X-Rite EyeOne spectrophotometer X-Rite 530 Spectrodensitometer A spectrophotometer is a device for measuring light intensity by measuring the wavelength of light. The most common application of spectrophotometers in the printing industry is the measurement of light absorption.
A spectrophotometer will illuminate the sample for measurement with white light. The sample will absorb some of that light and reflect a portion back. The reflected light passes through a detector which splits the light into separate wavelength intervals, and outputs those values to the device itself or an attached computer. The reflectance of a sample is expressed as a fraction or as a percentage.
Ink & paper manufacturers, printing companies, and others, need the data provided by a spectrophotometer. Spectrophotometers commonly take readings every 10 nanometers along the visible wavelengths(400-700nm), and produce a spectral reflectance curve. These curves can be used to make sure a color conforms to a given specification.