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Author Topic: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration  (Read 4744 times)

TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #20 on: April 07, 2022, 02:19:23 pm »

For many years high end displays like NEC PA and EIZO CG have image processors (called SpectraView Engine in case of NEC) and double 3DLUTs that are pedantically, factory calibrated with high end Konica-Minolta spectroradiometers and colorimeters (CS-2000, CA-310, CA-2500) worth well over 100k$, and have internal autocalibration sensors to maintain stability of displayed parameters. When you set target brightness, white point, contrast, TRC or gamut using OSD, NEC Multiprofiler or EIZO ColorNavigator, they achieve selected target in a second with higer accuracy than after calibration with external toy-colorimeter.

Apple did exactly the same (or similar) trick in Macbooks Pro XDR and Studio Displays. There's no need and no way to improve it using primitive vctg calibration and toy sensors.

Believe whatever you like for as long as you like and stay well and happy.

It will remain a fact that:

• Only thru calibrating a device under test will you get a calibration.
• Internal component stabilization — with or without a sensor — is not device calibration.
• Color signal processing is not device calibration.
• Configuration is not device calibration.
• It's useful for consumers to learn what terms actually mean to avoid being misled by marketing hype.
• Colorimeters are not cheap toys because they cost less than another device.
• Relatively inexpensive colorimeters are used every day by professionals in color critical environments as one component in their quality control measures.
• Colorimeters, like other types of measuring devices, have specific parameters for which they are designed and within which they perform well.
• Production environments require routine display calibration to maintain quality control and insure consistency.
• Production environments need to perform routine display calibrations regardless of how accurately the device was calibrated at the factory or how much the measuring instruments used in manufacturing cost.
• Production environments need to perform routine display calibrations even when using relatively stable devices because even well behaved and stable devices can become unstable or misbehave.
• Most people don't know or care anything about calibration of their display and there's no reason that they should.
• Some people outside of production environments want to calibrate their displays on occasion and there's no reason why they shouldn't do so.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2022, 01:49:22 am by TechTalk »
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Czornyj

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #21 on: April 07, 2022, 03:28:38 pm »

Believe whatever you like for as long as you like and stay well and happy.

It will remain a fact that:

• Only thru calibrating a device under test will you get a calibration.
• Internal component stabilization — with or without a sensor — is not device calibration.
• Color signal processing is not device calibration.
• Configuration is not device calibration.
• It's useful for consumers to learn what terms actually mean to avoid being mislead by marketing hype.
• Colorimeters are not cheap toys because they cost less than another device.
• Relatively inexpensive colorimeters are used every day by professionals in color critical environments as one component in their quality control measures.
• Colorimeters, like other types of measuring devices, have specific parameters for which they are designed and within which they perform well.
• Production environments require routine display calibration to maintain quality control and insure consistency.
• Production environments need to perform routine display calibrations regardless of how accurately the device was calibrated at the factory or how much the measuring instruments used in manufacturing cost.
• Production environments need to perform routine display calibrations even when using relatively stable devices because even well behaved and stable devices can become unstable or misbehave.
• Most people don't know or care anything about calibration of their display and there's no reason that they should.
• Some people outside of production environments want to calibrate their displays on occasion and there's no reason why they shouldn't do so.

Actually I believe in nothing.

I simply measured displays that I own - 2021 Macbook Pro 16 Retina XDR and NEC PA311D with my i1Display Pros, 5nm FWHM spectrometer, and draw obvious conclusions. Both displays work in production environment, match with each other as well as with prints from my Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-4000, imagePRESS C600i, FUJIFILM DX-100, standardised offset presses, and countless digital production presses, printers and minilabs I calibrate and profile for my customers. Contrary to most people I calibrate and profile s..t for a living.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2022, 03:38:11 pm by Czornyj »
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #22 on: April 07, 2022, 03:46:15 pm »

That is impressive! It doesn't change what the term calibration means or why it's performed, but it's impressive.

I wish you nothing but success in your professional endeavors.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2022, 04:23:50 pm by TechTalk »
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2022, 04:06:42 pm »

It's great that Apple has developed new displays that look really cool, are well calibrated at the factory, produce accurate color, and are generally quite stable. This is all to the benefit of consumers looking for those qualities. They will enjoy an excellent viewing experience from an impressive device with style.

Some content creators will also enjoy using the latest Apple displays. An Apple display might be the right choice for your content creation or it might not depending on what, where, how, and by whom or for whom the content is produced. Every user will have their own needs, desires, priorities, and preferences.

As good as the new Apple displays look and perform, they are still Apple products that carry with them Apple's reality distortion field marketing and Apple's design philosophy for their ecosystem which may limit or discourage some choices and options to end users. Longtime users of the Mac and other Apple products know that comes with the territory when buying into the system.

Buying into the system is fine. I bought into the Apple and Mac ecosystem decades ago. Like a lot of relationships, my Apple experience has at times been a love/hate affair and occasionally required going outside their system to meet my personal and professional needs—like with monitors for instance. I bought into the system capabilities but not the marketing of it.

One example that's illustrative and relevant to the topic at hand is Apple's introduction of the Pro Display XDR. During the announcement event, the presenter compared the Pro Display XDR to a Sony BVM-HX310 professional broadcast/cinema reference monitor costing several times the price. Now if you tilt your head at just the right angle and squint your eyes while looking at some specs and ignoring others, I guess you can get away with the comparison... or maybe not, if you really compare them in detail. Naturally, someone did just that...

https://www.youtube.com/Apple Pro Display XDR Review (vs Sony Reference Monitor)

In the end, all I'm suggesting is that buyers should be wary of hyperventilating comparisons, smoke and mirrors, and impressive sounding terminology and branding. Buy and compare with your eyes open for your own priorities and preferences. If that's Apple, great! If not, that's fine too! After you've decided what's right for your needs, enjoy your new device and ignore the noise online.
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #24 on: April 07, 2022, 07:14:44 pm »

For anyone looking for reliable information regarding calibration of displays and the measuring instruments used for that task, the concise white paper linked below is a very solid and informative introduction to the subject. Written by color scientist Karl Lang some years ago, it is well worth reading today. In just five illustrated pages, it covers the most important fundamental concepts of display calibration and measuring devices.

http://www.lumita.com/whitepapers/Display Calibration Devices: Methods, Accuracy, and Cost
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routlaw

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2022, 07:50:28 pm »

Resurrecting an older thread but this one caught my curiosity. Cutting to the chase for those of you have had experience with the Apple Studio Display can it effectively be used in a color critical environment such as proofing artwork, paintings etc. Its my understanding it only displays 86% of the Adobe RGB color space, which to my way of thinking is a mark against it.

For the last several years I have been using an NEC PA 271W monitor, but it is getting long in the tooth and I am starting to notice irregularities in brightness across the screen. From my understanding NEC/Sharp has discontinued these types of monitors which only leaves the Eizo Color Edge or perhaps this Apple Studio Display as an alternative. Many years ago I had an extremely bad experience with Eizo and while not worth describing that scenario it certainly left a very bitter taste for every purchasing another one of their products.

Thanks and I look forward to some informed opinions.
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Czornyj

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2022, 06:30:14 am »

Resurrecting an older thread but this one caught my curiosity. Cutting to the chase for those of you have had experience with the Apple Studio Display can it effectively be used in a color critical environment such as proofing artwork, paintings etc. Its my understanding it only displays 86% of the Adobe RGB color space, which to my way of thinking is a mark against it.

For the last several years I have been using an NEC PA 271W monitor, but it is getting long in the tooth and I am starting to notice irregularities in brightness across the screen. From my understanding NEC/Sharp has discontinued these types of monitors which only leaves the Eizo Color Edge or perhaps this Apple Studio Display as an alternative. Many years ago I had an extremely bad experience with Eizo and while not worth describing that scenario it certainly left a very bitter taste for every purchasing another one of their products.

Thanks and I look forward to some informed opinions.

Apple Studio Display can work in a color critical environment with flying colors. The gamut difference to my PA311D is negligible, and mostly in unprintable range so in the real world you won't see any difference while softproofing.

routlaw

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2022, 01:54:54 pm »

Well crap I just learned my existing older Mac Pro 5,1 will not work with the Apple Studio Display. Not sure why, but its also the same with the newer OS's such as Catalina through Monterey. If I do one of these looks like I will be needing to upgrade my Mac computers as well.

Just curious too, since the Studio Display is not true 10 bit, has anyone who has used these monitors seen issues with banding on gradients and other things.

Thanks
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2022, 05:54:35 pm »

Cutting to the chase for those of you have had experience with the Apple Studio Display can it effectively be used in a color critical environment such as proofing artwork, paintings etc.

While I haven't used an Apple Studio Display, I've looked at its calibration capability and compatibility. I do have a good deal of professional experience in the field of art reproduction (flat art, textiles, sculpture) and other color critical environments (primarily commercial advertising photography). Given the current limitations of the Apple Studio Display for hardware calibration, I cannot imagine any experienced user choosing this model for editing or "proofing" in a repro environment. Frankly, I wouldn't use any display that isn't easily calibrated as my capture monitor in that environment either. When it comes to color critical, art reproduction is especially critical.

I think its a fine choice for consumers looking for a monitor with great aesthetic appeal in its design, accurate color, wide color gamut, good sound, and ease of use. So, if it has good color accuracy and a reasonably wide gamut, why would I not consider it appropriate for the kind of art repro use you describe? Because faith doesn't cut it in a color critical environment.

The color accuracy, neutrality, brightness, and contrast of the display's actual output need to be verified thru calibration measurements. In a professional color critical environment, there will likely be a schedule for calibration and validation as well as record keeping that accompany those calibrations. Software that can produce display calibration which is validated to set standards and which will record and maintain a calibration history make those tasks easier.

As I've said before, if you're working in a closed loop environment of your own — capturing, editing, and printing your own work — you can do as you like in whatever way works for you. You can choose to operate on faith in receiving a display with good factory calibration that's accurate for the life of the display. If that works to your satisfaction then it's all good.

Where others are involved with your work like: artists, or pre-press and press operators, art directors, producers, editors, etc. then you will most likely want and need regular verification thru calibration measurements of the display's actual output. Apple marketing and claims made in online forums notwithstanding, that's been my experience as to how it works in real life. In my personal opinion, its a great display for a great many people and uses; but, it has limitations which make it less desirable for other applications like the ones that I've described.
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #29 on: May 21, 2022, 06:17:05 pm »

From my understanding NEC/Sharp has discontinued these types of monitors which only leaves the Eizo Color Edge or perhaps this Apple Studio Display as an alternative. Many years ago I had an extremely bad experience with Eizo and while not worth describing that scenario it certainly left a very bitter taste for every purchasing another one of their products.

Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience with Eizo. My own have been positive, but I have no doubt that others have had a different experience from time to time.

It's just a thought, but you might consider giving Eizo a call to explain your past experience and your hesitation in giving them a second chance to earn your business. They might be able to arrange for you to get a display to evaluate for some period or point you in the direction of someone that could make that happen.

It only comes to mind because I've known Eizo to supply an evaluation unit in the past when I was working in a corporate environment. That was done in the hope of securing a multi-unit purchase from us. Whether they can arrange that or offer it for an individual, I have no idea. I'm pretty sure that they would be happy to talk with you though and hear what you have to say, including any past problems you've experienced. They have customer service people to speak with before or after purchasing a monitor.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2022, 07:36:08 pm by TechTalk »
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2022, 06:48:15 pm »

Well crap I just learned my existing older Mac Pro 5,1 will not work with the Apple Studio Display. Not sure why, but its also the same with the newer OS's such as Catalina through Monterey. If I do one of these looks like I will be needing to upgrade my Mac computers as well.

Limiting compatibility or access to hardware configuration is a part of Apple's desire to control the user's product experience. To varying degrees, it's been that way for the decades over which I've purchased and used their products. I'm not expecting that to change and I've (grudgingly) learned to (mostly) live with it over the years.

Just curious too, since the Studio Display is not true 10 bit, has anyone who has used these monitors seen issues with banding on gradients and other things.

That's one thing that wouldn't concern me. I expect that Apple's implementation of 8-bit + FRC (Frame Rate Control) dithering to emulate native 10-bit is so good that it would be extremely difficult to tell the difference. Many professional graphics displays have used 8-bit + FRC to emulate native 10-bit with extremely good results.
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routlaw

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #31 on: May 21, 2022, 08:06:16 pm »

Thanks @TeckTalk and @Czornyj for the replies and helpful information. I do understand the situation having been working in the digital domain for well over 20 years. Planned obsolescence is part of the MO for many of these companies including Apple unfortunately. For now both my monitor and Mac Pro are still working so this is not a decision I have to jump into with possible regrets later on.

This afternoon I have been experimenting with my M1 Mac Mini which has been used for other purposes than photography for the past year. Its not surprising (given other reviews) that it seems to be outperforming my Mac Pro/3.46 Ghz 6 Core/48 MB RAM/OWC Accelssior 1M2 SS PCI HD, and dead quiet as a church mouse.

Lots to consider and cogitate on.
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budjames

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #32 on: May 22, 2022, 06:41:29 am »

Good work!
Calibrite ccStudio allows me to use my 12 year old ColorMunki to calibrate an LG Ultrafine 27" 5k monitor connected to my Mac Studio with no issues.
Regards,
Bud James

Please check out my fine art and travel photography at www.budjames.photography.
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Czornyj

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #33 on: May 22, 2022, 07:20:17 am »

Thanks @TeckTalk and @Czornyj for the replies and helpful information. I do understand the situation having been working in the digital domain for well over 20 years. Planned obsolescence is part of the MO for many of these companies including Apple unfortunately. For now both my monitor and Mac Pro are still working so this is not a decision I have to jump into with possible regrets later on.

This afternoon I have been experimenting with my M1 Mac Mini which has been used for other purposes than photography for the past year. Its not surprising (given other reviews) that it seems to be outperforming my Mac Pro/3.46 Ghz 6 Core/48 MB RAM/OWC Accelssior 1M2 SS PCI HD, and dead quiet as a church mouse.

Lots to consider and cogitate on.

For me M1 is a true game changer - stunningly fast, responsive, absolutely silent, super power efficient and relatively inexpensive.

Since many years high end displays like EIZO CG and NEC PA series are factory calibrated with super accurate (and super expensive), lab grade Konica-Minolta spectroradiometers and colorimeters, so they are simply more accurate than toy colorimeters like X-Rite i1D3 etc. They also have built in autocalibration sensors connected to image processors, so they are completly stable during the lifespan. For example my NEC PA311D since day one and after 7800h of use is stil perfectly calibrated - I have a huge collection of various display and printer calibration devices, but never calibrated it with external sensor, only check it by validating calibration every few months. In case of such display all you have to do is to set a target in NEC Multiprofiler, and the display auto calibrates itself to the desired imaging parameters in a second, then recalibrates every second using built-in RGB and thermal sensors connected to SpectraView Engine processor.

Exactly the same or similar solution is used in Apple XDR display in my Macbook Pro 16 M1 Pro, and it works the same since I bought it 5 months ago. And exactly the same or similar solution is used in Apple Studio Display.

As a result you don't really need an external calibration sensor, and recalibration of such display is completely pointless waste of time and even not recommended, as many calibration sensors are much less accurate than factory auto calibration of such display.

Of course you can't go wrong with EIZO, but Apple Studio Display looks better, has higher 5k resolution, unique antireflex coating, 3 port TB3 hub, really good speakers, web cam, microphone, and it's way much cheaper, so - contrary to common misbelieves - it's really a strong contender.

routlaw

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #34 on: May 22, 2022, 11:01:32 am »


Since many years high end displays like EIZO CG and NEC PA series are factory calibrated with super accurate (and super expensive), lab grade Konica-Minolta spectroradiometers and colorimeters, so they are simply more accurate than toy colorimeters like X-Rite i1D3 etc. They also have built in autocalibration sensors connected to image processors, so they are completly stable during the lifespan. For example my NEC PA311D since day one and after 7800h of use is stil perfectly calibrated - I have a huge collection of various display and printer calibration devices, but never calibrated it with external sensor, only check it by validating calibration every few months. In case of such display all you have to do is to set a target in NEC Multiprofiler, and the display auto calibrates itself to the desired imaging parameters in a second, then recalibrates every second using built-in RGB and thermal sensors connected to SpectraView Engine processor.

Exactly the same or similar solution is used in Apple XDR display in my Macbook Pro 16 M1 Pro, and it works the same since I bought it 5 months ago. And exactly the same or similar solution is used in Apple Studio Display.

As a result you don't really need an external calibration sensor, and recalibration of such display is completely pointless waste of time and even not recommended, as many calibration sensors are much less accurate than factory auto calibration of such display.

Of course you can't go wrong with EIZO, but Apple Studio Display looks better, has higher 5k resolution, unique antireflex coating, 3 port TB3 hub, really good speakers, web cam, microphone, and it's way much cheaper, so - contrary to common misbelieves - it's really a strong contender.

Interesting comments and conclusions. It does however beg the following question. If factory set calibration is so good, then why does Eizo still offer calibration software and built-in hardware devices for their CG monitors, such as the CS2740?

Clearly you and @TeckTalk are at opposite ends of this discussion regarding the accuracy and validity of self calibrating monitors and by no stretch of the imagination am I trying to agitate or elevate the argument. Like TechTalk having been at this for a very long time traditionally I have also placed regular calibration as part of my workflow for accurate results but am also open minded enough to realize technology changes and as a rule improves over time… usually.

It took me awhile to find the hours of use on my PA271W, but apparently it has 20,996 hours on this monitor, which I assume this to be a calculated "working hours" because there was also a number listed for "off hours" 62,222 hours. The display is rarely turned off but it does go into sleep mode which I assume this to mean the "off" hours.

Agreed these new M1 Macs are truly mind blowing in their capabilities and I love their energy efficiency. The M1 working full bore tilt uses less energy than my Mac Pro at idle. Many thanks again for your real world experiences posted.
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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #35 on: May 22, 2022, 11:39:54 am »

I'll give you my two cents on self calibrating displays. IF (big if) the calibration targets (aim points) are what you want or need, fine. Mine are not. My PA 271Q aim points were created with trial and error such they produce a match to my prints under a specific and controlled viewing booth. If I can't get that with a self calibration of a target, the self calibration is useless for me.
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #36 on: May 22, 2022, 01:07:46 pm »

The target for calibration may be based on an industry standard or one that you define. The better calibration applications will let you create custom targets in which you define your own aim points. You can then calibrate to your own set of defined aim points contained within your custom target. Once the target is defined, whether the calibration process is performed with user involvement or done entirely by the device being calibrated makes no difference in the calibration result.

Calibration — which is simply measuring a device and comparing the result to a defined value (aim point) or target (defined goal you're trying to achieve) — is limited to the aim point or points of your target. Calibration measurement of specific parameters only give you information on the state of your device for those specific parameters and may not be the end of your process to achieve your desired result. Calibration only provides a consistent foundation or base from which to begin any further refinement if required.

If the hardware and/or software you're using offer the capability, further manual adjustments may be carried out to refine your device for improved accuracy—for display to print matching for instance. The video linked below provides a concise demonstration of manual fine-tuning of a display for a more accurate screen to print match in soft proofing.

This video is under six minutes and is worth watching if you are not already familiar with this process...

https://www.youtube.com/Advanced Soft Proofing Monitor Calibration
« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 01:58:05 pm by TechTalk »
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #37 on: May 22, 2022, 01:41:27 pm »

If factory set calibration is so good...

Factory calibration is often extremely good for better quality monitors.

...then why does Eizo still offer calibration software and built-in hardware devices for their CG monitors, such as the CS2740?

1) Because even well made, well calibrated, well behaved, and stable devices can become unstable or misbehave. The best current displays, while amazingly accurate and stable, are still a complex combination of digital and analog electronic components. Stuff happens. 2) Because some use environments require routine display calibration as a quality control measure and to insure consistency over time and throughout the entire production chain. 3) Because it is unwise to assume and sensible to verify when working in a critical environment.

* As a small footnote: Currently, Eizo CG monitors have a built-in calibrator, other ColorEdge monitors, like the CS series, do not.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 02:22:11 pm by TechTalk »
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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #38 on: May 22, 2022, 02:53:34 pm »

Notwithstanding the various perspectives on the capabilities and/or deficiencies of the Studio Display 8), ArtisRight on YouTube has some informative videos about how to access the complex wonderful world of color profiles and calibration on the Studio Display.

ArtisRight on Mac Studio Display Settings
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TechTalk

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Re: Apple iMac & Studio Displays - Display Calibration
« Reply #39 on: May 22, 2022, 03:34:14 pm »

Notwithstanding the various perspectives on the capabilities and/or deficiencies of the Studio Display 8), ArtisRight on YouTube has some informative videos about how to access the complex wonderful world of color profiles and calibration on the Studio Display.

ArtisRight on Mac Studio Display Settings

Detailed information on using Apple display reference modes and custom reference modes, demonstrated in the helpful video which you linked, are also available in illustrated text form. The linked text form may be a handy reference for explanation or definition of the various presets and options available.

See links below...

Selecting a preset "display reference mode" or creating a "custom reference mode" is configuration of the display for a selected set of reference values.
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