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Review of myPantone App
By Sew Heidi on Aug, 22 2014

I was super excited to play around with the myPantone app (downloaded from the iTunes app store for $9.99 or the Google Play store for $7.99 ) and see how well it performed.  What I wanted to explore most was how well it captured color from a photograph.  I did a test to see how colors the app picked compared to colors I picked (I consider my eye to be quite well trained) using a real physical Pantone book. 

I chose to work with 2 different color palettes to see how they compared - bright colors and muted colors.  I pulled 2 of my favorite garments from my closet and took photographs of them using my iPhone 5S in what I would consider neutral (white) light.  Before using the app, I decided to pick the colors manually from my Pantone book so I wouldn’t be biased by what the app picked. 

myPantone review - bright pattern

myPantone review - muted pattern

While I consider myself to have a pretty good eye for color, you can already see that on screen my selections don’t all look amazing.  I’m very aware of all of the variables that occur when translating colors via cameras and computer screens, and at this point the glimmer of hope that I had that somehow the myPantone app would be magic and match colors perfectly started to fade (if I had been honest with myself from the beginning I would have admitted I knew this to be true all along). 

Now began the fun part, picking colors with the app.  In general, I was very pleased overall with how the app functioned.  It’s pretty user friendly, easy to browse different fan books, search for colors, and create palettes.
 
myPantone review - pantone app

I was easily able to pick a photo from my phone to use as a reference, and the app automatically picked an assortment of colors as a starting point.  I did some adjustments to the palette by running my finger over the photo to magnify sections and pick what I thought were better matches. 

myPantone review - pick a photo

I can even get more information on any of the selected color if I need.

myPantone review - picking colors

Once I got everything dialed in, I was able to choose to share the palette via email.  The email comes through pretty nicely, with a preview of the palette and 3 different palette attachments ready to load in your software of choice (.ase for Adobe, .color for Amaya, and .qcl for QuarkXPress). 

myPantone review - email the palette

While I’m very pleased with everything up to this point, I was really hoping that the photo used to make the palette was included in the email, but it wasn’t.  A minor complaint but something I’d love to be changed in the future.

So, how did my color palettes compare from what I picked in real life to what I picked in the app?  I would say just okay…I did have one perfect match, but otherwise a lot of the colors are quite different.  Choosing colors from a photo is never going to be quite as accurate as choosing them from a real tangible object, so the level of expectation has to be realistic.

myPantone review - matched colors for bright print

myPantone review - matched colors for muted print

Final Conclusion? Overall, I’m pleased and would spend the $9.99 again.  I love the idea of being able to create palettes on the go when I’m out shopping or to be able to take a quick photo of something and create a reference palette.  While I would never use the app for accurate color selection (which it warns against), it’s a great tool for “sketching” your palettes quickly when you’re out and about.  If you need accurate color matches, best to do that the good ol’ fashioned way with a real life Pantone book in hand.


Thanks for reading and please share with friends!.

Make sure to visit Heidi’s website at sewheidi.com for lots of great tips and goodies!