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calibrating a screen for web-only?

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  • calibrating a screen for web-only?

    I've searched the forum trying to answer this, and have also googled for information, but I haven't been able to answer the question specifically.

    I want to know that my screen is giving an accurate representation of color, for websites. Print isn't a factor at all for me, and it seems almost all the articles I turned up related to calibrating your screen for accurate prints.

    Am I correct in thinking that another purpose of a calibrated screen is so that any graphics I create on my system will appear identical on another (calibrated) system?

    I've spent a while with various on-screen color charts trying to get the gamma & brightness adjusted by eye, but I haven't achieved a satisfactory result. I'm looking at one of the lower-end calibration systems (pantone huey) as it seems that'd take the guesswork out of it, but I want to check that I understand the purpose of calibration before I buy anything.

    As I start to take on more serious projects, I'd like to know I've got the color correct from the start. Thank you for any help.

  • #2
    How are you going to calibrate someone else's monitor? Or more specifically the many someones who will be accessing your clients' websites?

    The web is a very unstable medium to be worried too horribly much about color control...especially when you have no real control. It may be important to communicate with your client that yes their corporate colors are accurately represented within the confines of ability of the medium to reproduce them.
    Last edited by PrintDriver; 05-28-2007, 08:26 PM.


    • #3
      What PrintDriver says is true, you won't be able to pin color down precisely for the web, however, you can get closer by making sure any graphics you work on in Photoshop are in the sRGB color space, which is the color space most browsers default to. In Photoshop, edit your color settings (if necessary) to make sRGB the default color space. You can also change your Photoshop preview to preview in Windows mode, which many of your end users will be viewing your website through. Typically, the difference between Windows and Macintosh previews makes the graphics much darker when viewed in Windows.
      "Lucy, you got some 'splainin' to do!" - Ricky Ricardo


      • #4
        Thanks for the replies

        Printdriver - That's essentially my question about calibration - if two different computers have been calibrated, does that mean they will both display any specific color the same, to an industry standard? The scenario I'm concerned about would be this:
        - I design a site in which the colors look good to me on my screen (not calibrated)
        - I (or someone else) view(s) it on a different system, which has been calibrated, and it looks washed-out, dark, or has a tint to it.

        It's acceptable and seems unavoidable to me that the colors will look different than intended on the majority of site visitors' screens, but I'd like to know that in a best case scenario, it will look as intended. This kind of hinges on whether I actually understand what calibration is/does however.

        I don't understand the difference between calibration and profiling either, any information on that would be much appreciated.

        Urstwile, thanks for the tip!
        Last edited by wolfestone; 05-29-2007, 09:14 AM.


        • #5
          Just to clarify a bit: you can pretty much throw all thoughts of calibration and profiles out the window when working with the majority of web browsers, as they work with the sRGB standard I mentioned. Depending on the end user, your site is going to look one way or another, color-wise, when viewed on different monitors, using different web browsers, etc.

          Your best bet is to try to look at your web work on a variety of different monitors, lighting situations, etc. It's not like print work, you can't predict how far up or down on the brightness/contrast button your end user has pushed. And Mac screens will tend to be a lighter gamma to Windows screens.

          There are just too many variables for you to predict what things will look like, so any type of color assurance is pretty much out of the question. Which is why you need to view your web work through a variety of browsers on a variety of platforms. Working in Photoshop with the sRGB as a start will get you closer, however, from what I've read.
          "Lucy, you got some 'splainin' to do!" - Ricky Ricardo


          • #6
            Thank you, sounds then like if I just check the progress periodically on a variety of systems that'll be good enough. I appreciate the advice.






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