sRGB vs Adobe RGB (Choosing the Color Profile that's Best for You)

srgb vs rgb

sRGB vs Adobe RGB

When browsing the settings on your DSLR, you may have come across the color profile settings in your camera's menu.  You will find 2 different setting choices: sRGB and Adobe RGB.

In this post, we will talk about what sRGB and Adobe RGB are, as well as their advantages and disadvantages so that you can make an informed decision on which color profile is best for YOU!

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What are sRGB and Adobe RGB Color Profiles?


sRGB is a standard color space that was created by Microsoft and Hewlett Packard in the 1990's for monitors and internet browsers.  Since it was created before Adobe RGB, and because it was created by electronics manufacturers, it has become the standard color space for electronic devices.

What is sRGB

Adobe RGB:

Adobe RGB color space was created by Adobe in the late 1990s and is now widely used among photographers, graphic designers, and print labs.  It contains an extremely broad range of colors, many of which cannot be displayed on certain screens, in internet browsers, or rendered by a printer.

What is  Adobe RGB

sRGB vs Adobe RGB: Which Color Profile Should You Use?

There are many people who swear by Adobe RGB, and there are also many people who swear by sRGB, so just hearing that will probably leave you a bit confused about which color profile to go with! 

I personally believe that, like so many things in the photography world, the color profile you should use comes down to:

  1. The type of work you do
  2. The equipment you have on hand and
  3. Personal preference.

So, with that in mind, let's talk about the pros and cons for each color profile.

sRGB vs Adobe RGB



  • The main advantage of sRGB is that what you see is what you get.  If you shoot, edit, print and share online in sRGB, you aren't going to run into any huge color surprises.
  • You also will not need to convert your files before sharing online, because they will already be in the standard, readable format for web browsers. 


  • The tradeoff here is that you won't have the broad range of colors provided by AdobeRGB,
  • You may also find that your colors don't have quite the same amount of "oomph" as they do in AdobeRGB.
  • You will NOT be able to convert this profile to AdobeRGB.

sRGB or Adobe RGB

Adobe RGB


  • Adobe RGB color profile will provide you with the MAXIMUM range of colors, so if you are a perfectionist who is focused on color critical work, this color profile will be of use to you.
  • It will also provide you with more vibrant color.  What's not to love about that?
  • Adobe RGB can also be converted to sRGB for ease-of-use in file handling.


  • The main issue with Adobe RGB is the same thing that makes it so useful - its broad range of colors!  Since Adobe RGB represents so many millions of colors, a vast number of the colors cannot be rendered on the average screen, in your web browser, and even on a printer.
  • Since Adobe RGB cannot be displayed in a web browser, if you are sharing your images online, you will need to convert them to sRGB to be rendered properly, which adds an extra step in your editing process.

Should I Shoot in sRGB vs Adobe RGB


I hope this tutorial has at least clarified some of the differences between sRGB and Adobe RGB.

Like so many things in photography, being flexible in your decision on which one to use is often the best practice.

If you are sure that your monitor and printer have AdobeRGB capabilities, by all means edit and print in AdobeRGB!  If, however, you are unsure, or you simply do not find yourself printing your images that often and you mostly upload your files online, then sRGB is probably the way to go in your situation.

READ MORE HERE: There is also an alternate color space you can edit with in Photoshop called LAB Color that can really enhance your images and take your editing to the next level. You can check out the LAB Color tutorial here.

Do you have any questions or comments about using the Photoshop sRGB vs RGB?  Leave us a comment below - we would LOVE to hear from you!  And PLEASE SHARE our tutorial using the social sharing buttons (we really appreciate it)!

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