One of the tricks when viewing your prints is to be sure of the colour of the light you are viewing them with. This might sound obvious, but it can be sometimes overlooked in the excitement of reviewing your output. Of course, when you're printing, you're usually quite critical of the output (and rightly so), so if the lighting you're working with is a little warm or cool, this will impact the assessment of your freshly produced print.

Generally we want to view our prints under the same light they will be exhibited in, but often when we're printing, we have no idea where our prints will eventually be viewed. The solution is to view them under a neutral or at least a known light source.

The Ilford Ilfolux MKI Colour Viewing Lamp is compact, portable and affordable (at around AUS $165). It features a built-in diffuser which doesn't emit UV radiation (which can incorrectly affect the print assessment process) and you can flick between four different colour standards: 3000K for tungsten-balanced lighting, 4000K for a middle warm light, 5000K (the printer's standard) and 6500K for daylight balanced light. The LED lamp module can be dimmed as required and has an expected life of 40,000 hours.

The unit itself includes a sturdy base or there's a desk mounting clamp, so one way or another, you can create a semi-permanent set-up near your printer. The lights can be positioned using adjustable arms and while one Ilfolux MKI will do the trick, two lights will enable you to more evenly illuminate and assess larger prints.

For more information, contact C. R. Kennedy.