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Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB
  
 
JayCeePhotog
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


So I currently have a U2412M (74.3% Adobe RGB, 95.8% sRGB).

I shoot RAW, and my camera says the color space is sRGB.

I am looking on doing a few prints soon, and I want the best color reproduction possible with what I have.

I do have photoshop, and lightroom for editing. In lightroom, I am in the ProPhoto RGB color space in 16bit Tiff.

What is the best I can do with my equipment for printing?



Mar 09, 2014 at 10:36 PM
BruceF99
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Do you have a calibration device? If not, get one.

Are you printing yourself or sending the files to a lab? If you are sending them to a lab, check with the lab to see what color space to convert to. Most take sRGB, but more are adding in aRGB. You, generally, want to edit in as large a color space as possible and then convert for output. If you are printing yourself, consider getting a calibration system that will do the prints as well.

When shooting it RAW, color space is irrelevant. The camera tag is just for the JPG or, sometimes, the camera's software.



Mar 09, 2014 at 10:52 PM
JayCeePhotog
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


BruceF99 wrote:
Do you have a calibration device? If not, get one.

Are you printing yourself or sending the files to a lab? If you are sending them to a lab, check with the lab to see what color space to convert to. Most take sRGB, but more are adding in aRGB. You, generally, want to edit in as large a color space as possible and then convert for output. If you are printing yourself, consider getting a calibration system that will do the prints as well.

When shooting it RAW, color space is irrelevant. The camera tag is just for the JPG or,
...Show more

I have a calibration device.

Sending to a lab. So what color space do I want to output to ?



Mar 09, 2014 at 10:55 PM
hugowolf
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


JayCeePhotog wrote:
Sending to a lab. So what color space do I want to output to ?


That is a question you need to ask of your lab.

Brian A



Mar 09, 2014 at 11:11 PM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


For any lab printing on traditional chemically developed paper like Crystal Archive, there's not much point in using anything wider than sRGB, as the paper itself is not a wide gamut material. If your lab is printing on inkjet, then it really depends on the paper being printed on. But in reality, the specific image and the range of color that THAT image contains are what matters.

For all the whining about everyone needing to use the widest color space possible for editing, you ought to see just how amazingly saturated and colorful prints from sRGB files can be. The truth is, is that most real world images don't contain anywhere near the gamut of something like ProPhoto and often not even as little as sRGB, and yet still are superbly colorful in their final outputs.



Mar 10, 2014 at 05:01 AM
hugowolf
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Peter Figen wrote:
For all the whining about everyone needing to use the widest color space possible for editing,


I think you have a problem with word definitions. Discussing color gamut is not in any way whining. And if you have had ever shot fall foliage here in Virginia, you would soon see yellows falling out of sRGB.

Brian A



Mar 11, 2014 at 02:36 AM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Yeah. Whining was the wrong word. Too many people are way too concerned about arguing minutiae, and for people that have to ask about what color space to use, the best and safest bet is definitely sRGB. Are there images you can take that have colors that exceed sRGB? Sure. But the real question is, does it really matter all that much. If you have a wide gamut printer, and you have an image that fits into its parameters, and you're using the right paper, then you may be able to see a difference, but then again, maybe not. For anyone printing on any chemical based printer, it's a moot point, as all the media is gamut limited, and yet, you can still get wonderfully colored images. Since we, at this point, don't know what the original poster's intended output is, and it appears that his experience in printing is limited, the best advice is to stick with sRGB.


Mar 11, 2014 at 08:19 AM
JimboCin
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Peter: I really appreciate the time and effort you put into these posts, and the knowledge you communicate via them!

Your latest comments above have answered for me many questions I have had, for which I have never seen adequate explanations.

Jim



Mar 11, 2014 at 09:03 PM
hugowolf
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Peter Figen wrote:
... the best advice is to stick with sRGB.


For all but the best custom labs, sRGB is certainly the way to go. In fact I don't see many online labs that accept anything but sRGB. It is one of those ‘if you have to ask, then sRGB is the way to go’.

On the other hand, it is interesting to see just how much you stand to lose with a decent printer.

Here is a gamut plot of sRGB (wireframe) against an Epson 4900/7900/9900 with a baryta paper:







While there is much the printer and its ink doesn't cover in the magneta/purple/violet areas, there is a massive amount of greens, blues, yellows, oranges, and reds, that sRGB doesn't come close to.

Brian A



Mar 12, 2014 at 03:21 AM
philhill
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


hugowolf wrote:
While there is much the printer and its ink doesn't cover in the magneta/purple/violet areas, there is a massive amount of greens, blues, yellows, oranges, and reds, that sRGB doesn't come close to.

Brian A


Agreed, but when we view this plot in a browser we're using the sRGB space. Which means that the actual colors that are visually depicted as being outside sRGB are really inside. Yes, there are colors that are outside, just not the actual ones shown. What we see on the screen is indicative of how those missing colors will reproduce on the print, though, assuming that the file you posted was sRGB and that we're viewing on a display capable of displaying 100% of sRGB.

As a side note, the transitions in sRGB can be smoother than AdobeRGB because the colors represented by the integers are closer together. Whether this is the case or not will probably depend on whether the image was converted from AdobeRGB to sRGB, and also on the conversion method. Processing from raw directly to sRGB will, in theory, tend to produce smoother gradations than processing to AdobeRGB and then later converting to sRGB. For example, blue skies can sometimes be problematic after conversion, especially if the AdobeRGB colors were 16-bit and the sRGB colors are 8-bit.

All that said, if it's important to depict colors with 100% accuracy, and if those colors lie outside sRGB but inside AdobeRGB, and if the output device can cover the AdobeRGB space, then that's definitely the way to go. For what I do, that doesn't arise often, so I usually stick to sRGB from start to finish.



Mar 12, 2014 at 04:08 AM
 

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Peter Figen
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


The problem with gamut plots, 2-D or 3-D is that they are greatly exaggerated in their comparisons. I've been using ColorThink Pro since it came out, and ProfileMaker's plotting tools prior to ColorThink. The issue here, is how do these plots correlate to the real world colors and how we perceive them.

Having spent a considerable amount of time making images with super saturated colors and then printing them on the widest gamut media for my Epson 9900, I've found that while the differences that appear to be huge in graphs like the one posted above, are really quite small in actual prints. Yes, on some images, you might see a purer, brighter, more saturated yellow or some other color, but who's to say which is either more accurate or more pleasing.

Brighter colors do not always mean better colors, unless you're a detergent. Hell, just drop in Galen Rowell's Mountain Light Gallery in Bishop, Ca. and you'll see lots of prints that have almost glowing, neon greens that are just not natural to anything I've seen in nature hiking all over the Sierra's.

Now, if you have the experience and you understand all the ramifications, then use whatever color space you feel comfortable with, but to advise people to always use the largest color space available is doing a disservice to many people starting out. Personally, I work with all spaces all the time - everything from sRGB to Adobe to Ektaspace to ProPhoto and every conceivable type of CMYK with all types of black generation. It's all the same to me, but I understand all of the ramifications.

The great thing about this sort of debate is that it's so easy to prove to yourself if any of this makes a difference or not, and more specifically, makes a whit of difference in YOUR images. Process your favorite raw file twice - once to ProPhoto and again to sRGB and then print them to a wide gamut inkjet and again to a chemical processed print medium like Crystal Archive and then decide for yourself.



Mar 12, 2014 at 04:40 AM
JayCeePhotog
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


So after reading everyone's input, now my question is...

what is the best output for web ?



Mar 12, 2014 at 11:30 AM
kdphotography
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


JayCeePhotog wrote:
So after reading everyone's input, now my question is...

what is the best output for web ?



sRGB for web.



Mar 12, 2014 at 12:33 PM
kdphotography
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Just to stir the pot more for everyone: Is there a widely available printer that is capable of printing (utilizes) the full ProPhoto color space??

; )



Mar 12, 2014 at 12:38 PM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


There's not even a narrowly available printer that meets your request. Not even close, and since ProPhoto RGB contains mathematical color coordinates that are outside the range of human vision, it's probably not even theoretically possible, at least not with today's technology. Furthermore, even if it were, there would probably be conditions attached to that, such as image longevity and fade resistance. There's probably a reason that the pace of inkjet technology has slowed considerably in the last few years as we're seeing a rate of diminishing return for R&D effort. For example, Epson used to introduce a new pro level (ala 9900) printer every three years. It's been over five years now for that model and there is no new model even rumored to be on the horizon.


Mar 12, 2014 at 01:29 PM
Mirek Elsner
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


kdphotography wrote:
Just to stir the pot more for everyone: Is there a widely available printer that is capable of printing (utilizes) the full ProPhoto color space??

; )


No, but there are printer/paper combinations that in one direction or other exceed sRGB and AdobeRGB. So you would use ProPhoto to preserve these colors.



Mar 12, 2014 at 04:13 PM
Mirek Elsner
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Peter Figen wrote:
Brighter colors do not always mean better colors, unless you're a detergent. Hell, just drop in Galen Rowell's Mountain Light Gallery in Bishop, Ca. and you'll see lots of prints that have almost glowing, neon greens that are just not natural to anything I've seen in nature hiking all over the Sierra's.



I believe Gallen Rowell printed on LightJet or some similar silver halide based process with gamut that is probably close to sRGB. Perhaps if he had access to modern day ink jets, the colors would look more natural?



Mar 12, 2014 at 04:43 PM
colinm
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


kdphotography wrote:
sRGB for web.


Moreover, 8-bit sRGB for web.

kdphotography wrote:
Just to stir the pot more for everyone: Is there a widely available printer that is capable of printing (utilizes) the full ProPhoto color space??


No, but as you're well aware, that's not the point of ProPhoto RGB.



Mar 12, 2014 at 04:47 PM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


MIrek - Have you been to Mountain Light? My theory is that, because he approved the color himself, is that he was partially color blind and those neon-ish greens were a result of his over compensation. My point is that even on an approximately sRGB gamut paper like the Crystal Archive he printed on, you could still have unnaturally saturated colors. Of course, his were in the green range, which is what that paper does well.

The bigger point is that arguing about what is theoretically possible is often quite different from actual use.



Mar 12, 2014 at 05:04 PM
Mirek Elsner
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Printing - Adobe RGB vs sRGB


Peter, I was only passing through Bishop once and did not have the opportunity to visit the gallery. I saw his prints, though. I respect him as a photographer as I think he was the first to do that.

He tried to convey the impression from the mountains to ordinary viewer and he used strong color to do that. Perhaps he was trying to show what was on the Velvia slide? What I am trying to say is that with the Fuji paper there is lots of squeezing he had to do. With modern inkjet there would be less squeezing and perhaps the same impression could be conveyed in more natural way.

It is similar to using high resolution media vs. low resolution and faking it with extra sharpening. Or using really good speakers with neutral response and low bass capability vs. cheap speakers where the lack of low frequencies is faked by amplifying the bass.



Mar 12, 2014 at 05:34 PM
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