Apple Cinema displays with PC - good calibration?

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by cnhoff, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. Hi,

    sorry for my third post in a few days, but although there is a lot of
    information about displays on the net, there is very little that actually refers
    specifically to photo editing.

    I understand that the Apple 20" and 23" cinema displays can be hooked up to a
    PC, but only offer brightness controls.

    Isn't there a third party or Apple tool, that enables Win users to do those
    adjustments provided on a MAC?

    I have a Spyder2 calibration system.
    Can i expect the screen to be perfectly calibrated WITHOUT having access to
    contrast/color controls?

    Thanks again!
  2. Christian,

    I can't help you directly with your questions, but you need to realize that the Apple Cinema monitors cannot be calibrated below about 6000K color temperature. Most people calibrate their monitors to 6500K, but if you are like me and want to match the monitor color temperature to 5000K digital darkroom lighting (from SoLux for instance) then you will not be able to do that with the Apple monitors.
  3. Lots of misunderstandings here. On any LCD the contrast control is always "soft", meaning that the numbers coming from the video card are being manipulated. Only brightness control can be done by actually adjusting the lamp (if the monitor has the ability to dim it). Apple monitors have this dimming control. Any other controls would be cheating with the numbers. It is better to adjust the numbers coming from the graphics card directly through a profile loaded in the card's LUT. This is how calibration systems work on a Mac and this is also how they work on a PC with a Mac monitor. Mac monitors can be calibrated to any color temperature target value within the reach of your calibration software. I can set my Cinema Displays to all values between 4000K and 10000K with my Eye-One Match controls (although for best LCD response it would be better to calibrate them to native color temperature). The adjustments provided on a Mac are nothing more than alternative ways to create a monitor profile. There are no controls adjusting contrast (for example) that are bypassing the monitor profile.
  4. Eric is mostly correct. Those controls in Mac OS are just affecting videocard LUTs. That's how Spyder2 software (or any other software) would calibrate them either on a mac or on a PC - via videocard LUTs.

    So from calibration point of view it would work the same on both platforms.

    On the other hand, if you are concerned with calibration, then Apple display and Spyder2 may not be the best products on the market as far as LCDs calibration goes (using videocard LUTs is not a good thing on LCDs). You may want to look into LCDs with 10 or higher bit internal LUTs and calibration solutions that work with them via DDC/CI. Again, it's a cross-platform consideration.

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