8 Replies Latest reply on Nov 17, 2009 9:47 AM by Harm Millaard

    Computer Monitor calibration

    Cris is Bliss Level 1

      Hello All,

      Since I'm now seriously doing Pre Pro and AE I think its time to get over the uncertainty of how to calibrate.   The only thing that I have to judge the color of my work is my computer screens and the tv when I burn a DVD.


      So Im looking for any advice when calibrating.  I use an Apple display monitor and an older HP 72 monitor for my second screen.


      When in the system preferences display controls, I was wondering does choosing any particular resolution makes for a better or more accurate display of the video on the monitor.


      My Systerm Preferences Color Display has 5 Display Profiles including the one that I created with the Calibrator Assistant: (1)  Cinema HD (what I created after using the Cailibrator Assistant);    (2)  Adobe RGB (1998);   (3)  Generic RGB Profile;   (4)  HP D8904CN21 (my second monitor); and (5) sRGB IEC61966-2.1


      Which should I use???

        • 2. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
          Jim_Simon Level 8

          Which should I use???


          None of the above.  Hook up a real TV for proper QC.  Get a professional, studio grade monitor.  If you can't do that, get the best consumer set you can afford and have it professionally calibrated by an ISF technician.  If you can't do that, use a calibration DVD to do it yourself.  If you can't do that, hire someone else to do the work for you who can properly monitor.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 3. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
            Cris is Bliss Level 1

            thank you for that information.

            • 4. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
              Cris is Bliss Level 1

              A professional monitor is something that I would like to have in the future.  Thank you for the information

              • 5. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
                KaiserBoy Level 1



                JSS's advice does not apply to many users of video editing software -- that is, the non-commercial scores of users who simply use their PC to edit (of which I am one).  As well, in the very rigor of the description ("professional", etc...), the majority of TVs across the world do not fit anyway.  So, though it is nice to have some standard from which to create and co-edit among pro users with commercial and art-based markets, it is unrealistic to think that the material will be viewed with any standard of color reproduction.


                So, Harm's advice is actually quite relevant to the majority of home and small-business editors who do not make videos under strict "pro" conditions or for whom the videos are intended to be viewed on PCs.


                Quite often here I seem to notice advice which contrives some high-level "pro-only" feeling about "proper" use of this software.  My feeling is that it is for anyone who can get their cilps into it and have creative fun with it.  Your question is a common, easy-to-answer one which can lead you to very nice colors in your PC monitor -- colors that are reasonably standardized among users and which will suffice without you buying a TV set to feel that you are looking at the true product "better".


                I have a PC-based system, and I use the nice products from Pantone, such as the Spyder line and supporting software. The device that Harm linked for you is the same kind of thing. You will find this type of monitor calibration to be quite sufficient.  It will create proper profiles for assignment to your monitor.  The ones you mentioned are not monitor calibration profiles, but profiles that the system uses to calibrate files and devices in the system.  We Photoshop users apply these profiles with a bit more interaction than the typical movie-making hobbyist.


                Google "monitor callibration" and you'll find the Spyder products and other things.  The simplist level of "calibration" can be done without hardware, with the user just looking at the colors and making changes to level and RGB sliders.  The more accurate systems, like Spyder products, use a sensor instead of your eyes and do a more consistent, accurate job.


                No need for a TV in many situations!  Just get your monitor right, as you intended to do in the first place.

                • 6. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
                  Jim_Simon Level 8
                  My feeling is that it is for anyone who can get their cilps into it and have creative fun with it.


                  The irony is that a good many of the users who don't take my advice on monitoring will also fail your test.

                  • 7. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
                    Cris is Bliss Level 1

                    Thank you for the Plain English advice.  I went to the site that Harm had recommended but was thrown off by the hi tech talk and words like "the calibrator's tool".   Im not a calibrator, I'm barely an editor,   and then looking at the items/prices in their store further scared me.  But your reply was really down to earth and made since.

                    • 8. Re: Computer Monitor calibration
                      Harm Millaard Level 7



                      I admit these tools are pretty expensive, but a professional monitor is way more expensive, for instance the Sony PVM-L2300 or even the JVC DT-V 24 L3D. What would be an ideal solution, since you generally use such a tool only once in a certain time is either to find an expert where you can rent one for a day, or get some people together who jointly buy such a tool and share the cost.