Yet more colour space confusion

I’m curious to view the print, that shows any advantage when using a larger colour space than AdobeRGB. Or the monitor that shows a relevant difference.
Or the monitor that shows the relevance of 30bits colour.
I still prefer wet chemical prints (of course generated by laser lighting nowadays) over many inkjet prints. Although their colour space is sRGB at best.

I don’t have the skills to produce such a print but I am convinced that there are people who can do so. Having the raw data mapped to the largest possible colour space (e.g. ProPhoto) as part of the initial RAW processing and then the ability to control how the resultant colours in that space are remapped to the smaller spaces of your monitor and the paper you are printing on means you have greater control of the end result, giving a subtlety to the output that otherwise would be missing. A bit like listening to a CD through a carefully set up high end hifi system vs hearing it on a perfectly adequate but less finely tuned system.

I’m not sure.
The bigger the difference in color space the bigger the differences in the end,smaller,color space.
The bigger the working color space, the bigger are the correcting steps with equal bit depth.


simple – get a good monitor and printer :slight_smile:

Hardware and stuff set apart, it depends on the subject if you profit of a wide(r) colour space. Going from sRGB to AdobeRGB is ‘easier’ to notice & realize than beyond.

While ‘my’ photobook provider mostly wants sRGB files to work with, I’m not sure about the wet prints’ colour range limitation.

Well, probably you can download the printer colour space of your photobook provider. If you have a profile viewer, you can compare it with sRGB and Adobe RGB. I don’t know if a profile viewer can be downloaded from the internet. When I worked as an R&D scientist for printing systems, I had the tooling to load multiple colour spaces in a viewer and compare them in 3D. The weakness of sRGB is in bright green colours. For the rest the difference with AdobeRGB is real, but rarely relevant. Bright green colours are also the weak point of pigment based inkjet inks. If you don’t have an specific green ink, it will be difficult to produce bright green hues because the cyan pigment is too “blue”. Dye based cyan inks are better at this point, but suffer from a worse longevity.
Of course, if you have a good monitor (my Eizo shows 99% of the AdobeRGB colour space), you can see the difference in SOME files if you do a soft proofing in e.g. Photoshop with an image that was edited in AdobeRGB and now shown in a simulated sRGB space. But definitely not always.
There are good reasons not to edit in wide-gamut spaces, because they contain many colours that do not exist in the real world, and because only a small part of the available colour space will be used. So you throw away a lot of the available grey levels/colour. Not a big deal as long as you edit 48bit images, but not a good idea if you edit e.g. a jpg with only 24bit colour depth. So you better remap to e.g. AdobeRGB to do your editing, soon after RAW conversion.

I don’t think a great image will be discarded if it is “only” in sRGB space. Nor do I think that anyone will view a mediocre image in ProPhoto and say: Wow, that color space! I think that e.g. the viewing conditions of the print (lighting) have a much greater effect than the print colour space, if of course a certain “lowest acceptance level” is met.


Well, over the years I tried to learn & understand. :slight_smile:

There is Gamutvision 1.4 to compare different profiles – and for now, I take this “merry-go-roundtrip” with LR, when to prepare photobooks ( → still missing softproof in PL ).

Colour space comparison – from practice shows some examples, what to achieve when printing with two different papers.

As my screen is (only) AdobeRGB compatible and I want to see what’s going on, I never printed in ProPhoto RGB – just until these days, when I tried to find out if & what I’m missing …

  • I used test pics in ProPhotoRGB colour space, converted a copy of each into AdobeRGB and printed out all versions (w/ PS & custom paper profile for my ‘best’ paper).

  • As said before, it depends on the subject …
    There are some colours like the deep blue sky or a saturated red & yellow, which in direct comparison to the AdobeRGB versions seem to ‘jump out of the page’, while onscreen I mainly noticed increased luminosity.
    Thing is, apart from some higher saturation there seem to be a ‘better’ gradation, leading to more ‘plasticity’ (like some more 3D). I still have to test this with real size prints (but no friend of HDR).

And no, a wider colour space doesn’t turn a mediocre pic all magically into something beautiful
– or vice versa, and not to forget great B&W pics.


From → here … I got test pics in ProPhoto RGB colour space


I have a good monitor (actually 2…iMac 5k and a brand new Eizo CG2700S), a very good printer (Canon ProGRAF Pro-1000)…and now…I seem to be stuck with software that doesn’t support 10-bit/30-bit colour. It seems that I have to go Adobe again (because Photoshop does support this).
A larger colourspace than Adobe RGB is very welcome…10-bit/30-bit support even more so. Oh, did I mention soft proofing?

Is it vissible 10 bits against 8 bit?


Professional color management implies that the photographer can choose the working color space. Everything else is a compromise and there will always be dissatisfied users.
I would always choose the workspace to be the color space the input image is in.
But as I’ve said in many threads over the past years - professional color management is clearly not important to the DXO team.

In 2 months, the new version of PhotoLab will be released. I’d bet there won’t be a positive change in color management…

1 Like

I don’t think so. Color management is about adjusting the pixel values to the colors of the output device so that they look equal and true as possible on any output device. That’s independent of the working color space. I also think that the best working color space should be the same as the used output device. But the output device is not always a fixed output device.
In genereal: the bigger the working color space as the one of the output device, the bigger the corrections has to be.


Good morning,

every time when I have to remember something areound color in photography I start here
Overview of Color Management (

because this was one link I noticed in a discussion here or in another forum

hope it helps

1 Like

Working color space is part of color management. For this reason, in some competing software, this setting is located in the color management tab.
But I’m not here to argue. My vote is for the photographer to be able to set that working color space. Because we have different needs. At the moment, photographers working entirely in AdobeRGB have no problems, but this is at the expense of us who work in sRGB. The only way I can support a request for a wider working color space is if I can specify the narrower sRGB. Otherwise, I’ll be against any wider working color space.
By support I mean voting for the respective request and purchasing the update.

I know what I want and why and forum discussion won’t change my mind.

Коко :slight_smile:

This article comprehensive article is fairly good, although it takes some effort to think it through…

And as you can read it’s output device related. No mentioning of a working space. It takes care that the color red by example is the same red on all output devices. And I mean the color as an exponent of its wavelength. To gain that the pixel values has to be changed a little, or more. That’s what color management does.


Hi George,
the link I posted is part 1 of 3, and I only want to remember to look that the process of color management has a starting point and a end point with lot of devices in the process. That is also the statement of the intro from the article platypus linked.

No more and no less :grinning:

The working space we have discussed a few month ago where I posted a video from the Affinity channel, where the guy explained why it’s sometimes necessary to work within a greater color space. I will have a look if I found it and post the link again.

Edit Farbverwaltung | Tutorials zu Affinity Photo für Desktop-Computer (

I didn’t see the link of @platypus. But it states the same: it’s output dedicated. It takes care that a certain color looks equal as possible on different output devices.
The working color space is part of the editing. The editing is done in the working color space but the result is shown in the color space of the output device. And that conversion to that different color space should use the perceptual rendering intent.

An interesting quote from wiki
Using a large (gamut) working space will lead to posterization, while using a small working space will lead to clipping.[7] This trade-off is a consideration for the critical image editor.
Using the relative rendering intent with a large color working space will lead to clipping to. See the figures in that Cambridgeincolor link. So I don’t know why some people are asking for a larger working space unless they have an output device that uses it.


And that’s the point…the discussion I think it’s more general, and for me a larger working color space isn’t important because I’m a hobby photographer and my lab for printing asks for sRGB. My monitors are sRGB and calibrated so all is good. the question I think was, why DXo doesn’t support larger color spaces and/or in another thread softproof possibilities for all the pro’s…like it’s implemented by other software manufacturers.

And I hope we can discuss, dream and ask for such things also in the future. Perhaps PL6 will make this discussion obsolete. :innocent:

Having a large working colour space has its advantages

  • Image data of RAW files can be preserved: Putting smaller gamut image data into a larger gamut working colour space requires no colour transformations and therefore causes no colours to be changed.
  • Reduced risk of clipping colours in customising because of ample “wiggle room”
  • BUT we need to tread carefully in order to prevent visible posterisation
    → work with >8bits/colour as long as possible

Using a smaller gamut working colour space has its drawbacks

  • Fitting a larger gamut image into a smaller gamut working colour space either needs trimming off or compression of colours. Through rendering intent, we define if colours will be cut or compressed.
  • BUT a smaller standardised WCS helps to guess how colours will look for someone not using colour management…although we can never be sure.

The main takeways for me in relation to PhotoLab are the following

  1. Describe the working colour space (WCS) that is used by default → Details
  2. Let the user decide if the default or any other WCS should be used…
    if there is more than one (the default) WCS.
  3. Let the user decide which transformation should be used…
    this is where rendering Intent comes to play.

I love my old link list and so I’ve take this one A Shocking Reason to Work in 16-Bit! - Photoshop Tips - YouTube
look it till the end, because the guy explained the reason when it’s better to stay in 8-bit

For me it’s very difficult to decide who is right or wrong

stay tuned


I’m reading something else. Edit in 16 bit, export in 8 bit for most output devices are in 8 bit. There’re some filters that doesn’t work with 16 bit so you’re forced to work with 8 bit in editing. Typical filters that only work with jpg.
But do the editing in 16 bit.