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I finished my new logo and always I make a logo, I pick CMYK format, thinking on print and vector first. I created a color scheme using Adobe Color by setting up the HEX values. As you may know, Adobe Color displays each color you picked in a variety of formats, including RGB, CMYK and, as a new feature, its Pantone respective match.

My 1st doubt here is that when I apply the CMYK values Adobe Color shows, those colors look like a little different from the RGB. Is that normal? Can we "rely" on Adobe Color regarding color conversions? And, before someone saying to me, I don't have Pantone physical palettes, I'm still unemployed :disappointed_face:

2nd point: the CMYK values Adobe Color shows to us is different from those which I see on Illustrator CMYK correspondent fields after putting that respective color's HEX or RGB code. Example: one of my colors is #CD0A5A. Adobe Color "says" that its CMYK value is 0, 95, 56, 20, however, if I insert #CD0A5A on Illustrator and take a look on the CMYK respective value, you'll see 15, 100, 48, 2. Also, after I add my color theme from Adobe Color to swatches on Illustrator, those colors are added with some variations on their values, e.g., the HEX #CD0A5A after I add onto Illustrator, it "becomes" #CD1D5C.

Could you help me with those points??

***** UPDATE *****

The print shop contacted me and they said me to proof colors using FOGRA39. That generated a BIG difference in comparison with default US Web Coated Swop v2.

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    Does adobe color know how your monitor and printer is calibrated? Does illustrator know? Do you know? Thrust the source that knows these things. If you answer no to all of these then your numbers are meaningless. – joojaa Oct 10 at 6:08
  • PMS is a spot color made with a single ink and has no CMYK color value. Are you actually making a document with "CMYK and PMS" as stated? – Yorik Oct 24 at 20:22
  • My edit was just about the CMYK, but entire question is around both CMYK and pantone. – joaogdesigner Oct 24 at 20:28
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Ok, stop.

You have not mentioned anything about the color profile.

My usual example:

Take a marker and draw a line on a coated magazine paper, and on a newspaper. The ink value is the same, the color is not.


  1. Leave your color as Pantone, the point of Pantone is that tries to be an "absolute color".

  2. Define a set of color profiles, for example, Swop2, Gracol X, Fogra Y, depending on the zone of the planet you live.

    In some experiments I did some time ago, the Pantone's website uses the Swop v2 (+Adobe 1998) combination of profiles to give you the conversions on the website itself, so it is an option if you do not know what to do.

  3. Mention that on your manual, that the base color is Pantone, and the RGB or Hexadecimal and the CMYK values are recommendations using the color profiles.


Answering your other questions...

a. You can not rely on how your monitor displays the colors unless it is a Design Grade monitor and is calibrated with either Color Munki or Color Spider colorimeters or spectrometers. Add that that your viewing conditions are optima, ambient light, background wall... And you are not tired or under the influence of 4 cups of coffee...

b. There is no one way to convert colors from Pantone to CMYK and then simulating them on a monitor, that is why there are color profiles.

c. Even the color libraries change values depending on the version of the library itself... It is annoying but it is how it is.

  • Sure, I really forgot to mention about color profile. I didn't change anything in Adobe CC, so the RGB profile is sRGB (I researched and graphic designers say Adobe 1998 is better) and CMYK profile is US Web Coated Swop v2. I'm in doubt now because there is another one in Adobe Bridge called "North America Prepress 2", which because the name sounds like more properly to be used for print design. – joaogdesigner Oct 11 at 21:49

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