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Help Correct Colours/Values in Photoshop Exports?

New Here ,
Mar 01, 2020 Mar 01, 2020

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Hi all! I've seen a few threads that pose this problem, but none of the solutions seem to have worked for me.

 

Problem: when I export an image from Photoshop (I use it for digital painting), the product comes out drastically darker/more saturated to the point where things are pretty much either black silhouettes or blown out highlights.

I've tried toggling the export options "Embed colour profile" and "Convert to sRGB" in various different combinations (one, both, neither, etc.) under both "Export as..." and "Save for web". I've made sure my workspace is set up in sRGB, I've assigned colour profiles, converted colour profiles, turned on "Preserve embedded profiles" in my colour settings, played under the "proof setup" tab under the View menu. I have this painting I've been working for a really long time on and the deadline is fast coming up, I'm looking for a solution that will let me export it as it is now, that'll get the exported product to look how it does in Photoshop (if such a thing exists). If not, I suppose I'm either looking at repainting it or messing around with filters/adjustment layers to try to make it resemble what I need.

 

I'm working in Photoshop CC 2019 on a Surface Pro 6. I've made sure my Surface's display was in sRGB as well.

 

What I have noticed is that when I go under "Proof Setup", if I set it to "Monitor RGB" it resembles something close to my exported project, not quite as dark, but close.

 

Any help anyone can offer would be hugely appreciated!

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Expert , Mar 01, 2020 Mar 01, 2020

First bit of advice -don't play around and try different colour settings - that is a recipe for incorrect colour. There is one set, that you set correctly and then leave them alone.

 

So :

1. In Photoshop colour settings :

Set Working space for RGB to either Adobe RGB (1998)   or, if you are producing your work exclusively for on screen viewing, to sRGB IEC61966-2.1

Also set colour management policies to Preserve Embeded Profiles

 

2. Make sure you have a monitor profile that actually describes

...

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Community Expert ,
Mar 01, 2020 Mar 01, 2020

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First bit of advice -don't play around and try different colour settings - that is a recipe for incorrect colour. There is one set, that you set correctly and then leave them alone.

 

So :

1. In Photoshop colour settings :

Set Working space for RGB to either Adobe RGB (1998)   or, if you are producing your work exclusively for on screen viewing, to sRGB IEC61966-2.1

Also set colour management policies to Preserve Embeded Profiles

 

2. Make sure you have a monitor profile that actually describes your monitor. That really means using a hardware device to calibrate and profile your monitor.

 

3. When exporting - check both Convert to sRGB and Embed Color Profile.

 

With the above in place, your colours will be correct in any Colour managed application or browser. Note though that some applications and browsers are not colour managed and those may well look different - there is nothing you can do about that.

 

Setting your proof space to Monitor RGB is simply turning off colour management and therefore displaying incorrect colour.

 

Colour Management simple explanation

Digital images are made up of numbers. In RGB mode, each pixel has a number representing Red, a number representing Green and a Number representing Blue. The problem comes in that different devices can be sent those same numbers but will show different colours. To see a demonstration of this, walk into your local T.V. shop and look at the different coloured pictures – all from the same material.

To ensure the output device is showing the correct colours then a colour management system needs to know two things.

1. What colours do the numbers in the document represent? 
This is the job of the document profile which describes the exact colour to be shown when Red=255 and what colour of white is meant when Red=255, Green = 255 and Blue =255. It also describes how the intermediate values move from 0 through to 255 – known as the tone response curve (or sometimes “gamma”).
Examples of colour spaces are (Adobe RGB1998, sRGB IEC61966-2.1)
With the information from the document profile, the colour management system knows what colour is actually represented by the pixel values in the document.

  1. What colour will be displayed on the printer/monitor if it is sent certain pixel values?
    This is the job of the monitor/printer&paper profile. It should describe exactly what colours the device is capable of showing and, how the device will respond when sent certain values.
    So with a monitor profile that is built to represent the specific monitor (or a printer profile built to represent the specific printer, ink and paper combination) then the colour management system can predict exactly what colours will be shown if it sends specific pixel values to that device.

    So armed with those two profiles, the colour management system will convert the numbers in the document to the numbers that must be sent to the device in order that the correct colours are displayed.

So what can go wrong :

  1. The colours look different in Photoshop, which is colour managed, to the colours in a different application which is not colour managed.
    This is not actually fault, but it is a commonly raised issue. It is the colour managed version which is correct – the none colour managed application is just sending the document RGB numbers to the output device regardless without any conversion regardless of what they represent in the document and the way they will be displayed on the output device.

  2. The colour settings are changed in Photoshop without understanding what they are for.
    This results in the wrong profiles being used and therefore the wrong conversions and the wrong colours.
    If Photoshop is set to Preserve embedded profiles – it will use the colour profile within the document.

  3. The profile for the output device is incorrect.
    The profile should represent the behaviour of the device exactly. If the wrong profile is used it will not. Equally if the settings on the device are changed in comparison to those settings when the profile was made, then the profile can no longer describe the behaviour of the device. Two examples would be using a printer profile designed for one paper, with a different paper. A second example would be using a monitor profile but changing the colour/contrast etc settings on the monitor.
    The monitor profile is set in the operating system (in Windows 10 that is under Settings>System>Display >Advanced) which leads to a potential further issue. Operating system updates can sometimes load a different monitor profile, or a broken profile, which no longer represents the actual monitor.

 

 

Colour management is simple to use provided the document profile is correct, always save or export with an embedded profile, and the monitor/printer profile is correct. All the math is done in the background.

 

I hope that helps

 

Dave

 

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 13, 2022 Dec 13, 2022

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Hi Dave I think I understand you correctly. I have a BenQ sw270c monitor that I've hard calibrated for default of d65

and a separate one for printing of 5800k and 90-candela luminance. I'm wondering about workflow. I shoot raw and have raw files tagged with adobe RGB in ACR, with the equipment I have I then edit make a duplicate file and convert that to embed srgb and save it for use on the web or websites, etc. Then should I save the original as adobe RGB embedded and if I decide later I want to print and change calibration and see how it looks or is it better to just save the raw file and then if you want to print change the calibration and start editing again in my adobe RGB workspace and the calibration I set up for printing?

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LEGEND ,
Dec 13, 2022 Dec 13, 2022

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quote

I'm wondering about workflow. I shoot raw and have raw files tagged with adobe RGB in ACR, with the equipment I have I then edit make a duplicate file and convert that to embed srgb and save it for use on the web or websites, etc. Then should I save the original as adobe RGB embedded and if I decide later I want to print and change calibration and see how it looks or is it better to just save the raw file and then if you want to print change the calibration and start editing again in my adobe RGB workspace and the calibration I set up for printing?


By @alkrevit

Let's start here:

The benefits of wide gamut working spaces on printed output:

This three-part, 32-minute video covers why a wide gamut RGB working space like ProPhoto RGB can produce superior quality output to print.

Part 1 discusses how the supplied Gamut Test File was created and shows two prints output to an Epson 3880 using ProPhoto RGB and sRGB, and how the deficiencies of sRGB gamut affect final output quality. Part 1 discusses what to look for on your own prints in terms of better color output. It also covers Photoshop’s Assign Profile command and how wide gamut spaces mishandled produce dull or oversaturated colors due to user error.

Part 2 goes into detail about how to print two versions of the properly converted Gamut Test File file in Photoshop using Photoshop’s Print command to set up the test files for output correctly. It covers the Convert to Profile command for preparing test files for output to a lab.

Part 3 goes into color theory and illustrates why a wide gamut space produces not only move vibrant and saturated color but detail and color separation compared to a small gamut working space like sRGB. 

High-Resolution Video: http://digitaldog.net/files/WideGamutPrintVideo.mov
Low Resolution (YouTube): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLlr7wpAZKs&feature=youtu.be

Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management/pluralsight"

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Community Expert ,
Dec 13, 2022 Dec 13, 2022

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Your workflow looks good until you mention what you have to to different to print.    

Color managed workflows, work properly when each step of the workflow is calibrated and profiled.  When that happens the embedded profile does a good job of describing how you want the image to look.  Not perfectly but very well for most in gamut colors.  With the possible exception of blues.  

so make sure your monitor and printer are profiled and that should help your workflow. 

ICC programmer and developer, Photographer, artist and color management expert, Print standards and process expert.

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Community Expert ,
Mar 02, 2020 Mar 02, 2020

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Hi. If you are saving a file tat was eithe rcreated in sRGB or has been CONVERTED to  [NOT assigned with] sRGB (saved ideally with the ICC profile embedded) and IF your Surface tablet really IS actually showing sRGB, then the appearance would match.

Setting the surface to sRGB as you mention may not be sufficient to m ake sure it IS sRGB.

Of course the screen you're working on when creating the file needs proper colourmanagement too. You need to make a profile for your Photoshop workstation using a screen sensor and decent software. i1 display pro is a good starting point for this.

Follow Dave's insructions to test this and try soak up his simple colour management explanation.

You can also read up more about ICC profles here https://www.colourmanagement.net/advice/about-icc-colour-profiles/

 

all is not as simple as it might seem with the Surface, reading this: "

“The Enhanced setting on the New Surface Pro is a profile within the sRGB space where through special hardware and proprietary color processing we take the mid-tones as close to P3-D65 color gamut as possible while leaving skin tones as is.  The overall color contrast is also enhanced.”

That’s the answer from Microsoft. It changes the tone map on colors to make them a bit more vivid, while still staying within the sRGB gamut, and without blowing out skin tones, making people look odd colors. In practice, it seems to work pretty well, offering a bit more pop, but without going overboard. It sounds like something that needs some data to sort it out though, so we’ll take a look at the Enhanced mode as well as sRGB mode."

- - - - -

"

SO it seems enhanced mode is some crazy adaptaton - its NOT sRGB

Enhanced Mode

As stated above, the Surface Pro now includes an enhanced sRGB mode. It remaps the color tones slightly, but keeps it within the sRGB color space. It’s not going to be as accurate as the sRGB mode"

https://www.anandtech.com/show/11538/the-microsoft-surface-pro-2017-review-evolution/6

 

I hope this helps

 

neil barstow, colourmanagement.net :: adobe forum volunteer

[please do not use the reply button on a message in the thread, only use the one at the top of the page, to maintain chronological order]

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Community Expert ,
Jun 14, 2020 Jun 14, 2020

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Moved to the Color Management Board.

 

neil barstow, colourmanagement.net :: adobe forum volunteer

 

 

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LEGEND ,
Dec 13, 2022 Dec 13, 2022

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You write "the product comes out drastically darker/more saturated " but I'm not clear what the "product" is here. For example is it-

- the same file opened back in Photoshop on the same computer

- the same file placed in InDesign on the same computer

- the same file opened in some random app by double clicking it

- the file viewed on a web site

- the file as printed to your desktop printer

- the file send to a professional print house

- something else?

Please be detailed.

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Community Expert ,
Dec 14, 2022 Dec 14, 2022

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Hi Test screen name, this is an old post from 2020 - were you intending to answer here?

 

neilB

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LEGEND ,
Dec 14, 2022 Dec 14, 2022

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LATEST

You're right. I didn't notice there was an original discussion from 2020 and a new discussion tagged on this week, so I went back to read it from the first post, and commented on that.  I wonder if all posts should automatically lock after a few months...?

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