The new free colour HLC Colour Atlas XL with 13,283 colour swatches on 74 pages in DIN A4 oversize format uses the CIELAB colour model and the clear HLC representation system to describe colours digitally and device-independently. The colour atlas XL addresses professional users from design to production, including the suppliers involved. Due to its open digital Creative Commons concept, the colour atlas is particularly suitable for cross-sector colour communications with the highest quality requirements.
In comparison to the classic CIELAB HLC colour atlas, the gradation of the colour swatches was refined in the XL colour atlas. The colour tables show the gradation of a basic colour H (value range 0 … 360) according to brightness L (0 … 100) and chromaticity C (0 … 110 for printing colour spaces). The step size of the gradations is 10 units for the standard atlas and 5 units for the XL atlas. Further tables show the grey series (C = 0) and also the less saturated colours (C = 5). When selecting the gamut, we have decided to accept a maximum deviation of ΔE00 = 1 from the reference Lab value of any colour swatch. in the printed version the ideal lab values can be reproduced with an average ∆E00 of 0.5 for approx. 90% of all colour swatches in the HLC Atlas XL.
HLC Colour Atlas XL semimatt: Colour atlas with 13,283 colours produced on an EPSON SureColor P9000V Spectro proofing system and GMG Colorproof software on a certified semimatt proofing medium without optical brighteners. The production method ensures a very good match between the printed colour swatch and the ideal LAB reference and between different atlases/batches. Each colour atlas contains an individual quality protocol according to ISO 12647-7.

The HLC Colour Atlas system consists of the following components: 

  • The file package (version 1.0 of 14.11.2018) contains the layer PDF of the HLC Colour Atlas XL, colour value tables in PDF and Excel format, spectral data in the formats CxF, CGATS and Excel as well as a text file with general notes. 
  • Ring binder HLC colour atlas as printed master reference for colour matching, colour measurement and colour communication. DIN A4 ring binder with 74 pages of colour swatches and explanations on 250gr/sqm GMG Premium Proofing Paper Semi-Mat and individual test report on the last page of each atlas. Only for the printed ring binder we charge a contribution towards expenses of EUR 399, – for the introductory price until 31.03.2019, then EUR 599,- plus VAT and shipping.

The HLC Colour Atlas was developed by FreieFarbe e. V (freeColour). The non-profit FreieFarbe e. V. is an association of German and Swiss colour professionals (available on the web at and is dedicated to colour communication on the basis of open standards and free licenses (Creative Commons). Proof GmbH is a partner of FreieFarbe e. V. and is involved in the conception, development and the numerous series of prints and measurements of the HLC colour system and produces the printed colour atlas. The distribution of the printed HLC colour atlas is done for FreieFarbe e. V. via