Greetings all,
I made the attached gift box to look like a book and I would like to engrave a book cover on it. This is a retirement gift for our editor and the cover is the last book she worked on for us. I have searched the forum and tried different settings, but I am not happy with the results (see attached). I know the photo is not necessarily a good candidate, but would appreciate any advice anyone might have. I am also considering making the box in maple to help with the contrast.

Gift box.

Original photo.

My best attempt, so far.


Quick questions:

  1. What do you feel should be improved on? What aspects would you like to see better and what would make them better?

  2. You said that’s the original photo. Is that also the resolution of the original photo that you used?


I’ve found when engraving from a jpg or bmp file that you need to make sure that you have a super high contrast for it to come out nicely engraved.

I think the attempt you have posted looks pretty nice, but if you lighted the sign up and then increased the power while slowing it down slightly could give the darker parts a bit more depth.

Also, and I’m just saying from what I’ve done, using the PG settings for SD photo works good and not using the pattern or dot engrave settings.

Hope this helps. It’s all trial and error so far :slight_smile:

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The Proofgrade Photo settings (Draft, SD, HD) use Convert to Dots :wink:

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Google how to adjust contrast via curves in whatever program you use to edit photos. That’s the best way to get good contrast.

It’s a bit much for me to explain here but google has you covered.

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Did you by any chance use the 3D Engrave settings for your photo? (I’m not wild about the results of engraving for depth on photos.)

I prefer the Photo Engrave settings for photos, you’ll get a much better result. That should show a lot more contrast than it does, although you could bump the contrast a bit more.

(Kewl looking book box too!) :sunglasses:

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I was hoping to improve the background detail.

That is the way the photo looked before I bumped up the contrast.

I came to the same conclusion and that attempt was PG settings for SD photo.

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Thanks, I will try this, too.

Thanks, I will give that a try too.

I can appreciate that, but this is still the best forum for friendly, helpful advice.

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Agree, I found the photo engrave settings to be better.

Thank you. I just sold that one Etsy and they want a heart engraved on it, so I will be making one in maple for our editor :slight_smile:

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I meant more along the actual size of the image. The one uploaded here is like 350x524 pixels. I don’t know the size of your finished engrave product, but if this is the size of the image you’re uploading, it’s very, very small for trying to do any engrave.

That’s not necessarily going to fix the background detail issue but larger resolution will help the entire overall engrave.

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I just checked one I just put up was 768x768 and was pretty minimal, and that was after I had cropped and played with it

What’s the saying, just because you can? :wink:

Re: input resolution to output resolution here is a test showing the difference:

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Mostly it is what you are able to do. Tthe original was 1200x800 before cropping and fooling with you can always decrease the resolution, but there is no value in increasing it does little good but the picture is 20 years old and it is hard to go back and take another.

It’s tough to get stellar editing results with the low res. image, but this is an idea how I would edit it. I used a brush to doge/burn , highlight and sharpen specific areas. The below video I a good overview of what I do for an image like this.

I might even use the gamma adjustment to lighten it even more like this.


Actually @jbmanning5, SD uses varying power, Draft and HD convert to halftone though.

For Photo settings or Graphic? I just spot checked a bunch of different materials… I guess I was wrong on SD Photo (since I don’t see any SD Photo settings), I only see Draft and HD Photo; every photo setting uses Convert to Dots/Dithering though.

On the Graphic Proofgrade settings, pretty sure the Draft and SD modes use vary power, and the HD settings use dithering/convert to dots (which doesn’t make a ton of sense to me).

Yep, you’re right. I knew there was only one SD setting and I wrongly assumed it was the photo setting you were referring to. I used the HD photo setting soon after it was introduced andI didn’t like the results. (Been using SD for my photos.) Then I gave HD photo another try the other day and it turned out great, so I’m going to revisit it.

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I want to thank everyone for your help. I am going to go back and rework few things and I will post my final results (I still need to build the box, unfortunately, I have to use my analog tools for that :slight_smile: ) As I posted earlier, this is the most friendly and helpful forum I have been part of.

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