Pure white is fine I think most designers preffer this but, be careful that your not leaving too much space as it could be seen as just trying to make the image larger. It also takes more server space.
On isolated objects the lighting setup is extremely important. If the light is too low, no matter how careful you are on removing the background, the viewer will still have the strange feeling of a "dirty" item. If you shoot a white mobile phone for example, the white on its panel will be in fact grey due to low lighting. Considering the pure white background this will create an annoying effect.
It's important to use a good lighting setup and maybe overexpose by one stop to be sure you avoid this.
Good lighting is very important yes!! Problem with me right now is having that good lighting. Now, if I upload BETTER quality pics and get a lot of sales I could have $$$ and buy those lights,,, LOL to me, HO HO !!
Nikon D300 , MB D10 Nikon D610 ,Nikon MB D 14 ,SB600 lens, and other s...
You don't have to go for Alien Bees right now, simple plain halogen ligths will be enough for beginning. You should get around 3000-5000 W and plenty of room because it will get really hot, but it's a good compromise until you make enough sales.
I read an article a little while ago that mentioned that white is usually never pure white (255,255,255) but actually a shade of very pale grey. Also black is a very dark shade of grey and not pure black. Too much clipping within your object can also be irritating to a user, but if it happens in your images, with care, can be fixed. Here is the article.....
I was refering to product photography, 3000W I think is Ok...5k is probably too much.
I only have 1000 W and is not enough, the dome is thick and quite dark, images get noisy and the items are not visible enough. It would be impossible to freeze action on water drops for example with 1000W+ dome as diffuser.
For a high speed action is true it is not enough light. But for that kind of photos it is better and nice to work with dedicated flash light. With halogen lights even at this power (5000W) the colors are not the same like what you see with your eyes. It is about the Temperature Light (it is too low).
All the colors will slightly turn to red. This is very visible only at negatives films and not so much at positive films.
At the digital camera this problem you will fix with custom white balance.