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LR3 Color Space Question

Discussion in 'Image Processing' started by Wasabi Bob, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. Wasabi Bob

    Wasabi Bob Mu-43 Top Veteran

    I use LR3 with the Photomatix plugin to export RAW photos to Photomatix. I just realized that LR is exporting the files using AdobeRGB color space. How / where can I change it to sRGB? I've read on several web pages that sRGB is supposed to be the default.
     
  2. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    Default and "best" are two different things. aRGB is a significantly larger colour space than sRGB. If Photomatix is happy working on the aRGB files then leave it at that.

    If you must change it the settings are in LRs export dialog.

    Gordon
     
  3. Wasabi Bob

    Wasabi Bob Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Found the setting

    Larger, yes....
    But it's my understanding that it's best to work in sRGB for color proofing. Working in other color spaces will produce larger color differences between the screen and the printed image.

    Actually, I found the setting in the "Export" section. While you can't change the working color space, you can change the export color space. I do appreciate your response - thanks again.
     
  4. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    Where did you hear that? Almost every printer currently available new, including cheapies, has a gamut much bigger than sRGB. It's only cheap commercial labs and web output that need sRGB files. Working in sRGB clips stronger colours significantly, especially oranges and reds. This affects not only those vibrant landscape colours but also the tonal range of portraits as well. The usual recommendation is to have a working space that is at least as large as the largest output space you have (usually your printer). Ideally you should send your images to Photomatix with as much colour information as possible for the round trip to LR. If possible use ProPhoto. Then when you export a *finished* file, choose the appropriate profile based on the colour space of the device your exporting to. Deliberately clipping a file during the creation stage rather than the output stage is going to severely compromise the file. Once those colours are gone you never get them back.

    For what it's worth LR uses a modified ProPhoto RGB space called "Melissa" as it's working space and this can't be changed. It's a huge space. LR4 now has soft proofing, for checking output but the working space remains the same.

    Gordon
     
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  5. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    Agree with flash: for web images, use sRGB. For printing aRGB.
     
  6. Wasabi Bob

    Wasabi Bob Mu-43 Top Veteran

    So why than ..

    I could list several reasons, but regarding AdobeRGB, look at this page:
    sRGB vs. Adobe RGB

    I get a lot of my printing done at Costco. I spoke to the tech from Noritsu while he was servicing their printer and we got on this subject. He explained that their systems are set up for sRGB. Most of the complaints they receive about "flat" color are from customers who aren't using sRGB. I attended the WPPI show last week and received te same advice from the folks at BayPhoto.

    Definitely need to do some testing and see for myself. Appreciate all the responses.
     
  7. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    I guess Flash and I weren't thinking of Costco. When I want display prints, I print them myself or use a high quality service, not the lowest cost one. I'm sure that 99% of Costco's photo business comes from P&S cameras, so calibrating for P&S makes sense. But you're definitely leaving some quality behind with that choice.
     
  8. pjohngren

    pjohngren Mu-43 Top Veteran

    560
    Oct 15, 2010
    I disagree. For years I used AdobeRGB but for the past year have switched to sRGB and get just as good results - in fact more reliable. All LCD monitors are in sRGB, the screen on the back of your camera is sRGB.

    sRGB has the exact same number of colors as Adobe RGB - 24 bit is 24 bit - you get 16 million colors. If you want to see on the screen what you will get on the print, use sRGB, otherwise you are working with a color space that is being translated from AdobeRGB to sRGB for you viewing, then back to AdobeRGB for the printing - which makes no sense to me.

    If you are like me and using a 7 or 8 ink printer (I'm using an Epson Stylus Pro 4000), then 16 million colors is enough when mixed down to 7 or 8 inks.

    Also, with AdobeRGB my understanding is that you are compressing the supposed wider color space of AdobeRGB into the given 24 bit space, then expanding it back again. If you screw up anywhere along the way and it isn't tagged that you are back in AdobeRGB, then you will end up worse than you started, as it won't be expanded back and will look sick and anemic.

    The standard for all of the book publishing houses, like Blurb, is sRGB. If you get any prints from places like Kodak, they use sRGB. I feel that AdobeRGB is highly overrated.
     
  9. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    Ken Rockwell is about 10 years behind........ He may have been involved in the early days of digital. But then, so was Kodak. Once upon a time sRGB was considered a huge colour space. Now even aRGB is considered small. Hence the Melissa colour space.

    I'm not saying you shouldn't output to sRGB. If your lab needs sRGB then that's the file you should give them. 90% of my own output is sRGB. But........

    That doesn't mean you should use it as your working space. Your sending information from LR to Photomatix. Why wouldn't you send as much information there as possible? The more information you send the less destructive the process is. You'll end up with a better file. Think of it like jepg vs raw. Sure jpegs work fine most of the time. But when you really need to push a file to its limits your better off with raw because there's more information available to work with. Work in the largest space you can. Then when you export to your "Costico" files, you export sRGB jpegs. In LR4 you'll even be able to soft proof the process to check out of gamut colours.

    The second advantage will be that when, down the track, you think you've got a shot worth printing on a fine art material or you get that great deal on an A3+ printer, you'll be able to go back and re-export a nice aRGB file. And even that won't be a big enough space to match a half decent printer.

    I suppose it just comes down to how wiling you are to compromise.

    Gordon
     
  10. Michael

    Michael Mu-43 Regular

    With one exception that I can think of all the colour printers I have used mosty for larger prints use sRGB. Personally, having worked in reprographics I use LAB and that is one reason why I don't use LR or Aperture I have the former and the latter I sold off. Both are good applications but I find that working and correcting in LAB is faster in my work flow and gives me the resuilts I like.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    No they don't. All my monitors have a larger than aRGB space except my Mac laptop screen. Certainly "most" screens and almost all laptop screens are less than sRGB. But many photographers upgrade in time to a better screen. Most printers are much larger than even aRGB. The problem with this advice is that is means that down the road your NEVER going to upgrade your monitor to a better unit or that your going to go back and re-process every file if you do. Using a larger working space is future proofing at worst.

    No it's not. Even if you have a cheaper sRGB monitor the file is being profiled to that device only. The printer uses its own profile, which it translates straight from the file. It goes from the working space to a single device. Not from the file to the monitor, then back to the file and then to the printer for printing. If what you were saying were the case there would be no difference between the screen image and the print as the entire sRGB space fits inside the aRGB space and no shades would be remapped.

    The number of colours is not the same as the range of colours. Gamut describes the deepest shade of a colour that can be represented not how many shades. I can have 256 shades of grey between white and mid grey or 256 shades of grey between white and black. Same amount of shades (256x256x256=16.7 million shades) different gamut. Then again I wouldn't limit myself to 24 bit files either? Even our pissy little m4/3 cameras are capturing 30 and 32 bit files. I may as well shoot jpegs if that's the case, in which case I have no need for Lightroom.

    My 3800 and 2400 are both capable of hundreds of millions of colours. As are most modern inkjet printers preferred by photographers.

    Bit depth and gamut are different things. You can have 24bit aRGB files if you want.

    Not the ones I use (Asuka and Momento Pro). They accept aRGB files. Anyway. Most people are going to get an inkjet printer before they get a book done.

    Gordon
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. pjohngren

    pjohngren Mu-43 Top Veteran

    560
    Oct 15, 2010
    Thanks flash for your comments on my iconoclastic remarks. After six months of dealing with RAW, I have dumped that as well as Adobe RGB, so I am a lost cause. I guess my plea is for those who believe that less is better, or simpler is more direct, when it comes to artistic expression. After all, there are those creating art with Polaroids.

    For me, tweaking my G3 to in-camera process at a very high level so that the image I download is just about where I want it, then staying in sRGB and using my trusty old Photoshop 7 to do the final tweaking, has openned up a straight forward, wonderful world of getting back to basics, that I wouldn't trade for all the bit-depth worry in the world. I can output and create wonderful 16 X 20 prints that I really doubt anyone would know were in-camera processed, sRGB jpegs. I know that I'm operating in the Ken Rockwell era, but I don't see it at all as a compromise, any more than a painter who decided to stay with oils instead of moving to acrylics.

    And by the way, I also can't stand HDR. It all looks like nuclear fill flash to me.
     
  13. jim_khoo

    jim_khoo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 9, 2010
    Kuala Lumpur
    i do not want to open another thread for one noob question so i piggy back on this thread. so here goes...

    how do i "stop" opening LR3 every time i plug in a sd card to download my photos? :redface:

    thanks.
     
  14. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    It's in the preferences for LR.

    Gordon
     
  15. sprinke

    sprinke Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 5, 2011
    Pasadena, CA
    Debi
    What good online photo printing service accepts aRGB? I mostly use Mpix -- they are sRGB.
     
  16. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    I can't speak for the states but here in Oz almost all the pro labs I deal with (CFL, Pixel Perfect etc.) deal with at least aRGB files. Some of these labs even have custom profiles available for download that are larger again, for soft proofing in your computer.

    I'm sure there are plenty if you want to work with large gamut files. Finding them can be a challenge though.

    Gordon
     
  17. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    784
    Mar 3, 2010
    In LR3/4 I use ProPhoto RGB 16bit for max Gamut