In CMYK Color Model, C refers to Cyan, M refers to Magenta, Y refers to Yellow, and K refers to Key/Black. These four colors are ink colors that are applied during the printing process. That is why it is also known as full-color printing or four-color printing.
These colors are produced by using the various RGB hues. All three primary colors (CMY) align at the black plate to get the desired printing result. So, because of the black plate's importance in the printing process, the alphabet "K" is used to define the color model's Black color.
The CMYK Color Model is subtractive, which means the more you add, the more you get closer to black.
One of RGB and CMYK's main differences is that the RGB Color Model is used in digital image-making, whereas, CMYK color model is used in printing. Most at-home printers, high-end color laser printers, and industrial offset presses use CMYK ink colors.
An important technique to understand in CMYK Color Printing is Halftoning. That technique reduces the primary colors' saturation and is responsible for the vast array of color combinations.
What is the Pantone Matching System (PMS)?
Today, we are more focusing on standard systems to measure and match things. The same goes for the Color industry.
The Pantone Matching System revolutionized the color industry by bringing the matching system. That system was introduced in 1963 to avoid the conflict of color matching. People can refer to and communicate the exact color to another person with confidence and without any ambiguity.
That Color System is considered a standard in the printing industry. When people refer to the PSM Color code, they refer to the color provided by Pantone Matching System.
CMYK plays an essential role in PSM colors. A specific subset of the PSM colors is formed by using the CMYK colors.
Currently, they are providing a total of 1800+ colors. In Pantone Color System, the majority of colors are represented by three or four digits numbers followed by C (coated), U (uncoated), and M (matte). These variations help the designer check how the color looks or displays on these different kinds of papers?
The industries, designers, marketers, and creators are highly dependent upon it because they can share the Pantone code with any person without fear of color inaccuracy.
CMYK Color Model vs. Pantone Matching System (PMS)
The CMYK Color Model is the combination of tiny little transparent dots of four colors Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. Various combinations of different small little translucent dots overlap to create a broad spectrum of colors. Depending upon how the colors are printed, humans may perceive it as a solid color. But if you magnify the CMYK printed paper, you can see how the CMYK dots overlap to make the final color. That system is adopted for the small-scale printing process and where you do not need that much accuracy.
The PMS is more of a color matching system rather than a color model. With over 50 years of experience, Pantone is responsible for creating the first comprehensive and standardized system of creating and matching colors in the graphic community. That system provides 1800+ colors.
This standardization means most businesses and organizations, designers, marketers, and creators use PMS colors for their branding, especially logos, to ensure complete color consistency across different print products and the globe. People can reference the Pantone color code to make sure that the color matches without any ambiguity.
The main difference between the CMYK and PMS is color accuracy. Looking at the image on the screen is a different experience rather than having it in printed form. Even the same picture looks different in various display qualities. The PMS is more consistent in providing the published form results, more closer to its digital form. But at the same time, that system is more costly than CMYK.
So prefer to use the CMYK, where you do not need color consistency and want the printing on a small scale. But if you're going to do the printing for the industry, for their stationery and logo, where color needs to be consistent and accurate, you need PSM for printing purposes.
One important thing to consider, whether these color systems work in conjunction with the RGB Color Model. The RGB Color Model is used for on-screen display, not for the printing process. However, the RGB can be converted into the CMYK color process even though the result would be different because both color systems have different color structure. But RGB only works with CMYK, not with PMS.
CMYK to PMS conversion
Several online tools are available that provide you CMYK to PMS conversion.
How to convert the CMYK color value to Pantone by using our online CMYK to Pantone converter?
For converting the CMYK color value to Pantone, perform the following steps.
- Open the CMYK to Pantone Color Converter.
- Enter the Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black values in their corresponding sections. The C, M, Y, K are the percent values of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black, ranging from 0 to 100 percent.
- You can also use the "color palette" for selecting the required color.
- Select any "Distance" value from (16, 32, 48, 64, 80, 96) from the dropdown.
- The tool will display the results, depending upon the distance value that you selected.
More Pantone Online Converters
The distance value helps you in getting your desired color. Having the smallest distance value allows you to get the Pantone color closest to the CMYK color value you selected. Suppose you do not get the desired color. You can increase the distance value to get more color options.