Monitor Calibration

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by Beachball, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. Beachball

    Beachball
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    Just had a play about with my monitor settings after looking at the chart on the dpreview site (see example page here - its about 3/4 of the way down) and realising XYZ and ABC all looked the same on my monitor.

    After changing the settings so I can see the differences between XYZ and even ABC to some extent... well... it all looks a lot brighter now. It will take some getting used to as I am running two 19" TFT monitors here on my PC! More importantly tho, my photos I 'photoshopped' now look all washed-out(over-exposed) with the re-calibrated monitor settings so I will have to re-do them. :rolleyes:

    Are my monitors calibrated quite well now or are there better sites/methods out there I should use?

    Many thanks.
     
  2. ancientgeek

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    Use a decent screen; calibrate the settings and don't change them; control ambient lighting; check your RGB histograms when adjusting pictures.

    My sister has ruined her holiday pictures by "making them look nice" on her crummy old laptop. On any properly set up screen, they are washed-out. You should always keep an eye on the RGB histograms when making this kind of adjustment (in camera, photoshop, iPhoto or whatever). Have a look at the histograms for your washed out photos.

    When making adjustments "by eye" on screen, it's important to have a good quality screen, correctly calibrated, and appropriate unchanging ambient lighting in the room, otherwise your brain will automatically make change the perceived brightness and colour balance of the picture.

    One of the reasons Apple monitors don't have any adjustments is that professionals (wo use Macs) calibrate the monitor set up, and don't want any casual changes made. You can get instruments to help you calibrate your monitor. For simpler calibaration, Macs have a calibrate button in the displays control panel. Your PC may or may not have somethng similar.

    Every image display device has only a limited gamut of colours it can display. If you enable colour management on your computer, images will be saved with the colour space embedded, and will be adjusted on display/print to compensate for the colour space of the screen/printer. A poor screen has a limited gamut, and colours and brightless change with viewing angle.
     
  3. dave_bass5

    dave_bass5
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    Well its a start. Have you looked at you shots on another PC to make sure they are washed out and its not just your PC?
    The best way to calibrate is to use a Hardware device like a Spyder2. they dont cost much and i found its made a difference to all my monitors (although not a huge one as they weren't bad to start with).
    Im not sure how you would go about using two monitors on on e PC though. I have two running off my work one but as its only one graphics card i dont think you can load two profiles in to it (although ive not looked in to it yet) so i just calibrated the best/main one and the profile gets applied to both (ones a Dell ultra sharp and the other is a Sun 20" CRT)
     
  4. ancientgeek

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    If you are re-doing pictures you have washed out, go back to the originals; detailed information has been permanently lost in the washed out ones.

    If your monitor is of the "looks different from different angles" variety, just use the histograms, and ignore what it looks like. The simplest thing to use is "auto levels" in photoshop

    I'm no expert on this stuff BTW :confused:
     
  5. cedmondson

    cedmondson
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    Beachball: I found that I got the best results using this bit of freeware.

    Dave Bass: Do you know how I can tell whether my dual-monitor set up can be properly profiled with a Spyder or similar? I've seen conflicting info about this. I'm running Vista & it seems that I can load a different icm profile for each monitor.
     
  6. dave_bass5

    dave_bass5
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    Colin
    Im not really sure i can help you.
    I know that i can load different profiles in to my graphics card but i have to do the second one manually. I havent profiled it though as i dont really use it for photos etc, its there more just so i can have a bigger desktop.
    I guess a quick (or long) google could help.
    Also some software is better than others. I have both the Spyder2 Express and Spyder2 Pro and the pro does let you calibrate two monitors so ill maybe give that a go tomorrow and let you know whats what.
     
  7. Beachball

    Beachball
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    Thanks for your replies. Everything on both monitors looks 'washed-out' to me now but these are the only settings that allowed me to see the difference between the blocks on the dpreview site. I haven't looked at my pics on another PC, yet. Good idea, I'll email a few to my work address and have a look on a few monitors at work tomorrow.

    cedmondson: I'll try out that freeware and see how it goes.

    I'll also look into this hardware device Dave Bass mentioned: Spyder2

    I still have all the RAW originals for my PP'd pics so I'll start again from them if I do need to 're-do' the pics. :)
     
  8. cedmondson

    cedmondson
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    Thanks for your response - I'd already googled extensively (with some conflicting answers) but I think I've finally made a bit of progress. It seems that with XP you can't load two profiles unless you have 2 seperate display cards (AND a calibration package that supports multiple monitors). Vista works differently and it may be possible to load 2 profiles with one dual-head card.
    Would you recommend the Spyder Pro? I see there's also a Huey Pro due out immnently that supports multiple monitors and costs a fair bit less - but I've no idea how much these things vary in terms of results, accuracy, usability etc.:confused:
     
  9. dave_bass5

    dave_bass5
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    Ive not used Vista so it could well be as you say.
    I can recomend the Spyder2 as i have one but i dont know how well it works compared to the others.
     
  10. viffer

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    I use a gretagmacbeth huey (looks like a pantone huey) and it does the job nicely. wasnt overly expensive.
    Ran the calibration for the first time and the difference was amazing.
    Before hand the colours were very grey/blue and cold looking. Afterwards a lot warmer. Took a while to get used to the new look though.

    Just had a look at the chart mentioned in the first post, calibrated i can see all the blocks as individuals, un-calibrated then the last 3 blocks merge into 1 and the frist 2 hard to spot.
     

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