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Thread: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

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    crisscross's Avatar
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    Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    to be fair to qveda, I feel I have messed up his thread Need help: color spaces & color management workflow too much already, so to start again & I fully expect finish it for good. Summary of story so far:


    Originally Posted by crisscross
    But, accepting that the monitor can't show a lot of the colours in Adobe RGB, it can still use them for PP work. A bit like working on a tif file rather than a jpg (ignoring the later progressive loss of quality) even if you can't see any difference between them on screen??
    Hi Chris,

    The problem isn't so much that monitors "can't display most of the extra colours of the Adobe colourspace" as it is one where those extra colours are rendered into SOMETHING that the monitor CAN display. People then adjust the image so that WHAT THEY SEE on the screen looks right - but then get bitten in the bum come print time because the colours that they thought they were changing the image to weren't really what they were changing them too; they were really being changed to something else, but the monitor couldn't display them. Good example of this is when I had a photo of fishing boats with bright red paint on the hulls - looked great on screen (because the monitor has a dedicated RED channel), but come print time the hue shifted considerably to something far more orangy because it was out of gamut for the printers inkset. (OK perhaps not a great example, but hopefully you get what I mean).


    Having done all the PP work, why then mess it up again changing the profile at the last minute before generating the forum jpg?
    For two good reasons ...

    1. The main one being that 97% percent of the population won't be able to view your images correctly unless they're tagged for sRGB (a) the images will look horrible and (b) even if they could use larger colourspaces like Adobe RGB or ProPhoto their monitors are incapable of displaying most of the extra colours anyway (similar to the broadcasting of high-definition colour TV signals if 99% of the population only had black and white TVs).

    2. The other consideration is that images put up for display are usually severely down-sampled anyway. Down-sampling will degrade image detail far more than using sRGB over Adobe RGB so for most, the uploaded image will only ever be a low-grade copy of the original (my originals are always 16 bit PSD files in large colourspaces - usually over 5000 pixels with and over 3000 pixels high, whereas what gets uploaded is 8 bit - sRGB and only 1024 x 512 pixels).

    Cheers,

    Colin - pbase.com/cjsouthern
    Despite the initial discouragement of changing from Adobe RGB to sRGB as far as web use was concerned, I thought it worth pursuing the other part of the thesis. That is that using Adobe RGB induces a false sense of colour when the OS converts it to the more limited colour range visible on-screen and that it will cause trouble on printing.

    For testing I am using an image of the setting of our house, one of the best I have achieved so far, but when I was printing it for competition short-list, found it was flawed by some blue cast to the darkest shadows. Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan
    I would normally have corrected this by tweaking and printing an A5 or two from the nef. However to test the thesis, I saved the original as a tif before setting the NX2 colour space to sRGB and the image to Nikon Colour Mode IIIa, the sRGB recommended by Nikon for landscapes.

    I then opened the original tif in another programme to compare with the sRGB version, or rather bring it back to how I had it, the sRGB being not that brilliant. It needed more than a tweak. The main culprit was the sky which had gone to a typical over-exposed pale turquoise, but correcting that turned the clouds mauve despite it being done on a gradient faded towards cloud level.

    After actually changing every single setting, I got it back to be as near as practical identical to the tif on screen. So then checked print settings and printed. Result: the offending blue cast in the dark shadows if anything worse, the sky actually way over-corrected, rusty-reds overcooked, grass palish.

    However what does it look like on the web? On the macBook pro both A-RGB & sRGB versions come through unscathed on Safari. On Firefox (with 'color management' disabled), the sRGB is nowhere near as washed out as the A-RGB, but still a touch weak on the red and green compared to Safari. On PC (Dell dimension 2400 with cheapish 17" flat screen), the A-RGB version doesn't look especially like the original, but is acceptable; the sRGB version, help, yuk, get a bowl quick. With Safari both versions are much better, though the sRGB version is still a bit on the lurid side.

    So as to be totally fair, I then got NX2 going on the PC to see what the images looked like prior to going over the web. Much the same as the Safari versions on the PC apart from......the failsafe sRGB jpg.....which arrives in colour space 'Ricoh Russian-SC' and looking as if it has just been fished out of a very weedy pond. They look very little like anything on the macs. (gone plural as to be even fairer I also started up my 7 year old G4 Powerbook). By comparison the original print was as close to the mac screen view as a print ever gets (apart from the shadow colour cast.)

    So apart from going back to using 100% Adobe RGB myself, I must qualify my remarks about NX2 here and on pbase, to make it clear that they apply only to mac. In theory it should be identical on both platforms, but it clearly it does need a core2duo chip (as I suspected) and also an OS stronger on colour than XP home. I assume that most photographers have high spec PCs, otherwise goodness only knows what image comments are being passed on.

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Well Chris, as stated elsewhere I'm using Lightroom. My computer is a P4 2.4Gig with 1Gig Ram (upgrading to 2Gig shortly) running XP Pro. As you can imagine it's a bit slow in Lightroom but since switching to Lightroom I've had no adverse comments from anyone regarding colour.

    I haven't even tried the trial version of the Nikon program that came with the camera. I might add that Lightroom and a 600+ page book by Martin Evening were a gift from a very good friend, so I might be a little biased towards the program.

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill44 View Post
    Well Chris, as stated elsewhere I'm using Lightroom. My computer is a P4 2.4Gig with 1Gig Ram (upgrading to 2Gig shortly) running XP Pro. As you can imagine it's a bit slow in Lightroom but since switching to Lightroom I've had no adverse comments from anyone regarding colour.

    I haven't even tried the trial version of the Nikon program that came with the camera. I might add that Lightroom and a 600+ page book by Martin Evening were a gift from a very good friend, so I might be a little biased towards the program.
    Have you posted any pics here Bill? Or where can I look? Apart from my own experiments I have been rather surprised at the comments on Nigel's trio Three of a kind
    where colour is pretty important and it doesn't seem as if Vincent, Keith or Colin can be looking at anything like I am looking at.

    I am not familiar with Lightroom, but guess it is roughly equivalent to Nikon View NX, which needs Capture NX2 for the serious stuff. I went Nikon as much for Capture NX2 as for the camera, though I had noticed a lot of the shots I really liked came from D200 (and OK D2). However I would not recommend it for a machine like yours....though a nice screen could get it looking good. From LR the progression is going to be to CS when you need to work on selections within images.

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Chris if you do a search under my Name Bill44 you will find shots of mine here, in fact Colin S is using one of them for his Canvas Print work.

    As for Lightroom I would suggest that you give the free trial a go, I think you will greatly upgrade your opinion of Lightroom, it far outclasses View NX and in many many ways outclasses capture NX2. I feel that a lot of program favouritism is because of familiarity, some people hate The Gimp, yet when you become familiar with it you find out how good it is, and the price is a lot cheaper than PS.

    As for a nice screen, I'm using a Sony CRT and I am going to cry when it finally dies because it is going to take serious dollars, which I don't have, to get an LCD screen as good as it. Many of the affordable LCD's are only 6bit screens and do a pretty lousy job on colours.

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Hi Chris,

    Bit busy right now, so I'll just pop in the quick comment that there's nothing in that landscape shot that should tax Adobe RGB or even sRGB in any way; so with the right processing & display I'd expect them to look identical under in colourspace.

    Bill's Rainbow Lorikeet is the perfect (in fact it's hard to imagine a better example) of something where sRGB -v- Adobe RGB -v- Monitor -v- Print would make a visable difference.

    Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill44 View Post
    Chris if you do a search under my Name Bill44 you will find shots of mine here, in fact Colin S is using one of them for his Canvas Print work.
    I may be using the search (advanced) incompetently, but can't find any way of isolating images from general posts. Or are you Bill Flannery and the Lorikeet Colin has posted is yours? I will study that a bit in due course. It seems to be processed in Gimp & sRGB, so would need an Adobe RGB version to compare.

    That shot is not exactly short of primary colours; round here I am more used to Dunnocks under overcast skies
    Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Quote Originally Posted by crisscross View Post
    I may be using the search (advanced) incompetently, but can't find any way of isolating images from general posts. Or are you Bill Flannery and the Lorikeet Colin has posted is yours?
    Hi Chris,

    Yes - the Rainbow Lorikeet is Bills - sorry, didn't mean to imply it was my shot ... I just remember Bill posing it in one of the earlier weekly challenges, so grabbed it from there for the benefit of the thread (I wish I HAD taken it - I'd be very proud to have a bird shot like that in my portfolio).

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill44 View Post
    As for Lightroom I would suggest that you give the free trial a go, I think you will greatly upgrade your opinion of Lightroom, it far outclasses View NX and in many many ways outclasses capture NX2
    To my pleasant surprise I was able both to log into Adobe site and download up-to-date mac version. I can now see I should have included it in my evaluations while grounded a few weeks ago. Yes it goes way beyond View NX (and Aperture) and from quickie thrash about I can see it has a lot of tools for dealing with part of an image rather than the whole, so one can begin to compare it with CS and Capture NX2. Will have to have a more serious play over the next few weeks. Whether it has any advantage over View & Capture as a combination is another matter

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill44 View Post
    As for a nice screen, I'm using a Sony CRT and I am going to cry when it finally dies because it is going to take serious dollars, which I don't have, to get an LCD screen as good as it. Many of the affordable LCD's are only 6bit screens and do a pretty lousy job on colours.
    The day the last CRT went out of the front door for good was one of the happiest of my life (IT section). I had good 21" ones for my professional CAD work, but was amazed at how much they had faded after a couple of years. I got my 15" G4 powerbook thinking it would be handy on site, but rapidly found myself using it for the lot. MacBook pro has even greater resolution in 15" (1440x900).

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    Re: Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill44 View Post
    As for Lightroom I would suggest that you give the free trial a go, I think you will greatly upgrade your opinion of Lightroom, it far outclasses View NX and in many many ways outclasses capture NX2.
    I have done as you suggested Bill and yes, LR has a lot more in it than I was aware of from only interpolating what others seem to be do or not do.

    My 1st problem has been trying to work out why it gives a slight but noticable magenta colour cast compared to all other progs/colour spaces. Having finally tracked down a ProPhoto icc (which if it had been house trained it would have put into the system library itself), I am even more puzzled. It looks about 2x the size of everything else, including Adobe 1998, but in blogs some say that in fact LR uses a tweaked version. Doesn't remove the colour cast whatever, but at least ensures that on is being consistent in trials, ie exporting tifs with all 3 alternative profiles. All 3 well magenta side of NX2, the sRGB as usual slightly gaudier than Adobe. Enough to kill the warmth of those Surrey bricks and tiles in the pic below.

    I chose a pic with a huge array of cables marring it thinking it might be easier to remove with a true clone as well as NX2 heal brush, but this was very disappointing and NX2 heal brush plus NX1.x technique of paint+noise/grain worked pretty well considering.
    Adobe RGB - sRGB again, groan
    I immediately missed the very easy way it is possible to backtrack and/or fine tune all moves in NX2, but maybe with greater familiarity it could come. Don't think I have either patience or cash to think it worth perservering. (or recommend it to anyone else with Nikon camera). If I became dissatisfied with NX2, I think I would go the whole hog to CS.

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