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Incorrect image display after monitor calibration

New Here ,
May 04, 2024 May 04, 2024

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Hello everyone, I calibrated my monitor using DisplayCal using the gamma curve 2.2 after which the images stopped displaying correctly in Photoshop and Camera Raw, that is, they became less contrast than they are displayed in any browser or on any of my devices, including on a computer outside Photoshop. The color settings are set correctly, that is, the sRGB space.

 

It is important that when calibrating using the sRGB curve or no calibration there is no such problem, it is also not a DisplayCal problem because when using i1Profiler absolutely the same thing happens

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Adobe
Community Expert ,
May 04, 2024 May 04, 2024

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quote

It is important that when calibrating using the sRGB curve or no calibration there is no such problem

 

By @Лев33811356ruf8

 

That doesn't make any sense. Please explain what you mean by that.

 

Generally, the gamma setting in the calibrator is the least important setting. It should always be 2.2, end of.

 

We need more information. You're not by any chance using the monitor profile at document level? That disables all display color management, and, noticeably, will look just like your examples show. All LCD panels have a native dip in the shadows, and this dip is corrected in the monitor profile - as long as color management is allowed to operate.

 

Please show screenshots of your settings in DisplayCal, including profile policies. Also Photoshop's Color Settings.

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Community Expert ,
May 04, 2024 May 04, 2024

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Ah, ok, I get it. You can choose alternative tone curves for the calibration. There isn't really any reason to do that. What you want is a native curve without too much adjustment needed. But nowadays, sRGB isn't any more native than 2.2. sRGB describes a CRT monitor, but LCD panels dont have the same native curve. "No calibration " makes more sense.

 

Anyway.

 

All this should be remapped in the monitor profile and you shouldn't see any difference visually. Theoretically, you can set any gamma and you won't see any difference on screen.

 

As long as the color management chain operates. Which is why I suspect it doesn't here.

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New Here ,
May 04, 2024 May 04, 2024

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I mean the tone curve; I calibrated it using the office and web D65 profile with standard settings, where the gamma 2.2 tone curve is selected. It's a straight line. There's also an option to choose the sRGB tone curve, which isn't entirely straight and curves in the shadows. So, when calibrating with the sRGB curve, the shadows appear too light, and the image looks good only on devices calibrated with this curve. This isn't just in DisplayCal; it's in absolutely any calibration software.

 

As for the monitor's built-in profile, based on my tests, it seems to use the gamma 2.2 curve, and I could use this profile, but some colours have delta 8.61, it seems too much 

photoshop-colorsettings-dialog.png

Photoshop settings look like this

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Community Expert ,
May 04, 2024 May 04, 2024

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When I say native, I mean the monitor's native behavior, the panels's native transfer function. In all monitors, that's very close to gamma 2.2. That's why you set the calibrator to gamma 2.2, because then it doesn't need to make any big adjustments, only small tweaks.

 

But the point is - as long as you have a fully color managed display pipeline, where the RGB values are remapped from the document profile and into the monitor profile, the gamma setting is invisible. It gets remapped, with the net result on screen linear. This is exactly the same as, say, converting from Adobe RGB gamma 2.2, into ProPhoto gamma 1.8. You don't see any difference.

 

So you could set any gamma value you want in the calibrator, and you won't see any difference. The profile conversion takes care of it. The net result is linear.

 

The reason 2.2 is used, is simply to avoid huge adjustments. When the monitor is allowed to behave naturally, it behaves at its best.

 

However, and this is important, when the color management chain breaks (or the application isn't color managed at all), when there is no profile conversion from document to display - then the gamma value matters. Then you see it. Then you will see that a gamma 1.8 ProPhoto file is darker than a gamma 2.2 Adobe RGB file (as well as wrong colors).

 

So the inevitable conclusion is: If you see a difference with setting different gamma values in the calibrator, that means color management is broken. By definition.

 

There can be several reasons for display color management breaking. It's executed in the GPU nowadays, so a buggy GPU driver can do it. But the most common reason is that the monitor profile (not the calibration) is bad or defective. One thing that will cause many applications to choke, is LUT (table)-based and/or version 4 monitor profiles. It should work, but sometimes doesn't. Matrix-based, version 2 profiles are always the safe choice. This is set up in profile policies in the calibrator.

 

I've only briefly used DisplayCAL, and a long time ago, but I was somewhat appalled at the sheer number of very complex options. Like you could choose 256 color patches, which is crazy. That guarantees calibration curves full of twists and turns and angular movements. In monitor calibration, simple is better. You don't want to twist its arms, you want to gently push. Similarly, there was an unrealistic list of complicated options for the curves themselves. Keep it simple.

 

Actually, "no calibration" is best if you're only using color managed software, and the monitor is reasonably well behaved. Then the color management and monitor profile will take care of it. The corrected numbers sent to screen will ensure correct display. Calibration is only really useful for non-color managed applications.

 

My, that's the longest post I've written in many years 😉

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