In The Desert
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Monitors - Cleaning
Why is this important? written by Larry Shaibley
If your taking photographs in the desert and want to correct them, resize them or optimizie them then this is an important set of guidelines for cleaning your monitor and keeping the colors accurate, especially for printing. This is especially important in the desert, with all the dust.
First what type of monitor do you have?
How to clean your monitor.
To clean a computer monitor which uses CRT technology, start by turning it off and totally unplugging it from the power source and your computer. Then, use an anti-static cloth or a very soft, clean cloth to wipe dust from the surface of the monitor. Next, spray a small amount of monitor or electronic appliance cleaning fluid onto the cloth, and rub the cloth consistently in one direction: top to bottom is a common choice. When you are done, use a dry cloth to dry the monitor right away. Never spray cleaning fluid directly onto the monitor, as it can damage the monitor and other computer components.
If you have a LCD monitor, the process to clean it is slightly different because the screen is more fragile. As with a CRT monitor, you should power down and fully unplug your LCD monitor before you clean it. To clean a computer monitor with LCD technology, start with an anti-static or very soft cloth and gently wipe dust from the surface of the monitor. Next, put a solution of rubbing alcohol or cider vinegar and water onto a cloth and wipe the monitor, always moving in the same direction, and follow by gently drying the monitor.
Some people have plasma monitors, which are similar in some ways to LCD monitors. To clean a computer monitor that uses gas or plasma, follow the directions for cleaning an LCD monitor, but use a special fluid designed for plasma monitors. When you clean a computer monitor with LCD or plasma, make sure that you do not use abrasive cleaning fluids such as those containing ammonia, because they can damage the screen, causing it to turn brittle, yellow, or crack in extreme cases. Try to avoid touching both types of monitors with any object, as they are highly delicate and can break or become dented.
If you clean a computer monitor on a regular basis, you will find your computing experience in general more pleasant, as you will not be forced to peer around streaks and dust on the screen. You can also clean other components like your case and keyboard at the same time, eliminating pet hair, dust, dirt, accumulated food particles, and other unsavory visitors. Depending on the amount of animals and children in your home, you should clean a computer monitor every three to six months, or whenever it is obviously dirty. And if you include monitor cleaning every week, along with all your regular cleaning chores, you can use a clean Micro Fiber cloth with plain water. The cloth should be just barely damp, so make sure you wring it out really well. The dampened Micro Fiber cloth is also the best way to clean your LCD/LED/Plasma TV screens. And since you're using plain water, there's no chance of you damaging anything
Monitors - Color Accuracy
Ever try to print a photo only to find that the colors don't match what your seeing on the monitor? Do the colors on your monitor look off? Is there a blue or green cast to all your photos? This may not be a problem associated with you camera, but may well be a color accuracy problem with you monitor. It's easy enough to fix in Windows 7, but doing that way is not the most accruate way of accomplishing this, and windows 7 will tell you that. It does work but the best way to use a color calibrator on your monitor. They are not that expensive and in fact the least expensive one from Datacolor is only $89.00. It is what they call a Spyder. When you see how they work and what they look like you'll know why. We use one and it's amazing the differences from before and after, and you'll get better results from your printer.
This an older version of the Spyder 3 but it still works great on our monitors. The one shown here is sitting on the LCD screen and is coupled into the computer via a USB connection. The Spyder software is running in the background and is on the monitor ready to take readings. This is done with different colors and takes about 20 to complete.
Now for this to work correctly you'll have to clean your monitor and keep it clean!
This is the before screen. The program gives you a before and after screen to show the newly updated color ICC profile. This profile will now control every- thing you see on your monitor and your printer.
The before here is not accurate because of a new monitor and computer system we just bought.
This is the after screen and it's obvious what an improvement the Spyder 3 has made in the color calibration on this monitor. If your taking a lot of photos then consider investing in a color calibrator like this. The before screen shown above had too much green!