The Difference Between Pigment Prints and LightJet Digital C-Prints

Q: What is the difference between lightjet digital c-print and Giclee? Which is better quality? Thanks! ~ A. A.

LightJet uses laser light to expose chromogenic photographic paper, which is then chemically developed and fully cleansed to create the archival dyes that render the fine-art image.

Giclee printing uses electrical impulses to deposit archival pigments onto fine art substrates such as canvas or watercolor papers, similar in the way a home ink-jet sprays inks.

As for your question about which has better quality: Though you will find fans on both sides of the fence, neither is really lesser to the other for “quality” but they each have their differences that can be appreciated. Fine art photographers tend to prefer the LightJet Digital C-Print because the photographic print has a certain look and feel that works very well with the art-form and the color tends to be less artificially saturated and thus feels natural. Giclee Pigment Prints are often favored by fine artists due to the substrate selections of watercolor paper or canvas being closer to that of their original artwork. They both posses extremely high sharpness and wonderful color, contrast and detail. The Lightjet is continuous-tone and does not use dots, allowing for smoother tones and detail in highlights with richer saturation in the shadows. The Giclee Pigments allow for more mid-tone color saturation, especially in the yellows and magentas.

Lightjet and Giclee Pigment are both for reproduction of fine art, and exceed the quality of consumer level printing by significant margins. When combined with professional archival fine art substrates and the skills of a master printer the result is a genuine fine art print. Both prints are museum quality and as such, certificates of authenticity may be used with integrity.

Our LightJet and Giclee Pigment prints have been hung in fine art museums and the Smithsonian, so rest assured you are getting the “real deal’ in a fine art grade print regardless of your choice.