Illustrator creates, why isn't that built into Illustrator ?

Anyway I wish everyone luck in getting this functionality added back...

Best regards

-David
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daniel

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I thnk I have an interesting possible solution to this huge, huge problem. First off I'm new here, hello. Second this is a huge problem for screen printers of all types. It is a huge problem, Adobe.

Anyway. I use a minum of 4-5 spot splates in addition to cmyk on all my jobs and require custom angles and shapes and the transfer functions. I save the files as DCS2.0 files.

For my CS3 workflow I wrote a photoshop action in CS3 that adds all my spot plates, transfer functions, screen angles and shapes to my files all in one action. I appears as though when I import the action into CS6 and use it make my plates it also adds the transfer functions and screen angles. After saving the file in CS6, I can open the file in CS 3 and verify all the angles and tranasfers are present.

The only porblem is CS 6 can't save a DCS2.0 file correctly anymore and now it includes all alpha channels when saved, not just the spot channels, which is totally wrong of course (Anyone pointed this one out to you Adobe?). All the extra channels have to be deleted, and I use a lot of alphas to do the trapping so its a big pain. Also occasionally the action goes wrong and gives one or two plates a value of 1 dot per inch witch makes the whole plate fail on output and theRIP flushes the plate. This probelm would be impoosble to trouble shooot and fix with CS6.

However my best workaround so far besides just doing all work in CS3 has been to do the work in CS6 and then copy all my finished PS color separtion files into a folder, then launch CS3 and do a batch Action on the folder that turns all the PS files into CS3 DCS files. And then only work in CS3 if I have to troubleshoot screen angles. I would simply do all the work in CS3 but I need to know the new versions in order to stay current.

Sometimes I get the feeling none of the Marketing Execs at Adobe are actual printing people, and that they all attended some printing 101 classes in local JCs where the instructionr covered saving .eps files and where his sole instruction in Transfer Functions was, "And never check these buttons, no uses them, make sure to never check them." And so said marketing execs said, "hey, don't recode that stuff back in, don't you know you're never suppoed to check those buttons?" Arrggh...
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Chris Cox

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I can't find any bug reports about DCS2 in recent years. Please write up a separate report on that, with details.
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PECourtejoie, Champion

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I've seen a (crude) workaround for creating your own separation in Photoshop (I don't know why he merges them in an RGB doc, but it might be worth sharing/discussing: https://vimeo.com/2811225#at=0
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jcc

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Hi PEC, thanks for the input. As you said a very LoFi way of doing a CMYK sep.
A good example of what extra work needs to be done just to add lpi and screen angles to a graphic in a newer version of Photoshop.

Old version...color correct in channels add lpi and screen values make sure your custom ink settings are correct then output.

Imagine using the above method for a 12 col simulated process separation. Something which used to take seconds (adding angles and LPI to dialogue box) Now takes hours.

Of course you could forget this above LoFi approach and just output your multichannel or CMYK doc etc from AI or ID , put the angles and LPI in there then output..

I think David Evans is right, they want us to buy a copy of AI or ID as well.
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Bill Yule

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I have Ai & ID, But It doesn't always work like that. I just want to know why would you take something out of something that you don't have to. When I spend all of this money on a suit, I expect it to work like it is suppose to. I just think when you sell someone an improved version of something, it should be just that. Not a crippled version that so far as I can tell is just making a lot of people (including me and everyone I know) MAD. I have seen more forums on this subject than anything
other subject I have looked into. Please just make a patch, a bandaid. a plugin, a stone tablet and chisel, something to justify money spent.
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Rhett Barber

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Bring back the screen button Dang It! IT IS VITAL!