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Cheapest monitor calibration tool


1 Apr 2013 11:27PM
Hi,

I currently have a dual monitor set up, and I'm looking into buying a monitor colour calibration tool. I've found the spyder4 pro on Amazon for just under 120, and I'm just wondering, are there any cheaper alternatives that I should look at before purchasing this? I'm currently on quite a budget so want to spend as little as possible.

Is it even worth buying something like this: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/KODAK-MONITOR-COLOUR-CALIBRATION-DEVICES-020151281-/270617941063?pt=UK_Computing_Other_Computing_Networking&hash=item3f02161447

But if I do, what sort of software would I need?

Many thanks
John.

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1 Apr 2013 11:59PM
Hi, i personally would avoid the cheaper stuff as you get what you pay for! you can get the spyder 4 pro here for cheaper! plus there is a code for free next day delivery. HTH

Jonny
tpfkapm e2
3 151 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 8:35AM
If there are no drivers/programme it will not work
If it is old it may not be accurate
Not a bargain if it is useless I'm afraid
2 Apr 2013 10:26AM
Thanks guys, might go for the Spyder4Pro.

Thanks!
CathR e2
7 139 563 United Kingdom
3 Apr 2013 11:02AM
Just a point before you go for the Spyder John. I had an older version which I liked using but it would not work when I upgraded my computer earlier this year even though I was using Windows 7 on both systems. It seemed Datacolor were not interested in writing new software so that older versions of the Spyder could work with newer operating systems. You could argue all companies do this to make you upgrade but I was cross enough with Datacolor to decide to go with ColorMunki. I've not got round to getting it yet though!

Cheers

Catherine
3 Apr 2013 11:12AM

Quote:Just a point before you go for the Spyder John. I had an older version which I liked using but it would not work when I upgraded my computer earlier this year even though I was using Windows 7 on both systems. It seemed Datacolor were not interested in writing new software so that older versions of the Spyder could work with newer operating systems. You could argue all companies do this to make you upgrade but I was cross enough with Datacolor to decide to go with ColorMunki. I've not got round to getting it yet though!

Cheers

Catherine



Hi Catherine,

Thanks for the info Smile. Actually, I did go for a ColorMunki in the end, the cheapest smile version because it supported dual monitors. I know it hasn't got as much features as the Spyder4Pro etc but it does calibrate colours and that's all I'm interested in for now Smile. Waiting for it to be delivered today.
GlennH 9 1.9k 1 France
3 Apr 2013 4:41PM

Quote:I had an older version which I liked using but it would not work when I upgraded my computer earlier this year even though I was using Windows 7 on both systems. It seemed Datacolor were not interested in writing new software so that older versions of the Spyder could work with newer operating systems.


You could try a program like basICColor display 5, which worked well with a Spyder3 when I trialled it recently. According to the website blurb it even supports Spyder2, whereas Datacolor tend to drop support for any slightly outmoded calibrator like the proverbial hot potato.

Although basICColor is advanced software with features that many won't use, it's not exorbitantly expensive (about 100 from a shop in Brighton) and can be used to knock out high quality monitor profiles with bog standard calibration settings.
4 Apr 2013 12:15AM
Hi guys,

Okay so I received my ColorMunki Smile today, and it has been a complete pain. Firstly, the CD didn't install the proper drivers etc so had to install something else (others have had this issue). Now, I have 2 monitors, both LED's but my main monitor is an IPS as well. My main monitor calibrated really well, an extremely slight difference but at least I know it's accurate.

My other monitor on the other hand just went warm, and the colours between the 2 monitors were just different. I spent 4 hours recalibrating trying to get it all correct but no luck Sad.

So I am returning this to Amazon and buying a Spyder4Pro which I should have purchased at first tomorrow Smile.

Wish I spent a bit more in the first place now!

Thanks all for your advice Smile.
GlennH 9 1.9k 1 France
4 Apr 2013 7:45AM
The Color Munki Display would probably have been a better choice; in Dry Creek Photo tests it proves more consistent and accurate than the Spyder. However, that doesn't account for the X-Rite software, which often seems to cause people headaches. Bear in mind the Spyder calibrators don't vary between packages - you're paying for the versatility of the software. So you could theoretically buy the cheapest Spyder package and pair it with a 3rd party program where your hardware would probably be supported for longer - Datacolor seem to employ Adobe-type tactics to get people to upgrade.

Getting two monitors to match perfectly is tricky - you ought to be able to match the white point (which seems a problem with the CM Smile) but the native gamut will obviously vary.
keithh e2
11 23.4k 33 Wallis And Futuna
4 Apr 2013 10:15AM
As a past Munki owner, I have to say that although the hardware is top notch, the software fails to be if you encounter a problem.

I've had X-rite software go belly up and then refuse to accept the licence code once re-installed. Emails are ignored at will.
4 Apr 2013 10:22AM
Hi all,

Thanks for your comments.

I have put an order through for a ColorMunki display and I am sending my ColorMunki smile back to Amazon (I wish I just went with the display first). All I've had was problems with the software, an absolute pain. Firstly, after installing, when I plugged in the smile device it couldn't find the files for the driver, then I couldn't even launch the software. The colours between both my monitors are just different. If I drag an image half way between both monitors, one monitor displays a brighter blue for example whilst the other one is much darker. Could just be a luminance issue.

Now, my screen just looks extremely yellow - pure black is just a dark shade of yellow.

I always have said that I will spend more money to have less problems, why didn't I do that with the ColorMunki Grin.

Thanks Smile.
GlennH 9 1.9k 1 France
4 Apr 2013 12:03PM
I hope it works okay for you - I've just realised that with the CM Display you're anchored to the X-Rite software, although the hardware itself is identical between the i1 Display Pro & Display packages. I've toyed with the idea of coupling the CM Display with 3rd party software, so that idea is scuppered!

Be careful with the 'dragging comparison' - I'm not experienced in profiling dual displays but I think the colour will display wrongly (using Photoshop, for instance) until you actually let go of the image.
keithh e2
11 23.4k 33 Wallis And Futuna
4 Apr 2013 12:22PM
The best way is to duplicate the image and have it sat on either screen. Most people using dual screens can manage with just one as the the main calibrated screen and their second screen as a parking bay for images and tools.
4 Apr 2013 2:53PM
Thanks for the information guys, really appreciate it.

So essentially my main monitor will be correctly calibrated and my second monitor may not be calibrated that accurately? Shall I calibrate both or just my main screen?

Thanks
John.
GlennH 9 1.9k 1 France
4 Apr 2013 3:35PM
If I were you John I'd follow Keith's advice. There's no real need for most people to have identical screens, perfectly calibrated, profiled, and matched - use the better of the two for colour-critical stuff and the other for extra working space.

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