We study the impact of paper surface on ink jet print quality. We first visually rank an ensemble of complex images and explain this ranking in terms of the print attributes (color rendering, mottle and edge raggedness) of the different papers. In particular, we find that heavy print mottle is more damaging to quality than poor color rendering. We then consider in more details these attributes and relate them to the specific chemical and physical properties of paper (permeability, roughness, formation and sizing). We show that permeability has the largest influence on both color rendering and print mottle, followed by paper roughness. Sizing and paper formation have however only limited effects.