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P: Cannot select Rhodamine Red Pantone Solid V4 library, swaps to Rubine Red

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Contributor ,
Oct 20, 2022 Oct 20, 2022

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I want to say up front that this issue isn't (necessarily) Adobe's fault, as it's clearly an issue with Pantone's ACB color book datbase file.

 

This is specific to the Pantone Solid Coated & Uncoated V4 ACB color book files. They were exported with the (no longer available) Pantone Color Manager app.

 

In any file in Photoshop, in the Channels panel, choose "New Spot Color." From Color Libraries, choose the Pantone Solid Coated (or Uncoated) V4 color book. Type in "Rhodamine" to select Rhodamine Red. Before you even click "OK," take a look at the Channels panel — it will list Rubine Red. You literally cannot select it.

 

The Pantone libraries (formerly) distributed by Adobe (the Pantone+ series and the older, lowercase versions) do not have this issue.

 

I'm posting this here because this issue would not exist if Photoshop was not dependent upon maintaining a live reference to an installed ACB color database file for spot channels chosen from that book.

 

InDesign and Illustrator do not have this issue, as they do not have the same issues with referencing colors from a live color book file.

 

Removing the requirment of Photoshop to have an installed color book reference to use a file with a channel from that specific book would solve so many other issues. Up to and including their decision to no longer distribute the libraries, where anyone who opens an older file created when the books were installed is going to get a "book not installed error." [https://community.adobe.com/t5/photoshop-ecosystem-discussions/pantone-colors-converted-to-black-err...

 

I just want to add that we've been using the V4 ACB files for years (2019) and this is the first time we're seeing this issue.

 

Currently our solution is to reference the older Pantone books.

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Adobe Employee , Oct 24, 2022 Oct 24, 2022

Your request about improving the way we internally reference these colors is well taken. It will become even more important as we transition to new, external systems for selecting these colors. I'll look into it and see if we can address it. You are quite correct that the strict binding we currently have to our ACB files is too restrictive. We need a better, more generalized system.

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Contributor ,
Oct 20, 2022 Oct 20, 2022

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demonstration, for reference: https://www.screencast.com/t/VADWW2likMb

(video too large to upload here)

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Adobe Employee ,
Oct 24, 2022 Oct 24, 2022

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Unfortunately, the root of this problem sounds like an issue that we've been aware of for a long time, but we don't have any control over it. The Pantone Color Manager software has a flaw that results in exporting incorrectly formatted Color Book files. Each color in the book needs a unique key identifier to differentiate it from the others, but Pantone's software sometimes exports multiple colors with the same key. This can result in confusion over selected colors.

 

The Color Books that shipped with Photoshop did not have this flaw. It only affects books exported by the Pantone Color Manager.

 

The best we can do is contact Pantone about the problem. However, if they're not updating Pantone Color Manager anymore, the longer term solution may be to use their new Pantone Connect service and extension.

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Contributor ,
Oct 24, 2022 Oct 24, 2022

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the colors in the color book files up through V3 were indexed by a number in the table (by book). What changed in the V4 books was they tried to index the colors by name, not their position in the table.

 

Indexed by number, you could ensure they were all unique. It made changes more cumbersome, as new colors were added often in the middle of the sequence, changing the number references for each book. (though the references were unique to the book in the first place.)

 

In V4 it wasn't that they referenced them all by name — where one might assume the names would be unique — but that the names were only the last 6 characters of the color name.

 

"Rhodamine Red" and "Rubine Red" end with the same characters.

 

That's just sloppy database design, as the first order of business is ensuring all of your table entries are unique. Like, that's something you can actually test for. There wasn't even a basic QC for the new table.

 

And yes, I don't see Pantone running to correct this issue. Much like they're not running to create a version of their Pantone Connect that runs on an M1 Mac (natively) or a product that can actually create spot channels. (this is going to be even more fun when the overdue next Pantone update comes out with even more new colors.)

 

What I feel is important for Adobe to address is how Photoshop references spot channels that were created from ACB files.

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Adobe Employee ,
Oct 24, 2022 Oct 24, 2022

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Your request about improving the way we internally reference these colors is well taken. It will become even more important as we transition to new, external systems for selecting these colors. I'll look into it and see if we can address it. You are quite correct that the strict binding we currently have to our ACB files is too restrictive. We need a better, more generalized system.

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Engaged ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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That screencast does not happen anymore in Photoshop 2023.

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Engaged ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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ZBalling_0-1667325393085.png

 

Photoshop 2023

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Contributor ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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@ZBalling thanks for confirming that — that's good to know

 

did you confirm that it works correctly the other way, too? that if you type in "Rubine" you do in fact get Rubine, and it doesn't switch to Rhodamine? (I'm wondering if it's just switching reading the database from top to bottom, or bottom to top and now the other one is first.)

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Engaged ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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It is also fixed in latest 23.5.2 update (BTW, does it mean that never before Rhodamine Red was used, no wonder Pantone withdrew from Adobe).

 

ZBalling_0-1667327315319.png

 

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Engaged ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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Yes, Rubine Red also works. Can you confirm that on your side with printers and stuff?

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