Today marks the release of the X-Rite ColorMunki Smile…
A name which lends itself to a host of puns and cheesy marketing gimmicks – although to be fair, I think we were fairly restrained with our efforts at CC HQ!
Anyway enough of that…
If you are completely new to the world of colour management, image editing or photography and are starting to require a solution to produce greater on-screen accuracy, then this is the solution for you.
Have you ever wondered why the pictures you took on your camera don’t look the same when displayed on your monitor? Well, monitors aren’t prefect; displayed colour can vary from monitor to monitor or even drift over time. This means the image you view on screen might not be a true reflection of what you actually captured.
Monitor calibrators are designed to solve this problem by optimising your monitor to display colours as accurately as possible.
The ColorMunki Smile has been designed with simplicity in mind. Unlike its bigger brothers; ColorMunki Display and i1Display Pro which offer a host of advanced features to play with, the Smile is as straight-forwards as plugging into your USB and letting it get on with calibrating your screen. This means you don’t need to have an expert knowledge of colour science to get the results you want.
It’s one of our most frequently received colour management questions in recent years.
What is the difference between sRGB and Adobe RGB?
Simply put – Adobe RGB defines a larger colour-space than RGB. (The ‘s’ stands for standard). But, how do you choose which format to work in?
The general rule of thumb is that the more you know and understand about colour management as a whole, the more likely it is you’ll want to use Adobe RGB to give you that extra control and customisation. Have you been pondering over switching to Adobe RGB? Have a read of our summary below…
The key advantages of Adobe RGB
Colours of a stronger saturation can be defined when working in Adobe RGB. In practical terms – or ink on paper – this means that some colours which use the Cyan – Yellow range of printing inks will not be reproduced to its full intensity as when working in sRGB.
The strongest Cyan printing colour that can be defined within sRGB equates to a 75% intensity of a Cyan printing ink, 85% of Green or 95% or Yellow, depending on your ink and paper combination.
As a result, Adobe RGB is considered the preferred source colour-space for conventional print when converting to press CMYK.
The key disadvantages of Adobe RGB
Monitor capabilities – Most monitors can only display the sRGB colour space, which generally means the increased colour intensities of Adobe RGB are not visible on-screen. Although sRGB sounds restricting in terms of colour vibrancy, Adobe RGB’s greater saturation is not necessarily that ‘natural’, and may only be relevant to a few percent of the pixels in your images.
Colour quality – Colour in sRGB is defined in steps, starting at white through to the most saturated level of Red, Green or Blue. Basically, the larger the colour space, the larger the steps have to be. Working in a smaller colour gamut – sRGB – means smaller steps, and less of a colour jump from one to the next. This means sRGB contains a larger range of intermediary colours, and smoother colour transitions within images.
Common use of sRGB – Web browsers automatically interpret images in sRGB format, so for colour accurate display online, images should be sRGB
So, in summary, working in sRGB is the best route to accurate colour for many users. But, once you understand and appreciate the potential pitfalls of working in Adobe RGB, you are in a much better position to make use of its advantages.
As with our previous last few blog posts, the above extract was taken from our extensive learning centre. For more information, or for a selection of similar articles, click here.
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