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Out Of Gam-What?

by Steph on 28 August 2012
in Designer Tools & Tips,Photoshop CS+,Tutorials Pin this scrappy stuff!

Gamut. If you are a digital scrapper or designer, I’m sure you have come across the word before..But what is it? It’s a little tricky to explain so I am going to use the definition from – 

“The phrase “out of gamut” refers to a range of colors that cannot be reproduced within the CMYK color space used for commercial printing. Graphics software is designed to work with images in the RGB color space throughout the editing process. The RGB color space has a much wider range of discernible colors than CMYK. When you print an image it must be reproduced with inks and these inks cannot reproduce the same range of colors that we can see with our eyes. Because the gamut of color that can be reproduced with ink is much smaller than what we can see, any color that cannot be reproduced with ink is referred to as “out of gamut.” In graphics software, you often will see an out of gamut warning when you select colors that will shift when an image is converted from the RGB color space used in the editing process, to the CMYK space used for commercial printing.”

Make sense? Well how do you check for gamut? It’s pretty easy! Here is a pallet I am working with. Nice fun bright colors. HINT- most of the time, your colors that are going to be out of gamut are your bright colors.


Go to View->Gamut Warning

See how my orange has turned grey? That means it is out of Gamut. Now, I could leave it, it wont print grey. The color would just be off, not the same orange. It would look different from screen to printed project. And guess what? There is an easy way to fix your out of gamut color.

Simply click on your out of gamut color with your color picker. If it’s out of gamut {we already know orange is} then a box with an ! will pop up. If you click on that color, PS will give you a replacement color that is very similar, but in gamut. Easy huh? This is actually how I check gamut, because it’s easy to fix at the same time. Have a great week!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 ScrappyMama 28 August 2012 at 3:07 pm

I haven’t gotten this msg before, but, I do occasionally get one that says “this uses a color that cannot be supported, would you like to convert it to a supported color now” (I’m doing that from memory but I think it’s pretty close to what the msg says)…the weird thing is that it’s usually a white (ish) color that gets the msg! I’m now using PSE10 but it was in PSE9 that I got that msg…if I get it again, maybe I can try this tip you shared…Thanks!!


2 SnickerdoodleDesigns 28 August 2012 at 8:19 pm

Great tip, Steph! Thanks!


3 Carol 28 August 2012 at 8:55 pm

This info was really great. I had never heard of this before so I really do appreciate your sharing this tip. Thanks so much.


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