10 Difference Between RGB And CMYK Color Model

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What Is RGB Color Model?

The RGB color model is an additive color model in which hues of red, green and blue light are added together in various ways to reproduce a broad array of colors. The name of the model comes from the initials of the three additive primary colors, red, green and blue. The main purpose of the RGB color model is for the sensing, representation and display of images in electronic systems such as Televisions, computer, monitors and smartphones.

The RGB color model is additive in the sense that the three light beams are added together and their light spectra add, wavelength for wavelength to make the final color’s spectrum.

Zero intensity for each component gives the darkest color (no light, considered the black), and full intensity of each gives a white; the quality of this white depends on the nature of the primary light sources, but if they are properly balanced, the result is a neutral white matching the system’s white point. When the intensities for all the components are the same, the result is a shade of gray, darker or lighter depending on the intensity. When the intensities are different, the result is a colorized hue, more or less saturated depending on the difference of the strongest and weakest of the intensities of the primary colors employed.

Red, Green and blue can be combined in various proportions to obtain any color in the visible spectrum. Levels of R, G and B can each range from 0 to 100 percent of full intensity. Each level is represented by the range of decimal numbers from 0 to 255 (256 levels for each color), equivalent to the range of binary numbers from 00000000 to 11111111 or hexadecimal 00 to FF. The total number of available colors is 256 X 256 X 256 OR 16,777,216 possible colors.

What You Need To know About RGB

  • Main colors are Red, Green and Blue.
  • RGB color model is referred to as additive model because these colors produce a brighter outcome when added with light.
  • The RGB model is mainly implemented in the display monitors for generating various colors.
  • In the RGB model, the light is used for changing the produced color intensity.
  • By adding the RGB colors, the white color is generated.
  • The RGB model helps in operating the tasks at a higher speed and consumes less memory space (file size is smaller) as compared to the CMYK model.
  • Yellow color is produced by combining red and green light.

What Is CMYK?

 The CMYK color model also referred to as process color or four color is a subtractive color model used in color printing and is also used to describe the printing process itself. CMYK refers to the four ink plates used in some color printing: cyan, magenta, yellow and key (black).

The CMYK model works by partially or entirely masking colors on a lighter, usually white background. The ink reduces the light that would otherwise be reflected. Such a model is referred to as subtractive because inks ‘’subtract’’ the colors red, green and blue from white light. White light minus red leaves cyan, white light minus green leaves magenta and white light minus blue leaves yellow.

In additive color models (RGB), white is the ‘’additive’’ combination of all primary colored lights, black is the absence of light. In the CMYK model, it is the opposite: white is the natural color of the paper or the background, black results from a full combination of colored inks. To save cost on ink and to produce deeper black tones, unsaturated and dark colors are produced by using black ink instead of the combination of cyan, magenta and yellow.

What You Need To Know About CMYK

  • Main colors are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key or Black.
  • CMYK is a subtractive model where we begin with the white sheet of paper and for getting the dark result; you need to add more ink to it.
  • CMYK is mainly used in printing works.
  • In CMYK model, ink is used in altering the color intensity.
  • The addition of CMYK colors produces a black color.
  • The model consumes less memory space (file size is smaller) as compared to the CMYK model.
  •  The yellow color is generated due to subtraction of blue color from the white light.

Also Read: Difference Between Lavender And Lilac

Difference Between RGB And CMYK In Tabular Form

BASIS OF COMPARISON RGB CMYK
Description RGB color model is referred to as additive model because these colors produce a brighter outcome when added with light. CMYK is a subtractive model where we begin with the white sheet of paper and for getting the dark result; you need to add more ink to it.
Main Color Main colors are Red, Green and Blue.   Main colors are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key or Black.  
Application The RGB model is mainly implemented in the display monitors for generating various colors.   CMYK is mainly used in printing works.  
Color Intensity In the RGB model, the light is used for changing the produced color intensity.   In CMYK model, ink is used in altering the color intensity.  
Effect By adding the RGB colors, the white color is generated.   The addition of CMYK colors produces a black color.  
Model It is an Additive model. It is a subtractive model.
File Size The RGB model helps in operating the tasks at a higher speed and consumes less memory space (file size is smaller) as compared to the CMYK model.   The model consumes less memory space (file size is smaller) as compared to the CMYK model.  
Generation of Yellow Color Yellow color is produced by combining red and green light. The yellow color is generated due to subtraction of blue color from the white light.
Nature When 100% of each color is mixed together, it creates white light. When 0% of each color is combined, no light is generated, creating black. Blending 100% of each color in the CMYK color model produces black, while 0% of each color results in white.