The What, Why and Where of ColorBase ICC Profiles

April 11, 2023 by Kai

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If you're a print shop owner, print enthusiast, or print operator in the sign and graphics industry, you understand the significance of delivering high-quality prints to your customers. The use of an ICC profile is crucial in ensuring the quality of your prints. In this blog post, we will delve into the details of an ICC profile, highlighting its importance and how it can assist in the production of better large format prints.

What Is an ICC profile?

An ICC (International Color Consortium) profile is a standard that defines how colors are represented on different devices, such as printers, monitors, and cameras. An ICC profile contains information about the color gamut, tone response curve, and the color behavior of a particular device. It is like a map that tells the printer how to produce accurate colors based on the colors in the image you are printing.

Converting colors from RGB to CMYK via lab or cielab using color profiles. Color management used in printing. Additive and subtractive color mixing. Conversion between color spaces isolated on white.

Why Should You Use ICC Profiles?

Large format printing is used to produce large banners, signs, trade show graphics, murals, and more. These prints often serve as the centerpiece of an advertising campaign or event. When producing these prints, it is essential to ensure that the colors are accurate and consistent. This is where ICC profiles come in.

Using a high-quality ICC profile will greatly increase the likelihood that colors in your digital images will be accurately reproduced on the printed output. The ICC profile will tell the printer how to adjust the printer settings based on the ink and media being used, ensuring that the final print matches the original image as closely as possible. This is particularly important when printing images that have specific color requirements, such as corporate logos or product images.

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In the absence of an ICC profile, the printer will use its default color management settings, which may not produce the desired results. The default settings may cause the printed image to have incorrect color saturation, incorrect brightness, or incorrect skin tones. This can result in a subpar print that does not meet your customer's expectations. This in turn of course is a waste of ink, materials, and time.

Where Can You Find ICC Profiles? 

What can you do if you don’t have the profile that you want, and you also don’t want to create the profile yourself? To save you the trouble, we provide a database for you. In the ColorBase Profile Search, you can browse the world’s largest collection of ICC profiles with ease, and download them to use in your next print job for free.

You can import these profile files into your RIP software, and then they’re ready to go. Most large format printers come with software that allows you to select the ICC profile by choosing a media you want to use for your print job. Once you have selected the profile, the software will automatically use the ICC profile to generate the colors to match the  image. 

Why Should I Trust ColorBase ICC Profiles?

You may be wondering where all of the 1.3 million+ profiles in our library come from, and how you can trust them. Don't worry - just because they are free for you doesn’t mean they aren’t high quality. Long story short, all the profiles you find on our platform are:

  1. Created directly by our partners - the material and printer manufacturers themselves
  2. Created by us, ColorBase, in partnership with the material and printer manufacturers themselves

We and our partners do this in order to offer print shops all over the world the ‘plug-and-print’ experience that ICC profiles provide. Ensuring that printshops have the tools they need to get the most of our their material / printer purchases is a true 'win-win-win' situation. The print buyer gets the best printed product, the print shop delivers with the minimal amount of color management headache and material/ink waste, and material and printer manufacturers benefit from happy customers and seel more products - this is why ColorBase works hard to deliver ICC profiles to the market, and why you can trust the profiles you find here. 

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By using a ColorBase ICC profile, you can be confident that the colors in your prints are accurate and consistent, meeting your customer's expectations and enhancing the quality of your final product. Always make sure to incorporate the use of our ICC profiles into your large format printing process, and you will be well on your way to producing high-quality, professional-looking prints.

Kai

Kai

Kai Chaplin, the ColorBase Product Manager, is crazy for great product design, dynamic start-up environments, and building customer relationships that last. At ColorBase he strives to bring the best customer experience to the growing range of ColorBase SaaS tools that are redefining the printing process.

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