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04-20-2013, 10:32 AM   #1
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Color Management on my laptop with CS6

I have a Dell XPS 17. I am trying to calabrate my screen and PS CS6 to render the best color settings for digital editing and posting pictures online. I am not printing images so I am not concerned with those settings. I have been reading all morning on this topic and I am even more confused than I was when I woke up. I have heard Pro's and Con's about both sRGB iec61966 and Adobe 1998 color space, but I am still confused as to which I sould pick for my screen settings and CS6 settings. My Laptop lets me choose from a laundry list of color spaces and of course I can change it in CS6. So for editing and displaying images online what should I be setting these to? I want to set the color space before I calabrate the screen. I have noticed that with the factory settings on my laptop and CS6, once I export a image after editing and save as a JPEG the images are much darker than they are within CS6 / Light Room 4 which is why I am here posting this now.

Thank you all for your help. Incase this is benificial information, I shoot with a K5 in RAW DNG.

04-20-2013, 10:39 AM   #2
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sRGB for your screen.

AdobeRGB as your working space in CS6. Once post processing is complete, convert to sRGB for your jpgs.

Reasoning: AdobeRGB has a wider gamut than sRGB, hence it's more suitable for getting the most from your RAW files. sRGB is compatible with most consumer output devices, such as the screen on your laptop. sRGB is the "default" color space for browser rendering of images.
04-20-2013, 10:44 AM   #3
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Great info, I love your upfront to the point responce! Now one last thing I forgot to ask, what about the color settings in my K5? I am searching online right now about how to convert my completed images to sRGB once complete in CS6
04-20-2013, 10:50 AM   #4
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I have mine set to AdobeRGB, but I don't know if it really makes a difference; the RAW is the info off the scanner and it's my understanding that it isn't really in any color space.

You can set both the color space and bit depth in Adobe Camera Raw at the bottom of the image window. You want to choose 16bit for processing in photoshop--when you export to jpg it'll be in 8 bit mode.

04-20-2013, 11:29 AM   #5
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Look at the attached file. I know it is not the best quality. made a quick image with a dark background and simple lighting so that I can clearly see the difference in the brightness. I also added my logo. when you compare the two columns, it seems to me that setting up CS6 with sRGB then once complete converting to Adobe 1998 yields a better result, granted it could just be my eyes, but if you look at the images on the left, look how much detail and brightness I loose in my logo. There also seems to be a noticeable blue hue to the images that were edited in Adobe 1998. Like I said, this could totally be my eyes, but I wanted someone else to see this and give me some feedback so that I can learn more about this.
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04-20-2013, 11:55 AM   #6
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Well if your working space is sRGB it is useless converting to a c
space with a larger gamut as you won't gain any more colors. It is too late.

ARGB images don't work on the web as most viewers don't have color managed browsers. Do you?

You really need to use a calibration tool to create a profile for your monitor. Mfgr claims of sRGB aren't always trustworthy or relevant. A monitor profile is different from an image color space. Very easy to be confused.

M
04-20-2013, 03:39 PM   #7
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Screen calibration cannot be set by using the working colour space environments in Lightroom, CS6 or other editing software.

Screen calibration should be ideally treated as part of a total colour management work flow i.e. at all three stages, image capture, screen viewing and finally printing. This is critical if your working with images where the colours need to be accurate. Normally you will need to get a bit hardware and software from the likes of X-Rite, their Colour Munki Dislay or the one I now recommend, i1 Display Pro, Google them for more info.

At the time of the shoot, I use the X-Rite colour checker passport. From which I can set the white balance correctly "in camera". Whilst I shoot in RAW DNG, viewing the images on the back of the camera, are as we all know jpeg, so it helps if the white balance is accurate, especially if you need to show others at the time of the shoot, what a great job your doing.

The colour checker passport software also creates a unique camera profile for those specific shooting lighting conditions, which when loaded into Lightroom, ACR and CS6, ensures the colours are correct for that shoot. My screen is also calibrated with the i1 Display Pro (or it will be shortly when it arrives, I'm just about to switch over from another system). Printing I'm not too worried about because I send out my work to a print house, so they get colour correct files from me, they are colour managed too, so the prints come back perfect.

It sounds like a huge hassle, really it's not, it saves so much time in PP to get perfect colour results, once done it's a just a couple of mouse clicks.

Now just briefly, working colour space environments, I work and edit in ProPhoto in both Lightroom & CS6 to give me the best possible on screen image to the limit of what my monitor is capable of doing. Export or saving to images for the web should be done as sRGB, otherwise all sorts of strange things happen.

Please bear in mind this is just my work flow, I'm sure there are other ways that could be equally as good, but this is what works for me, hope it helps.

Last edited by Kerrowdown; 04-21-2013 at 01:26 PM.
04-20-2013, 06:11 PM   #8
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If you are using camera raw then in ACR/Bridge adjust the color (WB) by picking a spot of white or gray in the scene and in the main/important lighting. I often use the person's eye (white) if nothing else is present. If you have the luxury take a photo with white paper or a gray card placed in the scene.

For the camera use the widest gamut (adobe pro photo). As noted above you can always narrow the profile--but not widen it.

I suspect with a laptop--try the various settings and see what gives you the best agreement between the working file and the print.

04-22-2013, 10:32 AM   #9
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Ok so first off let me thank you all for the input, this was a lot of help. Now I am not sure if I have a grasp on this or even more confused haha.

1. Camera: Change color to Adobe Pro Photo
2. Work Space: Still a little confused here, if I am going to export in sRGB for the internet shouldnt my workspace also be sRGB so that while I am workign I can see what the final image will come out. I am assuming that if I work in Adobe color then export to sRGB the final image will be slighlty different than what I see in CS6.
3. Export: sRGB.

Now if when going all of thee above and someone tells me that my image seems dark, does that mean that I need to tell them that their computer / monitor color space needs tweaking?
04-22-2013, 10:36 AM   #10
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I forgot to mention, I always white balance before shooting, I never use auto WB or the other presets. Also I like the color management devices, but I can not afford 2K for that item just yet, but in the future I am going to look into it. I am just still a little confused as to how that hardware will benifit my pictures. Now granted I know that they will look better on my screen, but since my work is only online right now, unless the individuals looking at my images also have a calibrated screen wont the image look different to the other people?
04-22-2013, 10:38 AM   #11
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Re: work space
When you process an image--applying curves, exposure adjustments etc, you are throwing away data. Having a large gamut, high bit work space means you have more data to work on, so theoretically your adjustments are less deleterious.

Convert to profile shouldn't noticeably affect your image appearance.

If the image is dark, maybe it's *your* monitor. That's the first thing you need to set up.
04-22-2013, 11:10 AM   #12
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Buckle up, he goes.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sig0431 Quote
1. Camera: Change color to Adobe Pro Photo
Not quite sure what you mean here, the camera should ideally shoot RAW, in Pentax land, that's either PEF or DNG. If you mean in the ACR profile, CS6, use Adobe Profile or the custom profile from the likes of X-Rite colour checker passport.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sig0431 Quote
2. Work Space: Still a little confused here, if I am going to export in sRGB for the internet shouldnt my workspace also be sRGB so that while I am working I can see what the final image will come out. I am assuming that if I work in Adobe color then export to sRGB the final image will be slighlty different than what I see in CS6.
That is correct it will look different, sRGB is a dumbed down colour space environment, but you ideally want to work with the best you can see on your monitor, so that when you convert down to sRGB its still the best that sRGB can be.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sig0431 Quote
3. Export: sRGB.
To web, definitely otherwise all your hard work goes kind up in smoke, because the web can only really work with sRGB, otherwise you'll end with lots a strange green colour casts and stuff.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sig0431 Quote
someone tells me that my image seems dark, does that mean that I need to tell them that their computer / monitor color space needs tweaking?
Yes basically that's exactly right.
04-22-2013, 11:29 AM   #13
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Kerrodown,
Thank you for your reply. As for number one, granted I dont have my camera in front of me, but I thought there was a menu item on my K5 where I could switch from Adobe Pro and other color settigns, but I could be totally off here. I always shoot in RAW but want to make sure my camera set up sets me up for success for post processing.
04-22-2013, 11:51 AM   #14
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RE: monitor calibration hardware/software .... You can find used tools for a reasonable price. Several months ago I purchased a used Huey Pro (looked brand new) for US$100. I had to download the latest driver for my installation of Win7 Pro 64bit.

Recalibration made a big change to my monitors. At least initially, my eyes said there was a decided pink tone to everything - and this is a common comment. After a day or so, my brain adjusted and white once again looks like white. Eyeballing my work in post-production is much easier and I have the widest contrast range my monitor is capable of producing.

Does that mean that my 'properly' processed images now look terrible on the typical non-calibrated monitor? Not at all. They still look better than my pre-calibration adjustments.

How about all those free software-only calibration tools? Poor substitutes at best and rubbish at worst. The problem isn't the software, the problem is your brain. It has the equivalent of both automatic white balance and automatic gain control and screws with reality.
04-22-2013, 12:11 PM   #15
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For a color managed work flow, ProPhoto RGB has the widest gamut with the most latitude for editing. When you save for web display in PS, it automatically converts it sRGB and in a RAW editor such as Lightroom you can specify the output to be sRGB. But I believe ProPhoto is the default editing color space in Lightroom. You will notice on some shots that the color is not quite the same when you save to a JPEG because some colors cannot be expressed in sRGB. But you can go back a tweak it some.
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