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Chris_Pearson

Please sort out your ICC colour management

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I like Affinity Photo and Design but I can't use them due to the sloppy implementation off ICC colour management. Here are a few issues and requests:

  • Affinity only sees profiles with the .icc extension, those with .icm are invisible. .icm is the default for many professional colour profiling applications
  • Affinity seems to filter the profiles I can access (based, I assume, on some property of the profile) and it's getting it wrong - please either get this right or let users who know what they're doing overrride this behaviour (e.g. I can't access a scanner profile in Affinity which I want to assign to an image). 
  • Please allow all Affinity apps to be able to pick profiles from a common location other than the system default (C:\Windows\System32\spool\drivers\color). 

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Hi Chris, did you see my reply in your previous thread? (https://forum.affinity.serif.com/index.php?/topic/60677-colour-profile-recognition-and-handling/&tab=comments#comment-314285)

 

It doesn't address your first point (.icm vs .icc)—I can't vouch for this as I haven't tried profiles with an .icm extension. It does however highlight that the profiles available are dependent on the document's current colour model (e.g. RGB or CMYK). I've also pointed out a specific directory unique to Affinity where you can put your custom profiles. Because you haven't replied to the thread I'm not sure if the suggestions have worked for you, or whether you're posting this thread because they haven't? Hope it helps!


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Hi James

I hadn't seen your earlier reply, however I'd already discovered the folder you suggest and have had no joy with that either.

At the moment in working with Affinity I haven't finished assessing it for  RGB workflows, so there's no confusion with CMYK, Lab or other colour spaces.

I'm very surprised that the .icm issue hasn't cropped up before: that should be fixed pronto, the ".icc only" thing will put off anyone with a knowledge of colour management because it looks like (a) Affinity aren't aware that there is such a thing and (b) if they are, they don't know what they're doing. If I'd spotted this during the trial period I'd have uninstalled it without delay.

I've attached one of the scanner profiles that won't show up in Affinity. I've changed the extension to .icc. The workflow at this stage is all in 16-bit and runs as follows: (scanned image in AdobeRGB)> Assign Profile (scanner profile) > Convert to AdobeRGB. I have this automated in Photoshop and hope to do a Macro in Affinity Photo, but obviously that can't happen at the moment.

 

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I've spent quite a bit of time assessing how bad Affinity Photo is as far as colour management is concerned, here are my observations:

  • The .icm extension is not recognised at all. This is simply an alternate file extension to .icc, the data inside the file is identical, please sort it out
  • Profiles with a device class of 'input' or 'scnr' are not recognised at all. This means that Affinity Photo can not be used as part of a a fully colour-managed workflow.
  • There's a menu item File > Import ICC Profile... which doesn't appear to do anything and which isn't mentioned anywhere in the online help. Please explain what this is for.

 

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13 minutes ago, Chris_Pearson said:

Profiles with a device class of 'input' or 'scnr' are not recognised at all. This means that Affinity Photo can not be used as part of a a fully colour-managed workflow.

Affinity Photo seems to recognize my scanner profiles just fine, at least the ones installed in the appropriate Windows system folder.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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7 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

Affinity Photo seems to recognize my scanner profiles just fine, at least the ones installed in the appropriate Windows system folder.

There are 3 locations from which Affinity Photo will pick up profiles:

The OS default folder (C:\Windows\System32\spool\drivers\color)

A folder in the same general location as the main app (C:\Program Files\Affinity\Affinity Photo\Resources\icc)

And C:\Users\xxx\AppData\Roaming\Affinity\Photo\1.0\profiles

I've just discovered the last one and it appears that File > Import ICC Profile lets you navigate anywhere on your system, find a profile - as long as it has the .icc extension - and when you press 'Open' it copies it to that last location, so at least that's cleared up.

Walt, are you OK with letting me see one of your scanner profiles so I can analyse it and figure out which flags or tags on mine might be causing the issue?

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-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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Thanks for that, are you aware that the book scanner profile is .ICM ? Changing the extension to ICC makes it recognisable to Affinity and it works, as does the Epson profile. Both of these look like ICC v2 whereas all of mine are v4, But I quickly made a couple of v2 input profiles and still no joy.

I've been through about a dozen ICC-savvy programmes and not one of these failed to recognise my scanner profiles. This and the ICM issue means the only conclusion I can come to is that Affinity have screwed something up quite badly. 

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28 minutes ago, Chris_Pearson said:

are you aware that the book scanner profile is .ICM ? Changing the extension to ICC makes it recognisable to Affinity and it works, as does the Epson profile.

Yes, it's a .icm file. And it works in Affinity as-is, without changing the extension.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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12 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Yes, it's a .icm file. And it works in Affinity as-is, without changing the extension.

So it does. But only if it's in the 'system' location. Put the same profile in either of the other two locations and it's not recognised... unless the extension is changed to .icc.

It looks like Affinity Photo looks for available profiles when it launches, all the restarting the programme while testing is tedious and time consuming. The Import ICC Profile facility - when that's used the programme moves the 'new' profile to its folder within the user's app data but also recognises it as 'available' - as long as it's has the .icc extension.

We're still left with the problem that only some profiles are recognised by Affinity, though those same profiles work with at least a dozen other programmes. I think I know why, but testing the theory will take hours: if I'm right it would only deepen my conviction that Affinity haven't got things right, if I'm wrong the mystery remains.  

I'm going to have to abandon this topic and, I think, Affinity software generally. I'm still boggling at the way issues with Design are being handled (e.g. you can specify bleed for a document but can't see it on screen - and they haven't fixed it after a year?) which doesn't inspire confidence in the soon (?) to be released Publisher. 

A great shame as the whole Affinity suite had the potential to genuinely challenge Adobe's near-monopoly, but their inability to get (some of) the basics right is a deal-breaker for me.

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