Date   

Re: Is it really worth it??

Terence L. Wyse <terry@...>
 

on 1/5/01 7:05 PM, They Call Me Ping! wrote:

I know there are limitations to the technology, but there are so many
options available, it's hard to know where to start!? Any advice on
Color Management implementation, or horror stories would be greatly
Appreciated... Thanks!

Well, it's hard to know exactly where to start but our company has been
successful helping printers and design customers implement a "color managed
workflow" (whatever THAT is!). This is the approach I would take, in this
order, to sort of ease into the whole ICC color thing:

1) Get a good digital proofer and (more importantly) a GOOD RIP that will
support both source and destination ICC profiles. I think the first "big"
benefit you will realize is being able to accurately proof and simulate
either your analog proofing system or perhaps even your press conditions.
Stick with simulating your analog proofs to start out.

2) Consider profiling your scanners and scanning in RGB ("ScannerRGB"
profile) and converting to CMYK in Photoshop using (possibly) the same
"AnalogProofCMYK" profiles you're using for your digital proofer. You may
try doing some editing in RGB but I don't push that as a "must" to realize
you can have a profile made of that scanner that might take you some of the
benefits of an ICC workflow.
I've even had drum scanners benefit from being profiled. In a couple hours,
days/weeks/years of tweaking to get exactly right the "normal" way. Trust
me, I've done it both ways, a profiled scanner will generally be WAY better
out of the box than most good scanner operators could hope to get in several
iterations of scanning/proofing.

Doing just those two things should have a positive impact over your current
workflow.

BTW, I'm really not a huge advocate of keeping things in RGB all the way to
the end of the workflow and converting to CMYK as late as possible (usually
in the film/platesetter RIP). This can be fraught with danger depending on
how you currently do things. Keep things in RGB during a good part of the
editing/retouching stages and convert to CMYK when you think you're about
there and just before pulling your first digital proof.
I'm also not a big fan of insisting on attempting to profile your printing
presses. Hugely variable process if you're a "typical" printer and I'm just
not sure the time spent justifies the end result. In short, if your
pressroom is successfully "matching" your analog proof system, then
standardise/profile the analog proof and be done with it. At least this is a
process that is somewhat stable and quantifiable to a degree. Now, if you're
going direct-to-plate, all bets are off!

My $.02..
Terry


_____________________________
Terence (Terry) Wyse
PrePress Specialist
All Systems Integration, Inc.
781.935.3322 voice
781.935.6622 fax
http://www.allsystems.com
terry@allsystems.com
_____________________________


Is it really worth it??

They Call Me Ping!
 

Hi All, My Name is Ping, I am new to this group, and I really need some
expert advice. I am a Scanner Operator running a Heidelberg Topaz II
scanner using LinoColor 6.0. I work in a medium size shop, we have
several imagesetters, a NT server, and around 10 MACS, and 3 PCs all on
a network. We currently have a Speedmaster 72 and 52, and many smaller
presses.We are looking at expanding into CTP and digital proofing and
printing very soon also.

I am in a unique situation, the Service Bureau I used to work for was
bought out by our major client, a PRINTING company. So now, it has
fallen upon my shoulders to CALIBRATE everything, all the way to the
Press. Quite a JOB! SO, with increasing requests from our customers, I
have been investigating the mysterious world of Color Management...

We had a color consultant come in and meet with everyone (Steve from
Chromix), he was very helpful and sharp, and the response from
management was positive. I did get a (meager) budget for this project,
and without mentiong numbers, it looks like quite an investment.
However management here wants me to research IF indeed the expense is
really worth the promised benefits of implementing a Color Managed
workflow(?) Basically, is it really necessary for a medium size (and
growing) print shop? I say YES, keeping up with technology is very
important, but they are very "old school" (if it works don't fix it),
and would like some proof. I'm sure you all have heard that story
before...

Currently, I am using a SPLASH color copier for intermediate proofing
(to save $$$ on Fuji Color art laminates, am I wasting my time?), but
we are looking at more accurate wide format options also that would
interface with our imagesetters Harlequin RIP. From what I gathered of
the "Digital Proofing" dilemma, a major problem seems to be what is
termed "HUE error", that is colors being displayed or proofed, that do
not match inks used in offset printing. And we thought Dot gain was
hard to measure (!)

I know there are limitations to the technology, but there are so many
options available, it's hard to know where to start!? Any advice on
Color Management implementation, or horror stories would be greatly
Appreciated... Thanks!


Vignettes and Digital Proofing

Dan Margulis <76270.1033@...>
 

Paul writes,

If one bends a curve in order to more perfectly proof with Digital
Proofing,
are you also, at least theoretically, going to make your vignettes less
smooth because at some point you'll be on a steeper part of the slope? If
this is true, how is it overcome?>>

This can happen, but it's not obvious that you want to overcome it. Digital
proofs can be made extremely accurate for color. Where they fall down, at
least those that don't generate their own halftone dot, is in portraying
texture. The digital proof isn't going to be absolutely reliable for how
sharp or how grainy the image will print, although it will give an idea.
And it won't predict banding well. Most of the time when serious banding
appears in print it's because somebody signed off on a digital proof that
didn't show it. Similarly, the digital proof can band in areas where there
will be no banding on press.

If it becomes a serious issue, just add noise to the gradient before
proofing it.

Dan Margulis


PowerStrip opinions

IronWorks <ironworks@...>
 

I don't recall if I obtained the suggestion from this group or another, but
I am trying out a utility called 'Powerstrip' from Entech
http://www.entechtaiwan.com/ps.htm for monitor color calibration. I have a
supported video card and have a Pentax 700 MHz PC, Dell 19" Sony Monitor,
and Epson Perfection 1200U Photo scanner, and am running Windows 98SE. I
use Corel PhotoPaint 8 for raster graphics. I am still in the process of
shopping around for a color printer.

I am an amateur and this program seems to be something I can learn to use
and would be helpful.

Is anyone familiar with this program and do you find it of value?

Are there other, similar programs you would recommend that I try?

IronWorks


<no subject>

Kevin Bubbenmoyer <kbphoto@...>
 


Re: Yarc...

Angus Pady <angus@...>
 

Also worth considering (although I don't know how high performance the
RIP is) is DeskCheck from Aurelon. It does quite an amazing job of
producing color accurate proofs on inkjets (I would consider them near
contract quality out of the box when making no profiles; and contract
quality if you do make profiles). While this product will use ICC
profiles, it revolves around a proprietary spectral profile technology

I understand that Aurelon is closing it's doors. I know a guy that knows a guy that works there and hasn't been paid in months. The investor from Europe is pulling the plug....

I have been trying the BESTColor Designer Edition, it runs on a mac. Still fairly new but looks promising. Also, Imation has been toying with a Mac based rip but is slow to get out of the gates.

Angus


Re: Yarc...

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

The printers are beginning to show their age and we are waiting to see what
Epson's next line of printers has to offer.
Make sure to stay away from the ones that use Epson's pigmented ink. They
won't be suitable for proofing.

Has anyone got any 'real world' experience with Yarc's http://www.yarc.com
line of products? It's a name I've heard on and off again... but I haven't
had the opportunity to work with the equipment.
Yarc has a free RIP for the Epson 3000. You might check it out and give
their sales department a call to see if it's fair to draw any conclusions
between the free RIP and the interface of their full blown RIP solution.
They have a RIP box that runs on Linux with a separate card that does
RIP. It sounds great because it will drive multiple printers using just a
single box which is something that BESTColor can't say. BESTColor on NT
seems to have more of a reputation, perhaps they just have better
marketing than Yarc. Yarc doesn't seem to market a whole lot. Both
products will allow you to specific a press and inkjet ICC profile so the
inkjet will produce color accurate proofs.

On Mac OS there are a couple of RIPs for proofing worth considering.
Compose has a Harlequin RIP that will produce proofs. I have this RIP but
my computer isn't high enough performance (292Mhz G3) and it's really
slow to get proofs out, so I haven't had an opportunity to really
evaluate how good it's color reproduction is.

Also worth considering (although I don't know how high performance the
RIP is) is DeskCheck from Aurelon. It does quite an amazing job of
producing color accurate proofs on inkjets (I would consider them near
contract quality out of the box when making no profiles; and contract
quality if you do make profiles). While this product will use ICC
profiles, it revolves around a proprietary spectral profile technology.

The only other company I'm aware of that uses spectral based profiles for
proofing is See Color. They also have a product for proofing, but I
haven't used it. From those who have used it, I hear they are quite
pleased.

Needless to say there are some options.


Chris Murphy


Re: Color settings and upgrades

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Since I'm finally taking the plunge and moving from PS4 to PS6, what would
you recommend as the best package for monitor calibration and profile
creation?

I work with both Mac's and PC's, so if there is a package that works with
both that would be preferred.
As long as it's Windows 98 or 2000, then I would get Photocal + Spyder
from Color Vision. $199 for 1 license of software and colorimeter and $50
for each additional seat of software. If you're looking at dealing with
NT, then it gets more dicey.

It will calibrate as well as make profiles for MONITORS.


A colleague has one of the Xrite densitometers
(don't recall which one offhand) that he has offered to let me borrow. It
was a several thousand device, so that would be great if the profile
software could allow the use of that device.
A densitometer is color blind (not a precisely accurate analogy, but it
doesn't give us useful colorimetric nor spectra information). At a
minimum a reflective colorimeter is needed to make profiles, but
spectrophotometers don't cost much more so I recommend them.
Spectrophotometers can be used as a colorimeter and as a densitometer, so
they are quite versatile.

If I understand correctly, I'll need some hardware (suction cup device) and
software for monitor calibration, and I'll need some software package and
device to read the output targets from diferent devices.
Honestly I'd stick with Photoshop 5 or 6 for making your initial
separation information if you're working with presses or contract
proofing systems. Andrew, hasn't Bruce said he's made pretty good inkjet
profiles using Photoshop also? I think he has. Anyway, I would start
there and once you have success and then want more functionality or
better results, look into a profiling application like Gretag Macbeth
ProfileMaker 3.


I'd like to move forward and adopt the new style color management, but
frankly find it extremely confusing.
I'd recommend joining Apple's ColorSync User's listserve. The group there
can provide assistance, product recommendations, and troubleshooting
advice.



Chris Murphy


Re: confusing color management & color correction

Broudy, David <david.broudy@...>
 

-----Original Message-----
From: Gordon Pritchard [mailto:Gordon_Pritchard@CreoScitex.com]
Sent: Tuesday, January 02, 2001 7:55 PM
To: Color theory
Subject: [ColorTheory] confusing color management & color correction
If you are not a commercial printer what are you?
we publish school yearbooks, among other things (class rings, diplomas,
etc.).

Would it not benefit your customers to provide them with profiles?
no. hardly any of them scan a thing. overwhelmingly we receive a large box
of paper snapshots and a disc containing the page layouts, into which we
place the images once scanned. it's all automated.

Do you advertise the availablity of your press profile? If
not why not?
no. to understand that you have to understand the mindset of the schools
which I'll try to condense below:

the students and yearbook advisor (an overworked teacher who typically would
much rather not be doing it) do not have the time and rarely have the means,
skill, or interest to scan the hundreds or thousands of photos that go into
a yearbook (think of all the little headshots). we work with all levels of
customer technology because we have to, for example we still get a smallish
percentage of yearbook layouts delivered as paste-ups. few high schools have
vocational programs in graphic arts and those that do tend to teach obsolete
methods. I'd have thought digital cameras would be a big draw to this
market, but they aren't. it's much faster for them to shoot film and send us
prints and pagemaker layouts.

bottom line is this: advisors want to get rid of the yearbook project
ASAP--it is a big liability, time-suck, and a PITA. some students enjoy the
challenge and it's they who are starting to drive in-school scanning and/or
digital photography, though this is a very small segment of the work. of
course this will increase in the future, and we're ready for that.

oh and even if 100% of the schools scanned the entire book, I'd still want
RGB from them. the only reason they should want my press profile is for
soft-proofing.

Wouldn't promoting the availability of your profile give you
a leg-up on
your competitors?
no, for the reasons cited above. everyone in this business faces the same
issues.

Would you provide instruction to customers as to how to use
your profile?
yes, if there's interest.

How would you manage their expectations? I.e. what would
happen if the color
was not what they expected? How would do you assign liability?
the expectation is we reproduce the originals as closely as possible, even
if the originals suck. nothing more. the volume prevents anything else.

one of the challenges in this job has been getting others to understand the
unusual requirements of this business ;)


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Dan Margulis <76270.1033@...>
 

Chris writes,

You make ICC based color management out to be this substantially
different technology than what we've been using for the last eight years.
It isn't. It's the same thing that makes up separation tables in Photoshop
and various other forms of proprietary table based conversion methods that
hvae been used for a decade or more.>>

Wait a minute! You're stealing my lines!

What's little is left of the concept absolutely meets the description
above. It's traditional methodology with a new file format, one that's more
efficient because it's somewhat universal and somewhat more flexible.

And that's about it, at the moment. One wonders how such a trivial thing
could have commanded so much ink and so much trade show attention over the
last decade, not to mention the waste of bandwidth in this group. But at
least people are starting to understand what it is now.

In retrospect, all those inflated promises of a few years back, like the
scenario Gordon mentioned, obviously never had a chance. The only things
that did were the sensible parts that people are using now--traditional
methods, new format.

But since you have preempted me from repeating what I said then by
embracing it yourself, you give me the gleeful opportunity to take the
other side and remind you what some of your friends would have called you
had you said anything so counterrevolutionary at that time.

You are a dinosaur!
You will go the way of the typesetters!!
You are extremely dense!!!
You are highly reactionist!!!!
You will be assimilated!!!!!
RESISTANCE IS FUTILE!!!!!!

Ahhh. I feel better now. And with that, I bow out of the thread.

Dan Margulis


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

I don't think that because a profile is in PShop that that makes for an ICC
workflow.
I don't think there is such a thing as an ICC workflow anymore than there
is a CTP workflow. Workflow is company specific and I think it's complex
enough that it defies naming conventions.

I've never
seen a working ICC color managed workflow. (At least one that works)
This is probably what Dan is referring to. I think he calls it "this
grandiose scheme of a full blown ICC workflow". The gradiose scheme
pretty much does fall apart because not every application uses ICC
profiles, or even if they do, don't color manage all file types.
QuarkXPress is a good example. It only color manages color builds you
make in QXP *and* TIFF files. It doesn't have a mechanism for dealing
with anything else.

Dan would consider this a flaw of color management, ICC, or the grandiose
scheme of whatever. I think that's unfair because it's not the fault of
color management. It *can* color manage other kinds of objects. The flaw
is with QuarkXPress, and actually it's just a lack of a feature. It's
certainly a major drawback, and one they are aware of, but it's not fair
to label an entire technology as a failure because a major application
doesn't have full implementation of that technology.


I believe that I can also embed a profile of my scanner in an RGB scan and
that the printer's color management software can use that info to do
something but I'm not sure what.
I think that because we've gone for years where people haven't gotten
training on basic color concepts, we are having these kinds of debates on
ICC color management because vendors are driving the idea down our
throats. The concept of printing inks and separation setups in Photoshop
isn't new and is pretty much the same idea as an ICC profile. The problem
is that as you introduce this idea to the average graphic arts
individual, they get lost because they weren't even previously aware of
the importance of accurate printing inks and separation setup. They would
obliviously leave it on defaults and hack away on the image using a
manual technique to fix what amounted to a bad separation.

So perhaps the resistance is the idea that ICC is twice as new; a.)
didn't know that color management has been around for a long time prior
to ICC, just that most people ignored the problem; b.) ICC is a newer
technology, and different UI than the old way of doing things.


I do not know how I would specify a synthetic color in this system though.
E.g. green type in Xpress or illustrator. By how it looks on screen?
You can do it in a conventional way if you want, without penalty or
making changes with settings. If you set an appropriate press profile,
and your monitor is calibrated/profiled, Illustrator and QuarkXPress will
show you a reasonably accurate representation of whatever CMYK (or RGB)
values you select.

From a really basic perspective, nothing is different except that you can
trust you monitor whereas previously everyone I've ever talked to says
they WANT to trust their monitor, but never do because it's always
different.

And that is probably another level of resistance is that we are so used
to not trusting our monitors that the idea of trusting them seems really
unsafe if not impossible.


I believe that if I change my mind and go to a different print shop then I
would load a new profile which would then make my screen and Epson produce
the colors that I could expect to see from that other printer.
The "old" way of doing this would be to convert the image to Lab. Then
change your CMYK information to the new printing situation, and then
reconvert to CMYK. The "ICC" way of doing this would be to use
Photoshop's Profile To Profile (Photoshop 5) or Convert to Profile
(Photoshop 6) and go from one CMYK space directly to another by selecting
a FROM and TO profile. Of course, you can still do it the old way.

Some benefits of using ICC profiles comes from other applications that
can help this go faster. A conventional method would have you reseparate
everything in your layout, then update the QuarkXPress document. For
many, possibly most this isn't a big deal. For others it could mean a lot
of images. This CMYK to CMYK "repurposing" can be done with ICC profiles
in QuarkXPress directly without having to do it manually image by image
in Photoshop.

My complaint isn't that this doesn't work or can't be done which is what
it always seems Dan is saying because he never elaborates on the REAL
problem. That complaint is that it's complicated to know and remember
what things QuarkXPress can and can't do. For example if your layout
contains one EPS image, you may have no idea - but if you repurpose the
document for some other press, all images will be properly converted
EXCEPT the EPS files, and QuarkXPress will *NOT* warn you about this.

In order to have a fully functional QuarkXPress requires a $400 XTension
that allows it to not only work with EPS files, but deal with RGB ouput.
QuarkXPress 4 only converts images to an CMYK space. It will not convert
to RGB for RGB output methods. This is complicated and a totally
legitimate gripe. But the "blame" should be on Quark. Not color
management technology.



I thought that consultants would have similar lists of their successes.
I would think so to but apparently I'm not the only one that does a lot
of taking with printers and they just aren't up to a lot of action. The
six I've actually done work for I have NDA's with. Two gravure. Two
flexography. One newsprint/magazine. And one commercial sheetfed & web
(book publishing). With gravure and flexo they use profiles in prepress
and to customer who want them to both convert from RGB to CMYK (rare) and
more commonly to convert SWOP separated imaged and convert them for their
specific purpose (CMYK to CMYK conversion). They use monitor soft
proofing not for critical purpose, but to avoid printing out really nasty
images on an inkjet printer that's going to take a while (20 minutes) to
shoot out a proof. Newsprint/magazine has a batch processing piece of
software to convert RGB images from digital cameras to CMYK. Customers
are asked to separate using the supplied profile. The commercial printer
uses their profiles exclusively for proofing purposes.

Now recently I've refused to sign NDA's that prevent me from even talking
about success stories, and will only sign one's that deal with exactly
what all we did and how it relates to their specific workflow and
technology. It's been a real PITA to not be able to mention them by name
and give out referrals. But for now that's where it's at. Since I've
refused to sign NDA's I haven't had any printing companies as customers
for purposes other than just proofing. Too bad because it's a lot of fun
seeing this stuff work and save them a *LOT* of make ready time.


I would have that that after ten years this would be possible.
Keep in mind we only got the first application that really uses ICC
profile by design three years ago with Photoshop 5. I don't think the CTP
industry was making serious inroads only three years into an actual
viable solution.


Chris Murphy


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/2/01 5:39 PM, Gordon Pritchard at gordon_pritchard@creoscitex.com
wrote:

I believe that I can also embed a profile of my scanner in an RGB scan and
that the printer's color management software can use that info to do
something but I'm not sure what.
Convert to some necessary space (Editing or output). It's raw data tagged in
the space from that scanner. Cool feature in Photoshop 6 is that now you can
edit in your input space. The preview is fine. For people doing scans but
providing (or wanting to provide) the raw RGB for their customers can now do
this a lot easier with Photoshop 6. Dust busting and other work in Photoshop
5 would hose that scanner profile even if we didn't convert on open and
worked in that scanner space (with an ugly preview). I'm not suggesting that
editing in input space is a good idea for all users or for a lot of work
(I'd convert into a nicely behaved space like Adobe RGB 1998 or ColorMatch
RGB).

I do not know how I would specify a synthetic color in this system though.
E.g. green type in Xpress or illustrator. By how it looks on screen?
Depends on what color you are seeking. If you want to match a Pantone or
process color onto a device that doesn't use process inks, you can do that
for vector elements using a product called VectorPro.

I believe that if I change my mind and go to a different print shop then I
would load a new profile which would then make my screen and Epson produce
the colors that I could expect to see from that other printer.
Just the profile that created the original conversion to CMYK you want to
mimic on the Epson. That should already be embedded in the file from the
last person who did the actual conversion.

Andrew Rodney


Seeking CM reference site

Gordon Pritchard <gordon_pritchard@...>
 

There now appears to be some confusion as to what constitutes an ICC Color
managed workflow.

I don't think that because a profile is in PShop that that makes for an ICC
workflow.

So, this is what I was thinking it was as this is the impression I've gotten
from the vendors. Bear with me, I'm probably wrong....but, hey, I've never
seen a working ICC color managed workflow. (At least one that works) Please
correct my understanding if I'm wrong.

Imagine I'm a designer...Let's say (for illustration purposes) Mac. PShop,
Illustrator, Xpress, Epson 5000.

I ask my local printer for an ICC profile of their press (or maybe their
perferred contract proof)

I take this profile and put it somewhere in my Mac system.

My Mac uses color sync with profiles of my monitor and Epson so that what I
see on screen and what prints on the Epson will look very close to what I
will see on the target press (or contract proof if that what the printer's
supplied profile was). Also, I take it that PShop can use the profile to
create better separations from RGB to CMYK than if I used the default.

I believe that I can also embed a profile of my scanner in an RGB scan and
that the printer's color management software can use that info to do
something but I'm not sure what.

I do not know how I would specify a synthetic color in this system though.
E.g. green type in Xpress or illustrator. By how it looks on screen?

I believe that if I change my mind and go to a different print shop then I
would load a new profile which would then make my screen and Epson produce
the colors that I could expect to see from that other printer.

So what I was looking for is the same as if you were asking me about CTP. If
you are interested in CTP, but weren't sure quite what it was, and were
suspicious about what I told you ('cause I'm a vendor) then I would provide
you with a list of my clients according to your criteria. (e.g. commercial
printer, no prepress, less than 35 million in sales, western US) You could
then contact them, visit them yourself and see the truth (or fiction) in
action for yourself..

I thought that consultants would have similar lists of their successes.

I was hoping to visit such a printer and maybe one of their clients to see
the truth of end to end color management in action.
I'm not particularly interested in closed-loop situations because I believe
anything will work in that environment. I'm looking for what I believe is
typical...a commercial printer working with their client (probably remotely)

I would have that that after ten years this would be possible.

I get the feeling though that the clothes have no emperor.

thx for your input.

Gordon Pritchard
Commercial Print Specialist
CreoScitex
Vancouver Canada
T: 604.451.2700 ext 2870
C: 604.351.2437
gordon_pritchard@creoscitex.com
http://www.creoscitex.com

Print, the original dot com<


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Nowadays, by definition, it will be an ICC profile,
but this is hardly "ICC color management."
Why not? The ICC does not define workflow of any kind. So what supposedly
defines "ICC color management" and who is defining it?


Go back a few years and the stated rationale for "ICC color management" was
that it would be a universal language of color, owing to the presence of
embedded tags and the ability to convert on the fly, and secondarily that
the use of "device-independent" RGB definitions was an enormous advantage
over the previous method.
Dan, I think it's time you stop living in the past on this subject. You
ask for non-vendors and consultants (as though they are incredible) to
provide their experience with ICC color management; and yet you quote
the vendor party line of idealized and glorified color management as
though what they think they are saying is legitimate.

Consumers have to be discriminating consumers, and not gullible. This is
no different in color mangement than it is when buying a car or a house
or a bag of potato chips. Just because a few years ago a vendor talked
about universal language of color does not make it true and does not make
it worth quoting forever and ever.

There are *nice* things about ICC based color management. This doesn't
mean that everyone must adopt it. It doesn't mean everyone should adopt
it. It doesn't mean that you're a nimrod for not adopting it. It doesn't
mean there is only one or two or 10 right ways to adopt it. But there are
*nice* things that it can help you do, and there isn't anyone in their
right mind that can say otherwise.

What you do have to be careful of is the idea of, without proper
planning, buying into some crazy idea of huge purchases in color
management. Responsible vendors and consultants will talk about analysis
and planning to make sure you're not spending money on unnecessary
software, hardware, and YES you can spend money on unnecessary training
that simply doesn't apply to your business.

But the idea that ICC color management is a farce because of how one or
two vendors define it is obsolete. I don't buy it and no one on the list
should buy it. You should be replacing your rhetoric which sounds like
an argument against anything ICC with a "buyer beware, be very aware"
against vendors and consultants. Some of them will sell you a
refrigerator even if you live in Alaska. So you do have to be a
discriminating consumer but this doesn't mean ICC color management as a
generic term isn't being adopted or doesn't work or doesn't exist.



So I think that a fair definition of a firm using "ICC color management"
would be, at an absolute minimum, one whose workflow depends on embedded
tags, or one that is deriving an incontestable benefit from
"device-independent" RGB that was not available in Photoshop 4.
Why? See I don't have such a limited concept of color management. Some
people aren't going to use embedded profiles, nor are they going to work
in RGB, yet they can derive benefit from aspects of what ICC technology
offers us. It's very company and workflow specific. But ICC is *NOT* a
workflow so I don't like your definition because your definition has a
specific workflow expectation.

It's like now that MOST people are using some form of ICC profile whether
they know it or not, since most people working with color are working
with Photoshop 5 or 6, that isn't enough to consider them using ICC color
management. Now the new definition (to make it sound like fewer people
are using the technology than actually are) is that you have to be
embedding profiles (intentionally) and/or using RGB as the primary
editing space.


These grandiose concepts have been utterly routed in the marketplace. Those
who were braying then about how necessary they were, and how this justified
all the disruption caused by their being shoved down everyone's throats
naturally need some way to save face.
Oh come on, that's what vendors do. And some have a more vigorous
(perhaps on the line of false advertising) marketing style than others.
Buyer BEWARE! But that does not mean "ignore this technology and
everything it has to offer you."


Particularly, since they have been
assuring us for several years that there is increasing adoption and
success of ICC color management among service providers.
NPES is doing a study on exactly this. I can't wait for it to come out
because I have no idea what the concensus opinion by print suppliers and
buyers are on color management. I only know what the people who come to
me think. I don't think anyone knows what the market as a whole really
thinks, or to what degree they are using some aspect of ICC technology.


And so, the preposterous claim that if an ICC profile appears anywhere in a
workflow, this is "ICC color management". How have the mighty fallen.
And so, the preposterous claim that unless RGB or embedded profiles are
being used, this is NOT ICC color management - oh how have the mighty
fallen.

You make ICC based color management out to be this substantially
different technology than what we've been using for the last eight years.
It isn't. It's the same thing that makes up separation tables in
Photoshop and various other forms of proprietary table based conversion
methods that hvae been used for a decade or more. The difference with ICC
is that it is *easier* and *cheaper* to build ICC profiles than it ever
was with proprietary solutions (like $300,000 drum scanners with
proprietary conversion technology), and they work with all of the major
desktop applications, UNLIKE proprietary technology. The differences are
academic, not as major as you make them out to be.



Chris Murphy


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/2/01 1:32 PM, Dan Margulis at 76270.1033@compuserve.com wrote:

Apparently, you took this to be a request to hear about claims
made by other vendors of color management services.
As far as I know, Herb is not a vendor of color management software.

Andrew Rodney


Re: confusing color management & color correction

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

David Broudy writes:
just to show that press profiling is feasible, all of the seps we do are now
generated through averaged press profiles. the resulting color is far better
than anything we've had in the past from CEPS and old-fashioned
direct-to-negs seps which were never dialed into anything other than a
sloppy approximation of SWOP. we aren't a SWOP shop.
<rest snipped>

I'm printing this out and framing it. Now I'm going to go do a jig.

Chris Murphy


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Dan Margulis <76270.1033@...>
 

Chris writes,

Also, a customer of mine, without my intervention, was encouraged to use
and was provided an ICC profile by their printer, Courier Printing, a
book printer.>>

The printer is to be commended for handing over to their client whatever
was in their own CMYK Setup. Intelligent printers have been doing this
since at least 1992. Nowadays, by definition, it will be an ICC profile,
but this is hardly "ICC color management."

So what's the point? That if they graft ICC profiles onto traditional
methodology that they aren't using ICC profiles? That they aren't using
color management? I don't understand what you're getting at Dan.>>

Go back a few years and the stated rationale for "ICC color management" was
that it would be a universal language of color, owing to the presence of
embedded tags and the ability to convert on the fly, and secondarily that
the use of "device-independent" RGB definitions was an enormous advantage
over the previous method.

So I think that a fair definition of a firm using "ICC color management"
would be, at an absolute minimum, one whose workflow depends on embedded
tags, or one that is deriving an incontestable benefit from
"device-independent" RGB that was not available in Photoshop 4.

Obviously, few if any such companies will be found. Gordo is correct in
stating that the small number of firms using third-party profiles at all
are as a rule doing so for inkjet printers.

These grandiose concepts have been utterly routed in the marketplace. Those
who were braying then about how necessary they were, and how this justified
all the disruption caused by their being shoved down everyone's throats
naturally need some way to save face. Particularly, since they have been
assuring us for several years that there is increasing adoption and
success of ICC color management among service providers.

And so, the preposterous claim that if an ICC profile appears anywhere in a
workflow, this is "ICC color management". How have the mighty fallen.

Look at every CTP implementation on the planet and you'll see they are
grafted onto traditional workflows as well. Does that mean these printers
aren't using CTP? Or they aren't real CTP workflow? What? Please clarify.>>

Gordo's company presumably would like the world to believe that CTP is used
widely. Possibly they might consider creating a large number of platesetter
front panels which would fit over the front panels of various imagesetters,
and then persuade the imagesetter owners to mount the new front panel on
their devices. They could then suggest that these were CTP users, and be at
least as correct in saying so as the suggestion that firms who give out
their CMYK Setup are indulging in "ICC color management."

Dan Margulis


Re: Seeking CM reference site

Dan Margulis <76270.1033@...>
 

Andrew writes,

That's just not so! Your buddy and mine, Herb Paynter wrote a very
in-depth
article for the magazine GATF World (July/August 2000) about a printer
(Bennett Graphics in Atlanta) implementing ICC and what was required to do
so. Did you not see Herb's piece???>>

I must not have been clear with the phrase, "I'd certainly love to hear
about it from a credible observer (i.e. not a vendor of color management
services)". Apparently, you took this to be a request to hear about claims
made by other vendors of color management services.

As members of this group are painfully aware, there is no shortage of
people selling profiling services who are able to write at great length in
praise of their concepts. This is true even when they don't have sales of
an additional product to tack on, such as Herb's fine software package,
ScanPrepPro, which was a key ingredient for all players in his project.

Setting that aside, it's a good read, much to be recommended. Herb spent
several months at this site calibrating to a variety of different
conditions. There is no indication that they embed profiles or recommend
that their clients do so. There is no indication of "implementing ICC."
Herb basically ran a large number of tests, measured a lot of swatches by
machine, and generated a large number of profiles, just as might have been
done pre-ICC in a very small fraction of the time.

Herb indicated that anyone thinking of doing such a thing should hire not
just one, but a team of consultants. He asked rhetorically whether what he
had done was worth the effort and then conspicuously did not answer.

While one has to commend Herb for his determination to get his profiles to
work, I would think that any printer reading his story of what he went
through would want to stay as far away from similar experiences as
possible.

Dan Margulis


Re: By the numbers ? and the D1

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/2/01 10:35 AM, Rob Outlaw at routlaw@imt.net wrote:

At any rate their claim was that "Nikon did not embed this
profile but only designed the NTSC working space as a color characteristic".
Which is fine IF that's really the case. I don't need an embedded profile
(it's nice). Having an untagged file that I KNOW is in a certain space and
having a profile to now assign to that file is all I need. As soon as I
Assign this profile, the preview in Photoshop 6 alters based on this new
information. The image looks really good! And when I convert to Adobe RGB,
it's a correct conversion because the source used to get to Adobe RGB is
correct. If I assume a different space, the conversions as well as the
previews undergo some degree of being hosed. So again, the question is, is
the file off the D1 really in NTSC space?

since Nikon does not let the general public in on what they really are
thinking, my assumptions would be that they have somehow within their RGB
capture used the x & y color coordinates of the NTSC working space as the color
gamut for the raw capture.
The real scary part here is what you said about Nikon not letting the
general public in on the color the unit produces. What are they thinking? If
you are going to force the non raw files into a colorspace, why NTSC? At
least with the S1 Pro, assuming ColorMatch RGB produces a very acceptable
preview because the file is massaged towards this space. If you don't use
Photoshop 5 or 6, the image still looks pretty good in non color managed
products. At least they didn't go sRGB.

So with that in mind and for those having trouble with flesh tones with the
D1, I still argue for
a total elimination of NTSC from a given workflow, since it does have an
extended red point
on the color map.
Actually IF the files really were in NTSC RGB and assigning this profile
produced good previews and conversions, I'd be OK with it. I question
whether the files are in NTSC RGB as described in the Working Space of that
name in Photoshop 5 or not.

Taken a step further anytime that I have completed a P2P
from say
NTSC to Adobe RGB or Colormatch RGB (while working in that space) reds do
become
more saturated and it is very clear to see this on my monitor, again
exacerbating any problems
that exist with overly red/magenta flesh tones.
Photoshop 5? You are changing your Working Space to now match up with the
file right? The previews should NOT change a lick. In Photoshop 6 they don't
because of the Document Specific Color and new preview pref's. In Photoshop
5 the preview would change after PtoP but as soon as you loaded that profile
you used in the PtoP, the preview would change back (and match) what you saw
prior to PtoP. Photoshop 6 makes all this so much easier!

Fundamentally I can not argue with this, makes perfect sense, but
unfortunately
probably the vast majority of D1 shooters out there do not have an adequate
custom profile, but have relied on Nikon to provide them with an out of the
box
camera with perfect color. I think it is safe to say Nikon let them down.
Nikon (and all manufacturers) have only a few options:

1. Pick a "common" RGB space and despite the gamut abilities of my sensor,
funnel the color into this space. In the case of the Nikon, we are told it's
NTSC RGB (I don't necessarily buy that but perhaps). Others could pick sRGB.
The upside is we can define the color without doing a thing (assuming the
color really does get funneled to that space). Downside is you get funneled
data which for some uses is just fine and for other cases not good.

2. Pick a non common, non profiled RGB. Now things get dicy. We don't have a
clue what the color really is. Yet in Photoshop, we have to tell it
something about the color of the file so we can preview it and make
conversions. We don't have a profile so we have to guess. Guess the RGB is
the name of this game. Pick one that's close to the reality of the file and
you'll do pretty well. Pick on that's not close and you'll get all kinds of
nasty previews and output. That magenta skin stuff for the D1 is an example.

3. Pick a non common but profiled space. So you buy a PhaseOne back and you
get a bunch of camera profiles. Are they any good? Not bad. At least we are
somewhat dialed into the color of the chip or the color the software gets.
Better yet, make a custom profile.

Andrew Rodney


Re: By the numbers ? and the D1

Rob Outlaw <routlaw@...>
 

Andrew wrote:

If indeed this is true on Nikons part, they dont need to embed a profile
(be nice). We only need to assign the NTSC profile to the data provided
for
conversion into another space. FWIW, the gamut map I have of the D1 from a
custom profile doesnt look to me like NTSC!
Perhaps I should elaborate on what Nikon claims if that is possible. This
info came
from the D1 discussion list moderated by Juergen Specht, and was a reply not
only
from Bill Pekala but also Stephen Pont of Nikon back when they were
responding
on that digest. At any rate their claim was that "Nikon did not embed this
profile but
only designed the NTSC working space as a color characteristic". Your guess
is as good
as mine as to what this really means technically, but as long as we have to
assume things
since Nikon does not let the general public in on what they really are
thinking, my
assumptions would be that they have somehow within their RGB capture used
the
x & y color coordinates of the NTSC working space as the color gamut for the
raw
capture.

So with that in mind and for those having trouble with flesh tones with the
D1, I still argue for
a total elimination of NTSC from a given workflow, since it does have an
extended red point
on the color map. Taken a step further anytime that I have completed a P2P
from say
NTSC to Adobe RGB or Colormatch RGB (while working in that space) reds do
become
more saturated and it is very clear to see this on my monitor, again
exacerbating any problems
that exist with overly red/magenta flesh tones.

That's not an indication alone we have an issue with reds only that the
camera has a wide gamut falling into reds. Again, with a proper profile
assigned, there is no red/magenta issue. In the gamut map I have of the
D1,
the blues fall off the CIE chart!
Fundamentally I can not argue with this, makes perfect sense, but
unfortunately
probably the vast majority of D1 shooters out there do not have an adequate
custom profile, but have relied on Nikon to provide them with an out of the
box
camera with perfect color. I think it is safe to say Nikon let them down.

I hope I do not sound like a broken record here, one can get really good
color
without the profile and with a few minor adjustments in PS with the raw
files at
least, but only if eliminating the NTSC issue. That has been my experience
with
the camera.

> I suspect when you use the Nikon Capture (shame they have to charge for
it),

Don't even get me started on this one! While I use it all the time it has to
be the
worst $450.00 I have ever spent in photography.

you may not get NTSC but indeed the raw RGB. I'm guessing that when using
other than RAW, Nikon *may* be forcing the raw RGB into NTSC although I
suspect this is may not be that accurate but convenient for Nikon to
simply
suggest to users.
If this were true with non raw data files when opened in PS 5.5 or later
would I not
be asked about converting from NTSC to Adobe or whatever? I can't think of
once
that this has happened for me, and I do have PS setup so that would happen
if a
profile were embedded or attached.

Of all the companies making digital cameras and scanners,
Nikon's track record for dealing with color issues is pretty bad.
I do not doubt this for a second.

Rob

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