Panel Match – When Matching to a Standard Isn’t Enough Reply

If you’ve ever used a spectrophotometer for color QC, you probably have a general idea of how it works: measure a standard or use a stored one, then measure the sample. The color difference is calculated, and if that difference falls below a certain level it means the sample is a good color match to the standard, and the product is ready to be shipped. The assumption here is that any parts that are a good color match to the standard will also be a good color match to each other, and this is unfortunately not true. Two samples can be a good match to the standard, both visually and instrumentally, but may not be an acceptable match to each other. This is where the panel match function comes in.

Take a look at the set of three flooring tiles below:








Each tile is labeled on the back with a 1, 2, or 3, and when placed in numeric order as above, they appear to be a good color match to each other. But look what happens when we switch Tiles 2 and 3:


Suddenly the tiles don’t appear to match! Nothing has changed about the tiles themselves, only the configuration in which we’re viewing them. To understand the cause of the apparent mismatch, we look to the color data:


Here we see that Tile 2 is slightly lighter, less green, and less yellow than Tile 1. This trend continues when comparing Tile 3 to Tile 2. However, the color differences between Tiles 1 and 2 are not large enough to be discerned visually, nor are the differences between Tiles 2 and 3. We can see from the table and color plot below that when Tile 2 is used as the standard, Tiles 1 and 3 both fall within tolerance:


However, if we set Tile 1 as the standard:


Suddenly Tile 3 is no longer within tolerance! This explains why the colors appear to match when lined up in numerical order, but when the order is switched such that we are directly comparing tiles 1 and 3, they no longer appear to match. Now suppose Tile 2 is used as the master standard and Tiles 1 and 3 are production parts. Tile 1 would be measured against Tile 2 and found to be an acceptable match, as would Tile 3. When the customer goes to install Tiles 1 and 3 side-by-side however, they would be upset to find that the tiles do not match! This is why when testing parts that will end up being viewed next to each other, it is necessary to compare those parts not only to the master standard, but to each other as well. This is where the panel match function comes in; by using Organizers in BYK-Gardner’s smart-chart software, when a color reading is taken of a sample to compare to the standard, another sample can be selected to compare the reading with as well. This ensures that not only will production parts match the desired color standard, but will also be a good visual match to other samples when viewed in a real-world setting.

Transparent Sheets Reply

Light weight and high design flexibility make transparent plastic sheets attractive for use as “organic glass” in many different applications, e.g., noise barriers, green houses, sport arenas, sky domes, solar panels or bus stop shelters. In addition, rigidity and impact resistance of acrylic (PMMA) and polycarbonate (PC) sheets were optimized expanding its usage for safety and architectural glazing as well as for automotive, aircraft, yacht or caravan applications. Depending on the application, the transparency requirements will be very different and need to be objectively controlled – often within very tight specification. More…

NEW BYK-Gardner Digital Catalog 2016 1

The 2016 BYK-Gardner Catalog with new color, appearance and physical test products, new application stories for trouble shooting, new free services for continuing education, new practical tips how to set tolerances and perform tests including an update on international standards is now available in a downloadable digital format. More…

Harmonization of Automotive Interior Parts Reply

How many hours do you spend in your car? Most likely you will say “many”. Therefore, the interior design needs to reflect a comfortable ambience. Color and grain of the different components need to be harmonized. At the same time, low gloss is required to avoid any reflections in the windshield disturbing the driver. In order to achieve these goals, the variety of materials is the big challenge for every car manufacturer.


The Objective Eye for Consistent Color and Appearance Reply

A world without color and shine, wouldn’t this be boring? Decorative coatings can be encountered every day and everywhere: on furniture, building facades, bridges and refrigerators. Even “White Goods” are no longer necessarily white, but exhibit fascinating color looks – from very elegant stainless steel to metallic effects on to colorful, glossy or textured surfaces.

Coatings are fascinating. Not much thicker than a human hair, they combine a variety of functions. Besides the requirement to look perfect under different lighting conditions, they are also expected to retain their good look over a long time and even when being exposed to harsh environments. More…

Transparency Measurement Reply

Did you ever walk into a glass door? The challenge is to make the product “invisible”, i.e. homogenous without any irregularities. Transparency is more than just the ability to transmit light. The perceived quality of a transparent product is dependent on how “good” we can see the objects behind it. It can appear crystal clear, hazy or unsharp. The human eye can perceive fine variations in sharpness as well as loss of contrast.


The Objective Eye for a Clear View Reply

Our modern high-tech world is no longer imaginable without transparent products. We are so used to their “invisibility” that we only notice them if defects diminish their transparency, and consequently, their final usage. If due to varying quality of the packaging film the same chocolates appear different on the shelf, the nice holiday photos appear hazy on the smart phone, or the motorcycle helmet’s face shield easily gets scratched – then, all of this will affect our quality expectation and can even become a hazardous risk. More…

FREE BYK-Gardner Orange Peel Webinar Reply

Objective Evaluation of Orange Peel with wave-scan

December 1, 2016 at 10:00 am EST


What influences our visual perception of appearance? How can the structure spectrum data be used to optimize appearance?

It is a daily challenge to achieve uniform surface appearance and at the same time meet the specifications of different auto OEM makers. Main influencing factors of our visual perception are the observation distance and the ratio of different structure sizes. As orange peel is highly influenced by material as well as processing parameters a good understanding of the measurement results will help you to achieve “Harmony”. Attend the webinar to learn more!


Join our Free BYK-Gardner Webinar:

Dec. 1st at 10:00am (EST)

In only 60 minutes you will learn what influences your visual perception and how to optimize the measurement results:

  •   How is orange peel and DOI of high gloss surfaces measured?
  •   How to interpret the structure spectrum?
  •   What material- and process parameters can influence Orange Peel and DOI?
  •   Customer specific auto OEM scales: R – CF – Tension – B-value?
  •   How low gloss can the surface be to get meaningful data with wave-scan?

Presented by Henrik Folkerts, Technical Marketing, BYK-Gardner

Register Now!

Click HERE to register for your FREE Webinar on Objective Evaluation of Orange Peel with wave-scan! 



Haze Measurement of Ballistic Resistance Glass and Protective Shields 1

Specialty glass manufacturers are developing ballistic resistance windshields for civilian and military vehicles. The windshields consist of various layers of polycarbonate materials that contain adhesives as well as protective layers of film. Various thicknesses are application dependent. Military vehicle protective shields require superior protection due to the increase in ballistic firepower in war zones.

Thickness variations have a direct correlation to the pass-through quality of available light, night or day. BYK-Gardner’s haze-gard i technology is used to measure total light transmittance as well as haze and clarity of various products. The goal is to produce a durable product by maintaining ballistic properties and improving visual attributes.

Image courtesy of Dr. Michelle Dickinson at the blog: Ongoing Chatter from a Materials Girl Curious about Matter.

Andy Stummer is the American PTE Business Manager for BYK-Gardner USA.

FREE BYK-Gardner Gloss Webinar Reply

Gloss in Theory and in Practice

April 14, 2016, 10am Eastern Time

(Available in different time zones around the world here)

Whether matte or glossy – products with gloss variations are perceived as lower quality and can result in customer complaints. Gloss changes could be the result of a variety of process parameters as well as material properties. Objective and reliable measurement data with defined limits are the prerequisite for a stable production process. More…