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Advice on monitor color calibration

T. Duane Jones , Mar 08, 2006; 01:11 a.m.

I need advice on getting a close match between my monitor (Sony 19" CRT) and my prints, which are printed at Mpix. First, what is the best method to color calibrate the monitor? Mpix requests that images are uploaded in sRGB. I have loaded the Mpix ICC profile, for soft proofing. When I am correcting the images, should my working profile be sRGB, or the Mpix profile? The images on my monitor look good, but the prints seem to have a yellow cast to them. Last Saturday's wedding was in a room painted yellow, and it seems to be very overpowering in the prints. I would appreciate any advice you could offer.



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Alan Chan , Mar 08, 2006; 04:37 a.m.

You may find this link useful. To answer your question quickly, "sRGB" should be the working space within Photoshop. The Mpix ICC profile is for proofing [View/Proof Setup/Custom...], it is not a working space profile.

Alan Chan , Mar 08, 2006; 04:40 a.m.

And if you haven't done so, monitor calibration is important. Spyder 2, Eye-One Display 2 and Monaco Optix XR Pro are some of the most popular options.

Marc Williams , Mar 08, 2006; 05:25 a.m.

When you shooting in a colored room, and allow ambient light to dominate, it will effect the entire image.

If you are not getting prints that match the screen view using the Mpix profile, then your monitor and color space aren't standardized to the same spec's as Mpix.

I assume the Mpix profile is already sRGB. So, IMO, the working profile should be Mpix. You can check this by making sure the Mpix profile is selected under View > Proof Set-Up > Custom AND/OR Edit > Assign Profile ... and make sure the Mpix profile is the current color space.

When printing on your own printer, be sure to select "Let Photoshop Determine Colors" in the printer dialog box.

Jason Hinds - Columbus, OH , Mar 08, 2006; 07:25 a.m.

I haven't had anything printed yet, but I just got the Pantone Huey monitor calibrator yesterday, and I couldn't believe the difference it made on my monitor. I have a couple test prints that my lab gave me to use as a reference, and when I open the digital version on my PC and compare to the printed version they gave me, the colors are now spot-on. It also has a cool feature that automatically checks the ambient light in the room and adjusts the monitor accordingly.

Jennifer Stone - Nashua, NH , Mar 08, 2006; 08:52 a.m.

This is off topic, but I after looking at your sample image (great shot!) I was wondering what your strategy was for shooting in what looks like a very small room. Did you shoot from the back of the room the entire time? I find these types of venues difficult to shoot because I really want to be unobtrusive.

T. Duane Jones , Mar 08, 2006; 09:22 a.m.

Good morning, everyone,
I want to thank everyone for their help so far, and keep it coming. I know this topic is mundane for alot of folks, but at the moment it is confusing to me, so I sincerely appreciate your time & advice.
Alan: Thanks for the link to Dry Creek.
Marc: So, when I'm editing images for Mpix, I should be using the mpix profile? That looks like it would give me the most accurate colors.
Jason: Thanks for your experience with that.
Jennifer: Funny you should ask. The wedding venue is set up for approx. 50-60 guests in that room. They had almost 80 guests. The location I wanted was (of course) in the very back of the rooom... just me, my tripod and 80-200 AF-s. With the extra people, my spot was full. In the end, I shot from the center aisle, knelt down low. Not my choice of locations, but it worked. My goal is to remain unobtrusive as well, but my ultimate goal is to get the shots!
Have a great day!

another, color untouched to show the cast

T. Duane Jones , Mar 08, 2006; 10:29 a.m.

Should I buy the monitor & printer calibrater ($300 and up) or the monitor only (like the spyder 2) for around 100-200? Thanks

Bill Clark - Minnetonka Minnesota , Mar 08, 2006; 11:38 a.m.

What has helped me is information I garnered from a week long seminar I spent with Eddie Tapp. I found what he said and taught made sense, at least to me. Others can offer additional information or correct me if I have presented something with errors. Break the color management process apart. 3 Stages: Input - such as your camera or scanner. Process - work in Photoshop or some other program. Output - device such as printer, monitor, projector. The key is to establish consistency. In color management you need to establish a color working space, such as Prophoto RGM, RGB, sRGB. Then the devices need to be calibrated and profiled. Finally convert profile.

Here is a link to help with printer color management:

Printer Color Management

Here is another on ProPhoto RGB:

ProPhoto RGB Stuff

This is a real good site to learn a lot about photography. Check out other articles.

Luminous Landscape

Eddie Tapp on his web site has information on calibration devices.

Hope this helps you.

Alan Chan , Mar 08, 2006; 06:04 p.m.

>Should I buy the monitor & printer calibrater ($300 and up) or the monitor only (like the spyder 2) for around 100-200? Thanks

Just the monitor one (Spyder2) will do since you will let the labs do the printing.

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