[argyllcms] How does the colour management works?

  • From: Marek Matulka <marek.matulka@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: argyllcms@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2012 22:27:33 +0000

Hello everybody,

I am a photography enthusiast and a software developer who happened to use
use linux.
I got a wide gamut display Dell U2410, which I've calibrated using
Colormunki Photo spectrometer.

Now here is my question. Last weekend I've spent a few hours at the London
Depot Museum and took a few photos, those photos were taken using Canon 40D
camera with AdobeRBG selected as a colour space. I brought those photos
home, picked a random jpg photo I've noticed something weird.

I've opened a GIMP, with the following settings on the colour management

[image: Inline images 1]

I would expect my image to show natural colours with this settings, as
picture was taken in AdobeRGB colour space, though colours where
not-natural looking (nothing in shadows, over saturated highlights). When I
chose none or sRGB as RBG profile, I still get non-natural looking colours,
but just darker, less saturated (expected). The fun part starts, when I
select my monitor profile as RGB Profile. Suddenly image looks exactly as I
expected it to look! No over saturated highlights and all details in
shadows visible).

This is a kind of surprise to me. I thought RBG Profile (as working
profile) should be selected as AdobeRGB/sRGB depending on how image was
taken. Then GIMP would convert those to the right monitor profile to

The second interesting notice is - when I assign an AdobeRGB profile, I
should see correct colours, but I don't. I see right colours only if I open
the file with monitor's profile as a working space and then convert it to
AdobeRGB / sRGB.

I am sorry for a lengthy (and maybe a bit chaotic) description of my
problem -- I want to find out what I am doing wrong and / or where my
understanding is wrong.

Many thanks in advance for any constructive feedback!


PNG image

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  • » [argyllcms] How does the colour management works? - Marek Matulka