4 Replies Latest reply on Jul 23, 2010 4:56 AM by W. Frost

    Pantone Color Bridge vs Photoshop

    W. Frost Level 1



      I'm curious why my Pantone Color Bridge is giving me different information than Photoshop CS4 for PMS 549.  I am in the process of creating a style guide for a client of mine, and he requested the spot, process, RGB and HTML color codes.


      Pantone Color Bridge says:

      PMS 549C

      RGB 94/156/174

      CMYK 59/8/9/19

      HTML 5E9CAE


      Photoshop says:

      PMS 549C

      RGB 94/156/174

      CMYK 65/26/26/1

      HTML 5e9cae


      The 65/26/26/1 looks a lot closer on the screen (I know, I know...) Does anyone know why the anomaly?

        • 1. Re: Pantone Color Bridge vs Photoshop
          thedigitaldog MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          CMYK values are based on whatever CMYK profile is currently accessed to build that mix. Sounds like the two products are using different CMYK profiles and calculating them from the same RGB values.

          • 2. Re: Pantone Color Bridge vs Photoshop
            Rick McCleary Level 3

            A quick bit of testing shows that your Photoshop setting for CMYK is USWebCoatedSWOPv2 - a pretty good middle-of-the-road profile.


            The build from Color Bridge is using a very heavy black generation - probably a lowest-common-denominator approach Pantone uses to give the most consistent color in the face of inevitable press drift in most assuredly unknown press conditions. A crapshoot.


            The actual color that comes off a press from a given CMYK build is very dependent upon paper and press conditions.

            Tread lightly here when recommending a CMYK build to your client. Include a BIG caveat.

            • 3. Re: Pantone Color Bridge vs Photoshop
              John Danek Level 4

              I agree, but I think it's best to go by the actual Pantone Solid-to-Process swatches or Bridge which has been updated and looks to be the most reasonable mix for process color.  There really isn't any need to get into caveats, though.  The client needs the industry standards and those can be found in Pantone's swatch books.  The problem with PS is that, the numbers do get affected by the Color Settings in the application, whereas the Pantone Bridge swatches are actual printed samples of the closest they could come to 549C and a standard print industry expectation.

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Pantone Color Bridge vs Photoshop
                W. Frost Level 1

                Thanks to all for your help!