Lightroom: CMYK softproofing needed

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  • Updated 5 years ago
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Following a discussion on the LR4 beta forum:

Converting to CMYK and soft proofing in CMYK are two completely different things, so at least we need a CMYK softproofing.

During the last years I ran into a lot of problems due to modern LED lightning on the scene, it is able to produce colors (especially in the blues) far away out of the CMYK color space. Converting pictures to CMYK later after my initial processing can change a picture dramatically, a bit similar to a conversion to b/w.

So even if you have to deliver your material in RGB and someone else is doing a professional conversion later, you should be able to predict what can happen to your material!

So if you deliver material that will be converted – earlier or later – to CMYK: You need at least a simple soft proof. Otherwise it can happen that you deliver material that simply can’t be published.
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Kaffeesegler

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Posted 6 years ago

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Hamish Niven

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With you here, even though 97% the printing that my work gets done is RGB
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Andrew Rodney

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Considering LR is a fully RGB processing path, it can’t convert to CMYK, what would be the point of soft proofing CMYK? You can (and should) do both in Photoshop.
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Kaffeesegler

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I'm here with two copies of PS. I work a lot with LR every day with tons of pictures. And I ended up with using PS may be once a year. Adobe will not motivate me to buy a third copy by moving features from LR to PS.

Using PS just for proofing purposes is like hiring a submarine when you want to go fishing. It's no practical workflow! Move a slider in LR, export to PS, look at the picture, go back to LR, move another slider, export again, look at it in PS - one gets crazy. And thats dangerous because you start selling and distributing material thats not working well for any purposes other than being printed at home or put on a website.

So if one thinks he needs no CMYK proof within LR, he should

- never use LRs book feature
- not sell any pictures to agencies, newspapers etc. because you never know how you material will behave

etc.
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Andrew Rodney

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What part of “LR has an RGB processing path” wasn’t clear? You’d be willing to have LR develop a big, ugly set of CMYK preferences as we have in Photoshop, only to soft proof and not convert the data?

You have two copies of PS, one more than you need to soft proof and convert.

What’s next, pop Illustrator or InDesign into LR?

The book feature isn’t going to fly here because there are no actual CMYK profiles for it to use (just one generic profile that doesn’t define the print process). Even if you could load the generic Blurb profile for an LR soft proof, what you were viewing would be incorrect. So that we have a book module, at least for this one provider doesn’t justify CMYK anything. If you can get Blurb to provide all the ICC output profiles for all CMYK processes, you’d be much closer to justify the ability to soft proof in Photoshop let alone LR.
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Kaffeesegler

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Editing photos in LR and soft proofing in PS makes no sense, at least if one has to edit material on a daily basis. You need to see the results in real time. Like you would do it within PS: Simply switch on the proof and keep on editing while in proof view. So recommending PS for soft proofing makes only sense if you stop editing your material in LR. And I think LRs intention is to bee a bit more than just a "iPhoto from Adobe".

And we are not asking for rocket science, there is even a LR plug in for such purposes (http://www.lightroom-plugins.com/Proo.... It's at least a compromise between the optimum (of having the proof fully integrated within LR) and the worst case (of having to do it clunky in PS).

Adding this proofing feature would be a further, strong enhancement of the biggest LR advantage: It's perfect workflow integration.

Books: I never asked for this feature. But as far as I know there are a lot of book printers offering a good profile support, which may be better than blurbs, but I don't know that.
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Michael Robertson

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I think CMYK softproofing is a good idea and validates that LR is an end-to-end workflow solution for professionals... one of LR's most important constituencies.

+1
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Andrew Rodney

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>I think CMYK softproofing is a good idea and validates that LR is an end-to-end workflow solution for professionals... one of LR's most important constituencies.

So you’d soft proof CMYK, knowing you can’t get CMYK out of LR?
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Mario Melillo

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Yes, I would. It's the back and forth between LR and PS that makes the workflow ridiculous.
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Michael Robertson

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You really don't think it's necessary to challenge everyone who votes on this feature do you? Your position is understood, other people have other ideas.
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Andrew Rodney

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Challange? I asked a question which so far is unanswered about viewing CMYK in a product that has only an RGB processing path.

We can all vote that the moon should be made of cheese. That will not change it to cheese.
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Michael Robertson

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And it's going to remain unanswered as long as the antagonistic sophistry continues. You're just another user of the product.
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P W

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I have no idea about the processing path of LR4 but I think that CMYK soft-proofing would definitely improve my workflow.

Out of the 8 icc profiles I use 3 are CMYK.
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TK

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Seems that the only book vendor LR4 supports (Blurb) uses CMYK and that softproofing does not support CMYK.

The uninitiated would expect that the combined availability of "softproofing" + "book module" means that you can check how your images will look printed in a book.

I realise that Blurb would have to provide more profiles, depending on the paper used for a book, but that's just another problem to be solved, not an explanation as to why features in LR4 do not work together as one may expect.
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Yann Bouckaert

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Well, I print my images to an Epson with a rip (EFI Colorproof XF), after exporting them from Lightroom as Prophoto RGB. This rip uses CMYK output profiles. I would also like to softproof this output from Lightroom, based on these profiles.
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Terry Thrift

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I have an HP Color Laserjet CP2025. It is a CMYK printer.
The output profiles generated for it by ColorMunki Photo are CMYK.
I would like to softproof output for this printer.
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Richard Henley

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I was going to install the LR4 Beta today until I understood that it doesn't offer simple CMYK softproofing which I wanted to use for checking my Blurb book submission ...
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didi

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If LR wants to address professionals it should really allow CMYK with 4.5 the latest.

My pictures go to CMYK print and it is very clunky with PS.
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Andreas Sakka

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CMYK proofing never bothered me... but I have just spent 6 weeks (and still counting) trying to fix major colour issues with a book created through LR4. Perhaps the ability to soft proof prior to printing would have avoided a lot of hassle.
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Chris Pearson

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Every colour printer I've owned has been CMYK, not RGB. To proof and export using a CMYK profile is essential to me, as the print house expects CYMK for all their Giclee (inkjet....) prints.

I don't want to spend a fortune for Photoshop simplly to proof and convert, this is madness when proofing and exporting are such core parts of lightroom.
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Andrew Rodney

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>>Every colour printer I've owned has been CMYK, not RGB.

With the exception of the very few chromagenic printers that use RGB light (lasers, CRT's etc) to expose silver paper, all other printers use CMY(maybe K) and maybe other colors. But you're missing the important difference between the colorants (dyes, pigments etc) used in the printer and the color space necessary to send a document to such printers.

All GDI and Quickdraw print drivers don't understand CMYK, they expect RGB data. While the printer itself may use CMYK colorants, the driver needs to create the conversion to that color space (or CMYKk, CMYKG0 etc) FROM RGB data.

Further, the entire LR path is RGB. This is why the print model works just fine with this color model sending this data to a huge number of printers. CMYK data isn't necessary nor the correct color model to be sending.

The only time sending CMYK data becomes useful is for proofing one CMYK device unto another (Make my Epson simulate a press sheet or contract proof). And you'll need a "RIP" or 3rd party driver that actually understands CMYK and how to produce a CMYK to CMYK conversion for proofing. All of this is well outside the LR usage (you still need the correct driver).
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Chris Pearson

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I stand corrected. I may have * completely* misunderstood the whys but the fact still stands I need to proof against a CMYK profile for the prints I want.

Currently I am having to round trip to a PS trial, so I have t proof. I also loose the great flexibility of lightrooms virtual copies, and will have to save a load of Tiffs.
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Chris Cox

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If the printer takes RGB signals, then you need an RGB profile for conversion and proofing. Otherwise you're doing multiple conversions and losing quality at each step. Doesn't matter what the inks are, what matters is the signals you send to the printer (that it then converts to inks). Even the 16 ink wide format monster printers I have here take RGB signals.
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Chris Pearson

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Sounds more like I need to speak to the print house then. The profile is definitely CMYK, but it would seem their epson wide format printers want RGB, so the double conversion seems wasteful. The paper manufactures profiles are RGB also.
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thomas olbrich

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As long most print processes use colors in CMYK it is usefull to get softproof for those processes within LR. This does not mean at all that LR would enable to work on images in CMYK. So I agree the wish to get cmyk softproof in LIghtoom.
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Mark Andrews

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You have a separate LR module for (Blurb) Book creation, yet LR cannot use the (CMYK) Blurb Printing Profile to provide the most accurate soft proofing. This needs to be corrected by supporting CMYK Color Profiles in future versions of LR.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
No LR CMYK Profile Support reduces quality of Blurb Books.