Photographing LCD screens, a challenge

PMYP-050800-electr-1My PMY column about testing NMEA 2000 is in print and online now, but something odd happened during the production process. It opens with a picture of the NMEA test setup aboard my little outboard boat, Gizmo. The screen on the laptop is naturally quite blown out in the open sunlight, so the PMY page designer asked the “color house” to goose it up a bit. Actually, this is often necessary to make photographs of LCD screens look more realistic, since a camera is nowhere near as agile as the human eye. But someone in the color house took a shortcut and simply copied the Raymarine E screen onto to the laptop, creating a very unrealistic image. Nobody noticed until it was printed.

Ralph test boat 2

At any rate, above is another image of the two NMEA 2000 plotters, plus a Standard Horizon CP1000, aboard my other test boat. It’s unretouched, meaning all the screens actually seemed brighter in reality, but it does show (bigger here) how comparatively bright the Raymarine E is (though note that the screens are not in direct sunlight, so transflective properties are not evident). If there was a laptop in the scene, it would look darn dim. (A March article I wrote about the E series is also now online, though without pictures.)

Test boat #2, by the way, is the long neglected Ralph, which deserves an entry one day. But today the missus and I are headed off for a long weekend of cruising aboard, so there will be no entry tomorrow unless I come across an odd WiFi connection in the outer islands.

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

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