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  • ICC embedded

    I just switched from PE 1 to PE2. I am using a Nikon D70. Now I notice that whenever I want to "save as" a TIFF file when I'm finished my edits, the check box for ICC Profle is checked and some sRGB file is being embedded. Is this a good idea? Do I need to uncheck this box every time I save, or can I set my preference to not embed a profile? I've looked mightily but can't find any help on this.
    Thanks.
    www.pbase.com/reimar

  • #2
    I can't give you a definitive answer but I can say that for my money, I want a color profile attached to every image. You don't necessarily have to use it but you may need a reference model describing color as the camera captured it, at least with your originals. As for which model to use, I would go with Adobe RGB 1998 or the D70 native profile instead of sRGB. Adobe RGB is a general purpose, wide gamut color model which translates well. Just about everybody doing digital imaging has it installed as an available color space so you can send files to someone else without losing the color reference. sRGB is also widely used because it is a standard internet color space but... because of that, it's gamut (range of color) is not as wide; you'll lose deep saturation in greens and blues amoung others. You can always save your original and convert a copy from Adobe RGB to sRGB if you want.
    I don't have PE and don't know about it's color managemrnt but if you can, set your working space to 'Adobe RGB 1998' and have it prompt you when there is a color space mismatch. That gives you the chance to discard the color profile if you don't want it or convert if it's not Adobe RGB. It also helps to avoid weird color imbalances when you cut and paste between images or make composites.
    I'm guessing the D70 will allow you to choose the color space it records, pick Adobe RGB 1998 or something like 'D70 RGB'.
    Lastly, shoot RAW files instead of JPEGs or TIFFs if you plan to do any processing after you shoot. It's more of a hassle but gives you a lot more flexibilty in terms of exposure compensation and color balance... Nikon has a good sharpening tool too (in Nikon View).
    Regards,
    Chip

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks Chip.
      I had gotten very comfortable working with sRGB CP4500 files in PE1 using "no color management" as Richard suggests. The D70 opens that color management can of worms again.

      My original files (NEF or JPG) contain the shooting and ICC profile information. The RAW NEF files are value added only when processed using Nikon Capture at additional cost. Nikon View just converts NEF to JPG as the camera would have done.

      I see what you're saying: if I'm in "no color management" then an embedded profile will be ignored by PE2 anyway. But won't I get into trouble when sending the finished files with an embedded ICC profile to printers like the Noritsu? I do most of my printing at home anyway.

      I would like to work in Adobe RGB for wider gamut printing. I haven't been able to since I also want colors not to change when putting images on the web. As far as I know, PE2 does not allow for color-space conversions.

      I wish there was a simple "how-to" on processing Adobe RGB images to get the most out of them and still produce consistent color output across different platforms.

      Reimar

      Comment


      • #4
        PE2 unlike PE1 respects the EXIF colour space info - it may be that this is the problem here. If you install Adobe's Ignore Exif utility (for Windows) or Ignore Exif plugin (for macs) (Available for download somewhere on the Adobe site under the Photoshop downloads - they work fine for Elements) you may find that your images revert to being untagged. The other possibility is that whatever you are using to download your images onto your computer is tagging them according to the EXIF info - the default settings in the macs Image capture does this for example.

        Susan S.

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        • #5
          As I believe I say elsewhere and hopefully most readers understand: using profiles is not a silver bullet for getting good color. You have to know why you are using them and exactly what you are profiling. Adobe RGB isn't 'better' for everything. It isn't even better for most things. I worked with Photoshop for many years before there was profiling at all, and there was still a way to get reliable results. In fact, I'd say that form was MORE reliable because there was no guessing (as there wouldn't be with proper profiling use).

          The real answer here has to do with what the original space is, and what the output is. If you are looking at a monitor and expecting to match those results and you are creating web pages, embedding a profile is pretty useless. If you are printing to CMYK, taging the file accurately MIGHT be helpful IF you are sending an RGB file. Personally i'd make my own separation so there is no guessing. There is not a fine difference between understanding your images and output and hoping a profile will do it for you. There is a fine difference between that knowledge and deciding how to control the result.

          Don't guess, know. Don't just chose a profile, use them.

          " I would like to work in Adobe RGB for wider gamut printing."

          Wider gamut is a little bit of a scam. there are still the same number of colors in sRGB and Adobe RGB. the idea that they are mapped differently doesn't make it an advantage. It SOUNDS good (wider gamut), because it makes you feel like there is more to get. Functionally you need something more capable than your monitor to show the difference, and something better than CMYK to print what you see. Good luck. As bland as sRGB is, it is a good, visual compromise to working in an environment where what you see is what you get.
          Last edited by Richard_Lynch; 05-05-2004, 08:17 PM.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Reimar
            Thanks Chip.
            I had gotten very comfortable working with sRGB CP4500 files in PE1 using "no color management" as Richard suggests. The D70 opens that color management can of worms again.
            Yeah, but ain't it nice having that D70!


            Originally posted by Reimar
            My original files (NEF or JPG) contain the shooting and ICC profile information. The RAW NEF files are value added only when processed using Nikon Capture at additional cost. Nikon View just converts NEF to JPG as the camera would have done.
            With Nikon View 6 you can right click a RAW file and select 'Edit'. The Nikon Editor allows you to do the value added stuff and save as a TIF or JPEG. It's a hassle though because there's no batch capability. It was a pricey investment but I got Phase One's 'Capture One DSLR' software. It's a RAW file workflow package; makes RAW files much easier to manage and manipulate. There's a 30 day trial here... http://www.phaseone.com/content/down...aptureone.aspx

            Originally posted by Reimar
            I see what you're saying: if I'm in "no color management" then an embedded profile will be ignored by PE2 anyway. But won't I get into trouble when sending the finished files with an embedded ICC profile to printers like the Noritsu? I do most of my printing at home anyway.
            Most digital color printers allow the operator to select if and where the ICC color management will happen, either in the software or the printing device. The default is typically some sort of non-ICC system proprietary to the device. In that case the profile gets ignored. If however ICC management is on and you have an embedded profile, the driver may try to apply a profile in addition to the output profile the application software applied. If the application, like Photoshop, is managing color, you have to tell the print driver not to manage color. I got into trouble with double profiling when I was just getting into digital printing by using a watercolor paper profile in photoshop to soft proof... so ICC management was on in Photoshop, then I would print and tell the print driver I wanted to use ICC management and to use the same watercolor paper profile. IT DON"T WORK, LET ME TELL YA. If you use a paper profile, either have your software manage it OR the print driver, but not both.

            Originally posted by Reimar
            I would like to work in Adobe RGB for wider gamut printing. I haven't been able to since I also want colors not to change when putting images on the web. As far as I know, PE2 does not allow for color-space conversions.
            Bummer on that, I don't have PE2 installed. There may be ther ways to convert but that just adds more work.

            Originally posted by Reimar
            I wish there was a simple "how-to" on processing Adobe RGB images to get the most out of them and still produce consistent color output across different platforms.
            I've had pretty good luck printing Adobe RGB tagged files to printers with all color management turned off. That's what we do when we have to go from Quark to EPS to TIF for large prints. We leave color management off in Quark where we create a layout at say 25% actual size... mainly because I can't figure Quark color management out. Then we save the page as an EPS, still no profile. Then we open it in PS7, rasterize it at 1200dpi, resize it and assign it Adobe RGB ('assign', not 'convert to'). Then we send it out to print on an Epson 10000 printer using the driver's built color controls, that is, no ICC management). The results pretty much match a print from Quark proper. If we don't assign the Adobe RGB profile we don't get a match... go figure.
            To me, the Adobe RGB Profile is a general purpose reference space. I'm not very web savvy and I've not done any serious imaging for the web. I don't know how Adobe RGB displays across browser platforms. I guess I will convert to sRGB when I do. I hope someone nice gives you Photoshop 7 or CS for your next birthday. I think CS has really good RAW file support built in, I'm still using 7 though.

            Chip

            Comment


            • #7
              FWIW I work in sRGB (by using the limited colour management settings on Elements) but generally don't bother to attach a prfile. This way my images look pretty much the same as in camera (maybe some slight intensification of the reds - but my camera colour space seems to be closer to sRGB than anything else) on the web, on my low end inkjet and printed out using commercial (consumer level) film processors, many of whom prefer sRGB - assuming that they know anything about colour profiles that is! I've heard that some of the high end printers (Epson 2200 I think) do better with Adobe RGB than sRGB. But I don't have one so I'm not at this stage worried about it.
              (this is a change from my earlier practice - i was working with colour management off, but I found that I get more consistent results in sRGB YMMV!)
              Susan S.

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              • #8
                I must say it is interesting to me...I have this forum...and I see that no one ever responds to my posts. It leaves me wondering if I have responded at all, or if even if people don't believe me so they choose to respond to someone else rather than be put on the block.

                my guess is, 98% of people using profiles don't have the slightest clue as to how to use them correctly. The other 2% use them because they are either a) supposed to, or b) they got good results one time that they didn't duplicate with sRGB.

                Guessing doesn't do it, and neither does suggestion. sRGB is mostly what you see, and that means you control the result. getting better results with Adobe RGB--whose difference may be approximated, but perhaps not accurate -- could mean you are guessing at what you want to get, and it seemed to get ou better results in a single comparison.

                I wouldn't bet the farm on a guess -- or a single comparison. There are choices for a reason, and you either use them, or you fake like you know what you are doing.

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                • #9
                  PS -- "I've not done any serious imaging for the web. I don't know how Adobe RGB displays across browser platforms. I guess I will convert to sRGB when I do. "

                  yes, that happens. and, well, the result leaves the images flat and sorry. Adobe RGB is like loading a film canister in a black bag: you can do it, but you don't have to anymore. If you do, it may be nostalgic, but I doubt it is really better.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Richard_Lynch
                    I must say it is interesting to me...I have this forum...and I see that no one ever responds to my posts. It leaves me wondering if I have responded at all, or if even if people don't believe me so they choose to respond to someone else rather than be put on the block.
                    I read your posts Richard! (and no one ever seems to respond to mine either! I think my first post actually answered the original question properly!...). I don't use profiles because I don't understand them fully - and I don't understand colour management sufficiently well to make a correct judgement as to whether they can provide any advantage, and in what circumstances they are likely to help. And as Elements isn't set up to deal with advanced colour mangement using profiles properly I haven't invested the time into understanding it. The only times I have attached an (sRGB) profile was when someone asked me to - and as I had worked in sRGB it didn't seem likely to be a harmful thing to do.

                    Richard - in your last post you said re converting from Adobe RGB to sRGB:
                    "yes, that happens. and, well, the result leaves the images flat and sorry. Adobe RGB is like loading a film canister in a black bag: you can do it, but you don't have to anymore. If you do, it may be nostalgic, but I doubt it is really better"

                    Do you mean by that you are better off editing in the colour space of your final use than trying to convert an edited image from one colour space to another ex post? ie if you want to use sRGB start off editing there; or is it a general disapproval of AdobeRGB? This isn't an issue for me right now as my camera uses sRGB or close to it - but I'm hoping for a digital SLR in the future and some of these higher end cameras allows choice of colour space including Adobe RGB and sRGB and wondering what the better choices are (in your opinion).
                    Susan S

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I was partly being tongue in cheek there.

                      Adobe RGB is just another version of RGB and a lot of people make a lot of fuss about it. My gripe with it is that the "wider gamut" (beside the phrase being somewhat on the edge of propoganda; wider or thinner, you still have the same numbers and the same 16,777,216 color possibilities) may actually not display correctly without correctly managed profiling...and then if it is displaying correctly, you should, in my book, see EXACTLY the same thing as you would when using sRGB. That is, if profiling works. If you are using color profiles to make color changes to your images, it is a gawd-awful tool, akin to using Brightness/Contrast or Auto-Levels.

                      I don't care what color space you use, you still have to get the color right. The BIG GLITCH is that when a profile fails, sRGB will probably be assumed, not Adobe RGB. If you have Adobe RGB assigned and you get looked at in sRGB, the mapping of colors is rendered as the "thinner" gammut. That is whatever 255, 40, 25 looks like in Adobe RGB now looks like 255, 40, 25 in sRGB. And that is what happens when using Adobe RGB tagged images on the web -- browsers don't read the profile and make a conversion of sorts because there is no profile for translation (like speaking swahili to a russian; you may understand neither, but I'd get the swahili phrase book if I was going where they spoke that language).

                      I'll say it...I am having the feeling that a lot of the push for Adobe RGB is, perhaps, some great plan to cultivate licensing fees...I'll put my sRGB images up against anyone's Adobe RGB images any day because there are only so many CMYK colors--a finite if large set--and you can't get any more CMYK out of CMYK with Adobe RGB than I can with sRGB unless the conversions are not correct.

                      To me, sRGB makes more sense because I can see the whole thing on my monitor (sRGB was designed based on the ability of monitors), and because it is the default. As long as you are calibrated, you'll see the right thing.

                      The only profile I could go for would be a custom one. Other stuff is pretty much arbitrary.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thanks for the input everyone. I don't think ICC profiles are a silver bullet - more like a hidden mine. Apart from calibrating my monitor, they have been only trouble for me, so I don't like to use them if I don't know what they're doing now or might do later on.
                        Nor have I ever been happy with Adobe RGB 1998. I can see the effect of 5 color spaces (4 sRGB and AdobeRGB) when I shoot RAW with the D70 and switch color spaces in Nikon Capture. Adobe colors are weird.
                        I'm going to stick with sRGB, I'm going to try working in limited color manangement mode in PE2, and I'm going to leave the "ICC profile" box checked when saving to TIFF (mostly because I don't know how to permanently uncheck this box). I'll check Nikon View again to see if there is an option for not tagging images.
                        Will this new workflow embed the sRGB profile in my image or just tag it? Is there a difference? I'm leary about this, but will do some tests to see if prints or web shots are altered.
                        Reimar

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Read this only for the sake of curiosity, It's long, rambling, marginally coherent and written as much for my own benefit as anyone else's.

                          Clearly I've touched a warm spot here; I wasn't trying to start a controversy, just offering what I've learned since I got into digital printing. I should apologize for stepping in here without knowing the context. I failed to recognize this forum is dedicated to Photoshop Elements; I just noticed it as a new post and thought I could add something. I shoot a D1X and it's similar to the D70 in terms of image files. I've been developing my workflow with it for about a year and process between 100 and 400 digital images every 2 or 3 days. I use Photoshop 7 but I mean't no predjudice against Elements. I'm in no position to judge because I've never used it. I was referring to the fact that PS has strong support for color management and RAW files.

                          Following are the circumstances leading me into color management and Adobe RGB. I write this because, right or wrong, I feel a bit defensive because I percieve my advice as being judged incorrect or inappropriate. I'm not willing to put my Adobe RGB file up against anybody's sRGB file because, to me, that seems irrelevant; color models are reference tools with different applications.

                          For my first year or so of digital photography, I didn't take the camera, a Nikon E5000, very seriously and reserved it for personal use, mostly point and shoot stuff. My images were all sRGB TIFFs and I was perfectly happy with the prints. For work, I shot film and digitized it, still do for lots of stuff.
                          A little over a year ago I teamed up with a graphic designer and since have been responsible for print production in addition to photography. Before that, I didn't know much about nitty gritty printing, I just turned over my image files, prints or film and the designers and prepress guys handled it.

                          Our business involves print ads, exhibits and art reproduction. I am often faced with having to MATCH colors from proofing device to output device and make reprints which remain true to the initial run. This includes spot color and paint/media color in addition to photographic image color. Art reproduction clients are especially picky about color fidelity and it takes a structured process to get them what they want without doing lots of guesswork. A big piece of that is having a reliable way to use output profiles. We print both in and out of house and using Adobe RGB as our reference model has allowed us to proof using color laser or inkjet, then output to offset press, silkscreen and outside service bureau inkjets. It has also allowed us to easily print on different papers and films with relatively accurate results.

                          My first attempts using a service bureau for large format prints were with sRGB image files and, while the results were acceptable, the clients were sometimes critical about the accuracy of reds (ink limitation) and the tonality in smoothly graded blues (sRGB limitation). We still get comments about reds but the blues are no longer much of a problem now, at the suggestion of the printer operator, that we send Adobe RGB files. It was a few months after solving that problem that I read about sRGB having gamut limitations with saturated greens and blues.

                          I'm not for or against sRGB, Adobe RGB, LAB or ICC color management in general; they are just tools in the box and when I need them, I use them. I try to do as little to an image as possible to get what I want. I am terrible at guessing about color and I hate having to change color balance in an image just to print it on a different device or media. It's just a lot easier for me to convert the profile and if the proof looks right, let it run. That's not using profiles to CHANGE colors, that's using them to NOT change colors, at least within the limits of the output medium.

                          I also agree that the number of displayable colors is the same for Adobe RGB and sRGB... on a given device. Number of displayable colors for all RGB color spaces are device dependent. I use the terms wide or narrow when speaking of gamut for lack of a better way to say it clearly. It is fair to say though that the color gamut of sRGB is compressed when compared to Adobe RGB.

                          All of this has to be framed by saying that our business is PRINTING... ink on paper, ultimately CMYK. We don't directly publish to the web so we rarely have cause to use sRGB as an output profile. That's what sRGB is designed for, right? It's an attempt at standardizing an approximation of the average, uncalibrated Windows monitor for the purpose allowing some degree of color consistency on the millions of uncharacterized monitors.

                          I could not agree more that you must get the color right to begin with; that's why I prefer my camera and scanner to supply images with their proprietary source profiles which I keep and then, when I'm ready to proof, I convert a copy to the appropriate output profile, a paper/printer profile if printing in-house or Adobe RGB if we're sending it out.
                          This is what works for me... most of the time; color management is imperfect but it has saved me a lot of time and money since I got used to using it. A client can ask me how something that's on matte will look if it's on glossy and I can show them in a few minutes, then they can ask what it will look like on ivory coated... and I can show them. That's a cool thing.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thanks Chris. I can see why there is no simple "how-to" manual since we all have different needs and environments. Capture One does look pricey, unless they come up with an econo version for the D70. I also see why it's a good idea to save the tiff images tagged with the camera profile. If I change to limited or full color management in PE2, color/contrast gets messed up without the tag.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              While it is a little bit of a tangent for this forum -- which isn't just about Photoshop Elements, but more specifically is for users and readers of my books and tools who use Elements -- there is a bit more to say considering you responded about Photoshop. My goal here is not as much to respond to the poster as to respond to the post, with the good of the Elements user in mind.

                              If the goal of your workflow is to match colors, I would imagine the best way to do this is to create final files that are in the form of the output. In other words, if you are going to an offset printer, create CMYK files with Photoshop, not RGB of any variety. This way you can have a pre-determined CMYK value that is best, and shoot for it. If you are using Adobe RGB or sRGB it shouldn't matter--if you have made the best corrections for that color space (preferably, changes that you can SEE--and this is where Adobe RGB provides a little disadvantage), your conversion to CMYK should finish up pretty much the same. You don't get more colors out of one color space than you do with another. You also don't get more accurate color. A tagged file correctly 'corrected' is a tagged file that will convert from RGB to CMYK. The wider gammut provides a buffer, but at the same time suggests that the mapping of colors from RGB to CMYK and Adobe RGB to CMYK is not consistent. I don't know that one is better than the other...I do suggest that Adobe may have a vested interest in making one work better than the other. As they control the medium, it is an interesting situation...and one that can easily be used by them. I have been doing CMYK output for quite a while...before there were even tagged images--as a technician and a graphic designer. I would much prefer to do my own CMYK conversion and final adjustments than to place that part of the artistic judgement in the hands of a computation.

                              While Chip may have developed a system with a current printer, that doesn't translate to the right way to do things generally. That isn't a poke, it is an observation and a clarification for those who use Elements and would be wondering about the Adobe RGB workflow. "Wider Gamut" is a sexy term, but in reality it shouldn't provide much...that it does is suspect. My sRGB image with full tonal range and correct color has the same number of colors; an Adobe RGB image with full tonal range and correct color should map out the same in preview if it is using my monitor profile. If it doesn't, my preview on screen will look different with sRGB and Adobe RGB...and if the purpose of profiling is to provide an accurate translation, this has failed. This is again, not a poke at the post, but a poke at the positioning of profiling. Somewhere here, someone added some unnecessary complexity and tried to make seem glamourous a 'wider gamut'...in turn a message of confusion in a realm where too few people know the right answer--and where, because of the complexity, there may be none. A well corrected image should work in either case--and technically the result should be the same if the process is accurate.

                              My interest in books and responses is to preach simplifying and making logical sense of workflow steps. You SHOULD profile if working in Adobe RGB and sending RGB printers to a CMYK printer. A better workflow, in my opinion, is to convert to CMYK and optimize that file if going to a CMYK printer.

                              My only question, Chip, would be what you are considering 'accurate' color to match on. Whether you use Adobe RGB or sRGB, CMYK is CMYK...the gammut of that does not get extended. Your original will almost always be RGB of some form (scanned, digitally captured, or, really, using film). Unless there is a known color in the image (e.g., a company logo color), what color is there to match? If it is to match what you see on screen, profiling will get you less distance than a good colorimeter which will help be sure that what you see on screen is a best representation, and profiling will only remain important for telling a second device what color space you were in in the first place so it can recognize the color mapping. It doesn't deliver more accurate color automatically. If that were true, it would be the only choice. I don't doubt you feel you get better color, but I question why rather than whether you do or not. Technically the end result should be the same.

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