January 4, 2021
Importance of Visual Assessment in Industrial Color
Visual evaluation of a product’s color is an important step in a color management workflow. Brand owners, product designers, and manufacturers across the supply chain need to evaluate color under a standard light source to ensure consistent color quality throughout the design and manufacturing process.
To help achieve this goal industries have developed international standards for the viewing of color and making visual assessments of a color match. Industrial color applications (plastics, paints, textiles, automotive, etc.) have adopted ASTM D1729 as their standard, which specifies D65 daylight viewing conditions. ASTM D1729 requires that viewing conditions meet strict specifications regarding color quality, light intensity, evenness of illumination, viewing/illumination geometry, and surround conditions.
- Color Quality: D65 is the specified daylight source for ASTM D1729-16. Other sources (Cool White Fluorescent, TL83, illuminant A, etc.) are specified for color matching and the detection of metamerism.
- Light Intensity: The standard provides a target intensity range that allows for full tonal visibility of dark samples without over illuminating light samples. For very light materials the illumination can be as low as 540 lux, materials of medium lightness should be illuminated between 810 and 1880 lux, and dark materials can be illuminated as high as 2150 lux.
- Evenness: Evenness is ensured by measuring illuminance at several evenly distributed points in the viewing area. Illumination should be at least 968 lux (20% of 1210) and not more than 1462 lux at all points on the viewing surface.
- Surround: The surround and backing shall be neutral and matte gray. Munsell N7/ neutral gray paint is used by GTI Graphic Technology, Inc.
- Geometry: Optimal light source and sample viewing geometry will depend on the characteristics (surface type, lightness/darkness) of the sample. 90 degree, 45 degree, and variable angled viewing geometry are recommended depending on the sample.
The best way to ensure that you meet these requirements is to use a color matching booth that meets industry specifications. GTI manufactures industry compliant viewing systems ranging from small desktop viewers to floor stand models to complete color harmony rooms.
Premier Critical Color Inspection Systems
The GTI ColorMatcher series is offered in four standard sizes to accommodate nearly any size sample. Each includes five light sources, ColorGuard II, a push button “Instant On” lamp selector, automatic light source sequencing, and are supplied with a certificate of product conformance (NIST traceable). ColorMatchers are available as a desktop model or with a range of floor stands and storage options.
Compact and Affordable Color Matching Systems
GTI MiniMatcher viewing and inspection systems provide a compact, affordable, and effective method for the viewing and inspection of colored products. The MM-1e and MM-2e provide three standard light sources while the MM-4e, MM-2448e, and MM-2460e include five.
Large Sample Color Viewing
For locations where a color viewing booth is not practical, GTI’s multi-source overhead luminaires can provide a cost-effective solution for standardized viewing. Overhead luminaires are offered in two styles. GLL luminaires need to be hard wired into a switched circuit while GLE luminaires include a control panel and plug into a standard power outlet. Luminaires are available in 3’ to 6’ lengths with two to five light sources. Multiple luminaires can be linked together to cover larger areas.
The GTI Color Harmony Inspection System (CHIS) is ideal for viewing large products such as automobiles, furnishings, and recreational equipment. The CHIS is available in three sizes and features three independently controlled luminaires with three light levels, multiple angles of illumination, and a wireless remote.
Color Harmony Rooms
GTI will work with you to conceptualize, develop specifications, and design the right color harmony room for your products, facility, and inspection needs. If needed, GTI will also develop a scaled prototype room at our facility to ensure that the intensity and angles of illumination meet your requirements.
All of GTI’s CMlite color matching products conform to industry viewing standards including ASTM D1729, ISO 3668, SAE J361, and AATCC Procedure #9 and have a CIE rating of B/C based on CIE Publication 51, one of the highest in the industry. GTI is a leading manufacturer of lighting systems for critical color matching, inspection, and aesthetic approval.
Contact GTI today for more information on our color viewing and color matching products.