Basically I am trying to achieve Navy color or PMS 662 or PMS 296 with CMYK and having trouble. This will be used on Dye Sublimation print.

Is there any recommendation on how I should do with CMYK.

Thank you in advance.

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  • I have seen rgb.to recommended before: http://rgb.to/pantone/662-c. There is also a relevant thread that goes over the conversion in detail Pantone color conversions.
    – AndrewH
    Jun 23, 2015 at 15:19
  • Andrew, this wont work becouse you still need a color profile from that printer.
    – Rafael
    Jun 23, 2015 at 18:47
  • @AndrewH; the answer for the Pantone color conversions you posted, is very discouraging to read through. It made me think that everything is subjective, infact, yes it is. Jun 24, 2015 at 18:22

5 Answers 5


There's a few factors you need to deal with here:

  • Not all Pantone colors are reproducable via CMYK. (in fact, that's one of the reasons people use Pantone colors...to print in colors they normally can't with CMYK)
  • The Dye Sublimation may print CMYK colors differently than what you might see on a offset press.

The solution is likely going to be you creating a bunch of swatches of various blues (like you have above) and sending that to the printer and have them create a proof for you. Then use your eyes to find the color that you think will work best.

  • Thank you so much for your answer. I was thinking about creating a bunch of swatches and sending it for hard proof. I guess there isn't better way to see things more accurate, huh? Jun 23, 2015 at 19:42
  • 1
    @Nomadme that's what proofs are for. We can only trust our eyes. :)
    – DA01
    Jun 23, 2015 at 19:42
  • :) I meant to say better efficient way. Would 100 75 0 60 would be to dark or do you think this would be a perfect Navy? Jun 23, 2015 at 19:48
  • @Nomadme I have no idea. That'll depend on your opinion of what the 'perfect' navy is and how that particular printer prints on the particular material you are printing on.
    – DA01
    Jun 23, 2015 at 19:56
  • lol, exactly, color is so subjective. Let me better prepare for a swatch for hard proof :) Jun 23, 2015 at 20:12

The technical solution would be: Get a color profile of your printer.

  • You can make it using special hardware.

  • There is a chance the manufacturer provides one too.

Or make a color chart as DA01 recomended. I would make a more methodical one than a random one like the one you posted.

I would make a CM K chart. Cyan on X axis, Magenta on Y axis and diferent charts adding more black.

Adding black to a color chart

Of course the starting point can be colors closer to your target, and smaller variations of each channel.

  • Thank you so much for your input. I like your CM K chart, could you show example chart? I'm not quite seeing how black chart would be placed. Jun 23, 2015 at 19:40
  • 1
    I added an image to clarify.
    – Rafael
    Jun 23, 2015 at 21:45

You may not get an exact match, but you can get close assuming is from the solid coated book. Here is work around I've used before.

In InDesign, create a new swatch, select your PMS number from the appropriate book, then switch back to CMYK in the drop down.

That will give you an approximation. Print a test and manually adjust the values until you get as close as you consider acceptable to the PMS color.

For Solid Coated 662 I get C100, M71, Y0, K18

For Solid Coated 296 I get C100, M46, Y0, K70

I hope that helps.



Use a Pantones chart as first reference; often the CMYK corresponding recipe is written on them for the process chart.

It's never going to be the exact same match but these are the recipes that Pantones itself recommends. Maybe you can even get these equivalent online.

All you'll need to do is check what is the recommended CMYK recipe for the Pantones 662 or 296. You might even see a blue you prefer that is different on the CMYK side of the chart.

Pantones Process color chart

Another answer about matching HEX, CMYK and Pantones colors.

  • 1
    Thanks for contributing. I think you might be interested looking at this . Jun 24, 2015 at 18:25
  • 1
    It will be, I worked in a printers as an art student and Pantone to Process book is a present they gave me on leaving... still using it 20 years later. You can avoid many issues by considering the press / CMYK limitations in advance and also by avoiding some colours altogether - Reflex Blue for example is only available as a Pantone, cannot be reproduced in CMYK BUT, even with the Pantone it takes HOURS to dry and can LOOK DIFFERENT on some stock due to soakage / coating - guess what, I last specified it 17 years ago! Dec 19, 2016 at 15:03

Deep Navy Blues are known to be difficult to achieve in CMYK. Things tent to get purple rather than deep blue. Cyan ink is just not strong enough to achieve it.

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