General Question

pixelkid74's avatar

What is the best way to calibrate your monitor for a web designer?

Asked by pixelkid74 (22points) October 28th, 2010

I have a Macbook Pro that I use as my main computer but also connect it to a 22.5 inch LG widescreen monitor as well. I notice that the colors on the LG always seem to come off a lot different than on my MacBook Pro. I have tried to go through the monitor calibration multiple times and still seems off. Just thought I could get some feedback on some good solutions or what has worked well for others. Thanks!

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6 Answers

anartist's avatar

I’m struggling with this one too.
This page has some advice.

fireside's avatar

Though distracting, I actually don’t see this as a big issue for a web designer because it ill help you to keep in mind that every person’s browsing experience will differ slightly. It is best to not get hung up on the exact color when designing for the web and to instead focus on overall user experience.

If you were a print designer, then I could see this as a bigger issue. I have used the Gamma correction settings in Photoshop before and had some success. You would just want to calibrate each monitor separately to give you the most consistent appearance.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

I use one of these. They make two different models, one for photographers, and one for designers. It’s the same unit, just different software.

I would get the photographer unit, even if I were a designer (I’m both). Why? Well because the only color critical work that a designer must be concerned about is pantone, and that can be dialed in manually, without worrying about what your monitor looks like.

But this issue is not nearly as important as it once was. Most printers are recalibrating themselves to sRGB color General North American CMYK colorsets. If you use a decent printing service, they should be able to provide you with their specific CMYK conversion profiles. Then you won’t have to worry about it. Just use your standard out of the box monitor color and go with it. But if you’re doing your own desktop printing, proofing to client, then you definitely want to invest in a decent calibration solution/workflow. WARNING!!! These things are great time stealers and can be very tedious… Takes about 45 minutes to calibrate one printer/monitor combo… I have six. Some shops do it twice a day. I do it once a week and see no changes.

Silence04's avatar

I am a print and packaging designer and swear by the Xrite kit, though it is pricey.

For web design, you could get any basic monitor calibrator. Such as pantone huey or spider.

But be aware, with a cheap display, calibration may not help much.

squirbel's avatar

Honestly – I see the view where a web designer must calibrate his/her monitor as technical at best, but not the least bit practical. When each person visiting the website is going to see the colors in so many different ways – it can be frustrating to the perfectionistic designer. Infuriatingly so.

Source – Web design business from 99–2007. Honestly quit the business because I don’t believe it turns a good profit anymore.

But if you are still set on calibrating, read this. More than just the monitor needs to be calibrated: link

pixelkid74's avatar

Thanks everyone. These are some great responses. For the most part, the prob was with lighter colors that could go either way. Maybe it looks a light tan on one screen but then almost salmon on another. It was stuff like that that was driving me nuts. Fireside, good point about doing it in Photoshop. I’ll give that a whirl and check out the rest of these too.

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