Color matching with PANTONE® colors

When it comes to color reproduction, printing devices and computer screens are on totally different “wavelengths.”

  • Printing creates colors by mixing inks which absorb light. Mix the four CMYK process inks (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and blacK), and you get black. No ink gives you white (i.e., the color of the paper)—so if you want white, you must use no ink! CMYK is a subtractive model: the more ink applied, the less light reflected, hence the darker the color.

  • A computer screen produces an image by mixing light using the three primary colors—Red, Green and Blue—hence, RGB. RGB is an additive model. Mix all three colors together and you get white light. Turn all the elements off and you get black. Different brightnesses of each element give the typical computer monitor a range or gamut of colors much greater than can be printed with CMYK inks.

The fundamental difference between the CMYK and RGB color models, and the limited gamut of the printed page compared to the computer screen, create the color matching problem: the challenge of getting your printed output to match what you see in your on-screen publication layout. By calibrating your equipment and using great care, you can achieve a close approximation—but the cardinal rule is “Trust, but verify!” Never simply assume the colors on your screen will turn out exactly the same when printed. It’s just very difficult to convert accurately between the two models!

To ensure accurate color reproduction, you will need to use the PANTONE Color Matching System which is built into PagePlus via the PANTONE® Color Picker. This lets you easily add PANTONE colors to the color palette for you to use. The PANTONE Color Matching system is an internationally recognized system for color matching. When a PANTONE color is output, PagePlus uses optimized color values to achieve a better color match.

In all cases, the screen displays an approximate color representation of the final printed color. You are cautioned not to use the screen for precise color matching, however; for accurate color reproduction, use official PANTONE color reference materials. There are steps you can take to improve screen-to-print matching.

To display the PANTONE Color Selector:

  1. Choose Palette Manager… from the Tools menu.

  1. Click the New… button to add a new color.
    – or -
    Select the color you want to modify and click the Modify… button.

  2. On the Models tab, click PANTONE® Colors in the Model drop-down list. The Palette list provides a selection of color groups appropriate to different printing methods—including solid (spot) colors, process colors, metallic and pastel—and coated or uncoated paper stock.

  1. Select a palette from the list.

  2. Use the slider to view the range of colors for the selected palette.

    PagePlus pantone slider Color matching with PANTONE(r) colors

    Click to select a color and preview it at the upper right in comparison to the “Old” color.

  3. When you’re satisfied with the new color, click OK. The Palette Manager displays the publication’s palette with the added color.

  1. Click OK to confirm the addition of the new color, or Save As… to save the modified palette under a different name. The color appears in the Publication palette of the Swatches tab.

Color matching with PANTONE(r) colors