Saturday, October 31, 2009

X-Rite ColorChecker Passport

I was lucky enough to get my hands on one of these and recently used it at the 2nd annual Family Fright Night held at the McKee Centre. Members of the club took photos of about 150 scarry little monsters (and some little princesses). We used the ColorChecker with each of the photographers.

Not all the results are in yet and not all the other members are going to get the benefit of the Lightroom Plug-In at this time. I have not started the editing yet for the Portraits but once I do I will report on this. From all accounts on the Internet the software is excellent and it makes color correction a snap.

The product itself was small and easy to carry in a pocket. It is well made as are other X-Rite products. So far I am very happy with this ColorChecker Passport. Below is some information from X-Rite.

Buy the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport from

Press Release: X-Rite Introduces ColorChecker Passport Into Digital Photography Raw Workflows – from Capture to Edit

All-new Hardware/Software Solution Also Offers Adobe® Imaging Solutions Users Even More Power With Seamless Integration of DNG Profiling & Many Other Passport Features

Grand Rapids, MI –September 15, 2009 – (NASDAQ: XRIT) X-Rite, Incorporated – the world leader in color management and measurement technologies ( today introduced ColorChecker Passport, an all-new solution for digital photographers working in a Raw workflow to quickly and easily capture accurate color, instantly enhance portraits and landscapes, and maintain color control from capture to edit. The powerful color control and creativity possible with the all-new X-Rite ColorChecker Passport are designed to be adopted into any Raw workflow – a solution made even more powerful when combined with Adobe® Imaging Solutions for those who want to benefit from DNG profile creation and the many other seamlessly integrated features of Passport. JPEG shooters benefit, as well.

“We developed ColorChecker Passport primarily for photographers working in a Raw workflow. It’s a powerful capture to edit solution for color control and creativity that becomes even more powerful for DNG profile creation when combined with Adobe Imaging Solutions. Users will benefit from the included Camera Calibration Application and Lightroom® Plug-In software to create Custom DNG Profiles that accommodate different lighting sources, even unusual artificial lighting. The extended functionality from the all-new camera calibration software also ensures an accurate color foundation, image to image and camera to camera,” states X-Rite Senior VP of Sales and Marketing Iris Mangelschots.

Introducing Raw Color Power From Capture To Edit
Based on X-Rite’s renowned ColorChecker product line, ColorChecker Passport allows those working in Raw to quickly and easily capture accurate color, instantly enhance portraits and landscapes and maintain color control from capture to edit – significantly reducing image processing time and improving quality control. In addition, ColorChecker Passport delivers valuable color control benefits to JPEG shooters.

This all-new hardware/software color solution comes in a durable, protective “passport” sized case for the ultimate in functionality and portability, and combines camera calibration software and three photographic targets.

The Total Package Comes With:
  • White Balance Target
  • Classic Target
  • Creative Enhancement Target
  • Camera Calibration Software
  • Protective Case & Lanyard
All-new Creative Enhancement Capabilities: The Look You Desire In A Few Clicks
Whether it’s a studio shot, a colorful landscape or a multiple scene photo event, ColorChecker Passport extends the power of photo editing software with one-click enhancements that articulate your inspiration in a fraction of the time.

The Enhancement Target also provides a visual reference for judging, controlling and editing images for shadow details, highlight clipping or color shifts. This includes multiple levels of warming and cooling patches for portraits and landscapes to help create pleasing and repeatable edits with a single click. When it comes to clipping, the all-new Passport Creative Enhancement target offers the ability to quickly verify any clipping and ensure that the image has optimal shadow and highlight detail as well as ensure color fidelity across all hues.

Extending An Industry Classic: Color Referencing For Specific Color Evaluation – PLUS DNG Profile Creation
The customary functionality of the Passport Classic Target is now extended with the included camera calibration software that produces DNG profiles of your camera’s response to the individual scene’s lighting. As a result, you get consistent, predictable and repeatable results from image to image and camera to camera. You can quickly establish an accurate color foundation, minimize color differences between cameras and lenses, and easily adapt for mixed lighting.

The Passport Classic Target still provides a built-in point of visual color reference. Photograph the Classic target in the same lighting as your images; then open it in your photo processing software as a reference to help with color correction.

The Classic Target also includes the 24 color reference patches, a long-time industry standard, with each patch representing the colors of natural objects, such as sky blue, skin tones and leaf green; and each patch reflecting light just like its real world counterpart. Each square is individually colored using a solid tone to produce pure, flat, rich color without dots or mixed tints.

The Classic target can help photographers make global corrections based on accurate information, saving hours of time by giving them a point of reference to see exactly how changes will affect the rest of the colors in an image before application.

White Balance Target: Capture True Colors from the Start
The ColorChecker Passport White Balance Target is a newly formulated spectrally flat target that provides a neutral reference point that reflects light equally across the visible spectrum, compensating for varying lighting conditions. With the Passport White Balance Target, you’ll be able to eliminate problems that can arise from inaccurate white balancing such as color casts, and improve camera display previews for more reliable histograms as well as speed up post-production editing by eliminating the need to neutralize each image individually.

All-new Camera Calibration Software: Custom DNG Profiles with Adobe Imaging Solutions for an Accurate Color Foundation
With the included ColorChecker Passport Camera Calibration Application and Lightroom® Plug-In, shooters can quickly and easily build DNG profiles for Adobe® Imaging solutions including Lightroom®, Photoshop®, Photoshop® Elements, Camera Raw (ACR) and Bridge.

This new advanced profiling technology provides excellent results with just the small 24-patch ColorChecker Classic target, producing DNG profiles that work exceptionally well, even in unusual artificial light sources. Whether shooting with just one camera, or multiple cameras, photographers can easily establish an accurate color foundation and maintain control of their colors.

Passport Camera Calibration advantages include:

  • Camera calibration for Raw shooters for greater capability to calibrate and correct color
  • Accurate color that provides a consistent foundation for creative interpretation
  • Minimized color differences between cameras and lenses
  • Automatic adaption for mixed lighting
  • Color balance matches across different scenes
  • Dual-illuminant profiles that take into account two different light sources in a single profile
Create Dual-Illuminant Profiles

A very powerful feature of the software is the ability to create dual-illuminant DNG profiles. This type of profile takes into account two different light sources to create a single profile, which can be applied to an even wider variety of lighting conditions. Dual-Illuminant profiles can be made with any two of twenty-one supported illuminants, allowing you to create a profile for just about any kind of lighting condition you may encounter. Dual-illuminant profiles allow you the freedom to move between the represented lighting conditions without switching profiles.

Great for JPEG Shooters, Too
From the start, ColorChecker Passport has great benefits for those who shoot in a JPEG workflow. You can ensure your JPEG files are captured correctly from the onset, giving you greater freedom to evaluate and optimize shadow details or highlight clippings as well as an excellent visual reference for color spectrum and color adjustments.

A Portable Protective Case: A Passport For Any Shoot
Rugged enough to take anywhere, small enough to fit into a camera bag or pocket, the protective casing adjusts to multiple positions to self-stand, providing the flexibility to place the targets exactly where needed and includes a lanyard for additional convenience for scene placement.

“With ColorChecker Passport, you can expect much faster image processing time, improved quality control, all in a cool little package that you can take anywhere,” Mangelschots confirms.

See For Yourself: Passport Featured On All-new Website
To view ColorChecker Passport’s features and benefits in action, visit and click on the product page to view a ColorChecker Passport video. Featuring pro photographer and X-Rite Coloratti Seth Resnick, the video is one of the many informative tools available on the all-new website. is both an online resource center and virtual community for anyone interested in digital photography to learn, explore, and exchange ideas about color.

(Version 1.01 - October 2009)

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- Francois Cleroux