Datacolor Spyder5 Elite review

Is this colorimeter worth your time?

Datacolor Spyder5 Elite review

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The Spyder5 Elite is an excellent tool for professionals hoping to get the most accurate output from their laptops or external displays. Coupled with the bundled Spyder Utility software, those obsessed about color accuracy in their workflow can learn a lot about their monitors and what is happening beneath the glass.

We liked

The built-in ambient light sensor on the Elite model that we reviewed – also found on the Pro model – makes it easy to calibrate a display under standard office environments without having to turn off the room lights. The Spyder5 Elite offers plenty of options for calibration, including an expert mode with unlimited calibration settings and advanced gray balancing. The Display Analysis tool allows users to gain a better understanding of their displays with a detailed report on the different display components covering saturation, brightness and contrast.

We disliked

There isn't much to dislike about the Spyder5 Elite. At $279 (£180, AU$356), the Elite is a pricy model with advanced features that may be overkill for the average consumer. Users who want a more straightforward calibration tool can opt for lesser expensive models, like the Spyder5 Express ($129, £83, AU$165) or the Spyder5 Pro ($189, £122, AU$241). Likely, the Pro model will hit the sweet spot for most users, coming with the ambient light sensor of the Elite.

Final verdict

The Spyder5 Elite is an excellent tool for graphics and video professionals working in studio environments demanding accurate color, contrast and saturation from their work. Compact enough for easy portability when traveling, the Spyder5 Elite not only lets you calibrate, check for calibration and quickly recalibrate, but it also provides tools to help you understand your display and its strengths and weaknesses.