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A colorimeter is a tri-stimulus (three-filtered) device that uses red, green, and blue filters to mimic the way humans perceive color. It works by shining an internal light source onto the surface of the sample. As the light reflects back to the device, it passes through three filters: red, green and blue. The filters distill these RGB values to quantify how our eyes will see that color.

Colorimeter Applications

Colorimeters are commonly used to calibrate computer monitors. They can also capture color and do basic evaluation for applications that don’t require tight color control. Because they are portable, designers like to use them to specify colors for use in designs.

However, colorimeters are not a replacement for spectrophotometers or formulation tools since they don’t account for metamerism, a common phenomenon that occurs when two colors appear to match under one lighting condition but not when the light changes.

Spectrophotometers are more comprehensive in their measurement, as they measure and provide color data on the entire spectrum instead of just red, green and blue. Read our blog post, "Colorimeters vs. Spectrophotometers" to learn more about these differences. 

Featured Colorimeters


The RM200QC Imaging Spectrocolorimeter is designed to provide stable color comparisons for materials and products wherever color control is important. It is an elegant, portable instrument that fits comfortably in your hand or pocket to take with you wherever you go – from the quality control lab to the manufacturing floor to supplier inspections in the field.


i1Display Pro

i1Display Pro ColorimeterThe i1Display Pro ensures a perfectly calibrated and profiled display while delivering the speed, options and flexibility needed to maintain color accuracy . Features include an intuitive all-in-one design, blazing fast speed, and the flexibility to manage color across a range of devices, from monitors to projectors.


Is A Colorimeter Right For You?

If you’re not sure which color measurement tool is best for your business, let us help you! Contact us, and one of our color experts will reach out to help you choose the right colorimeter, densitometer, or spectrophotometer for your business.

Need a Quote? Contact Sales(888) 800-9580

Technical Questions? Contact Support(888) 826-3042