by Mike McNamee Published 01/02/2010
Our quest to find an LCD monitor that accurately portrays what you see in a print continued for this issue. We have been continually frustrated by an inability to match apparently flawless statistics for monitors, prints and (now) viewing booths and finding that we do not have cross-device visual matching.
A couple of things have changed since we last looked at a monitor (which was the NEC SpectraView Reference 2690 in June 2009). With testing and making prints with the GMG ColorProof (see review this issue) we have a body of contract proof quality prints that are certified correct and cross-checked against other spectros and other organisations. In addition X-Rite have updated their monitor calibration software and provided a validation routine. We have also purchased BabelColor software and this too has a number of additional measuring features for us to exploit. Significantly BabelColor also allowed us to validate our viewing booth to ISO 3664 standards (see call-out opposite).
In theory then we should be well placed to make critical comparisons. Practical experience teaches that this remains difficult and we confirmed this by the end of our testing.
The subject monitor was kindly made available by Societies' member, Paul Atkins. He had taken delivery of the latest offering from Eizo, the ColorEdge CG243W and so we lost little time in driving over to take a look at it. This is a 5-star rated monitor in the Colour Confidence line-up, one of only seven which achieve that rating. It is competitively priced at £1,039 ex VAT. At the other end of the scale, Colour Confidence can supply the CG 232W for a mere £9,129 (oh - we'll have two then!).
The CG 243W comes with Color Navigator software, which includes its own validation software. The USB port on the side bezel of the monitor will accept most of the important profiling specros and colorimeters (ColorMunki, Eye-One, DTP94, DTP94B, and MonacoOPTIX from X-Rite, Spyder2 and Spyder 3 from DataColor, and EIZO's bundled EX1 sensor with the EIZO EasyPIX colour matching too). As you would expect with a monitor of this class it also comes with a hood. It has a native resolution of 1920x1200 pixels, three input ports and may be swivelled into portrait orientation.
We profiled the monitor at 80, 100 and 120 cd/m2 using ColorNavigator. The data obtained were as follows:
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