Best Monitor Settings for Photo Editing To Get The Best Results

Last Updated on March 13, 2022

Assessing the best monitor settings for photo editing is critical for any photographer. It helps to produce accurate and predictable photographic prints.

In fact, if your main (camera LCD monitor) is not calibrated properly, then all the time spent on image editing and post-processing could actually be counterproductive.

This tutorial covers how to calibrate a monitor both a casual photographer and serious photographers/professionals who want to use alternate, high-precision options!

Does Everyone Need To Color Calibrate Their Monitor?

Probably not. If you’re just a part-time photographer who is looking to hone his skills, this probably isn’t the biggest expense that you have to handle with your photography business.

Though many might think otherwise, there are many other more important aspects one must learn about photography before ever worrying about color calibration. However, you should calibrate your monitor if you’re a serious photographer and want to ensure your photos look their best!

Best Monitor Settings For Photo Editing—Color Calibrate Your Monitor The Right Way!

Below are some of the known tactics you could apply to perfectly color calibrate your monitor for photo editing with a calibration software and hardware. Also, you can adjust these settings if you’re into 3D animation or video editing!

Adjust Brightness and Contrast

One of the easiest ways to tweak your display’s color settings is by adjusting its brightness, and contrast controls. While this method works, it isn’t as accurate as using a color profile created by a hardware calibrator like the Spyder 3.

By choosing this method, you can make quick changes to your display on the fly, but it’s not recommended for more precise tasks such as graphics design.


You should always go for the middle option when deciding the best settings for photo editing, since ‘middle ground’ tends to be the safest bet. So, of course, we’d recommend a monitor with calibrated mid-tones that accurately displays the center square as being the same shade as the solid outer section when you look at it out of focus.

The left and right-hand squares should also appear visibly darker and lighter than the central, solid gray square; if this is true, then you know you’ve got your ideal color setting.

Highlights & Shadow Details

If you’ve followed the previous calibrations, then your image should look like it matches the first image. The shadows, mid-tones, and highlights should each be roughly at their intended shade.

However, as we continue to work through calibration settings for different types of lighting conditions and scenarios. You may destabilize the picture again, especially with some of the next calibrations, which deal with particularly intense light or shadow areas – so hold tight!

Get A Monitor Calibration Device

To start monitor calibration process, we need to use a calibration device tool. These calibration tools come with a cord that connects it to the back of the computer. The device itself looks like a mouse but with an attached Discover the top of it.

Furthermore, there is a special software for this tool so that everything can run properly. By running various tests and scans, you will be able to adjust the brightness levels and colors, as well as other settings under the calibration tool.

But, before calibrating your monitor, or even using calibration tools, make sure to give it at least ten minutes of warm-up time. This ensures that the screen brightness contrast and color balance reach a steady and reproducible state.

Best Calibration Settings For Photo Editing

White Point

This setting controls the mildness or warmth of your display’s lightest tone, as specified by the color temperature. Higher color temperatures tend to look cooler, while lower color temperatures tend to look warmer.

Display Gamma

This setting controls the rate at which shades appear to increase from black to white (for each successive digital value). This makes a given image more or less dark and bright depending on how high or low the gamma value is.

More so, the gamma settings are not the same thing as simple brightness, since it covers a wider range of mid-tones. So, it can help make an image appear brighter on monitor. However, it does not adjust for pure black tones at the lowest end of the scale nor pure white tones at the highest end of the scale.

Color Profiling Your Monitor Calibration For Photo Editing

The Color Profile settings will allow you to choose the target settings from your calibration. These settings include what we have already discussed in the previous paragraph as well. But also allows you to fine-tune them as you please.

In this section, you can also decide what sort of file format (i.e., ICC v2 or v4). After that, it will export XMLs so that they can be fed into the operating system correctly and displayed correctly on your monitor by Windows or macOS (or Linux).

Further, an RGB color profile is used to convert an image so that it can be displayed using the unique features of your computer monitor. Unlike a LUT, you must use images in color-managed software to display them properly.

In fact, it won’t be a problem if you are running PC or Mac operating systems with their updated color management capabilities. But if not, your baseline Photoshop or other mainstream image development software will suffice.

Testing Your Monitor For Color Calibration:

Don’t think that now you have adjusted the best monitor settings for photo editing, and you have done the monitor calibration perfectly so that it will display vivid and crisp colors. You should test the settings.

More so, it’s also important to ensure the quality of this calibration. If you realize the color calibration device cannot repair some inaccuracies, at least you’ll be aware of those in the back of your mind.

Another thing, if ever you perform any image editing afterward, as well as other color-related operations that may influence the true value, it’s better to do a color calibration test on your monitor screen.

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