Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

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Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

Postposted on Sun Nov 17, 2013 2:43 am

I do photography and graphic arts, both are casual hobbies for me, not what I do for a living. I also maintain a web site as a community service thing. I've decided it's time to get my colors right.

I am about 87.5% sure that the Datacolor Spyder line will be fine for me and I'm very close to buying one of these bundles:
The Spyder Capture Pro is all about camera and monitor calibration.
The Spyder Studio lets you calibrate your monitor and printer.

Neither one contains all the stuff I think I will eventually want/need. Too bad they don't have an "everything bundle". But I am a glutton and don't really need it all right away.

First priority is to get my monitor under control, and both kits contain the Spyder 4 Elite device and software to do that. Next up, I do very little printing at my home, so I guess the printer calibration device and software is not of highest priority. I guess I'm leaning toward the Capture Pro.

Has anybody else here had to wrestle with this decision recently? Did you end up going with Spyder or choose another maker? Did you get a bundle or choose individual pieces/parts, and why?

Side Note: Newegg's prices are quite a bit higher than I'm used to seeing from them. What's up with that? I found these bundles for a lot cheaper on Amazon!
BIF
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Re: Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

Postposted on Sun Nov 17, 2013 3:49 am

Spyder hardware is fine, I've been using it for long time for monitor calibration... Some people receive defective sensors which aren't accurate but the amount of such defects is pretty small. I only use it for monitor calibration, though.

As for Newegg prices - they like to rip people off with many items. So does Amazon but not as often. If you are trying to shop at Newegg - make sure to always use a "Hover Hound" browser add-on. Makes price comparison very easy :wink:
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Re: Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

Postposted on Sun Nov 17, 2013 4:48 am

JohnC wrote:Spyder hardware is fine, I've been using it for long time for monitor calibration... Some people receive defective sensors which aren't accurate but the amount of such defects is pretty small. I only use it for monitor calibration, though.

As for Newegg prices - they like to rip people off with many items. So does Amazon but not as often. If you are trying to shop at Newegg - make sure to always use a "Hover Hound" browser add-on. Makes price comparison very easy :wink:


Hmmmm, how does one know if their sensor is bad?

I just installed Hoverhound. Outstanding, thank you for the suggestion!
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Re: Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

Postposted on Sun Nov 17, 2013 5:30 am

BIF wrote:Hmmmm, how does one know if their sensor is bad?

Well, there's usually a pretty obvious color shift, making everything look too "blue/purple" or too "yellow/orange" after calibration :wink: Or when you compare it with other sensor's results.
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Re: Shopping for Monitor and Camera Calibration Equipment

Postposted on Sun Nov 17, 2013 10:45 am

Well, of course if it's supposed to look red and it looks distinctly purple, that's an obvious deviation.

But if your sensor is off only a tiny bit, then your whole reference point is off, and yet you don't know it. In fact, you've calibrated so you "know" yours is right and as far as you're concerned, the rest of the world is off kilter, and while we're at it, the universe revolves not only around Earth, but it revolves around me for me and you for you.

So even though we have calibrated our equipment, we really have no 100% assurance that we've calibrated to a truly common standard reference point; no "one calibrator to rule them all".

Is it possible that we have different reference points between manufacturers and even between models within manufacturer lines? It may be an existential question, but who calibrates the calibrators and their calibrators?

I'd better stop now before I talk myself out of this. :o :P
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