UK photographers waste almost £10,000 per year in lost time and printing costs by not colour calibrating their equipment, a survey has claimed.

Digital cameras, monitors, printers and scanners reproduce colours differently, meaning that the image colours on a computer monitor may fail to match those delivered by a printer, for example.

Colour-management software helps the photographer achieve more accurate and consistent results.

The poll, by colour-management software maker X-Rite, found that the lack of screen colour calibration costs UK photographers an average of £5,200 per year – equivalent to 4 ½ hours a week in colour correction.

White balance editing costs £3,700 per year, while wasted ink and paper from inaccurate prints accounts for £1,000.

While 80% of UK photographers said they owned colour-management equipment, only 21% said they colour calibrated their mobile device.

The total time lost through lack of white-balance control or screen calibration is the equivalent to one working day per week, according to X-Rite, which received responses from around 300 UK photographers who attended its trade shows and competitions across Europe in 2014 and 2015.

‘On average, a lack of print colour management will mean 27 photographers throwing away a tree’s worth of paper per year,’ claims X-Rite.

The UK results were among nearly 500 responses that X-Rite received from photographers across Europe.

Geoffrey Clements, managing director of X-Rite Photo Europe, said: ‘Talking to our customers, we have known that the benefits of superior image quality, consistency and peace of mind when editing are all powerful reasons why photographers and videographers use X-Rite’s world leading colour management solutions.’

He added: ‘This survey has, for the first time, given us clear data on how much time is being lost by photographers who aren’t using colour management.

‘It shows that photographers at all levels should realise the benefits of time and money savings when they start utilising colour management in their workflow.’

X-Rite produces colour-management software to create a profile for all a photographer’s devices.

‘A profile provides a description of each device’s colour gamut – the range of reproducible colour,’ explains the firm on its website.

‘You use these profiles in your workflow, and the result is an accurate translation from one device to the next, giving you consistent, predictable colour.’

X-rite survey infographic-UK