Understanding Colour Calibration

The club owns colour calibrator that members can borrow to calibrate their monitors for a nominal charge.  Speak to Cat if you would like to use it.

Why Calibrate?

It’s important to calibrate your monitor so that the colours you see on screen are the same as you will see when your PDI is projected at the club.

There will always be a difference between the image on a laptop screen or monitor and on a projector. This is because the laptop screen/monitor is back-lit whereas the projector screen is reflecting light. So be aware that some images look better on a monitor than they do projected, and vice versa. The aim of calibration is to make the colours as close as possible between the two formats.

We advise judges not to view the images on the club’s laptop during a projected competition as the colour, brightness and contrast in the image are calibrated to the projector rather than the laptop.

Hints and Tips

Warm-Up Time: Always let your monitor warm up for at least 30min before using the calibrator.

Ambient Light: The light levels in the room will alter the light that is being reflected in your monitor, along with any strong colours in the room so be careful if you are trying to calibrate in a room with bright red walls! The Spyder has advice on ambient light in it’s help section.

Notification: It’s probably best to select “never” when the Spyder asks if it should notify you when you should re-calibrate your monitor, otherwise you’ll get annoying messages on screen to remind you when to re-caibrate everytime you start up your computer. It’s a good feature when you own the Spyder yourself, but not when you’ve borrowed it from the club!

Useful Links

Booksmart Studio has a guide to colour management:

Northlight Images has a number of articles on colour management:

If you use Blurb to self-publish you’ll want to take a look at their guide to colour management:

SD Services offer calibration and colour management services:

Photo Friday have a useful monitor calibration tool on their website: