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As all screens are not created equal, which is why Microsoft have bundled a display color calibration tool with Windows 7. This tool is easy to use and this guide serves as a checklist for using it.

You should use this tool if:

  • You’ve not calibrated your screen yet.
  • You’ve changed monitors (even if it was calibrated with another computer.)

Calibrate Your Display Color

To calibrate your display color:

Click Start, type calib and click Calibrate display color.

Click Next as you read and work through each screen:

Before the test, you should reset your monitor to factory settings. Each monitor is different but most have a Menu button located on the front or on the side of the monitor. Refer to the user manual for your monitor to learn how to change settings.

I use a Dell S2209W, which has the following interface:

You will be asked to compare sample images to help you adjust settings during the calibration. I’m not sure how useful these are if your gamma is way off and you’re being asked to use them as a benchmark but they should give you a good idea of what you’re going for.

You should adjust the brightness and contrast on your display (avoid skipping this for optimal results):

Here are the settings on my Dell monitor:

The following screens are shown to you to help you optimize your display.



Color balance:

Once complete, you can accept the changes you made to Windows’ color calibration or revert to previous settings.

You will then be taken to the ClearType Tuner, which is covered, in more detail, here: ClearType Tuner.

Did the calibration improve your display at all? What tips do you have for calibration? Let us know in the comments.

About Rich

Rich is the owner and creator of Windows Guides; he spends his time breaking things on his PC so he can write how-to guides to fix them.

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3 thoughts on “Use Windows 7’s Display Color Calibration to Optimize Your Display [How To]”

  1. Alexandra Lawrenz says:

    Hey Rich—this is a great how-to guide. It can be very difficult to get the display settings on your monitor right. Is there a similar way to adjust calibration on Windows XP or Vista?

  2. Some Person says:

    This is not a guide by any means. Doesn’t contain anything more than the calibration wizard already contains. Thank you for the effort but it was useless.

    1. Rich says:

      Fair point. Have you any suggestions for improvement?

Comments are closed.

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