Spyder Monitor Calibration

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Johnboy2978, Nov 10, 2006.

  1. Johnboy2978

    Johnboy2978 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    So, I've been thinking of getting one of these as I recently purchased a new 19" wide screen flat panel lcd monitor and have been getting more requests for photo shoots. I would like to increase my quality control a bit and be sure that with all the time I spend with adjusting images that when I get the prints back, it will be quite close if not a perfect match to what I see on my monitor.

    So, are these things worth the price? They range from 70-600$ and I'd like to hear from those who use it. I've played with adobe gamma to adjust the calibration, but still not sure if it is WYSIWHG. Also what's the difference between the different models and which is 'best'?

    So from those who have these devices, could you live w/o it, is it worth the money, or just an expensive toy that you could do just as well on your own with adobe gamma or something?

    Also, even if you calibrate it with the best device, the print is still going to be subject to your developers printer calibration correct? Wouldn't it make sense to use a good quality lab, like MPIX on a regular basis, and then maybe have a 16 (or so) block of different colors image printed and match your monitor to what you get back? Does that make sense? Like make a 4x4 grid of different colors, have it printed, then when you get it back, open the image and adjust your monitor to match what the print shows? I don't print anything on my home printer, b/c it's a cheapo and even if it were better, I can never imagine how it would be more cost effective to print yourself as compared to mpix.

    comments appreciated.
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    If only it was that easy...trying to match it up by eye is pretty hard...otherwise we wouldn't need monitor calibration.

    I have a Spyder...I got the cheapest kit. The hardware is the same...but the software in the different kits is different. If you are only doing basic calibration of one monitor...then just get the cheap one (Colorvison Express) I think. I wasn't sure it would make a difference...but it did.
     
  3. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

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    I'm really glad I got mine. And yeah, printer calibration is separate. I wouldn't calibrate the monitor to the print. If a place like MPix is off, you create a ICC proofing profile for them. Some places already have them. I'm guess that MPix has one you can get.
     
  4. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    I have the spyder 2 pro. I have not used any other program so I cannot say it is better or worse than any other. But it is easy to use. And it did change the screen from the standard adobe gamma settings. If it has truer colors I have no idea. But at least it is now done to a standard that can be checked.

    One thing about Colorvision that bugs me is their support of existing products. I bought their Print Fix for printer calibration. It said on their site and on the box they are constantaly adding printers that would work with their program. Well it does work with one of my printers (was listed) and worked good. But after 6 months I bought a new Epson 2400. It was not supported so I emailed them and asked if it was going to be added. They said they stopped adding printers to the Print Fix program the year before. But that they have a new product comming out that would cover the 2400. The new program was 5x the cost of Printfix. Basically the same as other upper level programs.

    Now I understand you get what you pay for ($150 program). But they advertised adding new printers constantaly. Knowing full well they stopped supporting the program the year before!
     

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