Adobe Photoshop/RGB / indexed color?


Sone background:
I am an xml programmer, working on a project for a client where I display hundreds of graphics  (all screen shots of their computer system)  Over the past few years, they have had various graphic designers creating and editing these 6-yr old screenshots in paint shop pro) which they save as .gifs

The most recent graphics consultant is an intern who was brought in just to make updates to all these graphics.  She says she cannot make the edits she needs using PSP (although a dozen other designers did before her) and needs to use Photoshop.  She also is questioning the RGB graphics and insisted on converting everything to indexed color.  She also decided to save them all as png

These graphics are used in simulations of the system, so they need to be accurate pixel by pixel.
Now, I can edit the program to read in .pngs instead of (or along with) the .gifs -- I will need to change the filenames throughout the xml code.
But my question is:  What is the harm in using RGB color images?  (I dont even really know the difference color modes make -- the file sizes have been coming out the same)  Is there any risk of dithering?  Is there any risk in losing a color and throwing off the look and feel of the simulations?

There should be very little to no degradation in the images. Indexed color is appropriate for GIFs, assuming they are graphics and not high quality photos. I recommend you ask the new designer to give you a sample of one of the files converted and compare to what you have now. That should demonstrate if the new designer knows what he/she is talking about.

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Eric C. M. Basir


Ask me about anything related to working on your photos in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Photoshop Elements: Tools, functions, color, contrast, manipulation, restoration and scanning.


Since 1999, I have served as a digital photo retoucher for companies of all sizes, including United Airlines, K-Mart. I also serve individuals with their personal photos. This includes training through my video courses. Ask me about anything related to working on your photos: Color, contrast, manipulation, restoration, software, hardware. I run a no-charge photo retouching and restoration how-to YouTube channel here: I also run a blog full of great advice:

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