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White Point HELP! 50K vs 65K.... Clients asking Q's I don't have an answer for...

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Old 09-16-2004, 01:46 PM
liteandexp liteandexp is offline
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White Point HELP! 50K vs 65K.... Clients asking Q's I don't have an answer for...

Hi all,

I'm in a bit of a quandry... I worked a very reputable retouching house for a year where monitor calibration was very important... We had color management experts come in often... They always insisted that the monitors white point should be set to 5000 Kelvin... I never really understood the rationaile because they always looked way too warm... now that I'm working freelance, I've had many clients ask why the monitor is so warm...

I've read from a few sources that 5K simulates a press better and is the US standard whereas, 65K is the European standard and is more similar to the way film looks on a standard light box... When my retouched images are viewed on a 65K moniter the color looks much much more acurate to the film... and my clients are seeing this too... Is there any reason I wouldn't want this? I'd like to switch over to 65K but feel a bit bound by the opinion of the color management company I worked with before... DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY ADVICE? If I should stay with 5K, what explaination can I give to a client who comments on the difference in color between my monitor and a "cleaner" feeling 65K monitor and the original film?

thanks to everyone for your help,

John R. Fulton
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Old 09-16-2004, 02:29 PM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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I know what I'd do, but that would probably be wrong! So I'll leave this one up to the pros, and just say welcome aboard. I'm sure you'll get a good answer.

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Old 09-16-2004, 02:53 PM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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It all boils down to personal preference in the end, but "warm" means "yellow" and paper used to be a lot more yellow than it is nowadays. However, a warmer monitor also has an inherently lower color gamut, which would be (in theory) closer to print.

But you're never going to do your best work on a monitor that distracts you. And if it's really critical, I'd use a hardware calibrator.
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Old 09-18-2004, 09:09 PM
Robt Robt is offline
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Please pardon me thinking I might have an answer because if I do I can only explain it as 'I read it'.

Tim Grey in his Color Confidence pg 60. " '5000 Kelvin source* is the standard for color management when it comes to evaluating prints. However, a setting of 6500 Kelvin is much closer to the native white point for most moniters, and is the setting I recommend. Using 5000 Kelvin will result in a moniter display that is a bit yellow and dingy. I always recommend 6500 K' as the target white point when calibrating your moniter. "

I've seen B. Fraser say much the same as well do the instructions for using Color Vision's Spyder.

* The above 5000 K source reference is to the temp of the lamp to evaluate the prints.

Last edited by Robt; 09-19-2004 at 07:20 AM.
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