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DataColor Releases Pro Version of their SpyderTV Television Calibration Tool
By Chris Boylan
Why don't they set it up right at the factory? A good question. But most of the time, the default settings on any TV (high-end or low-end) are made so that the TV will look brighter, hotter and sharper than the competition on the brightly lit showroom floor. These settings usually don't translate well to the more subdued lighting of the home.
The SpyderTV package includes a cute little colorimeter (a device that measures light and color levels) which attaches to your TV screen via suction cups, and plugs into your laptop or PC via USB, where it interacts with datacolor's calibration software package. It also comes with a test pattern DVD that you use to display the appropriate patterns on your screen. The datacolor software measures your screen's output when it displays the various color patterns and tells you how to adjust it so that the readings are as close to possible to the proper NTSC (National Television Standards Committee) settings.
The standard SpyderTV package is pretty good (our writer Cliff Darroch certainly liked it in his SpyderTV review), but it has some limitations: a.) it cannot be used with front projection systems, b.) it provided no customization of gamma settings (individual red/green/blue color levels) or direct grey scale adjustments. These shortcomings are remedied in the new "SpyderTV Pro" package ($600, available now).
If you've got multiple display devices around the house, or you like to go over friends' houses and tweak their displays too (preferably in the middle of the SuperBowl, or during the latest episode of "The Amazing Race"), then datacolor's SpyderTV Pro may be just the tool for you.
We've requested a review sample of the SpyderTV Pro package and hope to share the results of using this device with you, dear readers, shortly.
What do you think?
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