For photographers, designers and anyone else who edits digital images, correct colour calibration is essential. If your monitor isn’t showing you the ‘true’ colour of an image, then when you print it, send it to clients or post it online, you could be in for a shock. Screens come with a limited ability to check their calibration, but to nowhere near the accuracy that’s needed. When trying to check something so subjective yet so important, how can you trust that the work you’re producing looks the way it should?

Datacolour has developed an accurate colour-reading engine that it uses in a range of products, including readers that scan your walls or other objects and find the matching paint, colour number etc. Using this same technology, the company has also produced the SpyderX, its latest in monitor calibration tools.

The SpyderX is fast and easy to use. The lens-based technology that drives it took Datacolour three years to develop, but now that work can deliver extremely accurate readings in under two minutes. The SpyderX is also extremely precise, giving accurate readings for colour, shadow detail and white balance. My wife is a fashion photographer, and I’ve assisted on plenty of photoshoots over the years, so I know the time and effort that goes into capturing the right shot. Correct editing is just as important in getting the very best of your image, and this device made my wife’s life a thousand times easier. It works just as effectively on any screen, no matter how that screen is engineered, giving you a consistent colour across technologies.

The device gives you a choice between either a one-click calibration, or getting in there and adjusting settings yourself. It even monitors light levels in your room throughout the day, and gives you the options of receiving alerts when you need a re-calibration, or letting it adjust your monitor automatically.

The SpyderX is amazing. If you’re in any doubt, you can even switch back and forth between a Before and After. Sometimes, when you’ve been staring at something for too long, you can miss what’s changed, but this feature showed us just how much the SpyderX was needed! It isn’t a cheap purchase, but if your hobby or profession relies on digital colour, it's a must-have.



Monitors room light levels and can adjust for them
Adjusts automatically or lets you choose
One-click calibration or detailed input

Quite large