El Don Motel, Albuquerque - sRGB Color Space version

This was a tough one to work from because my darkest exposure was not dark enough, and I had left the image stabilizer on even though I was using a tripod. That meant that each exposure moved just a tiny bit relative to the last. And besides; it was too late at night; this beauty needs to be shot at the blue hour!


Lame excuses aside, here it is: this version was converted from the 16 bit ProPhoto editing space I work in to an 8 bit JPEG in web standard sRGB.


If you have a color managed browser (Firefox and Safari are the only two which get it right by default) and a wide gamut monitor then you will see that the reds and blues are muted compared to their ProPhoto counterpart.


I see the difference easily; and since the gamut of my printer actually exceeds the gamut of my monitor one can understand why I archive my final edits as 16 bit ProPhoto color space TIFFs: Anything less would be throwing away image quality. sRGB is a lowest common denominator color space invented to complement the capabilities of a low priced CRT monitor circa 1996. Meaning, you could get a decent color reproduction even without calibrating and without a color managed workflow. That was a step forward for 1996. But the world has moved on!


  • Jeffery P. 3y

    It looks excellent in large format. Yes, the blue hour would be a nice touch, but don't sell yourself short. :)
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    Patricia Thomas Thanks Patty! I am really getting the itch to hit the road again; does it show?

    Weird thing I notice about color management and tagged photos: in browsers which as a default blithely ignore the color space tag (Chrome on Windows, Safari on iOS devices, Internet Explorer) the sRGB version has more "pop" than the ProPhoto version.

    If I view in Firefox, which gets the color management system right in stock trim the situation is reversed: The ProPhoto version has the snap and "in your face" colors while the sRGB version looks a bit more subdued. This is correct behavior; as verified by soft proofing in PS CS6, Lightroom 4 and Qimage. I also see the difference in actual prints made on my HP Z3200, a printer which has a 98% Pantone coverage.

    I don't know why the other browser vendors are dragging their feet but they are. I prefer Chrome but until Chrome gets the color management right I can't use if for critical work.

    Jeffery P. Thanks Jeffrey: I think I will add a print of this to my portfolio; I am still one of those old fashioned guys who totally loves his iPad but still prefers a portfolio full of nice 11x17 prints on high grade paper. And what the hell, I have been known to give away prints right out of the portfolio to total strangers when on road trips; I'd say that family from Australia who I met last November in the parking lot of a scenic overlook just outside of Jerome are still talking about that crazy Yank in the convertible with a trunk full of pictures to give away :D
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    Just what I thought; iOS has no color management either:

  • Pete Zarria 3y

    It looks great either way, I can't find a pref for one one another.
  • Wayne 3y

    Either one is fantastic!
  • Justin Waits PRO 3y

    Great one! Love all the extra color
  • Pam Morris PRO 3y

    Seeing this lit is breathtaking
  • Ken Foto PRO 3y

    Wow, That looks great. A very good rendition.
  • Gary~ 3y

    Awesome capture...
  • Onasill ~ Bill Badzo PRO 3y

    A pure beauty of work Tim. Thanks for the knowledge base. Have a great day
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    Pete Zarria Wayne Justin Waits Pam Morris Ken Foto Gary~ Thanks all! This is one of those times where I geek out into color science---the real surprise is that iOS devices are not color space aware; they just assume everything is in sRGB. Stunning oversight for a company which has roots in graphic arts; I know they know better; and their desktop browsers get it spot on perfect just as Firefox does.

    Even more odd; if viewing these two images in a non-colorspace aware browser on a wide gamut monitor the colors look pretty good; with the sRGB version looking better than the ProPhoto version. Throw a color space aware browser in and the situation is reversed.

    Obviously, the browser development folks have some homework to do.....glad you all like the picture regardless of the state of color science on the web today :-)
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    Onasill ~ Bill Badzo Thanks Bill; I am still trying to make my camera capture what my eye sees when it takes in neon....closing in on it!
  • David Cass 3y

    This is absolutely beautiful. I viewed it with Firefox and the colors are excellent.
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    David Cass Thank you -- in Firefox, the ProPhoto version should be a bit more vivid in the brilliant reds, greens and blues; the sRGB version looks a bit more muted by comparison.
  • arnie PRO 3y

    What a great shot!
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    arnie Thanks!
  • Ian Chamberlain PRO 3y

    Nice full-frame neon image. What a sign, too.
  • Tim Anderson PRO 3y

    Ian Chamberlain This one was restored a few years ago, glad they did it.
  • Jean PRO 3y

23 faves
Taken on December 25, 2011
  • ƒ/8.0
  • 65.0 mm
  • 0.6
  • 100
  • Show EXIF
This photo is in 2 albums

Additional info

  • Viewing this photo Public
  • Safety level of this photo Safe
  • S Search
    Photo navigation
    < > Thumbnail navigation
    Z Zoom
    B Back to context