Gutenprint or Turboprint (Linux)

I have recently acquired Canon Selphy 1200 and want to print some of photos on that printer.

I have already evaluated Turboprint and find it useful however driver seems to do some processing (if I understand manual correctly) and I don’t understand the color management workflow in this software yet. Manual does not clarify much.

For that reason I want to try gunteprint however Selphy is supported on higher version that is available for Ubuntu 16.04 and it seems that I need to compile it from scratch.

Which software you use for prints? What is your workflow for color management?

I usually proof my photos and send them to the printing service for high quality prints (I like Hahnemühle pearl very much) and there is no problem with that. However some photos I would like to print by myself and I need to figure out how to organize it at home.
Tests prints from Selphy (Turboprint) are flat. I know that it is not fine art printer but I guess that they can look better. Of course I have already ordered profiling service but I need to do it with either Turboprint or gutenprint and stick to single solution for repeatable results.
I suppose that that I will print from both Gimp 2.10 and Darktable.

Thank you for any suggestions.

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Hi @maf,

Ubuntu 16.04? Please upgrade!

I have achieved the best results using Turboprint – but I presume that much depends on what printer you use. It seemed as if Gutenprint did not like my Epson XP-960 (or vice versa).

The print result is extremely sensitive to what printer profile you pick. Every new kind of paper calls for a printer profile of its own – and the best profiles are those that you make yourself. If you will find a ColorMunki Photo at a good price, it will assist you with colour management from monitor to paper.

More info here:

Have fun!
Claes in Lund, Sweden

@Claes Thank you for your response.
Selphy is quite simple dye-sub printer and there is only one paper available from Canon and it can print only 10x15 cm prints (ok, more but they are smaller). I have contacted my printing service and will send them samples for making dedicated profile.
Color management with Turboprint is unclear for me. I have contacted the company for further clarifications.

Yes, upgrade is in plans but I need to have time for that.



Long, long time user of Turboprint (Epson P800, Canon Pro100) and I love it. Years ago I struggled with Gutenprint for photo printing and just couldn’t get anything that was production proof. Truth is, even the native print driver on Windows is so much more trouble. Turboprint includes a plug-in for GIMP.

@KumsaJack thank you. It looks like Turboprint has its reputation.

As for now I have noticed that manual is out of date. There are more options in the software (2.46) than manual describes.
I will need to sacrifice a dozen or so prints to see how it behaves. First of all unfortunately I have chosen Apple RGB (gamma 1.8) as color space thinking it is Adobe RGB (gamma 2.2) so that all prints were too bright. I was in hurry. My wife and children were watching and waiting :wink: I guess that I need to pick ‘none’ for rendering intent since color management is done in GIMP/Darktable.

I have standardized on ProPhotoRGB. Here’s my summary: Re: Printing in ProPhotoRGB ? - TurboPrint & PrintFab

Side comment, it’s always a struggle to line up everything for accurate color space management. The results are always worth the fuss.

Hi @Claes

As you have a ColorMunki Photo, could you elaborate more on why you couldn’t achieve good results with your Epson XP-960 using the libre Gutenprint but managed to using the closed-source TurboPrint? Have you tried contacting the Gutenprint developers to identify and fix the issue?

Hi @Morgan_Hardwood,

As far as I remember (this was far too many months ago!),
I had driver problems, not any colour infidelity problems.

Also, Turboprint/Printfab allowed me to set ink saturation to
match the odd paper qualities I was playing with (like 45 gsm
hymnal paper).

Have fun!
Claes in Lund, Sweden

I have played with my Selpy CP1200 and turboprint driver (gimp plugin) today using various rendering intent.
The question for you is if you’re using predefined rendering intent or maybe pass-through mode which is called no rendering indent(?). Do you set the sharpening method or switch it off?


My experience with Turboprint after a lot of experimentation:

  • I stick with Relative Colorimetric. Of course, I’m printing ProPhotoRGB TIFFs, and that probably helps some.
  • All sharpening is done prior to printing, none is added through Turboprint. I think sharpening is quite an aesthetic judgment, and my intention changes by several factors–print size, noise, color vs. B/W, and media (e.g., the very forgiving canvas versus glossy). Any large print (13x19 and up) I always print first to a 5x7.

@KumsaJack Oh, I see. So far for my Selphy, which is not good at shadows, Relative Colorimetric gives poor results. Images contains generally dark flat areas with rapid transition to midtones. Perceptive seems to be more suitable. I know it depends on the image. I have tried both sRGB and Adobe RGB images.
One thing I found strange is that Turboprint sets ‘Color: Refence Light’ to D65 by default and after switching to D50 the results are far more better. Have you changed this or left as it is?
Generally the results with Turboprints are very good and I guess I’ll stick to it (rather Studio version for more options). Of course I will do additional profiling either with Turboprint or by external service.


Hi maf, just busy, not ignoring your posting :slight_smile:

  • Normally, a print will be a little darker than the monitor, just the difference between a radiant versus a reflective image. I haven’t touched the Reference Light configuration, though I think it’s quite reasonable. I think I’ve used Turboprint for so long, that I’m used to getting the result. E.g., canvas is always going to block up shadows, and I know I need to lighten them up. So, as I mentioned, I print up a test image before doing something larger. Honestly, I can remember doing a 5 foot canvas print, and just depressed that the final output was terrible with the shadows. Newbie canvas trial. Most of the paper profiles in Turboprint do fine.
  • Pretty much I print in ProPhotoRGB TIFF, per my earlier posting. But, there are times that it’s not my image, and then I print in sRGB. For your purpose, sRGB is great.
  • I use the Turboprint Studio because I can add custom paper profiles and larger sizes.
  • Profiles: you have to use the Turboprint service or create your own. OEM profiles are not applicable.


I was trying Gutenprint + Gimp 2.10 without any luck so far. I have create dedicated ICC profile however I just can’t make it work with Gimp. Printing sRGB JPG and Selphy ICC converted JPG gives me exactly the same results while on darktable if I set the profile the results are very different (more accurate).
I did a lot of exercises and always got the same results with Gimp - the same as with no profile. If I try to use colord for automatic conversion then the printing never starts (hangs somewhere after leaving Gimp)

Turboprint on the other hand works almost out of the box. The results are good. However I’m not able to print photos directly from darktable (it hangs).

Turboprint is quite slow on printing (conversions?). It needs time to think. Gutenprint prints almost immediately.

It looks like Turboprint has an advantage here. However I don’t like the licensing model since I have at home 2 laptops from which I may print.

Hmm… I think I figured out that conversion done using jpgicc works as I expect. Prints the same as with darktable. Now I curious why ‘Convert to profile’ inside Gimp does not give me similar results.

In the end I find printing with gutenprint quite peculiar.

Hi, I’ve just joined I’m the project lead for Gutenprint. I’d certainly like to hear about issues people are having and what we can do to help out.


You should better not have asked :wink::

Epson Stylus Photo 1500W is missing from the supported printers, which constrains owners to turboprint.

So, welcome to this forum full of leechers such as me :wink: – no, just kidding, only[TM] great people here :smile:.

It’s quite possible that this printer would actually work with an existing driver. The L1800 is the one I think is most likely to be compatible, but it’s possible that the Stylus Photo 260 or Stylus Photo RX680 drivers would work (although those would be limited to A4/letter width, something that’s easy to remedy).

If you’d like, please try those options above and let me know whether it works, in which case it would be a simple matter to add it (and I could give you instructions about exactly what you’d have to edit – it’s all text files only).

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That was fast … I’ll try these tomorrow, it’s already half past twelve here and my children know no mercy when it comes to getting up :smile:.

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BTW, if you’re using a profile you’ve created against TurboPrint, don’t use it with Gutenprint. You will not likely get satisfactory results.

I am using the profiles from Rolf from “Meet the GIMP!” (see, because I am using the same printer and ink and a very similar paper selection. The reason for buying the printer actually was this episode. I do not worry about getting new profiles once the printer works, so first things first …