Spyder calibration


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Jun 2, 2008
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#1
Hi seniors, recently I got a 2nd hand Spyder2Express and found that my laptop monitor's colours looks very different after calibration with the spyder software. E.g. ClubSNAP forums looks yellowish-brown as opposed to grey.

While it may be simply due to my eyes not being used to the "correct" calibrated colours, I do hope to eliminate possibility of the spyder hardware being faulty. Running HCFR Colorimetre with the "View Images" grayscale test after calibration (and restarting) produces the following graphs:

Color Temperature:

Gamma:

Luminance:

RGB Levels:


Other than gamma and luminance, the colour temperature and RGB levels deviate greatly from the "ideal" curve. So.. does that mean my spyder is faulty or..?
Am using Spyder2Express, software 2.3.6 (previously 2.2 with same results), Windows Vista Business SP1 32-bits.
 

Jun 2, 2008
439
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18
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#2
Hmm no one can answer?

Okay, just in case I wasn't clear - I am asking if my Spyder2 hardware is faulty, based on results returned from HCFR after running Spyder2Express calibration.

Could anyone with Spyder2/3 confirm my results? Thanks in advance.
 

Jun 2, 2008
439
1
18
Singapore
#3
If anyone is wondering, no I don't have Adobe gamma running because I don't have any of the Adobe suite of imaging programs (e.g. Photoshop, Lightroom, Elements) and my Windows startup folder is empty.

No one else has this deviation problem after calibrating with their Spyder2?
 

stanycjw

Senior Member
Dec 25, 2008
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#4
I am using Spider3 express recently and after calibration I found that the color are much better than B4 calibrate. I have problems B4 like what shown on my laptop is different from my HP Photosmart but now is near 98% accurate.

By the way, I am using the new software downloaded, no problems. Hmmm.. you mention you bought it second hand? How much ? I got it new from Cathay at $117 only.
 

photoart

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2009
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#5
Hi seniors, recently I got a 2nd hand Spyder2Express and found that my laptop monitor's colours looks very different after calibration with the spyder software. E.g. ClubSNAP forums looks yellowish-brown as opposed to grey.

Other than gamma and luminance, the colour temperature and RGB levels deviate greatly from the "ideal" curve. So.. does that mean my spyder is faulty or..?
i have the same results(ClubSNAP forums looks yellowish-brown as opposed to grey) using my spyder 3. so rest assured that your spyder2express is not faulty
 

Apr 20, 2006
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#6
If there is something wrong with your Spyder unit, then you should not be getting the 'correct' reading on the HCFR software.

From what I know, people who cannot achieve ideal calibration usually have the following problem:

1) Monitor too bright: If your monitor's luminance is way above the 120 cd/m^2 target, then the Spyder software will have a hard time calibrating. To help the Spyder along, you need to lower the brightness level to a level that is close to 120 cd/m^2 before you start calibrating.

2) I don't know why your Spyder is calibrating to 4000K. Did you set this or 6500K? Try a few selections... 6500K, Native, 5000K, and see which works for you. If you cannot achieve the target temperature, it is sometimes due to monitor limitations. In which case, 'Native' will usually look the best.
 

Jun 2, 2008
439
1
18
Singapore
#7
Yay finally some response! :D

Hmmm.. you mention you bought it second hand? How much ? I got it new from Cathay at $117 only.
It's my first time calibrating a monitor (and viewing a "calibrated" monitor for that matter) hence I'm not sure what is considered "accurate". I got it for $70 but if it turns out faulty I'm going to hate myself for being penny wise but pound foolish.

If there is something wrong with your Spyder unit, then you should not be getting the 'correct' reading on the HCFR software.

From what I know, people who cannot achieve ideal calibration usually have the following problem:

1) Monitor too bright: If your monitor's luminance is way above the 120 cd/m^2 target, then the Spyder software will have a hard time calibrating. To help the Spyder along, you need to lower the brightness level to a level that is close to 120 cd/m^2 before you start calibrating.

2) I don't know why your Spyder is calibrating to 4000K. Did you set this or 6500K? Try a few selections... 6500K, Native, 5000K, and see which works for you. If you cannot achieve the target temperature, it is sometimes due to monitor limitations. In which case, 'Native' will usually look the best.
Hmm... how do I know what is the luminance level? My backlight settings is set to 75% of the maximum. And I'm not sure why HCFR registers my monitor at 4000K, since Spyder2Express defaults to 6500K (this setting cannot be modified by user). Which is why I'm wondering if there's something wrong with the hardware...

What is this 'Native' setting?
 

stanycjw

Senior Member
Dec 25, 2008
2,063
2
38
Singapore
#8
Yay finally some response! :D



It's my first time calibrating a monitor (and viewing a "calibrated" monitor for that matter) hence I'm not sure what is considered "accurate". I got it for $70 but if it turns out faulty I'm going to hate myself for being penny wise but pound foolish.



Hmm... how do I know what is the luminance level? My backlight settings is set to 75% of the maximum. And I'm not sure why HCFR registers my monitor at 4000K, since Spyder2Express defaults to 6500K (this setting cannot be modified by user). Which is why I'm wondering if there's something wrong with the hardware...

What is this 'Native' setting?
Na!!!!!
Just forgot to tell you, before any calibration is done. First you must have your display set to default before cal.

Happy calibrating and wish you success.
 

yrh0413

New Member
Oct 21, 2004
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#9
is your monitor the "glossy" type of the "matte" type? I have the Spyder2express myself... and I never manage to calibrate my glossy laptop screen well.
 

Apr 20, 2006
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#10
Yay finally some response! :D



It's my first time calibrating a monitor (and viewing a "calibrated" monitor for that matter) hence I'm not sure what is considered "accurate". I got it for $70 but if it turns out faulty I'm going to hate myself for being penny wise but pound foolish.



Hmm... how do I know what is the luminance level? My backlight settings is set to 75% of the maximum. And I'm not sure why HCFR registers my monitor at 4000K, since Spyder2Express defaults to 6500K (this setting cannot be modified by user). Which is why I'm wondering if there's something wrong with the hardware...

What is this 'Native' setting?
'Native' colour temperature is the actual colour temperature the monitor starts with, without you nor the Spyder tempering with it.

The whole idea of calibrating your monitor is so that you can:

1) Get the colour temperature right (to match your print output, etc)
2) Get the Gamma right (which is the relative brightness or contrast... which is important to see details)
3) Get the white and black luminance right (so that black is completely dark and white is bright, but not blinding)

I used to have the Spyder2Express. I found it very limiting. Read this:

http://www.maclife.com/article/colorvision_spyder2express

If your monitor is very good, then the Spyder2Express is ok. But if your monitor is a midrange one, then the Spyder2Express can give you problems, due to monitor limitations... which require you to tweak the settings and controls. If you are stuck with 6500K, and the Spyder cannot achieve 6500K on your monitor, a strange colour cast will result.

However... not to dispair. If you have a friend/buddy who has a Spyder2Pro, borrow the software from him. It uses the same Colormeter, but the software allows for more settings.

Another thing... if your screen is an LED screen (like on some laptops), Spyder2 may not work.
 

Apr 20, 2006
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#11
is your monitor the "glossy" type of the "matte" type? I have the Spyder2express myself... and I never manage to calibrate my glossy laptop screen well.
Nothing to do with the glossiness. Spyder2 does not calibrate LED displays. It says so on the specs.

You need the Spyder3... which is the main reason why I upgraded to the Spyder3.
 

yrh0413

New Member
Oct 21, 2004
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#12
Nothing to do with the glossiness. Spyder2 does not calibrate LED displays. It says so on the specs.

You need the Spyder3... which is the main reason why I upgraded to the Spyder3.
LED display? Or you mean LCD display? My laptop does not have LED screens, but due to its glossy surface it is close to impossible to performa calibration on it. However I have no issues calibrating my other monitor (Dell Ultrasharp) with my spyder2express... which is not an LED display as well.
 

hotwork77

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Jun 21, 2009
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#13
Hmm no one can answer?

Okay, just in case I wasn't clear - I am asking if my Spyder2 hardware is faulty, based on results returned from HCFR after running Spyder2Express calibration.

Could anyone with Spyder2/3 confirm my results? Thanks in advance.
I'm using Spyder2Express. I set everything to 50% on the monitor before the calibration. I shut off all the room lights, draw the curtains and start the calibration.

After calibration, the print output is very close to the screen output.

Just a note: ClubSNAP theme is lightgrey throughout and not yellowish brown and it cannot calibrate LED backlit monitors.
 

Last edited:
Apr 20, 2006
1,087
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#14
LED display? Or you mean LCD display? My laptop does not have LED screens, but due to its glossy surface it is close to impossible to performa calibration on it. However I have no issues calibrating my other monitor (Dell Ultrasharp) with my spyder2express... which is not an LED display as well.
Some laptop screens are LED backlit. Spyder2 won't work on these. My Dell Studio17 is LED backlit. I think most laptop screens are LED backlit these days... else the screen cannot achieve the thin profile and your laptop will be really fat.
 

Last edited:
Jun 2, 2008
439
1
18
Singapore
#16
is your monitor the "glossy" type of the "matte" type? I have the Spyder2express myself... and I never manage to calibrate my glossy laptop screen well.
Hmm... should be glossy I guess. It's pretty reflective.

'Native' colour temperature is the actual colour temperature the monitor starts with, without you nor the Spyder tempering with it.

The whole idea of calibrating your monitor is so that you can:

1) Get the colour temperature right (to match your print output, etc) - which is wrong, according to HCFR
2) Get the Gamma right (which is the relative brightness or contrast... which is important to see details)
3) Get the white and black luminance right (so that black is completely dark and white is bright, but not blinding)
- gamma and luminance is correct according to HCFR, and when I visually check using http://www.imaging-resource.com/ARTS/MONCAL/CALIBRATE.HTM I can see all the highlights and shadows fine, save for white looking like cream/off-white.

I used to have the Spyder2Express. I found it very limiting. Read this:

http://www.maclife.com/article/colorvision_spyder2express

If your monitor is very good, then the Spyder2Express is ok. But if your monitor is a midrange one, then the Spyder2Express can give you problems, due to monitor limitations... which require you to tweak the settings and controls. If you are stuck with 6500K, and the Spyder cannot achieve 6500K on your monitor, a strange colour cast will result.

However... not to dispair. If you have a friend/buddy who has a Spyder2Pro, borrow the software from him. It uses the same Colormeter, but the software allows for more settings.

Another thing... if your screen is an LED screen (like on some laptops), Spyder2 may not work.
- my laptop's too old to feature an LED screen. :sweat: It's a Vaio SZ-75G featuring a 13.3" TFT LCD using a NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS video card (if that info helps in troubleshooting).
My replies in red above.

I'm using Spyder2Express. I set everything to 50% on the monitor before the calibration. I shut off all the room lights, draw the curtains and start the calibration.

After calibration, the print output is very close to the screen output.

Just a note: ClubSNAP theme is lightgrey throughout and not yellowish brown and it cannot calibrate LED backlit monitors.
I tried calibration in the dark (at night) with lights off and curtains down, as well as in the day with curtains drawn, both results looks about the same. I guess the LCD baffle given works well enough to block out ambient light.

I don't discount that it could be just me not being used to "warmer" colours after calibration but right now grey looks like yellow-brown, and white looks off-white so I'm trying to figure out if it's me or the hardware (giving a colour cast) that needs replacing. :bsmilie:
 

yrh0413

New Member
Oct 21, 2004
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#17
Hmm... should be glossy I guess. It's pretty reflective.

I tried calibration in the dark (at night) with lights off and curtains down, as well as in the day with curtains drawn, both results looks about the same. I guess the LCD baffle given works well enough to block out ambient light.

I don't discount that it could be just me not being used to "warmer" colours after calibration but right now grey looks like yellow-brown, and white looks off-white so I'm trying to figure out if it's me or the hardware (giving a colour cast) that needs replacing. :bsmilie:
That's exactly what I got after I calibrated my glossy screen with my Spyder2express... the whole screen looks yellowish and the whites are not white at all. You should, however get pretty accurate calibration results if you are on a non-glossy screen.

Btw it doesn't matter if you pull down the curtains because Spyder2express does not take in ambient light. you need Spyder2pro for that.
 

Apr 20, 2006
1,087
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#18
Btw it doesn't matter if you pull down the curtains because Spyder2express does not take in ambient light. you need Spyder2pro for that.
You MUST pull down the curtains and turn off any bright lights. If ambient light gets into the Spyder, it will affect the reading. The newer Spyder3 can read the ambient light and 'compensate' for it, so you can keep the lights on... but it does not do it very well. So, whatever it is, you should calibrate in a dark room, whatever colorimeter you use.
 

Apr 20, 2006
1,087
0
0
#19
I just verified my Spyder3 calibration with HCFR. Apparently, by setting my target temperature at 'Native', I actually calibrated my monitor to a temperature of 7000K. That matches the photos I get back from Fotohub pretty well.

Everyone seems to agree that Spyder calibrates a little too warm. So, perhaps setting it to 7000K will solve the problem?

I get a luminance of around 112 cd/M^2, which is all right. So, I'm happy.
 

Jun 2, 2008
439
1
18
Singapore
#20
I found this setting "Native LCD" (from top left corner Spyder2express -> Preferences) so I did the following:
  1. removed spyder2express profile and loaded windows default
  2. calibrate with "Native LCD" unchecked
  3. removed spyder2express profile and reloaded windows default
  4. calibrate with "Native LCD" checked
Each step was done with the necessary warm-up and reboots. Calibration was done in the dark. HCFR results:

Gamma (default, native unchecked, native checked):
 

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