In a recognition memory experiment, the claim was tested that intrinsic object features contribute to familiarity, whereas extrinsic context features do not. We used the study-test manipulation of color to investigate the perceptual specificity of ERP old-new effects associated with familiarity and recollection. Color was either an intrinsic surface feature of the object or a feature of the surrounding context (a frame encasing the object); thus, the same feature was manipulated across intrinsic/extrinsic conditions. Subjects performed a threefold (same color/different color/new object) decision, making feature information task-relevant. Results suggest that the intrinsic manipulation of color affected the mid-frontal old-new effect associated with familiarity, while this effect was not influenced by extrinsic manipulation. This ERP pattern could not be explained by basic behavioral performance differences. It is concluded that familiarity can be perceptually specific with regard to intrinsic information belonging to the object. The putative electrophysiological signature of recollection - a late parietal old-new effect - was not present in the data, and reasons for this null effect are discussed. (C) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.