Originally Posted by TenoBell "In our Extreme Grayscale Bars and Intensity and Grayscale tests, the display scored higher than any previous display we've tested.CNET
Wow! That's quite a review.
It's exactly this kind of performance that will make this panel appeal to professionals. In the real world, grayscale banding is one of the biggest problems, and you're never quite sure if you've retouched an image properly and what's going to come off the press! Hopefully this level of gradient reproduction will reduce the number of nasty surprises!
I could have used a display like this last year, when I had to retouch a series of full-colour watercolour paintings that had to be reproduced via variety of production methods (including flexography).http://www.mcclellands.co.uk/product-range/
Between the delicate and subtle tones of the watercolour, and the minimum dot size of the flexography process, comping and retouching Kathy's illustrations proved quite challenging! As the lead designer, I can tell you that it took a team of about a dozen of us, including an uber-experienced artworker and some really top-notch printers, to tweak those illustrations so that they all looked as though they were part of a set - across a wide variety of production methods.
This project was without doubt one of the hardest I have been involved in - even worse than working with jewellery!
In the end, we were even tweaking the various print processes on press. We got to the point where we were even able to tell the difference between 1% iterations of process yellow, on press. Unbelievable I know, there will be a lot of experienced print designers out there who will scoff at that claim, but we spent that much time pouring over the repro that that's what it came to. From their reactions, I think it was the first time that the pressmen had worked with designers who were willing to take the time to make sure that the final outcome was a close to perfection as humanly possible.
[rant]So, to all you so called 'professionals' out there, who claim that the iMacs glossy screen is suitable for pro level work – this is where your argument falls flat on its arse, and where your definition of 'pro' is revealed as stopping short of the mark.
There are a lot of tinkerers out there who are self proclaimed 'professionals'.[/rant]
We originally used glossy screen iMacs on this project, and found them to be entirely unsuitable. Whilst you might be able to get away with using a glossy iMac with more forgiving mediums like photography, when it comes to delicate watercolour illustrations, the artificially boosted colour saturation and contrast results in an on-screen representation that is nowhere near what's going on in the real world. Throw in different substrates and technical considerations like flexographys minimum dot, and you've created a rod for your own back. When we moved to Cinema Displays, we were quite shocked at the difference - it literally sent a shiver up our spine when we realised the mess that we would have gotten ourselves into had we continued using the iMacs.
Whilst the matte Cinema Displays aren't perfect, the beauty of their 'neutral' reproduction is that they don't artificially boost what you are working with. You aren't lulled into a false sense of security. Which makes perfect sense, because how can you expect a low cost consumer device like the iMac to be able to do the same job as proper 'pro' kit. And yet there remain plenty of self appointed professionals out there who still claim that the iMac is suitable for pro work.
The glossy nature of the new Cinema Display severely limits its real world applications, and amongst 'real professionals' remains a deal-breaker. I don't know any artworkers or photographers that genuinely work in darkened colour-critical rooms. The people doing the real day-to-day spadework rarely get a chance to pick their working environment. If this display is limited to those lucky enough to work in these perfect conditions, then Apple aren't going to sell too many of these displays. And let's face facts – those that are prepared to go to the lengths of creating a dedicated colour critical room will be buying Eizos rather than Apple Cinema Displays.
But I'm glad to hear that the LED backlit panel itself is capable of such fine reproduction – it's just a pity that it's hidden behind a sheet of reflective glass that makes the whole exercise moot.