International Color Consortium
Getting Started
Making color seamles between devices and documents
ICC Specifications
Technical Notes
ICC Resource Center
ICC Slide Presentation
ICC Logos
Information on Profiles
ICC White Papers
Color Management Links
Member List
ICC Working Groups
Got a question about ICC Profiles or colour management?

ICC Characterization Data Registry

The characterization data specified in this registry provides a way for standards organizations and others to identify sets of characterization data for standard printing processes and three-component (including RGB) color encodings.

The Characterization Data Registry has two main sections:

The CMYK Data Registry contains characterization data for CMYK printing processes which conform to the relevant Part of ISO 12647.

The 3-component Color Encoding Registry contains encoding details for three-component (mostly RGB) encodings, largely based on ISO and IEC standards.

Profiles based on some of the registered CMYK data sets have been provided by industry organizations and can be found in the ICC Profile Registry. Profiles based on RGB encodings, where available, can be found on the information page for that encoding. This information is given in good faith, but inclusion of a link to a profile does not imply endorsement of the quality of that profile by ICC.

Guidelines on the use of characterization data

Registered characterization data sets may be used for the creation of profiles, subject to the following restriction. Since one of the principle objectives of this registry is to provide a means whereby users may know the source from which ICC Profiles were created, any profiles which are produced from registered data must include the charTargetTag with the value "ICCHDAT" where is the Reference Name of the characterization data as listed in this registry. These profiles should also include in the profileDescriptionTag (e.g., "Based on"). Users should note that being based on a registered set of data does not by itself guarantee the quality of the profile, nor should it be seen as an endorsement of the profile by the ICC.

Characterization data structure

Each set of characterization data registered by the ICC contains a Reference Name. Standards groups (including PDF/X and JDF) are using these reference names to identify the characterization data sets within their specifications and have requested that ICC maintain the specified reference names, together with the respective data, and not change them without discussion. They, in turn, have agreed that both PDF/X and JDF will use the same identifiers, so long as they are predictably located in the ICC registry. This the ICC has agreed to.

The ICC Registry is standardized in accordance with the following technical requirements:

  1. Each characterization data set shall be described in a separate web page.
  2. Each characterization web page shall include a "Reference Name" identifier, indicated by the string: "Reference Name: ", and comprised of all characters following that identifier on that line of the web page.
  3. Each "Reference Name" shall be a valid string comprised of N 7-bit ASCII characters (printable and space), per the textType definition in the ICC specification where N=(element size - 8)
  4. A memo containing a complete listing of the Reference Names (exactly matching the strings from the web pages) shall be available with the repository.
  5. Once published and in use, the Reference Names shall not be changed.
  6. Each Reference Name must be unique from the others in at least one printable (non-space) character. Space characters may be ignored in evaluating Reference Name values.
For further information about the guidelines for submission of new data sets see the Registry Overview

Vendor specific characterization data can also be registered. For details, please contact the ICC Technical Secretary

Please send feedback and comments on this data registry to the ICC Technical Secretary.