Update: Do not calibrate your external monitor with a Mac. See here.

In a previous post, I noted that my iMac prevented me from installing calibration software downloaded from the Asus website. I sent a message off to Asus technical support, but they’re pretty shiite. Apple support is better by miles. I since learned that the X-Rite i1Profiler is supposed to yield results superior to that of Asus’ proprietary software anyway. Another issue, not mentioned by any reviewers I’m aware of, is that the i1 Display Pro included with the PA32UCX-K is not an HDR calibrator. For that, you’ll need an i1 Display Pro Plus, which runs $299.00 in the States, and which, to the best of my knowledge, is unavailable in Vietnam. And while the PA32UCX comes with one Thunderbolt 3 cable, which is connected to my Blackmagic UltraStudio 4K Mini, I’d recommend picking up an extra 1.5 meter cable for other tasks, like browsing the Web. That out of the way, here’s my current calibration workflow, with the caveat that I’m still a novice at this sort of thing and for sure I’ve gotten a few things backwards! Be sure to let the monitor warm up for thirty minutes to an hour before calibration.

1. In System Preferences > Energy Saver, choose settings to prevent the display from turning off while performing calibration. It’s also advisable to turn off screensaver.

2. In System Preferences > Display, make sure PA32UCX is selected.

3. If not, go into System Preferences > Display > Color and select PA32UCX.

4. In the OSD, check Thunderbolt.

5. Every mode in the OSD allows calibration except for sRGB.

6. Set brightness.

7. No need to go higher than 80 for contrast!

8. Set color temperature to 6500K.

9. Black Level 50.

10. Gamma 2.2.

11. Click on Display Profiling from the Home screen.

12. Click on PA32UCX, choose White LED, D65, Gamma 2.2. I’ve selected native luminance because I find 120 nits too dim.

13. On the next screen, leave default settings as shown.

14. Choosing the large patch size on the following screen will take more time but hopefully be more accurate!

15. Leave ADC unchecked and proceed with measurement.

16. With the i1 Display Pro connected to a USB port of the monitor, place the calibrator on the screen as shown.

17. When finished, remove the calibrator and set it on the desk near the monitor.

18. Save settings.

19. Save the profile.

20. Return to the Home screen and click on Quality.

21. Select PA32UCX.

22. Begin measurement.

The report isn’t quite as good as I expected, probably because I didn’t let the monitor warm up long enough.
Screen Shot 2019-12-22 at 12.47.48 AM
My iMac fared much better, but I was using it for several hours before running calibration.

Meanwhile, putting the Asus to the test, here is my very first attempt at correcting skin tones in HLG HDR.

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