[Tfug] Color Calibration

John Gruenenfelder johng at as.arizona.edu
Fri Jan 30 22:32:29 MST 2009

Greetings all,

After 4-5 years with LG Flatron L1980U panel, I finally bit the bullet and
upgraded.  Considering how much time I spend looking at it, I decided to get
myself a nice screen and after reading many reviews I settled on a Dell
2408WFP (PVA panel, 1920x1200) and it's an amzing step up from the 6bit TN
panel in the LG.

The biggest issue so far has been calibrating the colors on the screen.  That
was the major negative in most of the reviews; the out-of-the-box color
settings are lousy, but can be made spot on with some tweaking.

Unfortunately, I don't have a colorimiter to do the job properly.  With some
Googling, I did find good RGB/etc. settings to use for the 2408WFP and it
looks pretty nice.  However, with the LG right next to it, the difference is
pretty clear.  I'd like to get the LG's colors closer (at least, as close as I
can with a 6bit panel) but I couldn't get any help with Google.

So I'd like some advice on maybe buying a colorimiter.  The key here, though,
is that I'd like something that will help me out in Linux as well.  I borrowed
a friend's "Huey" colorimiter, a fairly inexpensive thing.  But all it did was
adjust the Window's color profile.  I'd rather have something interactive
where I adjust the monitor controls and it gives feedback.  Then I'd know that
I should get decent color in X as well.

Of course, if there's a colorimiter that works natively in Linux, that would
be even better.

I'm looking for inexpensive, but still useful, if such a thing can be found.
I do some very minor/amateur photo editing, but nothing I really *need* a
calibrated screen for.  Rather, it's more that I can notice when colors are
way off and would prefer to have a screen look its best.  I paid for all those
colors... might as well get to see them.

--John Gruenenfelder    Systems Manager, MKS Imaging Technology, LLC.
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