The company eveloar GmbH offered me a report about their product xade nano to write. I gladly accepted the offer because I am always extremely curious about tech gadgets and how well the products work.
With the xade nano, however, I have to say right away that I don't have enough technical background knowledge to evaluate all the functions.
Why? Because the xade nano is not just an iPhone microscope, but with the apps "xade finder"And"xade roast“ is also an accurate colorimeter and a device for determining the degree of roasting of coffee beans. Yes, you heard me right. All this is in the small device in connection with the right apps from eveloar GmbH.
I usually mention the technical data at the top of the article, but since these are probably only understandable for experts on the xade nano, I have moved them further down.
The most common area of application for the xade nano is the determination of color values, which is why I deal with this function in detail in the test.
Chapter in this post:
- 1 Why accurate color measurements are difficult with the iPhone
- 2 This is how the color measuring device xade nano is structured
- 3 My test: color measurement with the iPhone
- 4 Available color spaces: Lab, sRGB and HEX
- 5 How good is the color measurement?
- 6 NCS, RAL and Colors of Nature
- 7 For iPhone 14 Pro/Pro Max users only
- 8 My conclusion on the xade nano
- 9 Technical data
- 10 Scope of delivery
- 11 Included in delivery: 1 year free subscriptions for these apps
- 12 Similar posts
Why accurate color measurements are difficult with iPhone
There are some apps in the App Store that allow you to measure the color of objects using the iPhone's camera. However, this "measurement" is far from accurate, since the app has no influence whatsoever on the lighting that comes from outside. Depending on whether the apps measure in artificial light, in daylight, in the morning or in the evening - you always get different results.
To eliminate these inaccuracies, the xade nano was developed, which is a combination of app and lighting attachment for the iPhone. Because the area to be measured is only illuminated with a certain light, xade nano can precisely assess the lighting and carry out a very precise color analysis.
This is how the color measuring device xade nano is structured
The xade nano is basically a small cylinder that has an opening on one side to put it over the iPhone camera. On the other side is a much smaller opening, which is basically the "measuring opening".
LED lighting is installed inside the xade nano, which illuminates the color surface to be measured. A small plate with a hole in the middle is attached to the underside of the device, which contains various colored dots on the edge. As far as I understand it, these color points are recorded with every shot and used as a sort of color map for the calibration.
If you want to use the xade nano as a microscope, you can remove this color card by sticking your little finger through the top hole and pushing the card down.
The iPhone is connected to the xade nano via a USB-C to Lightning cable to power the light source.
The xade finder app is the right software that records the data from the iPhone camera and then evaluates it to carry out the color analysis.
My test: color measurement with the iPhone
If you now want to perform color recognition with the xade nano, start the xade finder app and plug the device into the iPhone camera lens.
In the app you can then choose between the following modes:
- nano - if you want to perform a measurement with the "hardware" xade nano
- picker – if you just want to pick a color with the iPhone camera (less accurate)
- micro – if you want to use the iPhone as a microscope (works with or without xade nano)
Of course I chose "nano" because in this mode I can use the hardware xade nano and the color measurement has the maximum accuracy.
In the following, the iPhone shows a measuring point in the middle, which you have to align so that it is completely covered with the color area you want to measure. To prevent stray light from entering the measuring chamber, the xade nano and the iPhone must also be placed flush on this surface.
When you're done, you press the button in the app that starts the measurement. It now takes about 4 to 5 seconds for the measurement to be completed and the result to be available.
The analysis of the measurement seems to take place in the cloud (internet connection required!), because during the analysis the app connects to an external service (probably the manufacturer's server) and then gets the corresponding color data back.
When the measurement is finished, the app gives you two color tones, which are marked with "#1 match" and "#2 match" - i.e. the best match and the second best match.
In addition to the second hit, you will also find an icon with three dots in the app, which you can use to call up other matching colors - similar to a digital color fan.
Available color spaces: Lab, sRGB and HEX
The Lab color space is the default choice when displayed in the app, as this color space is the largest and can reproduce the most tones. The Lab color space also covers all the colors that the human eye can perceive. In addition, the Lab color space is device-independent.
However, the color values can also be displayed in other color spaces such as sRGB and HEX. Web designers will surely appreciate the HEX value as it contains the "web colors" that can be used by HTML codes.
You won't find an output in CMYK in the app, but since this color space is always dependent on the output device, it makes more sense to use Lab.
How good is the color measurement?
Unfortunately I don't have a measuring device to check the results, but I can see the colors detected on my iPhone and see the color on the items I used for the tests.
The color values that came out in my tests are convincing so far. If the displayed color does not match the real color, it is because the RAL colors do not contain all shades and some nuances simply do not appear in the RAL spectrum.
You can also use the xade finder app to take less accurate color measurements without the xade nano by selecting the “picker” mode in the app.
NCS, RAL and Colors of Nature
In the app you can switch between different color spectrums and thus get the app to find the best matching color from these specifications.
The following color collections are represented in the app and some of them can be unlocked with an in-app purchase:
- RAL Classic (216 shades)
- RAL DESIGN SYSTEM plus (1.825 colors)
- NCS 2050 Colors (2.050 shades)
- colors of nature
Quote from the manufacturer eveloar GmbH:
The Colors of Nature palette is our own and growing list of colors found in nature. They are color measurements of leaves, flowers, etc. to illustrate the principle of operation.
As a special feature, you can also create your own color palettes and save color tones in them. If you now measure a color and choose your own color palette, the app shows two colors that best match the measured color.
For iPhone 14 Pro/Pro Max users only
One thing to keep in mind when purchasing the xade nano is the fact that the device can only plug into the iPhone 14 Pro or Pro Max camera. The reason for this is that the xade nano is placed around the protruding lens.
Since the lens on the older iPhone models and also on the iPhone 14 (without Pro) does not have the same diameter, the xade nano does not hold on to these models.
It's hard to say how things will fare with the upcoming iPhone 15, as there's still no information on the diameter of the lenses. It would be perfect if the manufacturer of the xade nano could find a way to adapt the device to different lens diameters with a small adapter.
My conclusion on the xade nano
As far as I can judge as a layman, the combination of the hardware - i.e. the attachment for the iPhone camera - and the xade finder app is an effective solution for taking binding measurements in a defined lighting situation.
The results I got back from my test measurements all looked very good and - depending on the color collection selected - were very close to the shade I saw.
Bottom line: If you want to measure colors with your iPhone, you should definitely take a look at the xade nano. As long as you have an internet connection, you can measure any color anywhere with the xade nano and the iPhone 14 Pro or Pro Max and have the best approximation in various color collections determined.
Here in the appendix I have compiled the technical data of the device.
- Brand: xade
- Manufacturer: eveloar GmbH
- Compatible Devices: iPhone 14 Pro Max, iPhone 14 Pro
- System Requirements: iOS 16.0 or newer.
- Magnification levels: 5x/10x/15x magnification of the magnifying glass or microscope simply set the app and take a photo.
- Repeatability: dE00 ~ 0,01 mean deviation from mean of 10 measurements on white BCRAII tile with app xade finder.
- Device agreement: dE00 ~0,4/1,0 mean/maximum deviation on 12 BCRAII tiles using xade finder.
- Illumination geometry: 45°/0°
- Light source: CRI > 97
- Measuring range: diameter flexible between ~ 0.2-4 mm (xade roast and xade finder).
- Coffee repeatability: ~ 0,1 mean deviation from the mean of 10 measurements, with an xade degree of roasting of 45, on a comparison scale with 100 units.
- Sharp Image: Fixed distance and focus gives a sharp image directly when xade nano is held on the surface.
- Standard Geometry: 45/0 geometry ensures standardized physical properties of light. This makes it ideal for color measurement and color determination.
- Determine RAL color: 1 year Classic & Design System plus color tones. A digital fan deck.
- Precise color representations: measurement results are displayed in an extended color space. See what you measured: The measured color is highlighted in a photo.
- Pro features: 1 year of custom color lists and spectral graph (beta), for xade finder & roast.
- Premium library NCS 2050 optional: Determine the NCS2050 shade with the optional NCS 2050 subscription.
- Made in Germany: Developed and manufactured in Germany.
What's in the box
- xade nano (measuring device and light source)
- xade nano card (color chart; is already inserted in the nano)
- Connection cable (USB-C)
- Sample holder for coffee powder
- German instructions
Also included: 1 year free subscriptions for these apps
- RAL Classic & Design System plus for xade finder
- Pro features for xade finder & roast
Additional subscriptions in the apps allow matching colors to be found in the premium databases of NCS 2050 and RAL (Classic and RAL DESIGN SYSTEM plus).
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He acts as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with technical problems. In his spare time he rides electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with the iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions to current bugs.