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Monitor Gamma and Calibration

Bo Stahlbrandt (bgs)

Keywords: storing, processing, printing, guides, tips

The images on this comunity look best on a calibrated monitor and in a low ambient light room. To achieve a good "gamma calibration" of your monitor, please follow the steps outlined below. You should also have a system capable of producting 16-bit (high color) or 24-bit (true color) color depth.


Gamma correction test image
This gamma test works best with MS Internet Explorer while using a standard monitor. Problems with the above image, have been experienced with the Netscape browser.


Squint your eyes or stand back and adjust the monitor brightness control until the middle square (2.20) closely matches its background. The 2.00 square should be darker and the 2.40 square lighter. The technical term for this is 'gamma adjustment'. This image sets your monitor to an approximate standard gamma for photographs on a PC.

If you want to read in-depth information about gamma, there are FAQ here:
The gamma FAQ


Also Robert W. Berger goes into explaining monitor gamma:
Robert W. Berger's great explanation of monitor Gamma


If you feel you need a tool (Win95/98/XP/NT) with which you can control the gamma, check out:
PowerStrip 2.50 - (shareware) 656KByte download




Contrast test image


You should be able to see a difference between both the bright squares 1 and 2, and the dark squares 10 and 11.

(0 Votes )

Originally written on July 26, 2002

Last updated on April 29, 2016