The color space is a set of instructions that tells your camera how to define the colors in your image and then output them to the device of your choice, be it your monitor or a printer. Your camera has a choice of two color spaces: sRGB and Adobe RGB.
The first choice, sRGB, was developed by Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft as a way of defining colors for the Internet. This space was created to deal with the way that computer monitors actually display images using red, green, and blue (RGB) colors. Because there are no black pixels in your monitor, the color space uses a combination of these three colors to display all of the colors in your image.
In 1998, Adobe Systems developed a new color space, Adobe RGB, which was intended to encompass a wider range of colors than was obtainable using traditional cyan, magenta, yellow, and black colors (called CMYK), but doing so using the primary colors red, green, and blue. It uses a wider-defined palette of colors than the sRGB space and, therefore, looks better when printed.
When selecting your color space, base your choice on whether you intend to use your photographs for prints or for online applications. Remember that the color space does not directly affect the color information of your images. It simply embeds the color space profile into the image file as instructions for your computer so that your output device (monitor or printer) can correctly interpret the colors.
SETTING THE COLOR SPACE
- With the camera turned on, press the Menu button.
- Use the Multi-Controller to select the second menu tab and then scroll down to Color Space using the Quick Control dial (A).
- Press the Set button, and then highlight your desired color space and press the Set button once again (B).
- Press the Menu button to leave the menu and begin shooting with your new color space.
There will be no future indication of which space you have selected, so it’s important to set this early and make adjustments if your output intentions change. I typically use the Adobe RGB space when shooting, because I’m not sure of the end-usage of my images, and if I decide to use them online, I can use image software to change the color space to sRGB. It is always better to go from a larger color space to a smaller one.