How to achieve perfect colour management

How to achieve perfect color management

Color management

Color management is the controlled conversion of color across devices. The aim is to maintain a good and consistent color match, whether the image is displayed on a computer monitor, a photo print or a canvas.
All graphic content benefits from good color management, and it's also very useful when printing images to ensure that what you see on screen is what you get when you print.
While it is often not possible to guarantee identical color reproduction, as it depends on the recipient's monitor calibration and other environmental factors, it does give the creator control over any changes that may occur when switching mediums.
To ensure correct color management and reproduction, it's vital to control the environment and ensure that both lighting and monitor conditions are optimal. Saal Digital offers ICC profiles that can be used for soft proofing.


Make sure there is sufficient light in the room. Brightness and color temperature should be kept as constant and reproducible as possible. Ideally, this should be a glare-free room, with shutters and not affected by changes in daylight, and the monitor should be calibrated to display the correct colors and brightness.

Monitor calibration

Kelvin is often used in the measurement of the colors temperature of light sources. D50 is short for Daylight 5000 kelvin. D65 is short for 6500 kelvin and is bluer than D50.
The color temperature of the monitor should be 5000 kelvin (D50), and the light temperature in your room should be the same (5000 kelvin) while you are viewing the print or the final product. 5000 kelvin (D50) is standard in the printing industry. 6500 kelvin will sometimes also be used, but the color temperature is somehow colder (bluer), and thus will affect the final result.

Monitor settings

Getting your monitor set up correctly is the most important part of color management:

  • The  brightness of the monitor should be  between 90 and 120 cd/qm.
  • The  color temperature must be set at  5.000 kelvin (D50).
  • The monitor  gamma  should be set to  2.2.

Monitor calibration with colorimeter

High-level professional color management is not possible without the right hardware. Depending on your choice of supplier and budget, there are many options available. Some vendors offer a colorimeter with additional software that allows you to create an ICC profile of your monitor. This can be a good alternative to buying a new and expensive monitor.

Advantages of color management

Print previews are optimised with the help of your preset monitor and our color management — What you see is what you get. Ideally, this combination works so well that you will notice almost no difference between the display on the monitor and the actual photo product.

What can Saal Digital do for you?

Repeated daily calibration ensures that the profiled machines operate within a small tolerance. The state of the photochemical process is checked daily to compensate for fluctuations before the photo quality is affected.

Different color rendering for Adobe Photoshop / Lightroom / Saal Design software

It is possible that the representation of an image in the programs Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom and our Saal Design software deviate from each other. In most cases, the photo print is in color with the proof in our Saal Design software.
The reason for the different color representation in each program is usually an incorrect setting of the monitor's color management.
To correct this, open the Windows color management properties under System Control > Color management. Then select the appropriate monitor and check the Use my own settings for this device box. Now click on Add and select the profile sRGB IEC61966-2.1 from the list and set it as a new standard profile or select your most current monitor calibration.
After restarting Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and the Saal Design software, the three programs should look the same.


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