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Jayebirdblue
Currently Being Moderated

Dual monitors, ICC profiles, color management...problems

Feb 26, 2011 12:14 PM

Problem:

An image displayed in Safari and then pulled off the web into Photoshop shifts colors noticeably. This is esp. apparent in a side-by-side comparison on the same monitor with the Safari window open next to the Photoshop file window…they look very different.

 

Possible clues?

When I drag an image in Photoshop from one monitor to the other it shifts color after I release the mouse. In my two-monitor setup one is a large LCD (that's the "main" one) and the other is a MacBook Pro laptop. Even though they both have ICC profiles the laptop is slightly more saturated than the LCD…and Photoshop seems to mirror this but exaggerate it. For example: I pull the same image pulled off the web into two separate Photoshop files and then I display one on each screen: the one on the laptop will be /much/ more saturated than the one on the LCD.

 

In the end, if I have 4 windows open of the exact same image (2 on each screen: one in Photoshop and one in Safari) I am looking at 4 differently colored images - with the Photoshop images appearing even more exaggeratedly different than anything.

 

Obviously I understand that the two monitors will never look identical, but Photoshop seems to be imposing some extra color management on my files that makes it impossible to use with my previously very helpful dual-monitor setup.

 

Specs:

- Dual monitor setup: both are calibrated using an i1Display 2 from x-rite and have their own different profiles (this is new as of this week)

- Mac OS 10.6.6 (w/all current updates)

- Photoshop CS3 10.0.1 (w/all current updates) :: Edit>Color Settings : set to North America General Purpose 2

 

 

 

Help?

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 6:48 AM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    I am having the exact same problem.  Wish I could offer the solution, but I cannot.  Am hoping someone will see this post and provide an answer.  This just started happening to me after two years of using this external monitor.  My website photos look almost identical on my Macbook Pro and my external monitor, but my Photoshop images look rich on the MacBook Pro and completely desaturated on the external monitor.  It's nice to know I am not alone, but I need this resolved.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 6:58 AM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    Problem:

    An image displayed in Safari and then pulled off the web into Photoshop shifts colors noticeably. This is esp. apparent in a side-by-side comparison on the same monitor with the Safari window open next to the Photoshop file window…they look very different.

    Is the image profiled (does it have an ICC-profile attached)?

    What are your Photoshop Color Settings?

    Is Safari color-managed?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 7:15 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    I'm using Firefox.

     

    Basically any image looks fine in any software except Photoshop.  I am on CS3.

     

    According to this thread http://forums.adobe.com/message/2764165 this may be related to an Apple OS 10.6 upgrade, although I am not necessarily buying that.

     

    I've tried viewing the image in the embedded color profile and by making it use the monitor's profile.  It makes no difference.  I've even discarded the embedded profile.  It looks devoie fo color and desaturated no matter what profile I use.

     

    I've dragged the image halfway across from the MacBook Pro to the extrnal monitor.  The image looks fine on both until I release the mouse and the image drops onto the external monitor.  At that point it loses all the saturation and looks nothing like the image on the MacBook Pro.  When I release the image onto the external monitor it loses its color, but not until then.  Something happens to the image once it is released from the MacBook Pro's control to the monitor's control.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 7:25 AM   in reply to Clapper12
    When I release the image onto the external monitor it loses its color, but not until then. 

    The second monitor’s profile used to be only applied on release, that’s as expected; different in CS5, though.

     

    I've tried viewing the image in the embedded color profile and by making it use the monitor's profile.

    You might want to do some reading on Color Management.

     

    If your monitor profiles are good and your Photoshop Color Settings (and Proof Settings if you use Proof Colors) make sense then you should consider Photoshop’s display as the relevant one.

    But if you prefer not to let us know your Color Settings that’s your choice …

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 7:50 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    I am the first one to acknowledge I don't know jack about any of this.  That's why I got on the forum so people smarter than me can hopefully provide the solution.  I'm not being secretive, I am not sure where to even begin.  Was hoping someone would say, yes, go to PhotoShop Preferences/performance and change X, but this problem does not appear to be this simple, since the other thread makes it pretty clear this is an ongoing problem.

     

    I am using Adobe RGB (1998).  Is that what you were asking?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 8:01 AM   in reply to Clapper12
    I am using Adobe RGB (1998).

    As what?

    Please post a screenshot of Edit > Color Settings with the appropriate Tool in the browser (the camera-icon).

    cameraSymbol.jpg

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 8:22 AM   in reply to Clapper12

    Sorry, just browsed the thread you linked to and I had misjudged the merit of your problem; if I understand Mr.Cox’ statement in post 17 correctly you may be out of luck on this one with CS3 on OSX 10.6.

     

    Edit: Is your OS fully updated?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 8:33 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    I am on OS 10.6.6

     

    Below is the Color Settings and a framegrab of the photo in Firefox (left) and Photoshop (right) on the external monitor.  On the MacBook Pro monitor they look identical.  Thanks for taking the time to look at this.

     

    Screen shot 2011-03-11 at 11.28.16 AM.png

    Screen shot 2011-03-11 at 11.31.03 AM.png

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 8:42 AM   in reply to Clapper12

    Once again: Sorry; but I’m afraid it will be difficult to get more competent input than what Mr.Cox provided, even though it’s close to a year old and which seemed to give little room for hope of amending the situation.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 9:10 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    Do you get the impression switching to the latest version of PhotoShop will fix it?  Or is it snow leopard and I need to hope that Lion will fix it?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 9:17 AM   in reply to Clapper12

    Again, Photoshop CS5 works around the color management problems on MacOS 10.6.

    Older versions of Photoshop were not written to deal with the breakage in 10.6, and will require a change from Apple (which we requested, but have not seen as of yet).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 9:27 AM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    Okay, so it seems like I have 3 options:

     

    1) Buy PS-CS5 ... which will fix the problem

     

    2) Downgrade to 10.5 and keep PS-CS3 ... which will fix the problem

     

    3) Wait for the next Mac OS ... which will (hopefully) fix the problem

     

    ...

     

    I think I'll downgrade back to 10.5 and wait for the next OS to come out before buying PS-CS5 just to make sure Adobe can handle 10.7 before I purchase anything

     

    - - - - - - - -

     

     

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR HELP!!!

    I had almost given up hope and I really, really, REALLY appreciate this information from you guys!

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 10:08 AM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    woops - apparently I have two Apple IDs? Anyway - just FYI, this is Jayebirdblue (the original asker of the question)

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2011 10:09 AM   in reply to Jayezer

    I'm just glad there are people out there who know how to analyze these things.  Thanks for all the input.  Going back to 10.5 is not an option for me, because I just resolved a bunch of 10.6 issues with other software.  I will do all my Photoshop on my MacBook and wait for Lion to come out and go from there.

     

    Thansk everybody.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 5, 2011 8:19 PM   in reply to Clapper12

    hey, I've been reading your post, I'm dumbfounded this is a problem. I have exactly  the same problem..it's August now, what happened since your problem? did you find a solution ? I've just bought an NEC monitor along with their calibration system, all seems to be a waste of money if CS3 can't talk to Mac or NEC. Don't buy Lion. it'll screw up everything...I'm debating on the latest photoshop to fix this silly but fundimental problem. What does anyone else think !

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 17, 2011 1:42 PM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    Just a guess for anyone with this problem, when calibrating for either monitor make sure the gamma is set to either 1.8 or 2.2 on both monitors. Hope this helps!

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 18, 2011 12:53 PM   in reply to Jayebirdblue

    Just read this entire thread and wanted to leave a few comments and qualifications, first a couple of FACTS for all to consider.

     

    1) I am not "new" to color management - in fact I am quite experienced in color management at a commercial level since the days of film back when getting "accurate color" was actually difficult. At this point it should be easy if the involved software is working correctly and impossible if it is not.

     

    2) I have the top of the line color management solution provided by one of the top players in the color management market and am using it properly as verified by their technicians.

     

    3) I am running 10.6 on my main computers. Mac Pro, 2 27inch iMac sandy bridge quad cores, and am using mac cinema displays (new ones) on all of them.

     

    Now the rant - I have been trying to run down this or a similar and related issue for over a year. If you happen to be experiencing the same issue as I am, which I will summarize as trying to get 2 displays to display anywhere near the same color (even identical monitors) do not bother upgrading to CS5 as I am using CS5 as well as a bunch of other tools (Aperture, LR, etc, etc) - this is BROKEN and all I can get from any of the vendors involved is finger pointing from one to the other. Each of them wants to blame the other vendor for not doing something correctly but NONE of them can actually give me any details as to what exactly is the problem.

     

    At this point in time I am holding the color management vendor I use to create the profiles responsible - the reason that I am doing that has nothing to do with what exactly the technical problem is. It s purely because they claim that the product is compatible with OS 10.6 and they claim that their software does EXACTLY what I want = mach two monitors. Now we all know that different monitors have slightly different gamuts but at the end of the day if two identical colors fall within the gamut of both monitors they should display the same. They don't. I have worked with my color management vendor for 6 months on this, they agree that it is not working properly, they blame apple but they cannot tell me exactly what the issue is.

     

    If a company advertises and sells a product they claim to be compatible with a particular brand and version of hardware and software and they claim that it will manage color consistency across multiple monitors (even on differing machines) then I believe they are ultimately accountable for ensuring it actually works and resolving the issue - whatever it is, if it fails to function properly.

     

    RB

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 9:27 AM   in reply to rwboyer

    The Safari browser does apply color management, but if an image on a web site does not have a profile embeded, then Safari will treat it as if it were tagged with the default color space (likely sRGB or perhaps monitor RGB in Safari). If you then drag that image into Photoshop, lacking an embedded profile, it will be displayed in the set working space – Adobe RGB according to the settings in the screen shot – and thus differently than in Safari.

     

    The (probably smaller) differences between different profiled monitors are really a problem. Since the hardware often consists of different panels and backlights with different physical specs/color spaces, it may not be reasonable to expect identical color rendering. Moreover, some measuring devices for monitor profiling, especially colorimeters as opposed to spectrophotometers, can have limitations in accurately reading a monitor's white point/color temperature. The problem is similar to matching a monitor's white to the paper white of a hardcopy proof; even though measurements may yield the same values for both, the monitor's and proof's white need not necessarily appear the same visually due to different spectrums of the respective light source. Tristimulus measurements only get you so far, and even spectral measurements cannot change the physical properties of the medium in which an image is rendered (and the associated light source for viewing).

     

    X-Rite claims its new i1Display Pro (still a colorimeter) and i1Profiler software yield improved results in this regard. I am testing this but there are still noticeable differences when compared to profiles generated by means of an i1Pro spectrophotometer with identical settings in i1Profiler for the same monitor with unchanged hardware settings. Apparently, it is not such a simple thing to achieve visually similar color rendering across different types of hardware, both in measuring and displaying colors.

     
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