Calibrating a Projector

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Today’s Question: Our club has a good quality digital projector but some people are not always happy with how their images look when projected. Would it make a substantial difference if we took the extra step of calibrating it or will we always see a difference between the projected image and the display on a calibrated monitor?

Tim’s Answer: Calibrating and profiling your digital projector will indeed have a tremendous impact on the accuracy and consistency of the display of projected images.

Put simply, if all club members calibrate the monitor display they use for reviewing and optimizing their photos, and you calibrate the projector being used to display the images at your club meetings, you can expect a very good match between what the photographer created on their own computer and what is being displayed by your projector.

The key is to make sure everyone is calibrating to the same target values. For example, you could specify that everyone should calibrate to a color target of 6500 Kelvin and luminance of 100 candelas per square meter (cd/m2). If everyone uses the same values, you will achieve a high degree of consistency across multiple displays.

To actually calibrate the digital projector, you’ll need a monitor calibration package that supports digital projectors as well as standard displays. One such package that works very well is the X-Rite ColorMunki Display package, which you can find here:

http://timgrey.me/colormunkidisplay