ColorHug is shipping

ColorHug is shipping

After two months in development the first batch of ColorHugs, open colorimeters by Richard Hughes, are arriving to the first 50 customers.

ColorHug was first announced in November 2011 along with opening of preorders. The device is a small, cheap and blazing fast colorimeter with open schematics and firmware. All the code, including firmware and schematics, is available at Gitorious under terms of GPL and can be freely reused to produce your own colorimeter.


Shortly after the initial announcement Richard proceeded with improving the device, both hardware and firmware.

On the hardware side ColorHug got a smaller printed circuit board and it's now in a black box instead of the former clear box. There also is an IR filter in the aperture assembly now to let only visible light be read by the sensor.

ColorHug PCB

On the software side there have been several changes. The most important one is that now you can chain together CCMX matrices internally. What it means is that you always have a factory calibration, and you can apply a custom matrix on top of that to adapt the device to a specific display technology.

CCMX loader

The client's user interface got a few cleanups and is now available in over 20 languages thanks to the community. This new version is now available for downloading.

The previous version of the client got a somewhat controversial feature: remote deactivation of a device that is reported to be missing or stolen. The rationale behind that decision is that most people who ordered the device chose the cheapest shipping without tracking which makes it more vulnerable.

ColorHug deactivated

Given that quality of post services varies from country to country, and the seller is supposed to refund the price of missing or stolen goods, this could be viewed as a halfhearted measure against frauds. It doesn't stop fraudsters, but makes their life a bit more difficult. The check happens only when the user tries to fetch new firmware, so network connection isn't even required for the device to work.

Either way, parcels with the first batch are already arriving. First reports say that the current version of firmware produces colored blacks in vcgt for some displays, but that's hopefully going to be fixed with the next firmware update.

The device currently works on Linux only, with Windows drivers being a work in progress. Work on Mac drivers by volunteers hasn't started yet.

If you wish to follow evolution of ColorHug closely, the project has a Google+ page and a mailing list.

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4 Responses. Comments closed for this entry.

  1. Oh,oh,oh!
    Can’t wait to get mine!
    Alas, I havent heard anything so I guess I’m not among those 50 first. :(

  2. Kevin Brubeck Unhammer 12 January 2012 at 2:35 pm

    Waiting for mine too :-) I’m not among the first 50 so will have to be patient I guess. More time to save up for a real monitor in the meantime …

  3. Now there is no more excuse for not supporting color management on Linux :-)

    (waiting for mine)

  4. Thanks for creating and sharing the new thing by the help of Mechatronics. Actually i want to say some thing to Mr Hub,the thing is that every electronics instruments have some limitation and disadvantage. So this is not a excuse. This is fact.