Color Checker X-Rite Passport Review
Get Your Colors Correct
Product Rating: 5 Stars - Well Worth the Investment
You may think the colors you are seeing in Lightroom are correct because, you did your part and set the white balance on that camera you used during the shooting session, but once you get the prints back you are amazed at how awful the results are. Stop guessing and wasting time and money - get accurate results the easy way.
In My Honest Opinion, there are three things every "serious" photographer should carry/use.
One - A Sekonic Light Meter, Two - A X-Rite ColorChecker Passport and Three - A calibrated Monitor
If you use the three things mentioned above your photography will be much more accurate and rewarding the very first time without guessing what the colors were.
Does everyone need an X-Rite ColorChecker? No, if you are a landscape shooter you can probably get by without one because most landscapers take liberties during the post process of editing. People/event Photographers - I think it is a must-have tool.
Let me simplify why you need an X-Rite ColorChecker: With a ColorChecker, you can set-up custom color profiles by taking your ColorChecker on location and making a photo of the color checker in the lighting you are using. Once you have that image in camera - all the other images taken in that scene can be "correctly" color matched once you being to edit the images by loading the ColorChecker as a Profile, Lightroom makes it easy to do this, Just find the ColorChecker image you took and use Lightroom to export that ColorChecker image as a custom profile. Then you can apply the profile to all your images and match the colors based on the accurate color profile.
Doing this, you can actually see your images come to life and be truly accurate - no more guessing with color slider adjustment in hopes to acquire the correct colors. Once you start using a ColorChecker - you will never want to be without it for any professional work - even with flash photography.
The other main contributor to good image editing is having your Monitor Color balanced - there are several products available to do this, but I also choose the X-Rite Display Pro. This comes with software, a Calibrator and is all basically automatic. So, why have your monitor calibrated? If you do choose to add some personal touches to your images for printing - what you see on the screen will better match what you get back in print.
Finally I must mention the Sekonic Light Meter, I use a Sekonic L858 Light Meter, it is a wonderful workhorse of a light meter - and can basically do it all from CINE to Flash output/duration, and ambient and spot meter readings plus the Sekonic can be loaded with camera profiles that match your cameras dynamic range. So, when out shooting on location the light meter can indicate if the scene is outside the range of your camera, not to mention just an all around BETTER exposed images - the first time.
|X-Rite ColorChecker Passport
| Without the Profile - Notice the faded blue
||With the Profile Applied - More accurate colors
|Side by Side