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Datacolor SpyderX Pro – Monitor Calibration $169.99

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  • Mar 25th, 2020 7:37 pm
[OP]
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Jun 15, 2019
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[Amazon.ca] Datacolor SpyderX Pro – Monitor Calibration $169.99

Entering the field of monitor calibration myself, but still thought I'd share the opportunity. Price - almost Black Friday low.

You have the Pro and the Elite monikers. As far as my google-fu could take me, Elite is for when you also have a projector you want to calibrate. Dunno if I even need this thing, may be making a mistake, but hell, I spend so much time in front of the screen that I may as well spruce it up.

This doodad should remain functional for a decade, since you don't need to use it often. One previous case of loss of support I was able to find on the internet was some old model becoming useless cause it was from winXP times.
Last edited by Mars2012 on Mar 9th, 2020 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: added price to title
42 replies
Deal Addict
Nov 26, 2008
2579 posts
1070 upvotes
North York
Don't most monitors get settings for a proper profile posted on avsforums before long? It's a neat tool but why do people buy them when those that have them do the work for everyone anyways?
Member
Nov 23, 2014
459 posts
400 upvotes
Kelowna, BC
quazy wrote: Don't most monitors get settings for a proper profile posted on avsforums before long? It's a neat tool but why do people buy them when those that have them do the work for everyone anyways?
While the AVS data is better than not calibrating most of the time, pros and enthusiasts can see the difference.
Member
Nov 23, 2014
459 posts
400 upvotes
Kelowna, BC
Hot — thanks op. On the fence about getting a higher end model to add to my list of side gig services.
Member
Apr 13, 2010
250 posts
449 upvotes
Your points are valid, but $160 seems high to me. If you get one supported by Argyll on Linux, you'll basically be able to use it forever on any device, as long as you can output to it from any old laptop with Linux on it. You can then transfer the profiles you generate to a Windows system if the device isn't directly supported anymore with an updated Windows driver.

Here's a list of supported devices:
https://displaycal.net/#instruments

I got a Huey Pro new from eBay for about $100 in 2011, it still works now. For poorly calibrated old laptop screens, a colorimeter can make a night and day difference, and I think it's worth having one around for sure, but you might be able to get away with getting a Huey from eBay for $40 now instead of $160 for whatever the latest model is. The prices are that high now surely because of consolidation and monopoly rent-seeking, and not because it really costs that much to make them.
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Feb 16, 2006
4775 posts
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Vancouver
quazy wrote: Don't most monitors get settings for a proper profile posted on avsforums before long? It's a neat tool but why do people buy them when those that have them do the work for everyone anyways?
Because monitors, even the same model, can be a wee bit different.

Because monitors with a CCFL back light can age and the profile of a new unit will not be accurate with your 3 year old unit. Not many of these around anymore but some people still use an older one as a second or third monitor on their desktop in a multi-monitor array. A lot of Dell 2209WA's got sold thru RFD back in the day.

Because the guys posting the ICC profiles calibrated for specific brightness level different than you use and that can affect the response of the color controls.

When you run multiple monitors you want them as similar as possible. A big part of that is setting the brightness using the colorimeter.

Also, even with a single monitor, you want the brightness of the monitor "balanced" against the ambient light level of the room in which you edit images. Too bright a monitor vs the room and you tend to darken the image leading to dark prints. Too dark a monitor and you brighten the image. It's an issue involving perceptual peculiarities of the human eye which can be easily led astray. A colorimeter does not have a perceptual issue, it measures the monitor and measures the room.

If you do any photography at all where you post for public consumption and especially if you want to make prints, invest in one of these before you go out and get yourself a high end printer.

.
[OP]
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Jun 15, 2019
276 posts
470 upvotes
S1 wrote: Your points are valid, but $160 seems high to me. If you get one supported by Argyll on Linux, you'll basically be able to use it forever on any device, as long as you can output to it from any old laptop with Linux on it. You can then transfer the profiles you generate to a Windows system if the device isn't directly supported anymore with an updated Windows driver.

Here's a list of supported devices:
https://displaycal.net/#instruments

I got a Huey Pro new from eBay for about $100 in 2011, it still works now. For poorly calibrated old laptop screens, a colorimeter can make a night and day difference, and I think it's worth having one around for sure, but you might be able to get away with getting a Huey from eBay for $40 now instead of $160 for whatever the latest model is. The prices are that high now surely because of consolidation and monopoly rent-seeking, and not because it really costs that much to make them.
Well put! VM's FTW!
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Sep 19, 2017
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Yeah, this is a decent price (I paid $200 on the previous version back in dec 2017).

There is a significant difference between a calibrated monitor and what they ship from the factory... takes a while to get used to the tint of a calibrated monitor, but once you're used to it, a non calibrated monitor feels like it's going to burn your eyeballs out with it's tendency towards the blue spectrum.

The main benefit of calibration is for folks who want to do photo work and want what comes out on photo paper to be as close as possible to what you see on the screen.

As far as using on multiple devices goes.... you can save the profiles on any windows PC as a stand-alone profile that applies itself on boot.
Koodo 8GB UL T&T @ $45 (ported in from Public Mobile)
Newbie
Feb 9, 2020
69 posts
17 upvotes
Etobicoke
Thanks OP, just bought three new gaming monitors and they all look awful/different from each other. Nerved, tried to calibrate computer monitors before so I might look into this.

However, since this is a good amount of money assuming the product doesn't work as described, and it fulfilled by amazon. Will they accept refunds without question asked ? Sorry, if this might be off topic.
Deal Addict
Apr 24, 2017
1940 posts
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Waterloo, ON
Just buy it from a local store, use it, then return it. Why spend $200 on something that you'll realistically only use once.
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Dec 27, 2011
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Vancouver
I just want a buddy to buy one so i can borrow and use it lol
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Sicklyslick wrote: Just buy it from a local store, use it, then return it. Why spend $200 on something that you'll realistically only use once.
Then this isn't for you.

I'm a pro photog. I calibrate 3 monitors twice a year.
Let's hug it out
Member
Jun 7, 2013
330 posts
299 upvotes
Mascouche
NewsyL wrote: Because monitors, even the same model, can be a wee bit different.

Because monitors with a CCFL back light can age and the profile of a new unit will not be accurate with your 3 year old unit. Not many of these around anymore but some people still use an older one as a second or third monitor on their desktop in a multi-monitor array. A lot of Dell 2209WA's got sold thru RFD back in the day.

Because the guys posting the ICC profiles calibrated for specific brightness level different than you use and that can affect the response of the color controls.

When you run multiple monitors you want them as similar as possible. A big part of that is setting the brightness using the colorimeter.

Also, even with a single monitor, you want the brightness of the monitor "balanced" against the ambient light level of the room in which you edit images. Too bright a monitor vs the room and you tend to darken the image leading to dark prints. Too dark a monitor and you brighten the image. It's an issue involving perceptual peculiarities of the human eye which can be easily led astray. A colorimeter does not have a perceptual issue, it measures the monitor and measures the room.

If you do any photography at all where you post for public consumption and especially if you want to make prints, invest in one of these before you go out and get yourself a high end printer.

.
THIS and additionally, all screens age over time, so professionals and enthusiasts want to keep their screens calibrates.-> color range, luminance, etc.

These tools can help as they measure the final display of the screens and can make adjustments on either preset color settings / standards or custom ones.

Regular / average users do not need these btw.
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Sep 19, 2017
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Koolfreak wrote: Can we calibrate a tv with this?
Not really. I suppose you could calibrate a laptop screen with it and then manually calibrate the TV screen to best approximate what you see on that screen, but no, it's not really designed for that.
Koodo 8GB UL T&T @ $45 (ported in from Public Mobile)
[OP]
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Jun 15, 2019
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Koolfreak wrote: Can we calibrate a tv with this?
Yes, if the TV is being used as a computer monitor.
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Dec 26, 2007
482 posts
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Vancouver
Not sure about this model, but in the past Datacolor Colorimeters were not as good as X-Rite Devices. If you can score an used I1pro on craigslist, it's probably a better deal at this price point.
Sr. Member
Dec 13, 2006
664 posts
607 upvotes
Vancouver
i bought a spider pro a long time ago when i was using crts for photography. THen i found another at thrift store for $5 in the box.. never ended up using it as i was told newer LEDs dont really require much for calibration.. i wonder if my old one still would benefit from using it..
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Sep 19, 2015
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Kleinburg, ON.
iHibachi wrote: Thanks OP, just bought three new gaming monitors and they all look awful/different from each other. Nerved, tried to calibrate computer monitors before so I might look into this.

However, since this is a good amount of money assuming the product doesn't work as described, and it fulfilled by amazon. Will they accept refunds without question asked ? Sorry, if this might be off topic.
I would not use this for gaming, if my budget is not high.

These devices are strictly for video/photo work, and in this particular model, for professional work.

Find a more basic device that does the same thing for half or 1/3 of the price if you're just gaming.

But, if you have $200 to spare, go ahead and get it.
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Apr 17, 2005
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Kitchener
Koolfreak wrote: Can we calibrate a tv with this?
For TV, you could try downloading video/image files for calibration, output the file on your TV, and then manually calibrating by sight. You might need to source some filters though.

I haven't done this in a long time because I'm lazy, but I'm sure you can find the necessary files on avsforum. For the filters, I think I have one from a calibration DVD from ages ago.
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