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Photography Question 
Tara R. Swartzendruber

Help! Monitor Calibration Question

OK, I just calibrated my monitor for the first time (using Spyder3Pro), and it's so dark I feel like I'm going to get real eye strain! Is this normal? It's driving me crazy!

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11/11/2009 10:03:23 AM

Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
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  Hi Tara,
The first thing to consider is that when you calibrate, make sure the lighting in the room is the same as any other time you are using the computer. If I open a window or change the ambient lighting in my room, I re-calibrate my monitor.
Follow the Spyder3 guide to adjust your monitor settings as recommended. Brightness levels may need adjusting as well.
I keep my room pretty dark, and it stays this way as it is easier for me to see the monitor.
Hope this helps!

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11/11/2009 12:27:06 PM

Tara R. Swartzendruber   yeah, spyder actually didn't like the room lighting too well. I have a big window beside me that I tried to hang a neutral colored sheet over, but I'll have to get some blinds for it. I guess I'm used to things being a lot brighter so I feel like I'm straining. Maybe I need to get my eyes checked.... it just feels so dark!

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11/11/2009 1:23:37 PM

Mick Burkey
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/19/2005
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  I agree with you, Tara, that things look darker after calibrating than before. But, two things about this:

1. Most monitor makers set the monitor to be bright because the average person likes it that way.

2. But for photographers the best test of your calibration is to compaire it against a good quality print job. That's really what we are all trying to get to anyway. When I first calibrated my monitor I was amazed how off my uncalibrated monitor was to a good print. Now all matches.

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11/19/2009 10:03:18 AM

Carolyn M. DAlessandro
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/10/2005
  I found that for me calibrating my monitor works best when I do it in the evening without ambient light.Calibrating in darkness gives the best reading . Then run a test print and see if that works.I hope this helps.

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11/20/2009 5:23:24 PM

Donald R. Curry
BetterPhoto Member Since: 3/2/2006
  You can have several calibration settings by calibrating at different times and use the applicable setting based on the light. I have settings for night, cloudy day and bright day. Although, I prefer working on photos at night, the light is more consistent.

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11/24/2009 6:37:09 PM

Tara R. Swartzendruber   Thanks. This helps. I'm getting used to a darker screen and will continue to learn about the calibration....

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11/24/2009 7:39:47 PM

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