How To Properly Adjust The Monitor, Brightness, Color Rendering: 9 Steps

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You need to adjust your monitor so that it transmits colors without distortion. If you follow the tips, even the LCD screen will show a picture comparable to OLED displays. How to do this is described below.

Why do you need to adjust the monitor

A calibrated screen will show more natural colors, closer to the real. It is advisable to adjust the monitor’s color every time the lighting changes – sometimes a display that has been adjusted under daylight may appear bluish under ordinary lighting.

Professionals use a calibrator – a device that is attached to the screen to determine the color. But since not everyone has it, below will be described how to properly adjust the monitor at home, both through built-in programs and through third-party applications.

How to correctly adjust the monitor

The process is easier than it seems – you only need to have a computer or laptop and 15 minutes of your free time. Further in the material the setting will be described step-by-step that will simplify the process for the beginners.

Connecting

Before you set up the monitor, you should connect the screen to the PC. It is desirable to use modern methods. Then the quality and resolution of the picture will be maximum. Below are the main types of connections of displays to PCs and laptops.

Cable typeFeaturesImage quality
DVIIt transmits only a picture, and not the best qualityIntermediate: Color and brightness may be distorted.
VGATransmits picture and sound of mediocre quality. Will not be able to broadcast even HD content without distortionIntermediate: Color and brightness may be distorted.
USBUSB connection of the monitor is possible to almost any equipment: from PC to smartphone to smart watchExcellent
HDMIAdvanced data transferMaximum. If possible, you should connect the monitor through it – it transmits the signal directly without introducing interference.

When installing and connecting, follow the recommendations:

  1. Place the monitor in one place and try not to move it.
  2. The room should be illuminated. It is worth adjusting in the light in which the computer will be operated.
  3. The screen should be left on for a short period of time before calibration begins. For modern TN or IPS displays, 3 to 5 minutes is enough. Older LCD, LCD and TFT screens need at least half an hour.

Tip: If the monitor is used in artificial and natural light, it is worth creating several calibration profiles with different settings.

Installing drivers

The first thing to do is to check if you have the best drivers for your monitor. There are two ways to do this:

  • Enter the monitor model into the Internet search engine and download the necessary driver;
  • Task Manager.
  • The easiest way to check the second type is to use the following algorithm:
  1. Press Win + R.
  2. Enter the command dccw and press OK.
  3. Go to the line “Monitor”.
  4. Find the desired one.
  5. Right click (PCM) → “Update drivers”.

After updating to the most current settings, you can start adjusting the parameters.

The first step is to turn on the calibration wizard. The easiest way to do this on Windows is as follows:

  • Press Win + R.
  • Enter ddcv in the search box and click “Run”.

Mac OS also has a built-in calibration tool. To open it:

  1. Go to settings.
  2. Find the “Monitor” sub-item.
  3. Go to “Color” and select “Calibrate.

After that, the Assistant will open – you should perform all the actions suggested by the software to make a full correction.

Brightness

With accurate brightness correction, the picture will have rich tones and deep blacks. Usually this is done with the help of a “target” where several rows of rectangles with a slight gradation of shades are arranged in a row.

If there are no special programs, it is enough to carry out the following actions:

  1. Find similar images by typing “Monitor calibration pictures” into a search.
  2. Download them.
  3. Open them in full screen.
  4. Change the brightness of the monitor.

Most Windows laptops have brightness change keys at F11 and F12. To activate it you should press Fn and the button, depending on the desired result.

Important: F11 and F12 are not always responsible for the brightness, therefore the best solution is to review the datasheet for the screen and keyboard to find the brightness correction parameters in a particular moment.

To adjust the brightness of the monitor, you should make sure that the picture corresponds to the parameters below, such as:

  • merge squares on the edges – reduce the contrast;
  • only on the left – increase the brightness, only on the right – on the contrary – decrease the brightness;
  • when you change the brightness, several parts merge – adjust the contrast.

While adjusting the monitor brightness, you need to be in a well-lit room. In dim tones the screen will seem brighter than it really is.

It’s okay if you can’t see all the rectangles – some monitors just have a weaker matrix. Merging 2-3 squares is not critical.

Adjusting the resolution

The next step is to adjust the resolution – the number of pixels horizontally and vertically. This is always set to the highest possible resolution. For example, for an UltraHD monitor this would be 4K.

Setup StepWindows 1087XP
1Close open applicationsClose open applicationsClose open applicationsClose open applications
2Click on the Start buttonClick on an empty space on the desktopClick on an empty space on the desktopClick the Start menu
3Find the “Control Panel” (CP)Enter “Screen Resolution”Enter “Screen Resolution”Enter Control Panel
4Go to “Appearance and Personalization” → “Display”.Go to “Appearance and Personalization” → “Display”.Go to “Appearance and Personalization” → “Display”.Go to “Appearance and Themes” and make adjustments using a similar method
5If several displays are connected to the PC, you should mark the one you want to correctIf several displays are connected to the PC, you should mark the one you want to correctIf several displays are connected to the PC, you should mark the one you want to correctIf several displays are connected to the PC, you should mark the one you want to correct
6Go to “Advanced Screen Settings”Go to “Advanced Screen Settings”Go to “Advanced Screen Settings”Go to “Advanced Screen Settings”
7Go to “Resolution” and select the desired resolutionGo to “Resolution” and select the desired resolutionGo to “Resolution” and select the desired resolutionGo to “Resolution” and select the desired resolution

On a Mac, the resolution is changed a little differently. To do this, you need to:

  1. Go to the menu.
  2. Go to “Apple”→”System Preferences”, select “Monitors” and go to “Monitor”.
  3. Then just go to “Scaled” and select one of the suggested options.

Gamma

Working with gamma allows you to achieve natural color reproduction. You need to enter the standard calibration again. There will be 3 sliders of scarlet, green and blue on the screen. These are adjusted until the gray cube is clearly visible against the black and white stripes. The adjustment is also made with circles on the same striped background. The adjustment is made until the center of the circle becomes gray.

By changing the sliders, you can adjust the colors of the display, which can be very important when using frameless monitors, because due to the nature of the eye people can see a little different shades at the edges.

Interesting fact: Some designers purposely remove the sliders in gamma from time to time to see how accurately their monitors render certain shades.

Grayscale Adjustment

Aligns the color temperature. The same gamma adjustment is done again, only this time it is done more precisely, adjusting only the yellowness and blueness. All this is done in the standard monitor adjuster, which is under the control of the Windows system and can be called as follows:

  1. Press the Win + R combination until the “Run” window appears
  2. Enter the command dccw (or dccw.exe – the system recognizes both requests) and click OK.
  3. Follow the application’s recommendations until the gray setting window appears.
  4. Refer to your display’s manual to see how the grayscale calibration is done and finish it.

For Mac owners, the calibration will be as follows:

  1. Go to the menu and select “System Settings.”
  2. Go to the “Monitors” submenu.
  3. Click on “Color.”
  4. Click on “Calibrate” and follow the recommendations given in the adjuster.

Grayscale is chosen because it will be easiest to spot too warm or too cold shades. Matte monitors are easier to adjust: because they have no glare, they hardly change their color temperature due to their surroundings.

Setting the screen refresh rate (hertz)

To perform this step, you need to exit the built-in calibration and perform the following steps:

  1. Click the PCM on the Desktop and go to “Settings”. You can also go to “Start” and select “Settings”.
  2. Go to “System” – “Display”.
  3. Select “Advanced Display Settings”.
  4. Find “Display Information” and enter “Video Adapter Properties”.
  5. Change Hertz by one of the following methods: go to “Monitor” and make adjustments or go to “Adapter”, go to “All modes list” and make the necessary settings.

If the picture disappeared and the notification appeared: “Out of range” or “Input unsupported”, wait a couple of minutes until the PC accepts the changes.

To change the hertz on Apple computers, you should:

  1. Go to the Apple menu.
  2. Go to “System Preferences” and enter “Monitors”.
  3. Press the Option key, select “Scaled” until the hertz menu appears.
  4. Select the desired value and confirm it.

ClearType technology

Thanks to the software, the most comfortable display of text is adjusted for each user. It is worth adjusting the font when you purchase your monitor and every time you change ownership. You can do this either during a general calibration of your monitor or you can enable ClearType separately by following the instructions below.

First, start ClearType. The easiest way to do this is through the taskbar search in W10 or the Start menu in W7.

Next:

  1. Turn on the application.
  2. Select the desired display.
  3. Follow all setup instructions displayed on the screen.
  4. Confirm the selection and restart the PC.

Programs to configure the monitor

What should I do if the basic configuration utilities are not enough? Third-party applications can help. The best among them are collected in the table below.

TitleFeaturesPrice
Adobe GammaConfigures the PC screen to work with Photoshop. You can create lighting profiles and change the light temperature.Part of the Photoshop package
Online Monitor TestCalibrates the picture on PC, Smart TV and tablets. The software includes a picture delay check.Free
UltraMonIt allows you to configure several monitors at once and has many technical settings that will appeal to those who work with graphics.The trial version is free for two weeks. After that – from $20 for a license
UD PixelEasy to use and easy to operate software to check and calibrate your screen. Best at finding sticky pixels.Free

Setting up your monitor is a process that both pros and those who have just purchased their first computer can do. By spending a few minutes, you can get a display with perfect color reproduction.

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