Delta E Finder

This tutorial explain how to compare two Colors, like a measured color and a color from Pantone swatch book e.g.

The Delta E is the distance between two colors But if you want to know, what is a Delta E ? Following the wikipedia link, and you will understand what is it :

The closer the Delta E is to 0, the smaller is the difference between the colors. If the Delta E is higher then 2, the human eye recognizes the difference between two colors.

Delta E Finder is able to compare two kind of files:

  • .spc : Measured color with a spectrophotometer and with spectral data included

  • .spot : Color export from a color table or directly created with Lab values only.

In this tutorial, we are going to compare a Pantone sample from a printed swatch book with a value from a digital swatch book.

Read a PANTONE sample with your spectrophotometer.

In this example we will use a PANTONE spot color table.To use this PANTONE spot color table you must have the licence to use it.

The best way to get it, is to buy a PANTONE Formula Guide.With each of them, you will have a Code to download the PANTONE Color book into digital format with the PANTONE COLOR MANAGER Software.

pageCapturing a color

Import the PANTONE C digital swatch book

To import a color table, you just need to drag & drop the file into the left column.

pageColors tables

Import a selected PANTONE sample to put into the left column

You just need to write the PANTONE number into the "search" area then you have to drag & drop the displayed color from the color table to the left column.

How to know the Delta E between two color

The last step is to select the reference color and to drag & drop the color to compare into the Delta Finder area.

Delta E value will appear below

Delta E selection


Printed PANTONE Swatch books are less accurate than a digital swatch book because a printed swatch book don't have absolutes colors. The measurement with a spectrophotometer is more accurate and is not disturbed by a visual comparaison in a wrong condition (a wrong illuminant e.g.)

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