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Author Topic: Windows 10 Color Management Problems  (Read 4780 times)

roncarran

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Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« on: April 07, 2018, 01:29:32 pm »

I am a photographer, and do the technical work for my photo club. I have been trying to profile a new Dell laptop that I'm running projector on for weeks without success. I have been a Mac user for many years, and have never had any trouble profiling my monitors using various manufacturers hardware and software. Windows 10, however, has made this process totally incomprehensible. I've read and watched posts on the Internet, and still cannot seem to get a profile working correctly.

There are two identical admin accounts on the computer. I use an X-Rite ColorMunki (which requires that I just have the video on the projector active). When the profiling process finishes, a profile is created. I then switch the video to duplicate the displays (laptop and projector), and everything seems to be working. However, if I now switch to the other admin account and try to use that profile (through a totally confusing set of dialog boxes), nothing changes. Furthermore, on the account that works, there is a dropdown (sometimes active, sometimes not) on the main "Display Settings" screen that allows me to pick the profile I want to use. On the other admin account, that dropdown doesn't exist. On the "good" account, I am afraid to try to change profiles because I may not be able to get back to the one I want. On the other account, I can't get any profile to do anything perceptible. Nothing changes on the monitor, no matter which profile I try to use.

Does anyone have any idea why this is happening? Could it be something with the machine. It's a new i7 laptop, and seems to be working fine in other respects.

It shouldn't be so difficult to do this!
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Doug Gray

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2018, 03:59:30 pm »

I've found Windows based CM opaque too.

Xrite used to have a diagnostic app (small exe) that you could run, position on the "monitor" of interest and select the appropriate profile. It would load the LUTs automatically. Maybe someone has a link to it but I didn't see it on their site last time I looked. Might solve your problem.
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rasworth

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2018, 04:16:38 pm »

DisplayProfile.exe, still a very handy utility, works fine on W10 system.

https://www.xrite.com/service-support/downloads/d/displayprofile-freeware-for-windows

Richard Southworth
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rasworth

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2018, 04:22:04 pm »

And here's another utility of the same ilk, shows the lut curve obtained from the vcgt tag in the currently loaded monitor profile.  It's not quite as happy with W10, runs ok but one has to grab the window and shift it slightly to cause the curve to be displayed.

https://www.xrite.com/service-support/downloads/c/calibration-lut-tester

Richard Southworth
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Doug Gray

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2018, 04:27:43 pm »

DisplayProfile.exe, still a very handy utility, works fine on W10 system.

https://www.xrite.com/service-support/downloads/d/displayprofile-freeware-for-windows

Richard Southworth

Yup, that's the one! Thanks for digging up the link.
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roncarran

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2018, 08:47:12 pm »

Thanks so much! I'll give it a try.

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Pat Herold

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2018, 02:12:03 pm »

Just a little more explanation for those who might run into this in the future.
This can be a common point of confusion for Mac users who are dabbling in Windows.
On the Mac you are used to switching to a different monitor profile in System Preferences and seeing the result immediately.  The new profile is put in place as the default monitor profile and the computer's graphics card is updated to reflect the tags in the profile.

With Windows, you can select a new profile and save it as the new monitor profile, and "nothing will happen" visually.  Windows does not automatically refresh the curves in the computer's graphics card.  Usually, when you finish profiling a monitor on a Win system, a small app at the end will kick in to force a refresh of the graphics card as a final touch to the profiling process.  If you are placing profiles outside of that process you 'll run into this 'nothing changes' problem.  Of course, you can always restart the computer and the graphics card will pick up your new color from the new profile then.  But using the little utility that X-Rite provides will allow you to refresh the graphics card anytime you like.   That's the way to go.
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digitaldog

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2018, 02:56:21 pm »

With Windows, you can select a new profile and save it as the new monitor profile, and "nothing will happen" visually.  Windows does not automatically refresh the curves in the computer's graphics card.
Harkening back to the old days when a LUT loader was necessary (maybe it is today).
I squarely fall into the camp Pat refers to: Mac user dabbling (rarely) in Windows. So it's good to know what's going on here; thanks!
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Simon Garrett

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2018, 06:34:20 pm »

Just a little more explanation for those who might run into this in the future.
This can be a common point of confusion for Mac users who are dabbling in Windows.
On the Mac you are used to switching to a different monitor profile in System Preferences and seeing the result immediately.  The new profile is put in place as the default monitor profile and the computer's graphics card is updated to reflect the tags in the profile.

With Windows, you can select a new profile and save it as the new monitor profile, and "nothing will happen" visually.  Windows does not automatically refresh the curves in the computer's graphics card.  Usually, when you finish profiling a monitor on a Win system, a small app at the end will kick in to force a refresh of the graphics card as a final touch to the profiling process.  If you are placing profiles outside of that process you 'll run into this 'nothing changes' problem.  Of course, you can always restart the computer and the graphics card will pick up your new color from the new profile then.  But using the little utility that X-Rite provides will allow you to refresh the graphics card anytime you like.   That's the way to go.

There's a further issue for Windows (no idea for Macs): if you change a profile - even if you get the calibration data loaded into the graphics card LUT with a calibration loader as you describe - running programs in general won't notice either.  In nearly all cases, programs look up the monitor profile only once when they first run.  If you change the profile while a program is running, normally you have to exit the program and restart it to make it read the new profile. 
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digitaldog

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2018, 06:42:54 pm »

There's a further issue for Windows (no idea for Macs):
Can't say I've ever seen this.
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Doug Gray

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2018, 07:21:19 pm »

There's a further issue for Windows (no idea for Macs): if you change a profile - even if you get the calibration data loaded into the graphics card LUT with a calibration loader as you describe - running programs in general won't notice either.  In nearly all cases, programs look up the monitor profile only once when they first run.  If you change the profile while a program is running, normally you have to exit the program and restart it to make it read the new profile.
Photoshop does monitor profile changes dynamically in Windows. I can see how some apps might not but Photoshop users often change monitor profiles to match a change in paper white point when soft proofing. I switch to sRGB when doing stuff for the web.
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Simon Garrett

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2018, 09:57:57 am »

Photoshop does monitor profile changes dynamically in Windows. I can see how some apps might not but Photoshop users often change monitor profiles to match a change in paper white point when soft proofing. I switch to sRGB when doing stuff for the web.

I stand corrected, thanks for that.  I thought I'd checked Lightroom at least, and found that it didn't notice when I change the calibration and profile on my Eizo monitor, but maybe I didn't.  However, when I checked (a year or two ago) Firefox and I think Chrome didn't notice profile changes unless you exited and started it again. 
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Doug Gray

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2018, 11:05:57 am »

I stand corrected, thanks for that.  I thought I'd checked Lightroom at least, and found that it didn't notice when I change the calibration and profile on my Eizo monitor, but maybe I didn't.  However, when I checked (a year or two ago) Firefox and I think Chrome didn't notice profile changes unless you exited and started it again.
I'm pretty sure you're right about browsers. There's little reason for 99+% of users to change monitor colorspaces while in a browser and, of course, Photoshop's a different issue and they recognize the need.
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Czornyj

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2018, 04:03:29 pm »

Windows 10 started to referesh vcgt curves in LUT. On the other hand GUI is still not color aware, and also something went bad with color management in photo/web browsers (which used to work from time to time earlier). At the end of the day I wish all displays had 3x3 matrix LUT with color space calibrated 100% to sRGB, with other synthetic working spaces available as (very, very, very) advanced options. It's 25 years since ICC foundation, and color management is still not idiot proof in Windows. I hope that people responsible for CMS stuff in Windows die a slow painful death.
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GWGill

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Re: Windows 10 Color Management Problems
« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2018, 10:18:03 pm »

I hope that people responsible for CMS stuff in Windows die a slow painful death.
As I understand it, that's already what's happened - Microsoft as a company lost interest in color management after WCS was half done, and have since then left their color management expertise to wither away. From the slowness of response I get the impression that Apple is not a whole lot better though. Once they had a color management system that "works", interest wanes, and expertise dissipates as resources are shifted to more urgent things, like making new iPhones, or speaker systems that are really microphones.
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