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Spyder Question
Old 12-22-2003, 10:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I have been knocking around with hit and miss consistancy with my prints...basically relying on the photoshop gamma tool for calibration.

Actually I have been rather happy (only a few mishaps) with the results until recently when I got a ton of prints in that were just plain orange. and had to have them reprinted.

I recently took a bare bones system from Dell and added all the goodies I wanted. Now I need to pick the correct calibration tool.

I will be outsourcing my prints that I sell, and will not be printing anything in house except for invoices. so my question is which spyder product do I need?

will the CRT Monitor Spyder with PhotoCAL Software be enough or do I really need the more expensive calibration software?

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Re: Spyder Question
Old 12-22-2003, 10:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I find that the Gretag Macbeth Eye-One display produces superior profiles compared to the Colorvision Spyder. Another alternative worth considering is the BasICColor Display bundled with the Squid monitor sensor.

The major limitation of the PhotoCal software is that the instrument is not used to measure the black and white levels (you are basically eyeballing it), which produces less accurate profiles.

There's more information on hardware calibration at Dry Creek Photo.
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Re: Spyder Question
Old 12-23-2003, 12:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Gonna go with John here...Ive used both and found the Gretag to be alot more consistent and better with color than the spyder. First thign to check is the age of your monitor before you go buying calibrators....Anything over 5 years I would consider replacing esppecially if you game alot. Make sure you can adjust the R-G-B seperatly under your monitor settings...other than preset monitor guesstimates. If either one of these is a problem consider replacing the monitor with a newer one before spending hte money to calibrate. THe monitors guns wear out and you can calibrate it from here to there....and still be lacking....

BUT the guy to ask is Hackman....color manager extrodinare....

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Re: Spyder Question
Old 12-23-2003, 12:30 AM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks Rick and John...

the monitor is only 5 maybe 6 months old and seen limited use..so should be ok there
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What would you use for a flat screen/ LCD ???
Old 12-23-2003, 12:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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any difference in using these types of tools?

Thanks,

 
 
Re: What would you use for a flat screen/ LCD ???
Old 12-23-2003, 10:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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You don't want to use any hardware calibrator that attaches directly to the screen via large suction cups, as you will damage the screen. Most of the calibrators I've seen these days will include attachments which will allow you to hang the device from the top of the display.

The Colorvision Spyder is not recommended for LCDs. The profiles it produces appear too yellow under Photoshop.
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Get the optical software
Old 12-23-2003, 04:58 PM   #7 (permalink)
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the optical software does measure the white and black levels. I'm quite happy with it.
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My spyder has an LCD attachment but...
Old 12-23-2003, 05:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I dont think you should use an LCD monitor at all for your photo editing if there as anyway to avoid it. I believe LCDs can not be calibrated as closely as CRTs on the black levels - there may be other problems I'm not aware of. CRTs are superior as far as color accuracy though.
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My 2 cents
Old 12-23-2003, 05:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
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My suggestion would be if you want to do color management for prints to sell and color is critical enough for you then I would invest in a CRT not a flat screen/lcd. Brightness and accuracy of the calibration is an issue with the flat panels. Depending on your angles, the image can have different brightnesses and since you can't (and shouldn't) stick anything on your monitor, I really don't think the calibration can be as good as it should be. To me there are just too many factors involved that I would just get a crt for this purpose. If you really insist on an LCD, then you do need the Optical software with the Spyder (if you go with Spyder). I haven't used the MacBeth to know the differences though. One day, I'll borrow one and see if I notice any different results. Personally, I think you will get more true results from a cheapo eMachines monitor than you will from an expensive LCD. I'm sure there will be plenty of people that will tell me their LCDs are great. I'm sure they are, but you not read any good color management book that will tell you an LCD is just as good, if not better than a CRT. At the moment, CRTs will be the choice for true colormanagement. It is just a matter of how correct you want your images to match the printed output.
 
 
Re: My 2 cents
Old 12-23-2003, 11:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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hack I will be using a new crt...and this puter is my new my digital darkroom...my question is the OptiCal so much better than the PhotoCal for my calibration that I will notice a difference...better yet will my clients?

I am a crt guy all the way....
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