Musings on color management, CHROMiX products and services and other relevant topics.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Check your instruments

The beginning of a new year is a great time to take stock of all your measurement devices.  I'm thinking that peak time around your company is winding down now, and you have a bit of time to devote to some proactive maintenance.

This is a good time to:
  •  Run your spectros through any diagnostic programs that are available for your devices.  Barbieri has a software tool called "Service Report" for all of their instruments and X-Rite has a utility called "i1Diagnostics" that has been recently updated to work with the i1Pro 2 and IO 2 table.
The reason why you want to run your instruments through these tools when there is nothing wrong with them, is so you can have a record of what your instrument looks like when everything is good.  Run your instrument through the diagnostic tool, save the result and keep it for the future.  Someday you'll thank me when you have a color problem and the idea goes through your mind, "I wonder if the instrument is bad?"  You can run the process again and hopefully say, "Well the service report shows basically the same numbers it did when we ran the same test back in January."
  • An even better way to have assurance of instrument accuracy is to measure a control tool on a regular basis.  This control tool would be a control strip that is specially made to be stable and colorfast for a long time.   We sell the Vogelsong COLORef and also bundle it with our MeasureWatch service of Maxwell.  This combination gives you a quality control strip as well as an easy way to track the accuracy of your device as you make routine instrument checks over time.  The idea is that if an instrument is going out of spec. you'll know about it ahead of time.