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Knowledge Base > Using ICC Profiles/Color Management

  • Why don't my prints match what I see on my monitor?  Profiles need to be used in a color-managed workflow. If the profile is being applied correctly, the discrepancy is usually caused because the monitor is not profiled and calibrated. We recommend any of the popular hardware profiling solutions out on the market, from companies such as X-RiteDatacolor (formerly Colorvision) or Pantone.

  • Can I use the same profile for different printers or papers?  No. ICC profiles are created specifically for a particular printer, ink, and paper combination. Changing any one of those three variables will negate the profile's description of color.

    A good example would be keys and locks. While all keys are just keys, they are specific to a particular lock. Some keys will even fit in a different lock, but fail to open it. Profiles are like keys and are designed for a specific lock or device.

  • I can't open the profile after downloading ... There is no need to open the profile itself. Your image editing software like Photoshop will access it when needed. Please review the instructions for downloading and installing profiles for a complete review on how to do this.

  • What is an ICC profile? An ICC profile is a small file, which contains color information to describe a device's output. ICC stands for International Color Consortium and is the governing body which formulated the concept and standardized the information in response to rapidly changing environments in the printing and manufacturing industries where color matching is critical between devices often in different countries.

    ICC profiles are specific to the device they were created for. Inkjet printer profiles, like those downloadable from our site, are specific to the printer, ink, and paper combination.

  • How do I download a profile from your website? Windows Users

    Right-clicking on any link will open a list of options that allow the user to specify what to do with the file the link points to.

    Firefox users should choose Save Link As
    Internet Explorer users should choose Save Target As

    Apple Users

    Most of the time, you can click on the link itself and your Mac will ask you if you want to Preview the file or Save It. Some older Apple systems will not download a file if simply clicking on the link, but will instead try to open the file. One of the following methods should be used instead:

    Hold the Option key when clicking on the link.
    Hold the Control key when clicking on the link and choose Save Link As

    Regardless of the operating system, it's important to save the file in a location where you can easily find it. We suggest saving it to your desktop so you know where to find it when it comes time to install it.

  • I've downloaded the profile from you website, but can't see it in Adobe Photoshop ... First make sure you've followed the instructions and copied or installed the profile in to the appropriate directory. Click here to review the appropriate directories if needed. Once you've verified that the file is in the appropriate location, simply refresh Adobe Photoshop's profile list by either restarting Photoshop, or clicking on ViewProof SetupCustom... and then clicking on Cancel. This also forces Photoshop to refresh its cache of installed profiles.

  • Can I use your ICC profiles in my RIP? No. The profiles available for download from are RGB based profiles. Most RIPs use CMYK based profiles along with ink limiting and linearization data to control color. Most RIP companies provide profiles for use with their specific RIP for download. Contact your RIP manufacturer for more information.

  • Can I create my own profiles? Yes. It does require a special device like a Spectrophotometer or Spectrocolorimeter along with software which can interpret the data and format it correctly. Hardware and software packages are available from X-Rite or Datacolor (formerly Colorvision).

  • Why isn't my printer profiled? We make every effort to profile industry leading archival printers. With literally hundreds of printer models in use, we simply pick and choose the printers which we get the most requests for and which we feel are a good match for our products. If you would like for us to consider profiling a printer, please contact us.

  • My printer isn't profiled, will your product work it? Maybe. For compatibility of specific printers, simply email us and we can confirm this for you.

  • Why don't I see your paper listed in the options when I go to print? A profile is a set of data which is read by the device like an inkjet printer. They do not become a part of the printer's driver and will not be listed in the manufacturer's list of suggested paper settings for any given printer. Please refer to the instructions in Photoshop using our profiles. The suggested media setting is found directly below the link for each profile.

  • What profiles should I use for the Pina Zangaro Matte pages? Please use the profiles for Lasal Photo Matte for the Pina Zangaro pages and you'll be happy as a clam.

  • What media type should I use for your profiles? Our suggested media type can be found just to the right of each Moab paper name on the ICC profile download page. For best results, you should use our recommendation, as we have created our profile(s) with this media type. The media type controls which black ink will be used, as well as how much ink is laid down on the paper.

  • Why Doesn't My Print Match My Monitor? First and foremost - it can’t look just like your print, because a photograph, work of art, or even a plain piece of paper all use the qualities of reflective light, and the physics of light is completely different than that of backlighting. Neither of these links are for the faint of heart so here comes the layman’s version:

    There are two main objectives that need to be accounted for: 1) the luminance difference between the paper that you print on and the brightness of your display, and 2) the color of white between your paper and your display. Your display profiling software asks you these things without you really knowing what they are asking. Here is what you need to do:

    1) Start off with a D65 calibration and profiling process. Then match the color white of both inkjet paper and your display. If the display is too warm, adjust the Kelvin temperature of your profiling application downward to D55, D50 or a custom number (if you can do so). Most papers will have a good match for your lighting environment between D55 and D65.

    2) Match the brightness of your display to the brightness of your inkjet paper. This is the tough one, because many people don’t have their display environment for their printed images anywhere near their monitor. Some profiling applications allow for a manual control over brightness, and the average range we have found is something around 100 to 120cm2.

    Color management is a recipe no different than cookie recipes.  If you leave one part of the recipe out, the cookie may look right, but it isn’t going to taste very good.  The same goes for Color Management - make sure you have all the ingredients, including a room that is painted neutral gray, a light box in which to view your images under controlled lighting conditions or, no light other than your monitor in the room.  If you only have some of the “ingredients”, your results are going to be frustrating.

    That said, not everyone has the time, space or money to do this.  If you need your monitor and your prints to look close, not perfect, and don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on measuring devices or invest the time in getting into the nitty gritty details of color management, than we recommend Aesthetic Color Management.  This is the use of your eyes to determine what color should look like under your individual conditions.  It works like this: when you get a good print that you like, take the print and put it up to your monitor and adjust the monitor to look like the print.  It’s not very scientific, but you’d be surprised how accurate it can be.

  • Using a profile for a heavier paper, your recommended media setting is greyed out in my printer dialog box. Certain media types are going to be grayed out until you change the paper path. To do this you have to go back to the Page Setup screen where you indicate your paper size. When you select your paper size, you will notice a small arrow that indicates there is a sub-menu. In the sub-menu you will need to select the rear 'manual' paper path.  The heavier paper options now will show up.

  • I've been trying to download paper profiles for an HP Z3200, but they have a weird extension (.oms) that my system cannot read. The .oms files are paper presets, as indicated in the name on each file. You can import these presets in the HP utility that has a function called Paper Preset Management. Paper Presets are much more than just ICC profiles, but profiles are included inside of the .oms file.

    See your Z3200 documentation for more details.

  • I'm getting a magenta cast over my image. A magenta cast is almost always an indication that the output is being double profiled, or that color management is being applied in two different places.  I would suggest making sure that color management is indeed disabled in the printer driver.

  • What media type setting should I use with my profile? The media types are on our web site next to each download link.