X- rite Color­munki Dis­play

Cal­i­bra­tion for dis­plays and pro­jec­tors / Sim­ple to use set- up / For PC & Mac

Digital SLR Photography - - Gear - Test: DANIEL LEZANO

Price: £ 119 Web­site: www. xpdis­tri­bu­tion. com

HAVE YOU EVER com­pared the colours of your on- screen dig­i­tal files with prints, or on other screens, and noted a big dif­fer­ence? If so, it's pos­si­ble that your mon­i­tor( s) need to be cal­i­brated for more ac­cu­rate colours. While this sounds tech­ni­cal, it doesn't have to be.

While there are sev­eral cal­i­bra­tion kits of­fer­ing ex­ten­sive op­tions that cal­i­brate from screen through to prin­ter, there are also some sim­pler yet so­phis­ti­cated mod­els that make the whole process much eas­ier.

The X- Rite Color­munki Dis­play is one such de­vice and is de­signed for pho­tog­ra­phers want­ing a fast yet ac­cu­rate cal­i­bra­tion set- up that doesn't re­quire prior ex­pe­ri­ence or ex­per­tise. Sup­plied with the col­orime­ter is a quick start guide, USB ca­ble and a soft­ware disc ( in­stall it and when prompted, up­date it to the lat­est ver­sion). Fol­low­ing the in­struc­tions is a breeze – once the soft­ware's in­stalled the de­vice is con­nected to your com­puter via the USB lead and then mounted on the cen­tral part of the mon­i­tor, be­fore the cal­i­bra­tion process is started. You can choose be­tween Easy and Ad­vanced modes, with easy- to­fol­low wiz­ards help­ing you with each stage. The process takes less than ten min­utes, so you don't have to wait long, and once fin­ished you can flick be­tween the new and old profi pro­file le to com­pare the changes.

The Color­munki has a strong range of fea­tures avail­able, such as the Ad­vanced set- up be­ing able to mea­sure the level of am­bi­ent light and also flare when cal­i­brated, al­low­ing it to op­ti­mise your dis­play's cal­i­bra­tion to suit your work­ing con­di­tions. To be hon­est, I'm not sure I'd opt to use these lat­ter fea­tures as they add a de­gree of vari­a­tion to the set- up and in truth, I found the re­sults of the Easy cal­i­bra­tion to be ex­cel­lent. The changes are no­tice­able across the colour gamut but with the ma­jor­ity of my im­ages be­ing por­traits, the changes in skin tones stood out clearly. Along with cal­i­brat­ing mon­i­tors, it can also be used with dig­i­tal pro­jec­tors too, which will add its ap­peal to por­trait and wed­ding pho­tog­ra­phers as well as cam­era club pho­tog­ra­phers.

The soft­ware has a fea­ture that also re­minds you to re- pro­file ev­ery so of­ten, which is es­sen­tial to en­sure any shift in the mon­i­tor's colour dis­play is cor­rected.

Over­all, I didn't come across any prob­lems with the in­stal­la­tion or per­for­mance of the Color­munki de­vice and its soft­ware; it has cer­tainly lived up to its claims . I have no hes­i­ta­tion in rec­om­mend­ing this cal­i­bra­tion sys­tem to en­thu­si­ast and pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­phers alike; it's ideal if you're look­ing for a sim­ple, fast, af­ford­able – and most im­por­tantly – ac­cu­rate cal­i­bra­tion.

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