When exporting a PNG file of a photograph as 16 bit depth in Darktable, its Windows 10 file information ends up saying it has 48 bit depth!

Similarly, the default 8 bit depth when exported comes out being 32 bit depth according to Windows.

Why the mismatch, and which one is the industry standard when selling sRGB photographs, 8 bit or 16 bit?


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1 Answer 1


Because the images are colour so they have 16 bits channel for red, 16 bits for green and 16 bits for blue.


About selling: first you should check the stock photo sites, they are usually very good indicator. And AFAIK the usual practice is to sell 8 bits (24 bits) photos. If you have 16 bits photos you can ask for more money

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, could you edit with comments about whether 8-bit or 16-bit is the industry standard? Does it depend on the source camera, what to know? \$\endgroup\$
    – user610620
    Jan 31, 2022 at 15:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ @user610620, check my edited answer. ANd next time ask one question. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 31, 2022 at 15:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ @user610620 Which imaging industry? News/Editorial? Fine Art? eBay product photography? High end catalog product photography? Newspaper sales inset product photography? Web based advertising? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Feb 2, 2022 at 9:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ You can ask for more money for anything. That doesn't mean you'll get it. Sometimes asking for more means those asking for less get the business and you get nothing. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Feb 2, 2022 at 9:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MichaelC, right, you may ask and not get them. But you can communicate with customer the value (16 bits) you provide \$\endgroup\$ Feb 2, 2022 at 9:26

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