Tag Archives: monitors

Calibrating Your Monitors on the Cheap

Doc's Desktop

Graphic Designers, Photographers, Writers and Gamers all crave for the holy grail of computing; multiple monitors in their workspaces. Once you add that second monitor to your workflow it will be very hard for you not to have the luxury of bountiful screen real estate for all your applications and windows to the Web.

Lucky for us, you can buy a monitor or pair of monitors from your local blue box retailers for relatively cheap (around $200). I recently purchased a pair of LG E2350 Widescreen LED Flat-Panels from the “Buy More” for $239.00 each. These monitors are highly recommended all over the blogosphere and I can tell you first hand they are pretty incredible. The only knock you can give this class of LED/LCD monitors is our of the box they are not very consistent in regards to their color settings. I tried for hours to get the two monitors to match up on my Mac Pro and I could get them close but not perfect. I investigated getting a monitor calibration devices but didn’t want to dish out another $229 for a Datacolor Spyder3 Elite display calibrator.

I did a little research and found out my local Shutterbug shop rents out calibrators(actually colorimeters) for less than $20. The software is very easy to use and you can have your monitors matched up and displaying perfect color in minutes. I calibrated my Macbook Pro Unibody and every other machine I could find in the house. Make sure you save your calibrated settings in case you need to recall them later like after a hard drive change or Lion upgrade. Some of the display calibrators even work with calibrating a LED/LCD television as they are just giant iPhones… oh I mean computer monitors… that’s a whole different blog post.

Give your local photo rental shop a call and see if they rent out monitor calibrators. Once your monitor is all trued up you’ll thank your lucky stars you did it.

Quick Tip About Selecting Your Monitor(s)

Don’t get too caught up all the minutia of monitor specifications. They will confuse you and not make that big of a difference in everyday use. Buy your monitors from a dealer with a good return policy and do some real world testing in your very own workspace.