12 Replies Latest reply on Sep 10, 2017 8:29 AM by NB, colourmanagement

    GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles

    jethrodesign Level 1

      Hi. Out of curiosity, I went to the Idealliance site today to check on current standards. I saw that there are now CSF files and ICC profiles for GRACoL 2013 (it's obviously been a while since I've looked into it). So I downloaded these and added to the proper locations in my user directory.

       

      But I'm curious about the behavior of choosing the CSFs in the CS6 applications (mostly Illustrator or InDesign). In the past, we've generally just setup our own color settings and used the most appropriate output profile for CMYK working space depending on jobs, which was generally either GRACoL 2006 Coated, SWOP 2006 Coated, or a printer-specific profile.

       

      So I tried choosing some of the new GRACoL CSF settings and am unsure about the CMYK profiles that it selects. I was assuming they would be the new GRACoL 2013 profiles I downloaded and installed, but not sure they are.

       

      Here's what I see:

      INDESIGN CS6: When I choose 'GRACOL2013-C1', the CMYK working space is set to: 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc'.

      ILLUSTRATOR CS6: When I choose 'GRACOL2013-C1', the CMYK working space just says 'other'.

       

      - I can't find an ICC profile called 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc'. Am I expecting the wrong thing here?

      - When I exported a PDF/X-4 using these settings, choosing 'Convert to Destination' and 'Working CMYK', it looks like it uses GRACoL 2006 Coated as the profile and output intent (examined in Acrobat). Shouldn't it have used the 2013 profiles?!?

      - I CAN manually choose any of the appropriate GRACoL 2013 profiles as my CMYK working space, but just didn't think I'd have to. I am not understanding properly here??

       

      THANKS. I know I can set everything manually the way I always have, and choose the new GRACoL 2013 profiles, but just not sure if there's anything behind-the-scenes (i.e., not just checking the right boxes) that using a custom CSF does.

        • 1. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
          NB, colourmanagement Adobe Community Professional

          Hi jethrodesign,

           

          An important starting note: before adopting updated print standards, it's important to ask the people for whom you are preparing files [or the print shop] which CMYK profiles they want you to use for file conversion.

          You're right this could be easier ';~}. Although Idealliance do seem to be trying by providing the 2013 CSF files. [see below though about a 2015 CMYK profile update that’s not been included],

           

          I am not in the US but will try throw a little light on it. I used to be able to see the downloads but it seems that they are now "members only".

           

          Idealliance providing the CSF files seems like a great idea, but as you've discovered using them isn't perhaps as straightforward as it might be.

          There are various GRACoL CSF settings files for download -

          As you mentioned the CMYK ICC profile CGATS21_CRPC6.icc,

          I am presuming the CSF file you chose was GRACOL2013-C1 (CGATS21-2 CRPC6)

           

          I tend to use Photoshop as a base for studying behaviour - here is my Photoshop (CC2017) color settings dialog,

          with GRACOL2013-C1 (CGATS21-2 CRPC6).CSF file selected

          Screen Shot 2017-09-07 at 10.13.38.jpg

          as you can perhaps see, the CSF usefully described there as:

          "Optimized for ISO-standard printing on Universale PremCoated. Large gamut (typically commercial) printing  as defined in CGATS 21-2-2013 OK to use Intent: Perceptual and Dither if preferred."

           

          In INDesign CC 17, I see this when I load the CSF - seems to be what you are seeing with CMYK=CGATS21_CRPC6.icc ?

          Screen Shot 2017-09-07 at 10.26.31.jpg

           

           

           

          In Illustrator CC17 my result matches yours:

          Screen Shot 2017-09-07 at 10.29.18.jpg

           

          In Illustrator I would expect the same CMYK profile to be loaded as in the other applications, but, as it's not, you could select the CGATS21_CRPC6.icc profile in Illustrator .

           

          You ask about what's included in a .CSF file, well everything you see in the Photoshop color settings dialog above, it includes policies as well as working spaces etc. To the best of my knowledge, nothing is "hidden".

           

          My suggestion.

          IF you wish to adopt GRACoL 2013 and it's use approved by your print suppliers then you could download the CGATS21_CRPC6.icc icc profile and select it for CMYK in illustrator.

          You may also like to consider that the CGATS21_CRPC6 CMYK profile was updated in 2015, ask the printers.

           

          CGATS21_CRPC6.icc is apparently circa 2013, there is CGATS21_CRPC6 V2.icc now (it's dated 2015) - there doesn’t seem to be a CSF file for that but it's easy to select in applications once you have downloaded the icc profile.

           

           

           

           

          I hope this helps you

          if so, please do mark my reply as "helpful" and if you're OK now, please mark it as "correct" below, so others who have similar issues can see the solution

          thanks

          neil barstow, colourmanagement

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
            jethrodesign Level 1

            Hi Neil, thanks for the response! Here's where I got the files, though not sure if it's only viewable in the US: Idealliance GRACoL.

             

            And this conversation only applies to using print shops that 'say' they are G7 Certified and calibrated to GRACoL standards, which more are these days we're finding.

             

            - So I'm curious if the profiles we see (e.g., 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc') are embedded in the .CSF file?!? I can't find them on my drive, or select them individually in the CS apps for CMYK workspace or soft-proofing. They only 'show up' when I choose the CSF to use.

             

            I downloaded the separate ICC profiles for 2013 GRACoL & SWOP. But the title of the one for GRACoL Coated is 'GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc'. That's what I expected to see when choosing the GRACoL Coated CSF file.

             

            - Is that possibly the same profile as 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc', just with a different title?? As I added the others manually to my profiles directory, I am able to choose them as CMYK working space.

             

            And when I DID try using the new profiles in Illustrator, and went to create a PDF/X-4 to place in InDesign, I got a warning about having to convert v4 ICC profiles to v2. When I examined the PDF, it did list the output intent profile as 'modified'.

             

            - Is this due to working in CS6 and not CC2017??

             

            I think due to seeing that warning, and to the confusion about how things are showing up, I stuck with good 'ol GRACoL 2006 profile for current job which is due out this week. But I do still want to understand about using the newer CSF/ICC files for other projects. I especially like that there is now an Uncoated profile, where with 2006 bundle there is not.

             

            THANKS!!!

            • 3. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
              D Fosse Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              A color settings file (.csf) is just a preset. It just ticks the boxes in a certain way. No actual profiles are included.

               

              If you want to use a certain profile as working space - you just choose it as a working space. That's all you need to do. Then you can save that as your own preset, with all the other boxes ticked the way you want.

               

              It always takes a long time before new standards are adopted, and some never are. The profile you use should always correspond to the actual press and how it's calibrated. The old truth still holds: ask the printer what they want.

               

              BTW profiles have external and internal names. Often they are the same, but not always. My working CMYK is ISO Coated v2 300% (ECI), but in the system folder the file is called ISOcoated_v2_300_eci. That's recognizable, but it doesn't have to be.

              • 4. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                jethrodesign Level 1

                Thanks for the additional info! After doing a little more digging, it looks like 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc' and 'GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc' may be the same (or GRACoL is derived from CGATS21). Here's a page listing both and the specs seem the same.

                 

                So I was able to download the 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc' profile from color.org and added to my system.

                 

                Once this profile was added, choosing the corresponding CSF file in Illustrator now displays this profile instead of 'other'. InDesign is the same, as it was already listing that profile. But I can also now soft-proof to it, where before it wasn't an option.

                 

                - So my guess is that the CSF file lists the CMYK Working Space profile it WANTS you to use, whether you have it actually installed on your system or not. Does this sound correct?!?

                 

                The confusion came because the Idealliance page does not clearly list the CGATS profiles for download, just the GRACoL 2013 versions. I was able to eventually find them, but not clear why the CSF files use the CGATS over the GRACoL.

                 

                NOTE: I also saw the 'ICC CRPC Profiles Version 2' download on the Idealliance page, and this one appeared to have all of the GRACoL/SWOP 2013 profiles, as well as the corresponding CGATS21 profiles, all as ICC v2 files (not v4). So these are probably the ones I'll use to keep compatibility optimum.

                • 5. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                  NB, colourmanagement Adobe Community Professional

                  Hi jethrodesign,

                   

                  I'd say you've made the right decision.

                  Just remember to check with clients / printers before altering the way you make CMYK fles.

                   

                   

                   

                  neil barstow, colourmanagement

                  • 6. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                    D Fosse Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    Well, to remove all doubt, if you download GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc from the link you provided, that's what the file is called and that's how it appears in Color Settings:

                     

                    settings_GRACoL.png

                    GRACoL.png

                     

                     

                    I don't know why you're so concerned with this CSF file. These presets for color settings are really meant for people who don't know what this means, and can't make informed decisions. It's just a way to put these people in the right ballpark. It's not important.

                     

                    Pick the profiles you want, pick your policies, and save that as your own preset. That makes a lot more sense.

                    2 people found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                      rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                      - Is this due to working in CS6 and not CC2017??

                      You'll still get the warning in CC. I use a printer who requests GRACol 2013 and they tell me to ignore the warning.

                       

                      The profile embedded in the CSF file you linked to gives me identical conversion numbers to the ones I get using GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc (Coated GRACol 2013).

                       

                      You can test by duplicating a full range RGB image, convert one using the CSF profile and the other using the Coated GRACol 2013 profile, layer the two with the blend mode set to Difference, and all of the pixels will zero out (Info panel’s standard deviation is 0).

                       

                      Also, if I place the RGB image in InDesign and export to PDF/X-1a using the CSF I get the same CMYK values in Acrobat as I get making the conversion in Photoshop with GRACol 2013.

                      • 8. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                        NB, colourmanagement Adobe Community Professional

                        Hi jethrodesign

                         

                        you write:

                        After doing a little more digging, it looks like 'CGATS21_CRPC6.icc' and 'GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc' may be the same (or GRACoL is derived from CGATS21).

                        Below are the perceptual curves FYI.

                         

                        Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 18.19.43.jpg

                         

                        Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 18.19.33.jpg

                         

                        I think you are probably right. The fact they are from the same press data doesn't mean that are the same - since profile softwares differ and also profile building includes options like TAC, max K, K start, GCR level, K width etc. of course those options can alter the actual profile significantly.

                        [e.g. there's quite a difference between the eci.org's F39L profile and Adobe's version.

                         

                        I hope this helps

                         

                        if so, please do mark my reply as "helpful", so others who have similar issues can see the solution

                        thanks

                        neil barstow, colourmanagement

                        1 person found this helpful
                        • 9. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                          NB, colourmanagement Adobe Community Professional

                          Hi Rob

                           

                          So did you end up with 2 files in identical colour spaces? same CMYK profile embedded?

                          both CGATS21_CRPC6.icc

                           

                          If not, might I ask please, how did you deal with pasting together 2 images from different colour spaces?

                          did you allow the offered conversion to take place?

                          or - maybe you have "ask when pasting" switched off in color settings?

                           

                           

                           

                          thanks

                          neil barstow, colourmanagement

                          • 10. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                            jethrodesign Level 1

                            Thanks for all the replies!!!

                             

                            I don't know why you're so concerned with this CSF file. These presets for color settings are really meant for people who don't know what this means, and can't make informed decisions. It's just a way to put these people in the right ballpark. It's not important.

                             

                            I guess I was just trying to understand the CSF files, as they were the first and most prominent download on the Idealliance page. I'd never used CSF files before, so just wasn't completely clear on if they did anything more than just apply settings. And I figured there must be a reason Idealliance was recommending the CGATS profile, even though it wasn't obvious where to find it or how it differed from the GRACoL profile. So that was the base for my initial confusion.

                             

                            I have now created my own custom CSF files for each app we use, using the GRACoL 2013 v2 profiles so there will be no incompatibility issues.

                             

                            Thanks again for the solid assistance here!

                            1 person found this helpful
                            • 11. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                              rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              did you allow the offered conversion to take place?

                              No, if I get a warning I preserve numbers in order to see any differences in the conversions:

                               

                              The identical RGB

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.06.38 PM.png

                               

                              The conversions (if i sample the patches they are identical):

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.15.20 PM.png

                               

                              The two layered with the CMYK numbers preserved:

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.15.54 PM.png

                               

                              The difference

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.16.35 PM.png

                               

                              If I check GRACol 2013 vs. GRACol 2006 there is a difference mostly in the black generation—2013 has a heavier black plate.

                               

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.18.05 PM.png

                               

                              Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.20.04 PM.png

                              2 people found this helpful
                              • 12. Re: GRACoL 2013 CSFs & ICC Profiles
                                NB, colourmanagement Adobe Community Professional

                                Hi rob day,

                                 

                                 

                                thanks for clarification on your method. I am sure the OP will find this very useful as a method for comparison.

                                I like Colorthink pro to do this but of course folk here already have photoshop so will find your tips of use I am sure.

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                neil barstow, colourmanagement