Some of my photos look different because I was not careful with saving with or without color profile. Now I would like to be able to find out what color profile is used by an image. Is there a simple tool to see this? Hopefully a command line one? I'll try to pay attention next time!


4 Answers 4


Exiftool is a command-line utility that does exactly what you're after. Check out the ICC profile documentation.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Good news! I got Exiftool. Bad news! I don't understand the help. Are there examples for getting the color space and profile out? \$\endgroup\$
    – Zak
    Commented Aug 31, 2011 at 23:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ I've no idea I'm afraid, Zak, I just happened to know that exiftool ticked your boxes of colour profile + command line. I haven't used it myself. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 1, 2011 at 9:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Zak - Just drop photos into the executable, and it will show you the color space as one of the output rows if the image has one defined. If none is defined, I believe it won't output any row for color space. \$\endgroup\$
    – dpollitt
    Commented Jan 14, 2012 at 22:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @dpollit did't work for me. I have an image with Adobe RGB profile embedded, but exiv2 -pa | grep -i adobe shows nothing. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 2, 2014 at 10:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ And it's conveniently hosted on the web here: regex.info/exif.cgi \$\endgroup\$
    – feetwet
    Commented Oct 15, 2016 at 23:09

You can use imagemagick's identify program for this.


$ identify -verbose example.jpg | grep -A1 Profile-icc 
Profile-icc: 560 bytes
  Adobe RGB (1998)

(I could not get this out with the exiv2 tool mentioned in another answer.)

  • \$\begingroup\$ The full command is: magick identify rose.jpg after you install: imagemagick.org/script/download.php \$\endgroup\$
    – ttt
    Commented May 20, 2019 at 12:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ For me it just says "Profile-icc: 940 bytes" and the next line is unrelated. \$\endgroup\$
    – user74070
    Commented Oct 3, 2020 at 3:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ The grep is probably superfluous, unless you are writing a script. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 13, 2021 at 0:39

Have you got Adobe Bridge or Lightroom? Bridge can sort by Colour Profile, but I cannot find a way to do it in Lightroom, though it must exist (if it does in Bridge). This will only work in Windows or on a Mac though.

Alternatively, in Windows the colour profile is reported as part of the image properties, so it would just be an entry in metadata. So I would guess it should not be difficult to write a script that queries the metadata for every image, but I am the wrong person to tell you how to do that.


i tricked nikon scan into using prophoto rgb by swapping out the stored adobe rgb profile and renaming prophoto rgb as adobe rgb within nikon scan. was trying to find out how i did it 8 years ago.. having some trouble with posterizing skin tones in the poor underexposed images, but it is for archive so in the future that may become easier...


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