Where do I put ICC so I can choose it as the display cal. Windows

I am using Display Cal to make and load the color profile to the monitor.
When I use darktable and choose the profile associated to the display from the menu the blacks are way too dark. The resulting output is not the same as the display in darkroom.

Changing to sRGB for the profile makes it better, but I would like to use the ICC generated from Display Cal and loaded on my computer for darktable. The problem is, it is not listed in the menu.

So for windows, where do I put the ICC profile of the monitor have it appear in the lighttable menu?

You should be able to choose “system display profile” in the lighttable view and it should use your system display profile.

Otherwise I’d recommend sRGB, as that is the web standard.

The system display profile is not correct.
Using Display Cal is a more accurate way of loading the profile created.
I believe the problem is that the “system display profile” is the default windows profile, not the calibrated profile.
I assume there is a way to get the calibrated profile to show up, I just want to know how.

DisplayCal is for generating the profile. Use your OS’s display management function to load the profile generated by DisplayCal, then darktable should pick that up.

Display Cal has a “Display CAL profile loader” built in. It is recommended to use this to load the profile as it is more accurate and consistent.

1 Like

Hi @Joshua_Baker and welcome!

If my memory is not too rusty,
Win likes to have its icc files in C:\windows\System32\spool\drivers\color\

Have fun!
Claes in Lund, Sweden

Thanks for the response. I checked, and the correct profile is there. Must be something in darktable that isn’t rendering it right. I’ll use sRGB and trust that the monitor calibration will get it right.
I guess I’ll know after my first prints come back.

Did you try to put it in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\darktable\color\out ?


That got it. Now I can select it.
Thank you. I didn’t know where to put it because I needed to make the folders but wasn’t sure if it was in local or roaming.

Good workaround but only if one has no intention to print. If the end result is a hard-copy output, one should at least choose Adobe RGB. Otherwise, there is a risk of losing colour details because of the limited gamut of the sRGB colour space relative to the latter.

Having said this, if your printer (or your service’s printer) is likewise hobbled by sRGB, it makes no difference!

adobe vs s RGB isn’t even part of the equation yet. I am working to get rid of artifacting. Choosing the display’s icc profile or using the default profile gives a preview vastly different from the output. There is also a lot of artifacting in the form of dark regions displaying at black pixelated areas. Attempting the fix in the outlined in the documentation (gamut clipping) did nothing.
This is only a problem in darkroom. There is no problem when I use rawtherapee, but I like the tools and workflow in darktable more so I would like to get this figured out.

As far as the Adobe vs s RGB thing choosing one and saying the other is hobbled by sRGB is nothing short of fanboyism. It’s the same unproductive argument that would come from arguing one type of film was better than another in the film days.

What type is your icc monitor profile? Certain colour-managed photo applications don’t like LUT icc profiles. I create a “Single curve + matrix” profile type in DisplayCal and it works fine with all my photo applications, including darktable. The only problem with dt is that setting your custom profile isn’t sticky and when I re-start dt, it resets to the system profile.

Another thing to check is your Windows colour management settings – make sure that in the Devices tab your monitor’s default is indeed the profile you created with DisplayCal. This is the system profile dt should be taking into account.

Color management is set up correctly.

I used the default settings when I created the profile. I’ll have to look through and see what they were. Thanks for the suggestion.

If this is true, please provide some enlightenment. I had always been under the impression that working in a colour space with a larger gamut having more colour information vs working in a colour space with a smaller gamut is usually preferable.

I suppose that I’m unabashedly a fan of trying to limit colour compression and clipping as much as I can :wink:

A bit of an older article, but not in comparison to the color spaces
This one comes on the side of sRGB for the reason that they want the print to “look like” the image on the monitor.

Opts for the “more vibrant” Adobe RBG
In this article the author decides that he wants his prints to be more vibrant than his preview on the monitor (Softproofing in AdobeRBG goes beyond the capability of your monitor, that’s the point of AdobeRBG and the hear of the discussion).


This is a second aspect of color space, relating to different films. Different films have different color spaces, it did not make one better than the next.

I am not saying that AdobeRBG isn’t good, or that sRBG is in anyway better. What I am indicating is that it is a matter of choice not quality.

Thanks for taking the time and posting your comments, Joshua. Nevertheless, I’m still not convinced.
I still feel that if you’ve got the gear (like an AdobeRGB monitor) you should use it to its full advantage so that you can pull out as many colours as possible rather than (ahem) being hobbled :wink:

I’d tend to agree with you, but only if you don’t know your target output. In my workflow, it is either Adobe RGB for print or sRGB for web, so I work the entire time in Adobe AGB. Since most of the stuff ends up on the web, sRGB isn’t a bad choice at all, since that’s the web standard.

Most of darktable modules work in the huge Lab colour space, and the user doesn’t have any control over it. What you decide upon is the input colour profile and the output colour space. The input colour profile is specific for a given camera (dt ships with matrix ICC camera profiles, or you can calibrate your camera with something like DCamProf), and the output profile is usually sRGB if you intend to post the image to the internet. If you intend to work further on the RGB file, it’s indeed better to do so in a high-bit mode and in a large colour space. If you insist on working with 8-bit sRGB files, you are confined to very basic edits before you ruin the image.

It’s really hard to make much sense of your question and the comments of others, because they seem to conflate three distinct aspects of ICC profile usage.
The three aspects are:

  1. Display (i.e. Destination) profile.
  2. Display calibration curves, saved in the Display profile.
  3. Source Profile.

For MSWindows systems, the Display profile should be (put) in the standard system location, and color managed applications should be using it from that location.
Installing using ArgyllCMS/DisplayCAL will put display profiles in the standard location. I don’t know enough about darktable to know if it picks up the display profile from that location. If not, it should!

Typically when you create a display profile you also do a calibration. Those calibration curves need to be loaded into the graphics card hardware for the display profile to be valid. Modern MSWindows system have the ability to do so for the display profile, or a display profile loaded program could be used, such as ArgyllCMS’s dispwin. This may also be useful in figuring out what & how to make sure calibration is loaded.

When an application uses color management, it needs to have two ICC profiles specified for an image, a Source profile which describes the color space the image is in, and a Destination profile. Typically the Source profile will be either tagged in the image and/or be something selected by the user from a menu. Typically for displaying on the display, the Destination profile is the system Display profile.

To get color management working, you at least need to be clear that these three aspects are setup correctly.

1 Like

Not directly related but is there a way to enable or disable black point compensation when exporting sRGB jpeg or tiff files?