Monitor Calibrators? Do you use one?


Ming1388

New Member
Jul 30, 2013
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#1
Hi All,

Just wanted to get a feel of how many of you out here actually use monitor calibrators and whether you think it has made a difference to your work these days?

I'm more of a hobbyist/amateur and most of my pictures are shared online, on screen etc. Do you think I would benefit from something like a Spyder calibrator since I don't print that much? I'm using an AOC IPS 27" screen which I feel looks nice but not 100% sure the colors are that accurate.

Really just wanted to see whether those invested in one has really seen or feel a difference its made to their work and photography life.

Many thanks
 

G-man

Senior Member
Mar 2, 2006
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#2
Actually on a base level even if you calibrate your screen (you should but another story for another day), if you are sharing online do note that everyone's monitor is calibrated differently. So while you can control your end, it's not 100% that everyone will see the exact same thing you see as far as colours go.

Still, I would use a basic calibration system like the Datacolor Spyder you mentioned.

Am using that on my Dell U2713H monitor.

And yes it has made a difference to me. Colours are from what I can see, more accurate. For me la. Not sure about other users
 

Jun 2, 2012
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#3
If you do any form of PP editing on RAW files, yes I will highly recommend it.

It gives a true color indication when you edit your files. At least you wont get any wonky color when you send the edited JPEG output for print.

On a personal note, my workflow is color managed from shoot to PP with color charts & color corrected monitor. The only part which I dont do is print.
 

Octarine

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Jan 3, 2008
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#4
If you don't know that what you see on screen is exactly what is encoded in the image file, how can you seriously do any form of editing? Once you do a calibration (even if it's the most simple one using your eyes as gauge) you will notice a difference.
Also, all screens age and the color rendering will change as well. In order to have a consistent and accurate display of colours calibration devices are mandatory.
 

Kit

Senior Member
Jan 19, 2002
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#6
Hi All,

Just wanted to get a feel of how many of you out here actually use monitor calibrators and whether you think it has made a difference to your work these days?

I'm more of a hobbyist/amateur and most of my pictures are shared online, on screen etc. Do you think I would benefit from something like a Spyder calibrator since I don't print that much? I'm using an AOC IPS 27" screen which I feel looks nice but not 100% sure the colors are that accurate.

Really just wanted to see whether those invested in one has really seen or feel a difference its made to their work and photography life.

Many thanks
A spyder will calibrate your monitor, not prints.
 

Jan 26, 2002
521
1
0
Singapore
#7
Of course people can say if most viewers of your photos online are not viewing through calibrated monitors then does it really matter?

I imagine it something like our tv screens at home..shd show producers be bothered that our screens all look very different?

Just saying..Yah I do calibrate mine..:)
Ps: To TS, yah there is naked eye visible difference even for 'untrained' eyes..
 

Last edited:
Jun 23, 2007
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singapore
#8
just for info.. amazon now having promotion for the spyder elite for the price of the spyder pro.. deal ending in 3 hours.. just whack 1, with free shipping is $213sgd.. grab it if you are looking for a calibrater..
 

Dec 24, 2013
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#9
just for info.. amazon now having promotion for the spyder elite for the price of the spyder pro.. deal ending in 3 hours.. just whack 1, with free shipping is $213sgd.. grab it if you are looking for a calibrater..
No idea a calibrator is that ex. How about buying a new monitor with more accurate colours with that 213$. Just my two cents.
 

Octarine

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Jan 3, 2008
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#10
No idea a calibrator is that ex. How about buying a new monitor with more accurate colours with that 213$. Just my two cents.
If you have a deal for an IPS panel monitor , minimum 21 inch or more for that price I'm sure we will all be interested :)
Secondly: do you want to get a new monitor every other year? Even the best panels age and color rendering will change. That's why calibration is not a one-off thing but a regular task, every 3 months or so.
 

esoeij

Senior Member
Apr 12, 2009
1,992
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#11
No idea a calibrator is that ex. How about buying a new monitor with more accurate colours with that 213$. Just my two cents.
A new monitor will need calibration too.
 

bookwormm

New Member
Jun 8, 2010
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#12
just for info.. amazon now having promotion for the spyder elite for the price of the spyder pro.. deal ending in 3 hours.. just whack 1, with free shipping is $213sgd.. grab it if you are looking for a calibrater..
Thanks for the info baa tanhaa! I've been deliberating to get one but the deal seems really good, just got one for myself!
 

Jun 23, 2007
230
4
18
singapore
#13
Thanks for the info baa tanhaa! I've been deliberating to get one but the deal seems really good, just got one for myself!
glad that u got yourself 1 too! like you, have been deliberating to get 1 and also cant make up my mind which version to get.. am lucky that i happened to click amazon to see see look look and happened to spot the deal.. seeing the discount, cannot help but have to get it.. :)
 

#14
The comments given here are valid. A lot depend on the reasons for getting a monitor calibration tool. I think you need to understand how monitor calibration came to be and why it is crucial to certain group of users.

Most people don't need one especially with good modern monitors we use now. I use my Dell U3011 directly out of the box with just a software calibration from one of my graphic design software and I am ready to go. Before you consider a pricey item like a monitor calibrator which only gets used at most a few times in a year if ever, a good quality monitor is a better investment first. Read up on good monitor use for graphic design is a good place to start.

These days, I present my photos or artwork digitally via the monitor and online (webpage, facebook,picaso etc) INSTEAD of doing printed media work like before. I use to be an art director/designer so in the early days a monitor calibration tool is for all my monitors at home and office to ensure the same photo or artwork file I am working on is seen in the same accurate color rendering. This is when calibration monitor came onto the scene. Crucial colour depiction for advertising work for example is important when the artist import the photo into the computer and view it on their monitor. Base on what they see, they cut, paste,adjust, edit the artwork before finally preparing the final version for print ads, poster banners...etc. Colors range presented on different make and types of monitors was an issue back then more then today. Back then it went beyond just buying the calibration tool, the room lighting has to be of a certain level thru out the day, the monitors has to be switch on for about 30-45 mins before any real graphic work is done on it to ensure the CRT tube is warm up to product consistent colors! And also the kind CRT or LED ...eg monitor that was used in my earlier days is far more varied so color calibrating is very important as some hues can come out looking different from one monitor to another. Anyway.. just a little history lesson on how the calibration tool came about.

Don't be "over sold" on the idea that all photographers MUST need one (like other topic that say must get this lens as a Pro or this body or this accessory blah blah blah). It really depend on what you do with it on the long run unless money is no object to you for just an incremental improvement. If all you are doing is presenting your photos online, like another forummer mentioned earlier, your monitor may be calibrated but the thousands of monitors tuning in to your photos may not so how?

The good news is the variations of color difference between yours and theirs will not make that much of a difference with most modern monitors. Color shift will almost never happen unless you did some really terrible over Photoshopping of the colors and that could be more your problem then even a color calibration tool can help you. remember, the tool can help you ensure your monitor to calibrate to a certain universal standard but if you are bad at adjusting colors and over did it.. you are on your own with that boo boo.

One particular group of photographers I know will want a monitor calibration tool are wedding photographer because they have to make ink jet prints or printed copies for their clients. If all you do is view and present your photo works via the computer screen, you really don't have to have one.

There are those of us who use our eyes to calibrate our monitor but that may takes time to get a good eye for it doing it and there are also software that help you calibrate your monitor to an acceptable level.
 

Kit

Senior Member
Jan 19, 2002
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#15
Of course people can say if most viewers of your photos online are not viewing through calibrated monitors then does it really matter?

I imagine it something like our tv screens at home..shd show producers be bothered that our screens all look very different?

Just saying..Yah I do calibrate mine..:)
Ps: To TS, yah there is naked eye visible difference even for 'untrained' eyes..
Even if monitors are all calibrated, no two are ever alike. The ambient light under which you calibrate the monitor will affect the results. The same monitor calibrated under different lighting condition will give different results.
 

Ming1388

New Member
Jul 30, 2013
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Singapore, Orchard
#16
Hi All,

Thank you very much for all the valuable feedback. The impression I'm getting is that the Calibration tools are definitely something which can benefit but the value, like many things can depend on the type of use and the type of work I do.

I think for me personally, I'll take a look for a cheap and simple calibration model such as a Spyder 3 or something as I believe I only need the basics and don't want to spend too much since there is the argument of why not get a better quality monitor, which could display better anyway. Also I think its a very valid point even though my monitor is calibrated, many people on the net who view my work maybe using non calibrated monitors, smartphones and smart pads so as long as I have some degree of accuracy, this should be sufficient.

One further question I had with these calibrators is whether I can use them on multiple PC's and devices such as my desktop, Laptop, Ipad etc? Or do they specifically register to one unit only?

Hope I am understanding this correctly.

Many thanks

Ming
 

Octarine

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 3, 2008
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#19
One further question I had with these calibrators is whether I can use them on multiple PC's and devices such as my desktop, Laptop, Ipad etc? Or do they specifically register to one unit only?
You can use the calibrator on multiple devices, no problem. But do read about the technical specs and limitations for calibrators and screens. Older calibration devices might have issues with newer screens. If in doubt, contact the vendor and ask specifically for your screen.
Since the calibration requires software installation, you need to check whether there is an app for your Ipad or whatever pad you are using.
 

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