Monitor Calibrator

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by godfreyhk, Oct 13, 2009.

  1. godfreyhk macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #1
    Hi guys,

    I'm about to purchase a Dell U2410 and is looking for a calibrator to accompany it :) After spending $500 + Tax and Shipping on the monitor, my budget for the calibrator is REALLY tight (preferrably sub-$100). My requirement is simple - I just want to use both the built-in display on my MBP and the Dell at the same time and see the same color (or resonably close) on both. This is way more important to me than the "absolute" color accuracy. I also rarely send anything to print. I have looked into a few options (price from lowest to highest):

    • PANTONE huey
    • Spyder2Express
    • Spyder3Express
    • PANTONE huey PRO
    • Spyder3Pro

    The last few are actually slightly out of my budget and my personal favourite so far is the Spyder2Express.

    Here are my questions:

    • Does anyone has any experience with these things and can give any recommendation on which to get?
    • I have heard that the Spyder Express series are not really meant for dual monitors setup, but I heard there are work arounds for that. Any experience with that on a Mac? Also, if I have to, I can also get a copy of ColorEyes Display Pro from a friend - which can then be used with any member of the Spyder series (which I heard are actually the same hardware but comes with different software).
    • I heard something about these calibrator "expiring". I know that the calibrated profiles will "expire" and needs to be recalibrated every once a while, but the performance of the hardware itself degrade overtime?
     
  2. rkdiddy macrumors 65816

    rkdiddy

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Location:
    OC Baby!
    #2
    To be honest, you should try the color profile editor built into your Mac. It allows you to create a profile for each monitor.

    I purchased a Spyder3Pro thinking it would be a silver bullet to color match my dual monitors and I was disappointed to find I could do the same job with my eyes. I ended up taking it back to Frys. :rolleyes:

    If I were you, I would try with doing it manually and then go from there.

    Edit: Keep in mind depending on your MBP (glossy or matte) and the fact your MBP is most likely LED backlit and your monitor is not, you will notice a difference in color.
     
  3. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #3
    Thanks :) My previous experience is that it's extremely difficult to tune it using the built-in calibrator, but I guess I'll wait for my monitor to arrive and then give it a try.

    Meanwhile, I'd appreciate any other recommendations.
     
  4. cavemonkey50 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2007
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    #4
    I have a Spyder2Express and have used it on numerous computers since the purchase (MacBook Pro, Mac Mini, Windows machines, etc.). I absolutely love it. It always generates a great profile, and does substantially better than trying to manually create one.
     
  5. = bluntman = macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #5
    I have a Spyder3 Pro that I have used on my Dell 20" monitor and on LED Cinema Display (I haven't used it on my MBP).

    They recommend recalibrating your monitor every so often hence a reminder will pop up every so often (default is every two weeks). You can always change its frequency, I have it set to monthly. I also have it on a nearby shelf sampling the ambient lighting while I am working.
     
  6. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #6
    I'm using an Eye-One Display 2. But I only have a single monitor, and I'm not sure of how easy it works with mulitple displays. I recall reading it's capable of it though.
     
  7. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #7
    Thanks for the input :) I think I am leaning toward the S2Expres! And again, any words on the "expiring" part? I suppose it's just the calibrated profile that will expire, not the hardware?
     
  8. chiefroastbeef macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas/ Hong Kong
    #8
    It is not an expiration, simply put, they recommend you to recalibrate your monitor every so often because the brightness of your monitor will lessen over time, thus a recalibration will be benefited.

    You should be very happy with the spyder express 2, I have the spyder pro 3 and love it. Whatever you do, DO NOT get the Hueys, I bought one, it left a pinkish tint to anything white, exchanged for another one and the same thing happened. It is sitting in my drawer because I bought it in Hong Kong and it does not allow for refunds... :(
     
  9. GoKyu macrumors 65816

    GoKyu

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2007
    Location:
    New Orleans
    #9
    Please do NOT use the built in method - it relies on using your eyes to do the calibration, and the hardware method is MUCH more accurate.

    I really liked the Spyder2, but then I got an i1 Display 2 (X-Rite) on sale somewhere...think I paid around $115 for it, maybe.

    It's a great device, and much more accurate than my Spyder was.
     
  10. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #10
    Wow THAT's cheap!
     
  11. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #11
    So I am correct in that the hardware itself shouldn't "expire"? i.e. its accuracy shouldn't degrade "dramatically" over time?
     
  12. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #12
    cavemonkey have you tried using it on a dual monitor setup? :)
     
  13. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #13
    The hardware doesn't "expire". The profiles are intended to be updated on some time period, and the software I'm familiar with, even allows the user to select the interval (number of weeks for example).

    This is a result of the "aging" of the display, specifically the back lighting. As a CCFL tube ages, it has a variance in output. By re-doing the calibration over time, it keeps the monitor's output consistent as the fluorescent tube ages (luminosity changes over time for a given voltage).

    WOW! What a deal. :) I paid $200USD for mine (free shipping- love those... :D), and thought that was a bargain (cheapest I could find it at the time). :eek: :D
     
  14. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #14
    It seems that the eye-one is generally considered superior to the spyder series. I am wondering if anyone has any experience with their "lite" version? For similar price, should I get a lightly used spyder3pro or an i1 lite (LT)? Seems that the spyder would be a better buy? (wondering if the lite is the same hardware as the regular eye-one)

    Update: the i1 LT and i1 display 2 are the same hardware.
     
  15. cavemonkey50 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2007
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    #15
    Yeah, two of my friends borrowed it to calibrate their dual monitor setups. The monitors looked perfectly calibrated together once done. Both of their dual monitor setups used different brand monitors, so I was surprised at how well it worked.
     
  16. godfreyhk thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #16
    Thanks guys! I ended up getting a Spyder3Pro from ebay :)
     

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