Monitors: Is 16.7 Million Colors Enough? 8bit vs 6bit?

Started May 7, 2011 | Discussions
TomHeaven Regular Member • Posts: 310
Monitors: Is 16.7 Million Colors Enough? 8bit vs 6bit?

Is it important to get an 8bit monitor versus a 6bit, and how do you know which monitors are 8bit?

I've read something about the superiority of an 8bit monitor rather than a 6 bit monitor, but when I look at a page of monitors at Newegg

http://www.newegg.com/Store/SubCategory.aspx?SubCategory=20&name=LCD-Monitors

it seems they don't provide that information. Some or most of the monitors, in the "Details" section, say they can display 16.7 million colors. But are some monitors a true 16.7M and others interpolated, and is the latter much inferior?

Or is the advantage of 8bit the ability to work in aRGB and/or Profoto RGB rather than sRGB?

Does this monitor spec make a difference if processing photos in 16bit rather than 8bit?

Sailor Blue
Sailor Blue Forum Pro • Posts: 15,536
Re: Monitors: Is 16.7 Million Colors Enough? 8bit vs 6bit?

The advantage of 8-bits vs. 6-bits is that you will get much smoother tonal transitions - i.e. much less posterization when you view images. This makes post processing much easier and accurate.

You also want to use a IPS or PVA monitor, not a TN monitor for photography. Here is a list of IPS monitors.

http://www.pchardwarehelp.com/guides/s-ips-lcd-list.php

Once you get your new monitor then get yourself a hardware color calibration device - software color calibration just isn't good enough. I recommend the X-Rite iDisplay2 or the Datacolor Spyder3Elite. If you also want to color calibrate a printer then both X-Rite and Datacolor offer products for color calibration of both the monitor and printer.

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ABA DABA Veteran Member • Posts: 3,088
Re: Monitors: Is 16.7 Million Colors Enough? 8bit vs 6bit?

Sailor Blue wrote:

The advantage of 8-bits vs. 6-bits is that you will get much smoother tonal transitions - i.e. much less posterization when you view images. This makes post processing much easier and accurate.

You also want to use a IPS or PVA monitor, not a TN monitor for photography. Here is a list of IPS monitors.

http://www.pchardwarehelp.com/guides/s-ips-lcd-list.php

Once you get your new monitor then get yourself a hardware color calibration device - software color calibration just isn't good enough. I recommend the X-Rite iDisplay2 or the Datacolor Spyder3Elite. If you also want to color calibrate a printer then both X-Rite and Datacolor offer products for color calibration of both the monitor and printer.

In addition for viewing use a constant light source of a particular Kelvin number,

some use 5500 and others will try 6500K Suggestions from pros in my neighborhood.

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ABA DABA

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