HiTechnic color sensor - any experience?

Hi folks, I;ve been working with the hitechnic color sensor, and have been having VERY poor results - it is no better at resolving colors than the standard lego
sensors. I was wonderinf if anyone else has tried them, and what they are finding.
Here's what I'm experiencing:
I am trying to use the canned color interpretations - the 0-16 number scale. At best I can resolve 3 colors - blue, red, and sometimes green. Most of the time the green doesn't register, and yellow never does. Discriminating between black and greys is impossible.This happens both in the "view" mode - reading directly from the NXT brick, and when trying to access the data programatically.
If I switch into RGB mode, and read the raw data, I find taht the yellow sensor NEVER returns a value over about 14. I've tried this witha few different sensors, and it seems to be fairly consistant. I've varied ambient light levels from full dark too bright light, and the distance between the sensor and the target from touching to out of range.
So, is hte hitechnic sensor just a rip off, or is there something I'm missing?
My students are tryng to build brick sorters, and this is a major stumbling point, so any suggestions would be aprpeciated.
thanks -JD
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