Important notes on color (CMYK, Pantone, RGB, etc.)

  • We produce our color separations using a standard SWOP profile. We will then match SWOP densities within a reasonable tolerance.
  • In order for us to print in "full color", the graphics need to be in CMYK process color mode at the proper resolution. Spot color jobs must be separated properly.
  • If you are using a Pantone swatch book to choose your color for spot color jobs, please realize that Pantone swatch books are split between how a Pantone color will look on an uncoated paper and a coated paper. Hence the "U" or the "C" after the Pantone number. Many other factors affect how the colors will look on a finished printed piece. These variables are found at the beginning section of the Pantone book.
  • Pantone spot colors are not always simulated well in CMYK. CMYK printed on an uncoated paper versus a coated paper will produce muted colors. Colors on your screen may, or may not, be color accurate. We recommend the use of a Pantone Color Bridge swatch book to see the solid to process color simulation differences.
  • If you are sensitive to the accuracy of your file's color you should refer to the appropriate Pantone swatch book. If you are referencing a Pantone swatch book, please read the front pages' cautions and variables. There are many factors which affect the final printed color.
  • RGB, Pantone spot colors, and indexed colors must all be converted to CMYK for full color printing.
  • Not all RGB or Pantone spot colors have good CMYK simulations, because the color spectrum of 4-color process printing (CMYK) is different than that of the RGB and PMS spot colors. Below is a graphical representation of the different spectrums. The "web" looking spectrum is the process spectrum, the "triangle" represents the RGB spectrum, and the rest is the visual spectrum that our eyes can see in nature. PMS spot colors also have their own unique shape inside the visual spectrum. What this all means is that starting with a color in one spectrum and trying to move it to a different spectrum does not always produce desirable results.


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