Colour space, colour profile & printing


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Jemapela

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#1
Hi all,

I'm a little confused about colour space and colour profile.

When I shoot images using my DSLR, I mostly use sRGB colour space. After I work on the JPEG images in Photoshop and save as separate JPEG, the dialogue box presents a save option to embed (I'm guessing it's embed) ICC profile sRGB IEC61966-2.1.

If I chose to embed that ICC profile, what happens to the image when I print, say on my Canon IP4200, and say Fuji Frontier 350, as opposed to not embedding that ICC profile?

If I shot using Adobe RGB colour space which has a wider range of colours, do I get a more colours in prints from my IP4200 or Frontier 350?

I would appreciate anyone who could enlighten me on this.
 

Watcher

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#3
Your question is actually quite simple to answer: If your picture has its profile embedded (eg sRGB), then your image can and will only have sRGB range maximum. After all, the file is only containg sRGB colors. Regardless of output device it cannot be bigger but can be smaller.

If you had started with AdobeRGB (ie from capture), then it is slightly different. On the (low end) Canon printer, you will get more or less sRGB (provided that your printing application is CM-aware), though that depends on the paper used. To maximize the gamut, you would need a profile; the best is a custom profile. If you printed the AdobeRGB file on say a Epson R1800, the reproduction will have wider gamut and depending on the paper, can closely match AdobeRGB gamut.

If you print on the Frontier, it is a more complicated answer. It really depends if the operator of the Frontier wishes to enable the CM on it. IIRC, the Frontier 350 can produce colors outside the sRGB gamut provided the operator wishes to do so.
 

kex

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#4
u can actually soft proof the result if u have the paper profile on PS and see which colors are out of the paper gamut.
 

Jemapela

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#5
Watcher said:
Your question is actually quite simple to answer: If your picture has its profile embedded (eg sRGB), then your image can and will only have sRGB range maximum. After all, the file is only containg sRGB colors. Regardless of output device it cannot be bigger but can be smaller.
I understand the above bit.

The bit I don't understand is this:

I opened a sRGB colour space camera-shot JPEG image in Photoshop, do retouching/resizing, and then choose Save As to create a new JPEG file. In the Save As dialogue box, there is an option to embed sRGB ICC profile. Isn't the JPEG already in sRGB all along? Unless sRGB colour space and ICC profile don't mean the same thing?


Watcher said:
If you had started with AdobeRGB (ie from capture), then it is slightly different. On the (low end) Canon printer, you will get more or less sRGB (provided that your printing application is CM-aware), though that depends on the paper used. To maximize the gamut, you would need a profile; the best is a custom profile. If you printed the AdobeRGB file on say a Epson R1800, the reproduction will have wider gamut and depending on the paper, can closely match AdobeRGB gamut.
I'm guessing that the Epson R1800 is an excellent printer which is able to read/accept Adobe RGB colour space/profile (which ever word is correct)?

Can the benefits of Adobe RGB over sRGB be clearly seen in prints?

Watcher said:
If you print on the Frontier, it is a more complicated answer. It really depends if the operator of the Frontier wishes to enable the CM on it. IIRC, the Frontier 350 can produce colors outside the sRGB gamut provided the operator wishes to do so.
This is interesting. I have a Fuji Frontier 350 at my work place but don't know if it's CM-enabled (I'm assuming it means colour-management).

As best as I know, it reads/accepts, probably by default, sRGB. I should try printing Adobe RGB images.

If it can produce colours outside of the sRGB gamut, does it mean that the Fuji paper has a range beyond sRGB?
 

Watcher

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#6
Jemapela said:
I understand the above bit.

The bit I don't understand is this:

I opened a sRGB colour space camera-shot JPEG image in Photoshop, do retouching/resizing, and then choose Save As to create a new JPEG file. In the Save As dialogue box, there is an option to embed sRGB ICC profile. Isn't the JPEG already in sRGB all along? Unless sRGB colour space and ICC profile don't mean the same thing?
This is a little tricky to explain. You are working in sRGB but you can tell others that the file is in sRGB either by tagging (ie "this is a sRGB file") or embedding the ICC profile (ie "the colorspace for this file is *this*"). For web output, this is usually not an issue but if you were using a special color space, the destination may not have it. So in that case, embedding is more precise. In any case, the size difference is not significant.

Jemapela said:
I'm guessing that the Epson R1800 is an excellent printer which is able to read/accept Adobe RGB colour space/profile (which ever word is correct)?

Can the benefits of Adobe RGB over sRGB be clearly seen in prints?
The more precise way is to say that the output device has a output gamut matching the a particular color space.

As for the benefit, the larger color space allows for more saturated colors. AdobeRGB allows for more greens and blues, but not significantly more reds.

Jemapela said:
This is interesting. I have a Fuji Frontier 350 at my work place but don't know if it's CM-enabled (I'm assuming it means colour-management).

As best as I know, it reads/accepts, probably by default, sRGB. I should try printing Adobe RGB images.

If it can produce colours outside of the sRGB gamut, does it mean that the Fuji paper has a range beyond sRGB?
Note that there are some colors that the device can print outside sRGB but not the size of AdobeRGB. The paper + printint process is the one that would determine the gamut of the output. Generally, glossy has a bigger gamut than matte papers.
 

eclectyx

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kex said:
u can actually soft proof the result if u have the paper profile on PS and see which colors are out of the paper gamut.
Could you explain how we can do this? I am assuming we need a PS file with colour swatches or something and then send it to the lab to print on the Frontier machine, later compare the print with screen colours?

In my particular case, I have the Spyder2 Suite and have calibrated my monitor, but too confused by the PrintFix Plus software, which if I understand correctly, is supposed to do this soft-proofing? Also, where do I get the profiles for Frontier and consumer inkjets? :dunno:
 

kex

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#9
i am not sure where you can get the fuji paper profile,i heard they can be found online..

i am using a custom profile for my paper,when i need to check the gamut,i simply go to view->proof setup->custom->select my paper profile from the list.

PS will then use the color gamut info of the paper to view the image,those that are out of the gamut will be blinking..
 

Watcher

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#10
Just to see what others on the web is comparing, I did a google search and found the following links:

- http://www.galerie-photo.com/gamut.html on the various printed gamut. You can see from the 2D charts the various gamuts' sizes using the different devices and papers. It is in French but you can use Babelfish to translate.

- http://www.wildnaturephotos.com/Public/Gamut.html where they compared the various popular color spaces that can be used. They are using the more accurate 3D models instead.
 

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