Anyone with Spyder4Pro calibrator?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by domaso, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. domaso macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2012
    Hi there,

    I bought a Datacolor Spyder4Pro today for calibrating the screen of my iMac 21.5" (mid-2010). The problem is, it does more harm than good... I tried calibrating several times with different settings and I still can't get the colors right. I get pretty noticeable "cooling" (blue/violet) tinge over the image after calibration, I'm pretty confident with what I see because even grayscale photos have the tinge, and the solid grays are not neutral.

    Anyone with Spyder4Pro had similar problems and know any workarounds? Maybe some specific settings should be used? My calibration settings were (available options in brackets):

    Gamut: Normal Gamut (Unknown/Normal Gamut/Wide Gamut)
    Backlight: White LED (Unknown/Fluorescent CCFL/White LED/RGB LED)
    Gamma: 2.2 (1.8/2.0/2.2/2.4)
    White Point: 6500K (5000K/5800K/6500K/Native)
    Brightness: LCD (CRT/LCD/Native) [LCD=120]

    Could it be that the problem lies somewhere outside the Spyder4Pro? I noticed the image suddenly changes to "cool" at the very last step of the calibration, so I'm wondering maybe some other software (e.g. ColorSync) interprets the newly created profile wrong or something.
    I'm just so pissed off that I paid $200 to make my display worse than it was before...

    Any help greatly appreciated ;)
  2. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR
    I am not at home to answer for sure... but I think I used 5800. 6500 is pretty cool... so try warming it up to 5800.

    In any case... mine was an improvement, and I use the Spyder 4 Elite.

  3. domaso thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2012
    Yes, using 5800K White Point made it better, but still not quite right..

    I think I might have found a solution. I don't know if it was just a coincidence, but it worked pretty good. Here's what helped:

    Initially I calibrated in a shaded room with very little ambient light, the results were as I've mentioned in my previous post. Then I tried calibrating at night in a COMPLETE darkness – and it worked! The settings were: Gamma: 2.2, White Point: 6500K, Brightness: LCD (120). Both times the Ambient Light measuring was off.

    I'm might be wrong, but my theory is:

    Could it be that iMac's glass messes up the Spyder sensors readings? The glass edges pick up the ambient light and this light is traveling through the entire glass (just try to point a flashlight to the side of your iMac and look on the opposite side – you'll see the light passes right through. On top of that, the glass is lifted from the LCD so there is a small air gap between them – another theory but couldn't that gap cause micro reflections and mess up the colorimeter reading too?
    I tried calibrating another monitor with no glass (framed matte screen, no air gap) – calibrated like a charm.

    The ultimate test to confirm this would be to run a calibration with iMac glass on and then with glass removed (making sure the ambient light conditions and the settings are identical). I'm planning to remove the glass soon for cleaning anyway, so I'll do this test while I'm at it. If you guys are interested, I will post the results.
  4. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR

    Please post your results. I have a slight difference between my two displays. My iMac is a 2012 with the bonded panel/glass, but my second display is an ATD which has the separate panel/glass. I am planning to buy a new ATD if/when one comes out with the new bonded style.

  5. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Mar 29, 2008
    To be honest, I've never had much luck with Spyder colorimeters. Reviewers even mention this. Very wild results, even from one physical unit to another. Pick up an i1 Pro if you can.
  6. domaso thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2012
    Too late for that, I already bought Spyder...
    I found the majority of reviews to be positive, thats why I bought it in the first place, and I really can't afford to buy yet another colorimeter, sorry... I'm not 100% satisfied with Spyder but I guess it works "acceptably" after some tinkering with it. I wish I could afford a better device, but in this price range I can't find anything better I guess...

    All in all, I'm pretty disappointed with Datacolor consumer products – you pay a fairly large sum of money for this tiny device that claims to make the colors right on your display and it fails pretty miserably. I opened a ticket about my problem on their Support but after reading some feedbacks I don't really expect it to be answered, as it seems Datacolor really doesn't give a $-hit about their customers...
    I will try to do some experiments with calibrations in the complete darkness and with glass removed to see what works. I will definitely post the possible solutions for the unfortunate ones who bought the Spyders. I wonder what solution Datacolor support will suggest (if any at all)...
    In the end, don't get me wrong, I'm a graphic designer, so I know a thing or two about the coloring, this is why I'm so pissed off about this product...

    Don't buy the Spyders folks...

    P.S. I'm still open to any ingenious solutions if anyone has found out.

    P.P.S. I'm slightly drunk so please don't judge me if I sound a bit too harsh, but it really got on my last nerve...
  7. Apple fanboy macrumors Nehalem

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    The Spyder 4 was supposed to be updated with a new colorimeter so it would work better with glossy screens like the iMac.

    I have found the i1 to give me better results.

    Where did you buy it? Couldn't you just return it and by the i1 instead? If that's a bit too pricey look at the ColorMunki Display instead. Basically that is the mid range calibrator, the Xrite equivalent of your Spyder Pro.
  8. domaso thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2012
    I will check if it's possible to return ir but I highly doubt it.. I"m in Lithuania (EU) and there is a law saying you can't return electronic devices if they are not defected, and if it works, it's only up to the seller's goodwill to accept it, which I highly doubt..

    I have heard about the equivalent ColorMunki Design, but it's considerably (~x3) more expensive than Spyder4Pro, thats why I've gone for it after reading so many positive reviews..
  9. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Mar 29, 2008
    Sounds like your Spyder is defective. As far as I'm concerned, if it's not giving me good results, it's defective! There's not much to really tinker with when it comes to colorimeters. They either work or don't.
  10. SoK66 macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2015
    I do not recommend the Datacolor product for OS X Yosemitie users. I had a terrible time with the Spyder 4 & Yosemite, which got progressively worse, to the point I removed the profiles and deleted the application software files. It worked well before 10.10. However the OS X Yosemite upgrade, and subsequent patches just seemed to make the incompatibilities worse. Finally, around April '15 when I did the scheduled profile renewal, after the software ran its routine and a new profile created, when I saved it the screen suddently went a sickly yellow and the ENTIRE system froze and could not be normally recovered. A forced shutdown and restart didn't work. I finally had to restart in safe mode and delete the new profile. I ran the routine again and saved the new profile with OK results, although the profiling did not look accurate to the eye. The software's timing function did not recognize the new profile and continually said it was expired and to run the profiling application again. When I did I got the yellow screen and freeze again. I tried Datacolor's Spyder 4 downloads but none of them would overwrite the original files that came with the install disc. At this point I have completely deleted Spyder 4 Pro and all of it's files from my iMac, which is a late 2013 27" model. Looking for a product that works.
  11. troy14 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 25, 2008
    Las Vegas (Summerlin), NV

    Thanks, I was hoping someone would hit me in the face with a giant wall of text that's 2 years late.
  12. SoK66 macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2015
    Hopefully others will find it a credible, detailed warning before purchasing.
  13. poxan macrumors newbie


    Mar 12, 2016
    Your piece of advice worked for me. Thanks!
  14. joema2 macrumors 68000


    Sep 3, 2013
    I use ColorMunki Photo on my 2012, 2013 and 2015 iMac 27s. It works well, although there was a problem on the 2015 the required manual de-installation and re-installation of the software. This was apparently unique to the retina display. It works fine now:

    This calibrates between both displays and printers. If you don't need the printer calibration feature, they make a less expensive version that only does displays, called ColorMunki Display:

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