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DatacolorSpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras
 
4.5

(based on 35 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (21)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (12)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

97%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Accurate colors (15)
  • Easy to collaborate across programs (10)
  • Reliable (7)
  • Easy to customize (5)
  • Easy to use (4)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Professional quality (14)
  • Portraits (4)
  • Everyday (3)
  • Photography (3)
  • Studio (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Quality oriented (12), Professional (7)
    • Primary use:
    • Business (19), Personal (9)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (6)
    • Computer Platform:
    • Mac (12), PC (11)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Using the SpyderCheckr for Real Estate

Datacolor recently released their new SpyderCheckr Camera Calibration Tool, to compete with the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport. After doing a bit of research, I decided to pick up the SpyderCheckr over the Passport, and...Read complete review

Datacolor recently released their new SpyderCheckr Camera Calibration Tool, to compete with the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport. After doing a bit of research, I decided to pick up the SpyderCheckr over the Passport, and I'm fairly happy with my decision. In this review I'll delve into why I bought a color tool at all, why I chose the SpyderCheckr, how I use it in the field and in post-processing, and my general thoughts on the subject matter. .

ACCURATE COLOR IS VERY IMPORTANT
As a real estate photographer, I have to make sure that I accurately portray the homes I am photographing. A huge part of this is getting accurate color. Using a camera calibration tool allows me to recreate the color in the room with scientific accuracy, ensuring that the images I deliver to my clients are exactly correct.

DIRECT COMPARISON: BEFORE AND AFTER
A great way to see the difference this makes is too look at a photograph corrected with the SpyderCheckr, and the same photograph uncorrected. The difference is subtle, but noticeable. Getting that accurate color is very important, and makes the SpyderCheckr worth the time it takes to use.

WHY SPYDERCHECKR?
While X-Rite may be the big player in the camera calibration world, Datacolor and its Spyder3 products rule the world of monitor calibration. They recently launched the SpyderCheckr, and it has some definite benefits over X-Rite's offerings.

First, the SpyderCheckr has replaceable color cards, because paper does fade over time. This means in a few years when both the Passport and the SpyderCheckr are fading, I can pay about half as much to replace just the cards in my SpyderCheckr, whereas owners of the Passport have to replace the entire product.

Second, the SpyderCheckr has a tripod mount on the top AND bottom. This means it can be set up on a tripod (or light stand) in the field, and the SpyderCube can also be attached to it. In fact, the product is always advertised with the SpyderCube attached, which led to some major confusing and disappointment that I will get to later.

Third, the SpyderCheckr software creates preset for Adobe Camera Raw or Lightroom that is a Develop Preset that edits the HSL sliders. The Passport software creates a camera calibration profile. This means it is easier to manage, edit, and delete the presets SpyderCheckr creates, and you can still use Adobe's camera calibration profiles. Since real estate photographers have to create a preset for every lighting situation (which means every room), this is a big benefit.

Check out their video on YouTube for Datacolor's introduction of their SpyderCheckr.

HOW I USE IT IN MY DAY-TO-DAY WORK
Every time I finish composing and lighting a shot, I take an additional shot with the SpyderCheckr in the frame. Because each room has different lighting, it is necessary to do this for every composition. I tend to hold my SpyderCheckr in my hand and trigger my camera with a cable release, because I had a bad habit of forgetting to remove it from the scene if I set it on something.

Once I get back to my workstation, I follow the workflow outlined in the video above, creating a preset for each composition. I tend to create all the presets at once, then re-launch Lightroom and apply them, to avoid spending extra time waiting for Lightroom to quit and start again. After I have applied the preset, I simply right click on the preset name to delete it. Because I often create a dozen or more presets for every home I shoot, it is quite nice to be able to delete them so easily.

CAVEAT EMPTOR
When I purchased the SpyderCheckr, it was advertised with the SpyderCube attached, and the online doucmentation indicated that the SpyderCube was, indeed, included with the package. In fact, this inclusion was another reason I was willing to spend $30 more on the SpyderCheckr over the Passport. However, when my SpyderCheckr arrived I was dismayed to find no SpyderCube in the package! I am still trying to resolve this with Datacolor, and I will try to post an update when I figure things out.

GENERAL THOUGHTS
Even if you choose a different camera calibration tool, I do recommend using one over just an 18% grey card or ExpoDisc. You will get more accurate color in every shot you use it in, which will represent the property more accurately, especially in rooms with bright, vivid, or strange colored walls or decoration.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not as usable as other, similar products

The included software can't automatically find the color chart within an image. This means that every time the camera requires a calibration due to a change in lighting it will need to have the...Read complete review

The included software can't automatically find the color chart within an image. This means that every time the camera requires a calibration due to a change in lighting it will need to have the color checker positioned to fill the frame and the photographer will have to crop and adjust the image to get the color checker to be used by the software... who has time for all that.

I've since switched over to the X-Rite Colorchecker Passport which includes software for identifying the color chart automatically and imports a profile into Lightroom for me to apply automatically. The SpyderCheckr is a great tool for in the studio but not out in the field.

Reviewed by 35 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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5.0

Make sure Lightroom CC is up to date FIRST

By kingzrule

from Medford Lakes, NJ USA

About Me Quality Oriented

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Accurate Colors and Controls
  • Rugged Good Quality

Cons

  • Sort Of Pricey

Best Uses

  • Color Workflow
  • Professional Quality

Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

This is a good quality item that is important in your capture, edit, printing/publishing workflow. I spent hours trying to figure out why the DataColor Spyder ColorChecker would not launch from Lightroom CC. DataColor knowledgebase and online support were useless. I finally found a random web posting that suggested an update to a recent version of Lightroom CC. That solved the problem.

The ColorChecker works as advertised, and the software is good, too. I am always surprised how really small things like white balance and color calibration make a big difference. I'm now using this in a studio and outdoors with off camera flash.

Good stuff from DataColor. I also use their Spyder monitor calibration tools and software.

  • Primary use:
  • Personal
  • Computer Platform:
  • Mac

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5.0

Excellent Price

By kimww

from IN

About Me Quality Oriented

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Accurate Colors and Controls
  • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
  • Easy To Customize
  • Easy To Navigate
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Professional Quality

    Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

    This Datacolor color checker works with Davinci software to color correct video footage and is a bargain compared to the X-rite. I like that the gray card for custom WB and color checker are in one package. The tripod mount is especially handy, and the case enclosure for it worked great on the set of my first movie. The gray card and color chip cards can be removed and moved to the side convenient to your workflow, and the opposite chart I'm sure I will use later although I don't know what the muted color chips are for yet. I recommend a cheapo light stand and umbrella clamp for those times when you run tests while alone.

    • Primary use:
    • Personal
    • Computer Platform:
    • PC

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    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Dont Confuse with X-Rite

    By iSequoia

    from Marin County, CA

    About Me Quality Oriented

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Accurate Colors and Controls
    • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Presentations
      • Professional Quality

      Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

      Excellent Product and does exactly what you expect BUT in a large form factor.
      Compare with the very similar X-Rite Passport product. Same result but fit's in a pocket at about the same price.

      • Primary use:
      • Personal

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      (0 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Spyder Checker

      By Amit Kumar

      from India

      Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

      Many scratches on the silver cover of color checker

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      4.0

      Very complete and well built

      By Fruchstuck

      from NYC

      About Me Quality Oriented

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Accurate Colors and Controls

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Professional Quality

        Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

        solid stuff, complete, well built

        • Primary use:
        • Personal
        • Computer Platform:
        • Mac

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        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        very useful could use some design improvements

        By brad

        from new york, ny

        About Me Value Oriented

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Accurate Colors and Controls
        • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Professional Quality

          Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

          After looking around I couldn't find anything better especially for the price. This makes grading later much cleaner and scientific.

          The case it comes in doesn't quite stay shut it hangs open a little, there's no latch or built in tension to keep it securely shut so you'll want to alter it either with some Velcro or tape to keep it shut when not in use

          • Primary use:
          • Business
          • Computer Platform:
          • PC

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          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Important tool to have not sold on the construction of it

          By brad

          from new york, ny

          About Me Quality Oriented

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Accurate Colors and Controls
          • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Professional Quality

            Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

            This is a must have i think if you care about matching shots or people will demand it from you.

            The plastic shell feels sturdy and it comes with to convient ways to mount it via both male and female threads.

            My only complaint is theres nothing keeping it shut. mine kind of sags open a bit which is not good since its sensitive to light, A simple little latch on one side would have fixed this in the design but... if you just use anything like velcro tape whatever you'll get the job done

            • Primary use:
            • Business
            • Computer Platform:
            • PC

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            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Skin Tone Chips make a difference

            By MediaOnQ

            from Fargo, ND

            About Me Quality Oriented

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Accurate Colors and Controls
            • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Professional Quality

              Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

              I use this product to match video cameras in post production. This allows me to shoot with a 5DMIII and match it to my Canon C300. The skintone shades also help when setting up the lighting in a mixed light environment.

              • Primary use:
              • Business
              • Computer Platform:
              • Mac

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              5.0

              Help me a lot

              By Edi C

              from New York, NY

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Accurate Colors and Controls

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Professional Quality

                Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                I aways worried about color correct specially for work. Even I use mac this problem still confuse me. After did a lot of research i choose SpyderCHECKR. It really help me a lot. Now my work up to a new level.

                • Primary use:
                • Business
                • Computer Platform:
                • Mac

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                5.0

                Accuracy is critical

                By Michael

                from Owasso, OK

                About Me Quality Oriented

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Accurate Colors and Controls
                • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
                • Easy To Customize
                • Easy To Navigate
                • Versatile

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Professional Quality

                  Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                  I calibrated my monitor a couple of years ago with the Spyder Pro and although I get my shots 100 percent right in camera there was always that slight variation between the monitor and the camera lcd. So in the pursuit of something to help with my color workflow I decided upon this product which was the final piece I'd been missing.

                  • Primary use:
                  • Business
                  • Computer Platform:
                  • PC

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                  5.0

                  SpyderCHECKR

                  By David S

                  from NE Florida

                  About Me Professional

                  Verified Buyer

                  Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                  Works great.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Simple and straight forward

                  By cwSFBay

                  from San Francisco, CA

                  About Me Professional

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy To Use
                  • Lightweight

                  Cons

                  • Came Poorly Packaged - As

                  Best Uses

                  • Everyday use
                  • Home
                  • Portraits
                  • Studio
                  • Traveling

                  Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                  This actually came bundled with my Spyder4PRO and is nice little tool to keep consistent color. It was very helpful in photographing interior design images for a client of mine where the real life representation of paint colors for rooms is essential in conveying the sense of life and atmosphere of a re-designed room. My client was very satisfied with the end result and I'm glad that it made my workflow faster.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Important tool for my shooting!

                  By Bob

                  from Mexico

                  About Me Professional

                  Verified Reviewer

                  Pros

                  • Durable
                  • Good design
                  • Reliable
                  • Well Design

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Portraits
                    • Product Photography
                    • Studio

                    Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                    My work is mostly product and fashion photography, so color consistency is very important for me, after reading so many reviews about different options/brands i decided to get this item. What i love about this color card is that have replaceable cards (so I don't to buy again all the set again), a color degradation indicator (i think a cool feature to know when replace my cards) and a hard case (great to reduce the color degradation, keep the cards as new, enough space to hold it in front the camera and a tripod/lightstand mount on top and bottom!).

                    All these features convinced me about getting this color card. The Spyder Checkr calibrate the color through the HSL slider meanwhile other tools create a DNG table, have in mind this when making the purchase; for me it's ok to have HSL.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    5.0

                    works

                    By quantumrider

                    from new york, ny

                    About Me Professional

                    Verified Buyer

                    Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                    using it with davinci resolve 11

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    5.0

                    Color check lets calibrate your camera!

                    By Chrissy4605

                    from Portland, OR

                    About Me Quality Oriented

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Accurate Colors and Controls
                    • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
                    • Easy To Customize
                    • Easy To Navigate
                    • Versatile

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Educational Purposes
                      • Professional Quality

                      Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                      Are you a photographer. Then you need this product. It will allow you to calibrate your camera. So that you shoot the colors that work!!

                      • Primary use:
                      • Personal
                      • Computer Platform:
                      • PC

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                      4.0

                      Correct color is important

                      By RPhoto

                      from Reno

                      About Me Quality Oriented

                      Verified Buyer

                      Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                      I use this at every shoot to get accurate color.
                      X-rite's equivalent of this is much more compact.

                      • Primary use:
                      • Business
                      • Computer Platform:
                      • Mac

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                      3.0

                      Good tool for target color

                      By Lindy

                      from Los Angeles

                      About Me Quality Oriented

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Accurate Colors and Controls

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Professional Quality

                        Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                        Used to accurately set & balance color

                        • Primary use:
                        • Business
                        • Computer Platform:
                        • PC

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                        4.0

                        seems to work

                        By Edwizer

                        from Boulder, CO

                        About Me Quality Oriented

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Accurate Colors and Controls
                        • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs

                        Cons

                        • Difficult To Navigate

                        Best Uses

                        • Professional Quality

                        Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                        haven't put it through the true test of having photos published using it yet

                        • Primary use:
                        • Business
                        • Computer Platform:
                        • PC

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                        5.0

                        Satisfied customer

                        By Ismael

                        from San Juan, PR

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Accurate Colors and Controls
                        • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
                        • Easy To Customize
                        • Versatile

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Professional Quality

                          Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                          Fast shipping and items as described!

                          • Primary use:
                          • Business
                          • Computer Platform:
                          • PC

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                          (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          5.0

                          Perfect For Product Photography

                          By Vinni

                          from Eureka, CA

                          About Me Quality Oriented

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Accurate Colors and Controls
                          • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
                          • Easy To Customize
                          • Replaceable Color Cards

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Professional Quality

                            Comments about Datacolor SpyderCHECKR Color Calibration Tool for Digital Cameras:

                            I use this product to ensure color accuracy when shooting products, especially fabrics, for accurate color output. I have the Datacolor SpyderSTUDIO Color Calibration Bundle for monitor and printer calibration and this is a great addition to that workflow. NOTE: The Spyder Cube, which is pictured and listed as optional, is not included with this set. The case seams durable and the addition of a bottom threaded mount is great. I use a table-top tripod that screws into the base to position the checker. I also like the cards can be replaced if they fade. The software is easy to use and provides excellent color accuracy. Others have mentioned that there is no auto detection of the grid like other systems, but that has not effected my workflow.

                            • Primary use:
                            • Business
                            • Computer Platform:
                            • Mac

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