A color space is a specific organization of colors. In combination with physical device profiling, it allows for reproducible representations of color, in both analog and digital representations. A color space may be arbitrary, with particular colors assigned to a set of physical color swatches and corresponding assigned color names or numbers (such as with the Pantone collection), or structured mathematically (as with the NCS System, Adobe RGB and sRGB).

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  • A color space is a specific organization of colors. In combination with physical device profiling, it allows for reproducible representations of color, in both analog and digital representations. A color space may be arbitrary, with particular colors assigned to a set of physical color swatches and corresponding assigned color names or numbers (such as with the Pantone collection), or structured mathematically (as with the NCS System, Adobe RGB and sRGB). A "color model" is an abstract mathematical model describing the way colors can be represented as tuples of numbers (e.g. triples in RGB or quadruples in CMYK); however, a color model with no associated mapping function to an absolute color space is a more or less arbitrary color system with no connection to any globally understood system of color interpretation. Adding a specific mapping function between a color model and a reference color space establishes within the reference color space a definite "footprint", known as a gamut, and for a given color model this defines a color space. For example, Adobe RGB and sRGB are two different absolute color spaces, both based on the RGB color model. When defining a color space, the usual reference standard is the CIELAB or CIEXYZ color spaces, which were specifically designed to encompass all colors the average human can see. Since "color space" identifies a particular combination of the color model and the mapping function, the word is often used informally to identify a color model. However, even though identifying a color space automatically identifies the associated color model, this usage is incorrect in a strict sense. For example, although several specific color spaces are based on the RGB color model, there is no such thing as the singular RGB color space. (en)
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  • A color space is a specific organization of colors. In combination with physical device profiling, it allows for reproducible representations of color, in both analog and digital representations. A color space may be arbitrary, with particular colors assigned to a set of physical color swatches and corresponding assigned color names or numbers (such as with the Pantone collection), or structured mathematically (as with the NCS System, Adobe RGB and sRGB). (en)
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  • Color space (en)
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