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Mr. Pixelsmith -- Web Design & Review

Fred Wade's questoin about Gold PMS 146 and Blue PMS 2746

PMS on the WEB

Mr. Pixelsmith -- Web Design & ReviewI generated some color chips from the PMS Color Specifier, and here they are. (at right.) As you can see the chip is almost black, and the RGB signature does NOT work in the 51/51 hex color ratio for use on the web. That's probably why the chip may be dithered on your monitor.

Below we see a better "match" for the color Mr Wade asked for, except it's really not "right on". The color Mr. Wade wanted is almost what we might call a "Reflex" blue -- only darker. Even the printed swatches in the PMS book looked so dark the blue is hardly worth stealing an ink color if this happens to be a printing job, rather than a web job.

Mr. Pixelsmith -- Web Design & Review

When you are thinking about colors on a web site, beware -- and don't promis the client that you'll 'match' the pms color. You probably won't.


Color is subjective. It depends on how its purveyed, who is seeing it, and how their system and ambient room light affects it. A dangerous mix to say the least.

Mr. Pixelsmith -- Web Design & ReviewThe "gold" (which is actually more of a caramel color) will NOT translate. We had lots of problems with that one. It's probably badly dithered on your monitor. That's because the closest color match actually used a composite of three other colors.

In order to get the color we're looking for we had to take the PMS mix, and work on it a bit.

Mr. Pixelsmith -- Web Design & Review

Above we see the actual colors that go to make up the mix Mr Wade asked for.
The first square is the dithered sample of the PMS swatch. This is actually what we call a custom color, or "Hybrid" color. This means it's made up of other closely related colors.

Next to it, the next three swatches show the actual HEX (or browser safe colors) prescribed by the dither. While not close, they're pure.

Next we went in and attempted to show colors that are "close" but still in the 51/51 range.
At this point Mr. Wade needs to look at the file and ask himself which most closely matches the chip his client wants, and whether or not it's an accent, anchor, supportive or background color.

Go ahead. Click and save these swatches to your hard drive. You may need them one day.
I know. Sorry to say we weren't too much help. Questions?


Have you had your web site reviewed yet?

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