How Important Is Accurate Color?
The ability to see a file on your screen with accurate color and tone is essential for professional photography regardless if your image was created in JPEG or RAW workflow. Photographers are “visual” folks who need to see the color, exposure and detail on a monitor as it will appear on the printed paper. So in order to keep your laptop, LCD monitor (or even old CRT monitors) “honest” in their ability to present a neutral and unbiased color and tone on-screen, we need to correct for the color shift inside each monitor or in-house inkjet printer that changes with time, heat, vibration and just plain daily use by “profiling”. It’s easy to get in control and stay in control these days.
By using a monitor profiling kit that consists of a color measuring device referred to as a puck (aka colorimeter) that connects to your computer’s USB port and links up with it’s accompanying software application to measure how far “off” your monitor or printers’ color shift is, then builds a profile that acts kinda like a digital filter to correct for this shift; so no matter how far off it is (within reason)… the profiling kit has corrected it back to neutral. This may not mean it’s perfectly accurate when matching a professional print held next to your screen, but if you follow our guidelines it’s pretty darned close. Profiling kits don’t do a thing to your actual photo files, they only help to neutralize the color of them as they are displayed on screen or on the printed sheet of paper.