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Display Calibration Light Illusion Forums / Display Calibration /

Confused about licensing, ICC profiles, and calibrating many systems

Author Tinkerer
Mono
#1 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 13:35 
Hi,

I'm confused about licensing.

If I buy LightSpace XPT, and I use it to calibrate multiple monitors that DON'T have LUT import capability (for example notebook displays), I would need to create ICC profiles for them, right?

Do I need Spaceman ICC or DCM to manage and load the ICC profiles on EACH PC? I've read that ICC profile management doesn't always work consistently with Windows. For example you can get windows to apply the ICC and you can see that the profile is applied, but then every time you reboot you lose it and have to go into settings to re-apply it.

I'm put off by the idea that I have to pay $50 or more for a license for EVERY computer / monitor I calibrate where I need to make sure the ICC profile is applied correctly to EACH calibrated system.

Author Steve
Scene
#2 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 13:46 
As per the website, ICC profiles have different uses, and different 'components' from any given ICC are often applied in different ways.
For example. Graphics Cards ONLY use the VCGT component - which is a just a 1D LUT, so ONLY affects the grey scale/white point.
It in no way manages the gamut/saturation (colour).
So, SpaceMatch DCM 'just' manages the VCGT, nothing else.

With SpaceMan ICC, you can generate ICC profiles from any given 3D LUT, and that ICC can be used by systems/graphics programs that are ICC compliant.

The way different systems/programs use ICC is down to those systems/programs.
And Windows for example has no system-wide ICC capability.
(ICCs used within a Windows environment ONLY operate with ICC compliant programs.)
Mac is 'supposed' to have a system-wide ICC capability, but often users report strange/inaccurate behaviour.

All the above is why we really do not suggest the use of ICCs for 'Display Calibration', unless you really know and understand their operation inside-out.

I hope that helps.

Steve

Author Tinkerer
Mono
#3 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 16:37 
Sorry, obviously I'm still learning and catching up to modern standards. 1080P60 still seems brand new to me. :P

I recently saw someone demonstrate Lacie Blue Eye Pro, which is ANCIENT software (circa 2005), which he ran on Windows 10. He used it with an i1 Display, and it created and applied an ICC profile. I could clearly see the monitor change when he activated the created ICC profile in the Blue Eye Pro software. And it appeared to be system wide, he ran Photoshop, etc., and the ICC profile held. So that's where I'm coming from with this question. He let me poke around the system and I found that every time Windows boots, the software runs a 564KB program called "CLCalibrationLoader.exe", which seems to "make sure" the created ICC is applied on Windows startup. I could clearly see that happen when the machine reboots. (I'm guessing "CL" is "Color Logic," the file has a 2/25/05 modified date. Again, old stuff!)

Is this sort of thing achievable with Lightspace or Spaceman?

I know SpectraCal has "Calman Client 3" which I believe does the same sort of thing, but it costs $50 per computer! The Lacie Software didn't have any checks or serials in it so it could be installed and run on an unlimited number of systems. (Not sure if that's part of the actual license or not!)

In this review of the Asus PG27UQ (a recently released 4K/HDR gaming monitor @ ~$2,000), the reviewer states that he tested and "calibrated" the monitor with Lacie Blue Eye Pro!!!!

Author Steve
Scene
#4 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 16:52 
As said, there is no 'System Wide' ICC application for Windows.
Only the VCGT (which can be part of the ICC) is system wide, but is only a 1D LUT, so ONLY affects the grey scale/white point.
When you open Photoshop, that will use the full ICC profile as it is n ICC aware program, so will manage Gamut.
See: https://www.lightillusion.com/spaceman_manual.html to see a method for using ICCs with Photoshop.

The CLCalibrationLoader is basically loading the VCGT into the graphics card, just as SpaceMatch DCM does.
Exact the same as Calman Client 3.
As stated, this is just a 1D LUT, and ONLY affects the grey scale/white point.

However, some displays do use ICCs within them, matched to the OS ICC, for display calibration.
But, such calibration is just a 1D LUT, and 3x3 matrix.
They are not 3D LUT based.

Steve

Author Tinkerer
Mono
#5 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 17:24 
OK, that helps. But again, I'm kind of put off at having to buy a separate license for each computer to reliably load a 1D LUT. SpaceMatch DCM is over $100! Maybe that old CLCalibrationLoader.exe will work?

Again, I understand about the 1D / 3D thing. I will be calibrating monitors with 3D LUTs. But I'm trying to understand what my options are for calibrating displays where the only capability is 1D / ICC (again, like notebook or most consumer monitors).

Windows 10 is supposed to have system wide ICC capability (which you're pointing out is 1D / VCGT), which should always be loaded into the graphics card on boot by having the "Use Windows display calibration" check box set in Windows:

Use Windows Display Calibration

But I've read this can be buggy... some people say when they reboot, the ICC profile is no longer applied, and they have to go back in there and uncheck/recheck the box or other stupid things like that. :P

Author Steve
Scene
#6 | Posted: 1 Dec 2018 17:46 
SpaceMatch DCM is used to load the VCGT without the need for ICCs.
As said, ICCs can be a real pain (and unreliable) to use, especially if you do not understand them inside-out.

The price is for one license.
We offer good discounts for multiple license requirements.
And if purchasing with LightSpace CMS, the price comes down dramatically.

But, any display that has no 3D LUT calibration capability (either directly, or via a LUT box or graphics software LUT management) is extremely difficult to calibrate accurately, and manage that calibration, as you have found.

Steve

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