What is the difference between CMYK and RGB?Design
November 20, 20202 minutesuserKishan Savaliya
What is the difference between CMYK and RGB?
One of our clients once asked me to explain what CMYK means and what is the difference between it and RGB. Here's why it's important.






We discussed the need for one of their vendors to provide or convert a digital image file as CMYK. If this conversion is not done properly, the resulting image may have muddy colors and lack vibrancy that may reflect badly on your brand.


CMYK is an acronym for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black) - the ink colors used in the typical four-color printing process. RGB is an acronym for red, green, and blue light colors used in digital display screens.


CMYK is a term widely used in the graphic design business and is also known as "full-color". This printing method uses a process where each ink color is printed with a specific pattern, each subtractive color overlapping to create a spectrum. In the subtractive color spectrum, the more color you overlap, the darker the color becomes. Our eyes interpret this printed color spectrum as images and words on paper or printed surfaces

Printing a four-color process is not possible with what you see on your computer monitor.

RGB is an additive color spectrum. By default, any image displayed on a monitor or digital display screen will be created in RGB. In this color space, the more overlapping color you add, the lighter the resulting image. For this reason, almost every digital camera saves its images in the RGB color spectrum.

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RGB color spectrum is higher than CMYK.


CMYK is for printing. RGB is for digital screens. But the thing to remember is that the RGB color spectrum is larger than CMYK, so what you see on your computer monitor is not possible by printing a four-color process. When we are designing artwork for our clients, careful attention is paid when converting artwork from RGB to CMYK. In the example above, you can see how RGB images with very bright colors can see unnecessary color shifts when converting to CMYK.



At Trillion, a combination of quality devices and expert eyes results in colors that look great in whatever environment they appear in, so your brand will always look its best. Don't let RGB fool you. If your brand has experienced a mismatch between your print and digital marketing efforts and you want to improve things.