Colour Space Workflow

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Newbie29, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. Newbie29

    Newbie29 TPF Noob!

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    Hi. I'm pretty confused about working colour spaces and final output of my digital photos. I download my images from my camera (Adobe RGB working space) into Lightroom. I then edit some photos in Photoshop and save them back into Lightroom. I then export my final product and save it in a folder on my computer to print out at a lab. The lab I print at requires 8 bit files in either the Adobe RGB or sRGB colour space. Both my Lightroom & Photoshop programs are in the Adobe RGB (1998) colour space at 16bits. Not sure what my colour space work flow should be? Should i just stay in sRGB 8 bit mode all the way through from camera to final my final saved photo? Also what if i burn some photos onto a disk and give it to my friends for them to print - will the colours look all wrong (washed out etc...) if they use their printer or their own photo lab? Hope someone can help me! :banghead:
     
  2. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Big question. If you do not have a chance to display or print the wide colour range offered by Adobe RGB then don't bother. Work with sRGB all the way and you won't have an issue. This includes taking photos to many cheaper labs, definitely applies to a large portion of home printers too, and nearly all consumer printers.

    Work flow wise I keep mine in AdobeRGB but that is because my monitor can display the full colour gamut. Many people say it's a load of crap because when they convert to sRGB they notice no difference, well yeah they couldn't display the wide gamut in the first place. Believe me there's a night and day difference.

    You need to consider storage and of course compatibility. Few browsers are colour managed. Firefox 3 Beta 5 is, and so is the latest Safari, between the two of them you have less than 5% of the internet. So any image destined for the web NEEDs to be converted to sRGB first.

    Your friends may get away with viewing photos. Windows picture and fax viewer is colour managed and will open photos correctly, other applications are not necessarily so. Consider your target audience, if they may use a non-colour managed viewer, and if they will complain to you about the look of their colours.

    Finally colour management is a destructive process. I personally would love to store my photos in AdobeRGB but the reality is there is so little colour management these days, and so few devices that can display the colour gamut, and printing a wide gamut image is so expensive, that my final archived images are sRGB. Makes things much easier too.
     
  3. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Here's a recent, similar thread: link.

    Best,
    Helen
    Here are some diagrams of Adobe RGB (1998) and sRGB colour spaces (the two similar shapes, the Adobe being the larger of the two, and the gamut of an Epson 3800 with glossy paper (the odd one out).

    First, the extremities (envelope) of the colour spaces, at any brightness:

    [​IMG]

    Next, the outlines in one of the darker tones:

    [​IMG]

    Finally, in one of the lighter tones:

    [​IMG]

    Best,
    Helen
     
  4. Newbie29

    Newbie29 TPF Noob!

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    So I guess its best for me to work in sRGB all the way through? What happens if I work in Adobe RGB and then archieve my photos as sRGB like you Garbz? Whats the point of working in Adobe RGB in the first place if you are going to convert to sRGB and have a narrower colour range in the end?
     

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