I suppose the answer to this question depends on what you are doing.
I mean if you are a photographer who just posts the odd image on the web then maybe the answer is no as most of the time people will view your image on a smartphone or on a monitor that is also un-calibrated so you have no control over how the colours in your image may look to them.
If on the other hand you want print out your images or post them on a blog or website and have some control on how the colours will be seen (assuming the end viewer also has a calibrated monitor to) then calibrating your system is a must.
I have been calibrating my system for years using one of the original Datacolor Spyder express 2 which has served me well all this time but I recently managed to get hold of the new Spyder 5 to compare between the old and the new thanks to @digitalglueuk and datacolor.com
Firstly I was pleased with the size difference, the new Spyder 5 was a much neater compact unit that split open to reveal the sensor and the cover was then used as a counter weight over the top of the monitor.
Also after installing the software I was especially pleased to find that I was able to calibrate multiple monitors where as with my Spyder 2 I was limited to just the single monitor ( I use a 2 monitor set up ).
The sensor also monitors the ambient room light to optimally tune the screen to your environment.
Quite a few people ask me if calibrating your monitor is hard to do?
Well I have taken a few screen shots just to show you how easy it is as it is a step by step process that anyone can do .
The software guides you every step of the way…All you have to do is follow along and change a few monitor settings and you are done in a matter of minutes…You then save the new profile and the final screens will show you the before and after views …The best thing is if you have multiple computers when you calibrate each one you know that when you are editing/viewing the same picture on each computer you will get the same look and then when you save the image with the embedded profile and send it to the printer or out to a lab you know that the image will be reproduced pretty damn close to how it appeared on your screen (obviously it depends on the output device matching the colour gamut of the profile you used).
Since getting the new Spyder 5 I have printed loads of images and had a few done in a lab and the results have been perfect that’s not to say that my old Spyder 2 did not do the same but the ease of use and the newer software with the Spyder 5 made the whole process so much easier.
I cannot recommend this product highly enough, It is so easy to use with such huge benefits to a photographer that I personally think everyone should get one.
I have only ever used the Datacolor calibrators so I can’t speak of any others out there on the market but I imagine that they may be just as good/easy to use too but they would have to go a long way to beat this little gem.
Thanks for looking ….
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I also have a film only blog over at usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂
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