Tools for Color Matching
A mini-sourcelist of IT8 targets, color guides, and viewing devices.
Our June-issue sourcelist of color-measurement instruments (p. 56) addressed colorimeters, densitometers, and spectrophotometers. But don't neglect other types of tools that also can help you when it comes to color matching, including IT8 targets and reference cards, color guides, and color-viewing devices. This "mini sourcelist" of noteworthy items includes basic information on each tool; visit the companies' websites for more information.
Fuji's IT8.7 targets are used for making ICC profiles for scanners, digital cameras, and printers. The targets consist of color patches, which are read by color-measuring devices to use as a basis for color profiles. The targets are offered with either "custom" data (calibrated; with colorimetric data specific to that target) or "batchmeasured" data (averaged, with data averaged from 50 targets).
The Digital Proof Comparator, from the Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF), contains targets that measure the exposure, resolution, and directional effects of an imaging system and its reproduction characteristics.
GATF's Digital Test Form Version 5.0 is an 8.5 x 11-in. form designed to test digital proofers and presses.
GTI Graphic Technology
GTI's Graphiclite VPI Vertical Print Inspection Station has specially designed lighting for the controlled color inspection of large-format digital images. It features a Graphiclite 100 Color Viewing Lamp, highefficiency reflectors, and spectrally neutral, non-yellowing diffusers. Three sizes are available: 40 x 45.25, 52 x 45.25, and 64 x 45.25 in. Options include variable intensity for soft-proof comparisons, a height-adjustable lower ledge, and sidewalls for stricter control of ambient light. For soft proofing, the VPI Station can accommodate a computer and monitor, with variable intensity for optimum monitor match.
Also available: the GTI ColorMatcher Series of lightboxes in three standard sizes (as well as larger custom sizes).
Just Normlicht's Wide Format Viewing Station allows for proofing of large-format prints up to 81 in. wide. The Station features a digital hour meter with LED display to remind users when to exchange light tubes and an integrated bottom light source. Featuring a 5000 Kelvin color temperature with a Color Rendering Index of 98, the Station comes in three sizes: 56 x 87.75, 67.75 x 87.75, and 88.5 x 89.25 in. (all are 31-in. deep).
The Image Pro 5000 XL (32.5 x 25 x 13.5 in. deep) features D50"?5000 Kelvin lighting, compliant with ISO standards, as well as a Color Rendering Index of 98.
Kodak Professional's Q-60 Targets (IT8 targets) are for use by prepress houses, professional photographers, and desktop publishers. The targets are available on Kodak Professional Endura Paper in 5 x 7-in. sizes.
LaserSoft Imaging offers 5 x 7-in. IT.8 Scanner Calibration Targets on Fuji Professional Paper as well as Digital Camera Targets in Studio and Pocket versions. The camera targets help users get better dynamic range from images and develop ICC profiles; they feature a focusing aid and graycard on the back for precise white balance and an integrated barcode.
Pantone's color bridge, previously known as the Pantone Solid to Process Guide, is a color reference that can be used to: select and specify solid Pantone colors on coated stock; determine how a Pantone color will appear when reproduced in CMYK; and create optimal display of Pantone Colors on monitors and Web pages.
The company also offers its Pantone Formula Guides (for solid matte, solid uncoated, and solid coated media) for graphic designers, prepress professionals, and printers to match Pantone colors.
PrintTools.org (an Internet-based resource from graphics-industry groups including Gracol, Idealliance, IPA, and SWOP) offers T-Reference Cards. Consisting of a printed sample of white, yellow, cyan, and black SWOP patches, these cards are a printed standard-reference material for publishers who want to control color reproduction.