Computer monitor calibration? : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I just purchased a new monitor to help in my rpoduction/darkroom work leading to digital/lightjet prints. I would appreciate any advice concerning the calibration of the monitor. Is using a Shirley print witht he monitor and Adobe Gamma settings just as effective as using very expensive software?

Thanks- Jon

-- Jon Paul (, April 09, 2002


Includes a link to several outstanding papers by Pete Andrews, a frequent contributor to this forum. These will get you started. THAN

-- David Stein (, April 09, 2002.

GammThe Adobe gamma is a good tool, and among the monitor sensor+ software packages the $600.00 Macbeth/Gretag Eye1 appears to be the best of the under $1,000 packages ,but from my extensive research into the subject you will be better off learning to go by the numbers. Now if you are the one makingthe lightjet prints it might be worth yourwhile to get an entire profile creating/ reoutput reading set as you'll have a closed loop (scanner/monitor/output device).

Frankly the whole area is a little daunting.

-- Ellis Vener Photography (, April 09, 2002.

Get Monaco EZ Color - calibrates your monitor, scanner and printer all to one standard using standard IT8 targets.

-- Matt O. (, April 10, 2002.

Colorvision Photocal or Optical and the RGB Spyder is a great solution for monitor calibration. ( The results are excellent.

Go here: ( to download some great info on color management. Using a scanned print and comparing the original to its image on your monitor is better than nothing, but not near as good as a proper color management system. You do need tools to do this.

A color management system using your printer's profile, your system color space, and a profile for your monitor, will give consistent color results when its all set up and maintained.

-- Henry Ambrose (, April 10, 2002.

Thanks for the endorsement David.
FWIW, here are a few more things that aren't covered in any depth on the website.

Adobe Gamma is OK to use as the software for adjusting Gamma, but you shouldn't follow Adobe's directions for setting up your monitor. In particular, the black level will be wrong if you follow the instructions in Adobe Gamma. The separation between the black and dark grey squares needs to be distinct, not 'just visible', as Adobe states. If you do as adobe suggest, the black level (monitor brightness control) is set too low, and you won't be able to see anything below a pixel value of ~ 20. (I used a photometer to track and set the gamma curve exactly on several monitors, and this invariably gave a much higher black level than following Adopey's instructions)
The Colour temperature you arrive at by Adobe's method of setting it in the dark is likely to be miles off, as well. Far better to have some natural daylight (slightly overcast, noon & north facing, if possible) falling on a sheet of white paper as a comparator for your eyes, against the white of your monitor screen. Though you obviously shouldn't have bright daylight permanently flooding your monitor work area.
I find a 100W daylight simulation lightbulb over my working area gives the right brightness and quality of light so that my eyes don't get 'colour fatigue' from the monitor too easily.
That's about as far as you can go, using your eyes and low-tech methods alone to set up your monitor, but I've found that provided the monitor is in good order, your eyes can get pretty close to what any gadget-assisted adjustment gives you.

-- Pete Andrews (, April 10, 2002.

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