Customer Review

101 of 108 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good value for amateurs, but beware the software, December 16, 2009
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This review is from: X-Rite CMUNPH ColorMunki Photo (Camera)
(written after two months of use)

PROS:

* Probably the most reasonably priced spectrophotometer on the market. Colorimeters are cheaper, but inferior.

* Extremely versatile in its ability to profile screens, projectors, printers and measure ambient light intensity in a single piece of hardware.

* Color profiles produced are very accurate, even profiles I've made for one printer using aftermarket inks significantly different from OEM in gamut and intensity.

CONS:

* Design of hardware is stylish, but at the expense of being practical. Rotating wheel can be difficult to turn and it is very easy to depress the button unintentionally.

* Software too simplistic and not likely to change. There are no true advanced options. The only "advanced" mode exists in monitor profiles, where it will measure ambient light and adjust display intensity accordingly, in addition to the color profiling.

I have a case where my printed photo profiles, while accurate, are too dark for intended viewing conditions. There is no way to tell the software to use a different tonal curve or tweak anything else, such as ink density, when the profile is made. As a result, I have to manually adjust every one of these images in photoshop before printing, which is a huge hassle. Even after lightening in ps, sometimes images are still too dark.

Note that this problem I have seems to vary with media type. Some media profiles do not exhibit this problem at all; it appears to be most pronounced in coated glossy photo paper.

I also fear X-Rite will never make the ColorMunki compatible with any of their more advanced software to prevent competition with their more expensive hardware. After all, why would all but the most serious photographers spend 3x + more on the next step up profiling hardware for a small incremental improvement in the hardware itself?

* Printer profiles can only be made on 8.5 x 11 or larger media due to the way it prints swatches for measurement. If you have smaller media, such as 4x6, you need to purchase larger of the exact same paper to get an accurate profile. Unfortunately, with media such as CDs, you're out of luck. X-Rite should make media profiling more flexible in this regard.

* Printer profiles have to be created one at a time, and the software cannot be closed during the process. The printer profile process works as follows: you print the initial set of swatches (will always be the same for any media or printer), give sufficient drying time, read the swatches with the ColorMunki, print a second set of swatches automatically generated and based on the results of the first scan (these swatches will vary depending on media, etc. and can have slight variations even using the same media, printer and initial swatch printing), allow sufficient dry time for the second set then finally read this second set with the ColorMunki. The problem is if you are using media with very long dry times (or wish to provide long dry times) or need to profile many different types of media. The initial set of swatches can all be printed in advance, with appropriate dry times given, but once the second set has been printed, closing the application will require you re-print the second set; your progress cannot be saved and resumed later.

I suspect this was an intentional software design to prevent using this device for remote profiling, although anyone providing such services should be using high-end, professionally calibrated equipment.

* A minor quibble, but the zipper on the cloth zippered case with the counterweight broke two weeks after purchase. Since the case is somewhat necessary for monitor profiling (you can hold the device up to the screen, but must be careful not to press it on an LCD display). The case should have a more durable design, such as Velcro flaps for the enclosure and riveted hooks to attach the counterweight, rather than the (now broken) zipper.
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Comments

Tracked by 1 customer

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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 19, 2012 5:20:22 PM PDT
Steve says:
I had no trouble printing the test swatches on 8 x 10" paper. I understand what you're saying, though, about paper smaller than that and CD's.

Posted on Jan 27, 2014 5:04:13 PM PST
michael venz says:
At the same price point a colorimeter can be expected to be better than a spectrophotometer, it cant calibrate a printer though.
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