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Colors & exposure in Develop & Edit modes don't match each other or the output. Fix?

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  • Colors & exposure in Develop & Edit modes don't match each other or the output. Fix?

    *reposting because I had issues with my first attempt, which got flagged as spam for some reason, and no one moderated to clear the spam flag.*
    I have noticed this issue for a while, and I am hoping that there is a setting or a group of settings that will help me fix this. I have two problems: 1) I have noticed that when I bring a raw file into develop mode, after getting the image to look how I want in terms of colors and exposure, when I export it to JPEG from Develop, or when I switch over to Edit mode, the image is slightly off. The colors are a little different. Not enough to really put your finger on it, but you can tell when you open the raw file in Develop then open the jpeg in View. 2) What's more is that after I am done with the image in Edit mode and save the image (or after I export to JPEG from Develop), ACDSee will render the image in View and Manage mode just about identically as it was in Edit mode (as far as I can tell), but when I open the image in another program (say, Photos in Windows 10) or after I upload the image to something like Flickr, the image will look a little different there, too; slightly darker. For example, in the linked image, which is on Flickr at (, you cannot see any of the shadow detail on the river bank. I have both Flickr and ACDSee open right now, and ACDSee is rendering the shadows brighter than Flickr or Photos are, and in ACDSee, I can see detail on the bank. The bank is intended to be dark but Flickr and Photos are displaying clipped blacks instead of a dark bank. When I go to view the image on my phone, same story. I have it uploaded to my Flickr and Instagram. Both phone apps display consistently with each other and with my computer's web browser and with Windows 10's Photos application. Only ACDSee shows me the image as I intended it to look--except that this is not useful if after the image leaves ACDSee because no one can see it the way I intended. All my screens appear to be consistent with each other if I am not viewing the exported image through ACDSee
    My camera's color space is set to sRGB. Develop mode's Output Color Space is also set to sRGB. I understand that sRGB is the most common color space on the internet (although I don't know how to check whether a site is or isn't using sRGB). So, I figure that this can't be a color space issue. If it isn't a color space issue, then what is it? The thing that has me really scratching my head is how I can open up the JPEG in ACDSee right now and see the image how I thought it would look, but then if I open up the same image in Photos it looks different. Additionally, it bothers me that the finished edits in Develop mode don't carry over 1:1 to Edit mode or to JPEG export. Does anyone have a solution, or is this a bug, or something else? Losing my mind over here.
    Also, I am currently editing in Ultimate 2020. This is not something new with 2020. I have upgraded with each new version of Ultimate for the last few years, and I have been with ACDSee before they started using the year as the version number. I do not know when I first noticed the issue, but I can confirm that I have had this problem for at least two or three versions. I am really hoping that this is something that can be fixed by changing some settings, and I hope someone can help me out. Thanks!
    Last edited by dragus359; 01-25-2020, 10:14 AM.

  • #2
    There is a lot to unwrap in this post.

    As a reference point (and not a defense), in my experience, images exported to JPG from ACD Ult2020 (and previous 5+ versions) do match. But, there are ways to get this to go sideways. (I have gone sidewas myself and it drove me crazy, too.

    I think there may be a color management related. This may make this thread worth reading.
    I would not use Win10 photos as a tie breaker in anything that requires confirmation of photos with unknown color spaces or wider color spaces

    About the image link
    * The image comes back as a 640x480 jpg at a sie of ~56kB. Any detail that was there is gone due to the combined image resolution reduction and jpg compression.
    * It is odd the image in the link reports a color space of AddobeRGB / ProPhoto RGB:
    ** As you stated it is always best to post to the Web as sRGB.
    ** It seems somehow this photo had it's color space changed. (May be worth a double check)

    I would also consider
    Tools > Options > Color Management > UN-Check "Enable soft proofing" to get through the present issues


    • #3
      Thank you, for the reply, Gus. The image link is low quality because I was having trouble with the link inserting feature of the text editor. I’m on my phone now, so here’s hoping that the link I got from the app works: Hopefully that will show up in higher resolution—and if it does, then I will update the OP. Resolution of that image aside, my point is that ACDSee is the only application that displays the image as I edited it, so something is going wrong. I did edit with soft proofing on, so I will try editing a different photo with it off. I did try switching it on and off, but that was after I edited the photo I posted about. Switching it on and off did not seem to do anything with photos that were already edited.

      I will check out the DP Review article. Thanks again.