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Due to the improvement of image rendering processes, and the increasing importance of quantitative comparisons among synthetic color images, it is essential to define perceptually based metrics which enable to objectively assess the visual quality of digital simulations. In response to this need, this paper proposes a new methodology for the determination of an objective image quality metric, and gives an answer to this problem through three metrics. This methodology is based on the LLAB color space for perception of color in complex images, a modification of the CIELab1976 color space. The first metric proposed is a pixel by pixel metric which introduces a local distance map between two images. The second metric associates, to a pair of images, a global value. Finally, the third metric uses a recursive subdivision of the images to obtain an adaptative distance map, rougher but less expensive to compute than the first method.