Issue with lightroom/PS exported JPEGs coming out desaturated.


TPF Noob!
Jul 30, 2009
Reaction score
San Diego, CA (RB)
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
Background- I created a few photos comprised of about 12-13 individual raw files processed using CS5, which came out great; until I exported them. The files while open in CS5 or Lightroom, show good color, but when you export them into JPEG format they become muted. The preset I use works great for any single photo, but these mega photos seem to give it a problem.

Anyone have any ideas what the problem could be? Could it be simply that the files are just too large to render correctly?
What working color space do you have CS5 Camera Raw set to? Was the initial Raw conversion done in Camera Raw or in Lightroom?

It sound like a color space conflict.

If you were processing converted files in the regular CS5 work space, they weren't Raw files anymore.
If you look at the big file, what is the color profile?
If you didn't convert the color profile to sRGB, it will look dull and desaturated in any application, browser or viewer that is not color managed.

LR and PS are color managed and thus it will look great
I import everything into Lightroom and then go from there into CS5 if I need to do anything that exceeds LR's capabilities.

I have the external file handling set to TIFF/ ProPhoto RGB/ 16bits

With CS5 it appears to be set to sRGB.

I have not encountered any problems with this setup until now, and it's still only with the big file photos.


Actuaally, You have CS5 set to Preserve Emebeded Profiles and the Warnings Turned offf (you should check all those check boxes so you know when you have a profile mismatch)

So when you open a File from Lightrrom in PS, It will be in the ProPhoto Space and not your working Space - which is fine PS can do that. At that point it would depend what you did upon saving a File out of PS, If you just hit save it would keep it in Pro Photo. If instead you did a convert to profile first, it may help or it may hurt because the sRGB profile has a smaller gamut which will have a less saturated look

If instead you do an Assign profile before saving, that may do even more damage
Thanks for the tip, enabled the warnings.I have switched CS5 over to ProPhoto and am processing the file in halves now to see if it changes anything.So now everything should be in ProPhoto up until its exported.
LR is set for prophoto
If you export from LR into CS5 for editing, it will be in prophoto in CS5.
if you merge files there and then save them to LR, LR will handle the export to jpg and automatically convert to sRGB.

If you save as a jpg directly from CS5 the large file MUST be converted to sRGB or it will display with muted colors in any application but one that is colored managed. (and will print poorly probably)

not ASSIGN, CONVERT then save as jpeg
So I added an image preview to folder and noticed a difference in what it displayed, and what the jpeg looked like opened up. So I decided to upload to my SmugMug to see what it looked like and it appeared as it was in PS.


I never save out of CS5 as I like for an edited image that was in my organized LR catalog, to end up back there with the CS5 edits.

Thanks for the tip on the conversion, I'll keep use it if I end up going directly from CS5 in the future.

Most reactions