calibration hardware questions

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by jonstock, Mar 23, 2007.

  1. Hi I want to buy calibration hardware but I don't know which one to get. I
    have read the previous posts and looked at several web pages mentioned in
    them. Thanks for the info so far. I have some questions about the systems.

    Gretag Macbeth Eye-One Display2
    Is listed as discontinued on Amazon websites (US and Canadian sites) the
    manufacturers site did not list it as discontinued.
    http://www.xrite.com/discontinued_products.aspx?Industry=1&Segment=12&Action=Support
    Is this discontinued?

    Monaco Optix XR
    This is listed as discontinued on the manufacturer?s website (see above). Have
    they announced Vista drivers for discontinued items? I use XP Pro but
    eventually my next computer will run Vista. If they are both discontinued and
    Vista is not supported this will shorten up the list of options.

    ColorEyes Display Pro
    Is there a reseller? - Or is it full price only?

    Also the drycreek review mentioned quirks with this software specifically:

    "ColorEyes can use the instrument to guide setting screen luminance levels,
    although this requires starting the calibration with a CRT monitor selected,
    even if you use a LCD. You need to abort the process and restart if you have a
    LCD after setting the display luminance. In a similar vein, there is no direct
    readout of the screen white point. You can calculate it from the displayed xyY
    values, but this is not useful for most folks."

    Is this dated information or is it still like that?
    Are there other quirks that buyers should be wary of?


    Spyder2 Pro
    There seems to be mixed feelings about this one. Most people recommend another
    one instead. Drycreek says it is bad at lighter colors, is that still current
    information? I was leaning toward this one, but if it isn't good at highlights
    that is a problem.

    Huey
    This one has worse forum reviews than the Spyder2.

    None of the above seems like a slam dunk, or have I just read too much?

    My current setup is only OK. I have a HP computer with an older video card (2
    years old) and a new 22" widescreen that was on sale. The reviews of the 22"
    widescreens are not that good. I didn't do any homework before I bought it.
    It was a Boxing Day sale impulse buy.
    I also have a HP laptop that I want to calibrate too. Spyder2 pro and Eye-One
    Display2 both mention matching the calibration between different systems. Is
    this just marketing or does this work?

    These are worth reading if you are planning to get a LCD monitor:
    <http://www.pchardwarehelp.com/guides/lcd-panel-types.php>
    <http://encycl.opentopia.com/term/TFT_LCD>
    <http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/other/display/lcd-guide.html>

    This page is in Dutch but if you enter the manufactures name in the box it will
    list off their LCD models and what type of LCD it is. The one to avoid is TN
    (Twisted Nematic). All of the Current 22? widescreens are TN types.
    <http://www.flatpanels.dk/skaerme.php>


    Calibration links:
    <http://www.drycreekphoto.com/Learn/monitor_calibration_tools.htm>
    <http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/links.html#color_management>

    And this useful little site:
    <http://www.flatpanels.dk/monitortest_dk.php>

    <http://www.shootsmarter.com/> has links to their recommended systems but I am
    not a member there so I can't see them. Someone mentioned they specialize is
    high end setups. I am new at this. I don't want to spend $1000+ on this.

    Thank you for any help you can provide.

    Jon Stock
     
  2. The above links all include the > at the end. Please delete the > at the end to get a working link. Sorry.
     
  3. I recently purchased the EyeOne Display2 through Amazon. The sale was through a third-
    party. (Adorama) It has worked well for me.

    The URL is
    http://www.amazon.com/GRETAGMACBETH-Eye-One-Display-Windows-355420/dp/
    B0007ZGCT6/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2/002-4120362-3964049?
    ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1174738518&sr=8-2

    That's longer than I expected. An Amazon search on "Eye One Display" will find it too.
     
  4. I've been using Spyder2 Pro for almost two years with excellent results.
     
  5. here's an article from ShootSmarter:
    http://www.shootsmarter.com/infocenter/wc026a.htm

    you have to register, but registering is as simple as giving your email address. don't worry, i
    don't get any spam from them, just a monthly newsletter that actually tends to be useful
     
  6. Gretag-Macbeth and Monaco are now part of X-Rite. The Monaco OPTIXxr has been
    discontinued and the G-M Display 2 is now sold as the X-Rite Display 2. Same product and
    software.

    I never had good luck with the Colorvision products: just not accurate enough for me.
     
  7. I have the original Monaco Optix XR, and as of a week ago, there were no Vista drivers, not even beta. That surprised me, when 64-bit XP came out, you could get the "beta" drivers (same drivers, just 64-bit) by contacting their tech support.
     
  8. I run ColorEyes Display Pro on a Mac with their bundled DTP94. I couldn't be happier. The
    latest version has a much improved user interface and generates very accurate profiles and
    tone response curves.

    Unfortunately, the latest version is Mac only. They've been promising the Windows version
    for a while now, and if you buy the current Windows version you'll get a free upgrade. But
    no word on exactly when the release will happen.

    I bought my bundle through Chromix at a slight discount. I've dealt with them a few times
    and always found them to be a customer-oriented outfit.
     
  9. Thank you for your quick responses. I will sign up for quickshooter and see what they say.
     
  10. Hi Quickshooter trashed the makers of Coloreyes and Spyder2 as unprofessional. Has anyone delt with customer service from them? Are they that bad?

    Thanks
     
  11. This link will help you with your first question.

    http://www.xrite.com/product_overview.aspx?Industry=1&Segment=12&ID=592&Action=Support&SoftwareID=625
     
  12. First of all Vista compatibility is questionable with all calibration software. Not all of them admit it and reportedly not all users experience the startup LUT loader problems. But you may want to take a look at the conclusions of the Chromix article:

    http://www.outbackphoto.com/tforum/viewtopic.php?TopicID=2518

    Personally I believe that software-wise from best to average it goes like this: Basiccolor > Coloreyes > Spyder2 Pro > Eyeone Display2...

    Hardware-wize it's Xrite DTP94 > EyeOne D2 > Spyder2.

    Note that DTP 94 and Spyder2 colorimeters can be bought in bundles with cheap software. Like, Spyder2 can be bought as an Express bundle and then you can add Basiccolor. Or you can buy Monaco and add Basiccolor or Coloreyes.

    http://mpex.com/ItemDetail.aspx?SKUID=10832&SKU=0834596000287&SN=0000&Q=False

    Basiccolor has a very inconvenient licensing policy. Basiccolor and Coloreyes are essentially software products that work with a number of colorimeters. They include their own colorimeter drivers. They bundle their software with DTP94 as an option because it's the best colorimeter on the market. I don't think PC version of Coloreyes supports Spyder2 colorimeters yet.
     
  13. Overall EyeOne Display2 is a pretty mainstream solution and is good value for the money. For some reason my Nikon Capture has issues with it's profiles though...

    Monaco (that includes DTP94) is discontinued in favor of the EyeOne products. So you would rely on third party software for support.

    DTP94 is the only new colorimeter that currently works natively in Linux...

    Sorry I can't make a definitive recommendation - just a bunch of random facts...
     
  14. Thank you, it is good to know that Monaco and Eye-One will be supported in the future I don't need the Vista update yet but it is good to see it and know it is free.
    http://www.xrite.com/product_overview.aspx?Industry=1&Segment=12&ID=592&Action=Support&SoftwareID=625
     
  15. EZColor is some sort of printer and scanner profiling thing. I don't think it's in any way related to monitor calibration and profiling.

    Printer profiling is a much more expensive procedure (that normally involves spectrophotometers). If you are interested in printer/paper profiling you should look at more expensive packages.

    I don't know what's the best way to profile scanners but it would involve buying some standard targets to scan. Plus some software.
     
  16. I have a printer scanner combo. It is old. It still plugs into the printer port. It was an expensive combo years ago and is still OK for normal stuff. I don't print photos at home. I was looking at a more complete system but they are expensive. The Xrite Eye-One Photo Color Calibration System is $1399 at B&H http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=Search&A=details&Q=&sku=465163&is=REG&addedTroughType=search
    The ColorVision PrintFIX PRO is $680 Canadian (not stocked at B&H)
    http://www.vistek.ca/details/details.aspx?WebCode=222512&CategoryID=ComputerAccessories
    Too bad the original spyder is not well reviewed, Amazon has the original spider for $44 http://www.amazon.com/COLORVISION-GEU102-Spyder-Windows-Macintosh/dp/B00007IT9B/ref=sr_1_6/002-9994271-4520037?ie=UTF8&s=software&qid=1174810561&sr=1-6
    and the original screen/printer set for $150 http://www.amazon.com/ColorVision-Spyder-Master-Suite-Spectro/dp/B00009YWJM/ref=sr_1_7/002-9994271-4520037?ie=UTF8&s=software&qid=1174810561&sr=1-7

    Currently I just want to sent an accurate picture to the local printer and get back what I expect.

    Jon
     
  17. I've not had any issues with customer support at ColorEyes. I downloaded the trial version
    and had some questions - they were answered immediately and helpfully by the President,
    Derrick Brown. He engaged me in an email conversation that answered all my questions.

    I've had no issues requiring support after I purchased the license.

    They use a forum for support.
     
  18. I also think that Coloreyes guys are very responsive and very active in the color community. Even though I don't own their software it's easy to get answers from them both on their support board and on public boards.
     

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