Adobe rgb versus srgb

Joined
Apr 18, 2008
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Fairfax, Virginia
I'm looking at purchasing a new monitor. I've always worked in srgb and do not have a photo printer.

Adobe rgb looks interesting but I'm not sure where I could obtain prints using this color space or whether I would get much bang for the buck with better prints if I did.

I'd be interested in some advice on whether there is enough of a difference to consider buying a monitor that can display Adobe rgb so I can learn how to work in that color space and review the results.

Thanks in advance for any input.
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
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Typically I edit my photos in Adobe RGB color space, then convert to srgb for web display. When printing, I convert to a specific, material based color profile, such as those made for Ilford for their Gallerie papers.
 

Growltiger

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Unless you have a specific need I think you are better off sticking with an sRGB monitor.

Some people have had complex colour management problems using extended gamut (i.e. Adobe RGB) monitors. Some can be configured for sRGB which simplifies things and gets you back to an sRGB monitor again. Obviously you must carry out your calibration when in the mode you will use.

Some people have both types of monitor so they can easily and accurately see images they will be printing in Adobe RGB as well as images destined for the web.

I don't pretend to be a colour management expert. Each time I think I understand it all I find I don't.
 
Joined
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In a properly colour managed workflow including a correctly calibrated and profiled monitor you can work in any colour editing space you want with any monitor. For my own captures I work in Prophoto even though my monitor is not capable of displaying such a wide gamut space. My next monitor will be wide gamut and I will be prepared to spend a little more for a quality one designed for graphics work probably from NEC or Eizo -still they will not approach the colour gamut of Prophoto.

While it may not seem logical to use such a wide colour space when both viewing and printing are limited by the device capability the fact remains that our camera sensors are quite capable of recording a much greater colour range than can be accomodated within either sRGB or Adobe RGB therefore Prophoto is the best fit for many. Using soft proofing and the correct paper profile supplied by your printer in either PS or LR will show you what the paper printer combination is able to record
Understanding Prophoto
Wide Gamut display

I am not trying to sell you the idea of going to Prophoto but think that as you mentioned Adobe RGB that it is worth considering as well. There is absolutely nothing wrong with sticking within an sRGB workflow and fine images are still being produced in sRGB by many photographers.
 
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I agree with Tony. Two alternative approaches:

(a) The ideal (IMHO): use an entirely colour-manged workflow. Calibrated and profiled monitor, can choose any monitor gamut (most are approximately sRGB, wide gamut monitors are generally nearer to Adobe RGB), all software is colour-managed (e.g. Elements, Photoshop and Lightroom) and use colour-managed browsers (which means Firefox or Safari). Work in whatever colour space you like, but convert to sRGB for posting to the web.

(b) Alternatively: work entirely in sRGB. Use a standard gamut monitor (not wide gamut), and work only in sRGB. Ideally the monitor should be profiled and calibrated, but not so critical.

If you have a wide-gamut monitor or you work in Adobe RGB, you must choose (a) - fully colour-managed workflow - or most colours will be wrong most of the time. You end up chasing mysterious colour errors.
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2006
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Pennsylvania
I went through this decision process a couple of years ago and ended up getting an Adobe RGB monitor from NEC. If I had to do it all over again, I'm not sure what I would do. While Adobe RGB does have a wider gamut than sRGB, it is not dramatically wider, and there is no printing process that I'm aware of that can make use of all those extra colors. Yes, some print labs accept images in Adobe RGB, but that doesn't mean they can print it all.

The overwhelming majority of people use sRGB, so you always have to remember to convert to that color space before sending anything. I've reached the point where I have gone back to the sRGB option in camera. I shoot raw usually, so it's something that can be changed in Capture NX2 if really needed, but if not, this way I don't have to remember to convert every time.

Barry
 
Joined
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Chicago
My lab prints to Kodak paper, furnishes a profile, and specifically wants files in RGB. I use an Eizo monitor same as they have. Prints are beautiful.

AiProLab.com or Advances Imaging. They will do mail order. Neil is great at keeping his system up to proper calibration.
 

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