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Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 7:35 pm ]
Post subject:  GemeWizard

Update 8 February 2010
Due to possible issues with copyright, beginning January 1st 2010, Gemewizard will provide online demo versions of its products instead of the free trial versions.

The following several posts were dated when GemeWizard offered a free online version.
* * * *

GemeWizard Inc. is a pioneer in the development of software and hardware that provides solutions for professionals involved in the colored gemstone, fancy color diamond and jewelry industries, enabling the analysis, description and communication of color in gems. The company was founded and developed by Menahem Sevdermish, an internationally recognized authority on gem commercialization and gemstone processing. GemeWizard maintains a research and development center in Israel and a sales and support center in the United States. For further information, visit the company's website at

Author:  keyla [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:01 pm ]
Post subject: 

This is great! Now maybe I can finally figure out what color my topaz really is... :D

Author:  Jason [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:11 pm ]
Post subject: 


I am excited. Can you tell? :D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

Author:  Casandra [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:53 pm ]
Post subject: 

I really liked the program just because I like fooling around with software - we were given 6 month versions when I did the GG program as part of the color grading portion of the course. I found it a useful tool for learning, but I also liked the almost antique color cards (the ones with the little plastic gemstones) so I used them together to learn the system. I don't think anything would replace reference stones and years of experience. But, as for a way of communicating colors.... this is going to be hard. The main obstacle is that while you may take time to calibrate your monitor, will the person you are communicating with ever calibrate theirs? Most people aren't even aware of the process. Aside from that I think it is a great concept and a very useful tool.

I am excited that there is a free version because I have wanted to "revisit" it. I subscribe to The Guide and journals so the slush fund has been exhausted already.

Author:  Ben P [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:02 pm ]
Post subject: 

This is really awesome. I used this when it was back when it came out and was in "testing" mode from their website, then they stopped the trial. Glad they opened it up again, it will help educate people more about its use.

Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:07 pm ]
Post subject: 

I think that color calibration in monitors has evolved significantly over the past few years. It's not the issue it was even 24 months ago in my opinion.

Of course if one has an older monitor it will not be a perfect solution. But I have always preferred GemeWizard to the old plastic GIA color paddles.
The human eye has very poor color memory. Just as one needs master diamonds to help in assigning proper diamond color, it is useful to have a guide for color comparison.

Author:  GEMFRANCE [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:13 pm ]
Post subject: 

This is really good news. I am going to plan to use it with my website.

Author:  Casandra [ Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:33 pm ]
Post subject: 

Barbra Voltaire wrote:
I have always preferred GemeWizard to the old plastic GIA color paddles. The human eye has very poor color memory. Just as one needs master diamonds to help in assigning proper diamond color, it is useful to have a guide for color comparison.
I agree completely - I just found the plastic stone sets (they weren't the paddles) useful as I began to learn the system which I wasn't familiar with before. The program takes that many steps forward with its ability to communicate color to others via all the electronic toys we have now. My comment on calibration comes from too many years work with website building and Adobe Photoshop - it was something we debated when GemeWizard first came out. I am looking forward to testing it out again.

Nothing substitutes for the real thing of course. At GIT, in their museum, there is a display of actual stones representing color grading.... that was a real education for the eye! and worth going to see if you are in the area.

Author:  bradscopegems [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 5:58 am ]
Post subject:  Identifying colours

I have not tried the new computer-based method yet, but I am a bit worried about measurements based on camera images. In my experience, cameras differ and do not correspond exactly to human colour perception, even when the colour temperature is set according to the lamp. For example, my digital Nikon DS and Nikon S1 camera images show much less neodymium colour shift on changing from tungsten to fluorescent than is visible to the eye, whereas a Nikon Coolpix 950 is about the same as the eye.
I am looking at spectra of various lamps at the moment, including the OTT lamp , standard fluorescents, halogen and daylight and it is obvious that for a photo to have any meaning, the type of lamp used as well as the type of camera chip need to be specified. Visually, different fluorescent tubes show the 'tourmalike' glass as grass green or dull olive brownish, while daylight shows it a russet red and it is a rich wine red in halogen lamps. Neodymium glass is colourless under some fluorescent tubes, blue under others, pink in tungsten halogen.
These examples are of colour-changing gems, but other
materials show similar variations.

Author:  Patrick [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:55 am ]
Post subject:  other obstacles than calibration

It's not just calibration. Provided all partners involved calibrate with the same profile and on an almost daily basis, there are still many other variables at play:

1) lighting conditions of the stone: daylight/type of lamp/cloudy/sunny/high latitude/equator/winter/summer sun etc etc. THAT in itself makes communication already difficult enough.

2) the digital camera. People seem to forget that. Points made in previous post occur because of (but not limited to): differences in sensors of different makers (or even the same maker !!!) , pixel sizes, color recognition of different light(bulb)s, color balancing, compression techniques (jpg, or RAW, or tiff) etc etc.

I am not convinced. I talked to the GIA about all this last year in Tucson, and what they said was: "well... you know.. technology has really advanced, it's not a problem anymore". Quite an insult to my intelligence. And if THAT is their level of looking at things, then that's scary. Oh.. not one person but THREE people told me that at the booth, at different times, on different days.

For having been 2 years in existence, Gem-E-Wizard has paid very little attention to their website and educating their customers. For a B2B application this is really bad. Except for a long, and poorly written FAQ, there are no explanations of the concepts or technologies they use. No whitepapers, no test results, nothing. Perhaps a sign of how they value their frequently hyped GIA endorsement over user-interaction and education ?

For some basic tutorials which would be the bare minimum I expected on Gem-E-Wizard's website go to:

Beware their website is slow. That link is a good starting point. Scroll down for articles on color management, and digital cameras (and within the digital camera articles there are sections dealing with the interpretation of colors).


Colors and web browsers ... browser_cm

Spyder3Pro Review ... r3pro.html

Author:  AntonyZ [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:06 am ]
Post subject: 

Took a look at the software - not bad and definitely a jump forward in the elusive search to find a solution to online color representation but serious drawbacks include monitor variations (different graphics cards display colors differently), Lighting variances and much more - I agree with Patrick - this is no panacea, but its a step forward definitely.

Author:  Jason [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 10:27 am ]
Post subject: 


I think you may be missing the point that Barbra and others here are making. While the issues you bring up concerning digital photographs are true, they aren't really relative to the discussion unless one is planning on doing all their color judgment from a photo. Barbra and other, insist, I believe being a good word, on having the actual stone or piece of jewelry in their hands and matching the color on Gemewizard to what they see in fact...not on a photograph.

Nobody HERE (I cannot speak for Gemewizard) is suggesting digital photography has advanced to the point where one can trust the color of a digital photo across all platforms.


Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 10:54 am ]
Post subject: 

You might also notice that the strongest objections come from those who start their post with something similar to, "I haven't tried it yet, BUT..."

May I emphasize that the developers of this program are very open to discussion and fine tuning. They monitor forums such as ours and are very willing to correct issues that may cause inaccuracies.

There will always be issues concerning lighting and peculiarities of each individual eye, but I feel strongly, that until we are ALL able to communicate in the same language, color description will be full of misunderstanding, miscommunication and inaccuracy.

Author:  Patrick [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 11:17 am ]
Post subject:  matching with screen


1) photography: I refer to part of the posting that was made in the beginning which DOES include a referral to digital photography.

"GemeSquare 2.0. The latest version of the program includes an application called GemeSampler Lite, which is able to scan a digital photograph of a colored gem and then automatically assign its color description and GemeWizard alphanumeric Color Code. "

Furthermore statements like: "GemSquare Lite, the feature enables users to accurately describe a gemstone's color, and then transfer that information to a third party by email."

"we have provided the industry with tools to make this dream of a common color language a reality"

"Gem colors are described using standard GIA terminology and GemeWizard's alphanumeric Color Code. "

Give a sense of a creating a "final solution" on a sound, scientific basis with common standards. Where is the proof of all that ? ANY technology company knows that *that* is where you start: which problems have we solved, and why is our technology better at solving it than anyone else's ? If you're making bold statements like that in your press release, and refer to GIA"s endorsement frequently, then you'd better be prepared to back it up.

I do not need Gem-E-Wizard to calibrate my screen, look at the colors on the screen and tell my partner: calibrate your screen and type hexadecimal code such and such. it is *not* a new solution. What Gem-E-Wizard DOES.. is make life easy for you, so that you do not have to type in the hexadecimal code.

But that hardly warrants the marketing hype of their press release.

That also brings me to your comment Brins:
2) Obviously I understand you would judge a stone in person (as well). However, even if you were doing that, then how do you calibrate and standardize your lighting conditions ?

So if you then tell me.. ok, I would have always had that problem but before Gem-E-Wizard I did not even have a way of indicating which color I talked about, then I agree.. in that sense it does make life easier. As I said.. it offers a cool user-interface... but nothing more.

However, I would like to hear from others, what I am missing, if there really is hard-core technology behind all this that really revolutionizes online color assessment and I would be the first one to sing their praises.
After all: I love technology.

PS: I have a background in both physics and developing strategies for Silicon Valley startups. These type of discussions happen in most start-ups and are absolutely not uncommon.

Author:  Patrick [ Wed Jan 23, 2008 11:22 am ]
Post subject:  color standardization


I agree fully with standardization.. and that IS an old discussion.

Whether or not someone has actually used it (gemewizard), does not confirm or negate the validity of someone's arguments.

However collaborative a team may or may not be, that again has no bearing on the validity of their statements, or the quality of their work. It's the same thing as saying.. "they are so nice.. hence they must be right".

Just by saying.. I used it.. and it works.. doesn't mean it really works. That is anecdotal evidence. What matters is that can be explained, how it works, and why it works better than any other technology and most importantly: that the technology is actually able to solve the underlying problem.

If it really is "using it is believing it" why not have a user test, benchmark with a control group, lab reports, whatever, document and publish the results. Repeat this exercise with different groups. Once again, that has nothing to do with anyone using the software or not, and judging it, but simply with trying to create an objective benchmark as is possible and a professional approach to launching a new technology product. Perhaps the GIA has done so (and I assume they did before endorsing it ?) and I missed the GIA test reports on the GemEWizard website.

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