Display Gamma/Color of Ipad pro 12.9" vs Ipad pro 11" 2018 vs iMac 27" and Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Sephrioth, Dec 5, 2018.

  1. Sephrioth macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #1
    I have tested the new Ipad pro's 11" and 12.9" models. I love almost everything about these devices, the design, the processor speed... I really want to keep the device but I am still not super happy with the screen. I am a 3D character artist and quite critical about gamma and color of displays. I have 2 Samsung 32" wide gamut 4K displays, an OLED 4K LG TV (Calibrated), and a Samsung Oled tablet.

    Ipad screen vs other Apple (pro) devices: I have looked at all the new iMac, MacBook pro and iPhone displays in the store too. When comparing the exact same content I find the Ipad pro screens slightly worse than the other premium/pro apple devices.

    Ipad Pro vs iMac 27" 5K: The Ipad pro has a nice screen. But it's not as good as for example the Imac 27" 5k inch. Both the contrast and the color gamma are lower on the Ipads. Does anyone own a 27" 5k iMac and compare the same content on both screens?

    Ipad pro screen 11" vs 12.9": The 11" has a slightly warmer screen, slightly more contrast, and saturation. The larger 12.9 has a slightly more 'washed out'. It's still a good screen, with deep blacks, but it seems the gamma/contrast is slightly lower. Can someone maybe compare the same content/images on the 11 and 12.9 inch Ipad pro and say if this is also the case for them?

    Maybe variations in the display?
    I am still hoping that some Ipad Pro 2018 models have a better screen (maybe another manufacturer of the panel like in previous generations? I know screens can vary quite a lot depending on the batch. Gamma... 2.2? 2.4?
     
  2. alFR macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    #2
    If you're using your displays for pro work you presumably have a Spyder colorimeter or similar. Why not stick that on them all and give us some objective figures to compare?
     
  3. AlexiTQ macrumors member

    AlexiTQ

    Joined:
    May 22, 2016
    #3
    You can't compare the accuracy with the naked eye. With that said, the iPad Pro's color accuracy out of the box tends to be very good. The contrast ratio is around 1500:1, compared to 1100-1200:1 on the iMac. Gamma curves may differ and Apple likes to give their displays a gamma closer to 2,3.

    Aside from the iPhone's with OLED displays the iPad Pro's are closer to reference displays than the iMac 5K.

    For color critical work you need to calibrate and/or profile the display. At best you can get crappy profiles that work in a few apps on the iPad. So, it's not a device for color critical work. And, quite frankly, character art is not really that color critical.

    Basically, the iPad Pro's have excellent displays that are "good enough" for most work - including art. However, they are not good enough for color critical prints or color grading. If you needed this though, you wouldn't start by comparing it to other displays with the naked eye. You would start by looking at the options for profiling the display and apps that can load icc-profiles. Since iOS is quite lacking in this regard, the iPad Pro is not an option for critical color work.
     
  4. Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #4
    I do not need perfect color reproduction, I just like to view images and my portfolio in a way I find most pleasing. I think for example the Imac 27" 5K that I used to compare, had clearly richer color (wider gamut) and more contrast than the Ipad-pro's 2018 on display in the same store.

    The problem is that I am unsure whether the screens of the Ipads have much variance between the display samples/batches. This was quite clearly the case with previous ipad generations (even Ipad pro). In my experience, expensive 4k IPS wide gamut panels of the same model can have a wide variety in color bias/contrast. you frequently see uneven screens op displays all the time (color shifts from left to right, up to down, darker on one side. It may be quite subtle, but it's there a lot of the time.

    I would just like the subjective opinion of people that have compared 11" and 12.9 inch ipads with a critical view. And also other apple pro devices like the iMac 27" 5k and the iPad pro's (next to each other). If they all have a different gamma setting, sure. But if it's dependant on the batch of the display, then I can try a new one.
     
  5. AlexiTQ macrumors member

    AlexiTQ

    Joined:
    May 22, 2016
    #5
    Subjective opinions are useless. You have no control over the settings, the environment or how others view the differences.

    The iMac does not have a wider gamut than the iPad Pro. At least not in a sense that matters for viewing them in a store.
    Differences may have been due to different brightness, different gamma curves or differences in color management for the content viewed. Differences in size also affect the impression.

    There are differences in all of the devices. Typically Apple has pretty tight control, and similar characteristics across devices, but there will always be variations.

    Typical for Apple is a gamma curve that rises more slowly out of black than standard sRGB, giving somewhat crushed blacks, and a white point that’s a bit towards blue and green.
     
  6. Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #6
    Subjective opinions are not useless for me. The 27" 5K iMac had far deeper colors and more contrast than the iPads. Can't imagine they had it set at a non-default gamma value. I adjusted the brightness, turned off true tone on the iPads. The iPads looked more 'washed' out. I just think the Ipad pro displays I saw were not as vibrant and contrast full as other displays of apple and the screens I own myself.

    My questions remain:

    • How do the 11" and 12.9" iPads compare to each other? My experience is that the 11" has a bit deeper colors and more contrast. But it's subtle, so most people won't see it if they are not looking for it and seeing them side by side.
    • Has anyone compared the 27" 4K iMac to the iPad pro's, and what was their impression?
    • Are there large variations in the displays (batch/individual units)? Then I can try another production series later on.
     
  7. TheRealAlex, Dec 6, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018

    TheRealAlex macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2015
    #7
    The 11” iPad Pro does have a Wide Color Gamut if not you could not notice the differences in the images I’ll link below.
    I am also very critical about Display technology I use and how the coloring and black levels look.
    Quite simply put the iPad Pro 11” and 12.9” I own the 11” are hands down the BEST tablet displays on the market.

    Do better displays exists, absolutely. Are they portable ? Not as small as on the iPad Pro I’d say,
    Is the iPad Pro as super vivid as my LG OLED 4K Dolby Vision Not by a mile. But it’s good enough. Or my 144Hz VA Gsync Gaming monitor not at all.
    It it doesn’t have to be. The lack of HDR10 and Dolby Vision hurts, yes. But I can live with it since it’s an IPS Display with 120Hz and Wide color gamut and satured colors, and side by side to an OLED TV watching Marco Polo NetFlix In Dolby Vision, simultaneously the iPad Pro despite not being officially Dolby Vision certified, gives you Everything a much more expensive OLED TV gives you.

    Until something better comes along. I’d be more upset as to why the 27” 4K iMAC or MBP at its price point Don’t have 120Hz Displays and lack HDR10 at the minimum than scrutinize the iPad Pro.

    Besides HDR is a mess in the PC market. I’ll take Dolby Vision any day since there are no compromises or fracturing of its Spec. And next year. HDMI 2.1 and Dynamic HDR will throw everting into chaos once again.

    https://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/hdmi_2_1/index.aspx

    https://displayhdr.org/

    Enjoy

    https://webkit.org/blog-files/color-gamut/
     
  8. Sephrioth, Dec 6, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018

    Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #8
    I mainly want to determine if the unit I have has a worse screen than other devices of the same model. Since display production can vary between units substantially. I have seen quite a bit of variation on the 2017 iPad pro's last year too when I re-bought one 3-4 month later. And on Ipads of previous generations screens sometimes had less contrast than others of the same model.

    For example, I can clearly see a difference between the 11" and 12.9" model. Where the 12.9 is whiter but has slightly lower gamma/contrast and the 11" Ipad Pro also has slightly more vivid colors. So then it could also be the case that the 12.9-inch unit I have just has a display that is maybe worse.
     
  9. alFR macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    #9
    The 27" was too heavy for one-handed use and fitting it in my bag was a bit of a struggle.

    On a serious note, though, this thread is pointless. You asked a question about display contrast, colour balance and gamma and then, when it was pointed out that all those should be measured objectively, you said you didn't care about objective data only about your subjective opinion. Based on that any of us telling you our subjective opinion is pointless, because it won't change yours.
     
  10. AlexiTQ macrumors member

    AlexiTQ

    Joined:
    May 22, 2016
    #10
    That’s why you should use a colorimeter to measure the displays. You have nothing but your subjective impressions, which are very easily fooled.
    The iPad Pro’s have higher contrast than the iMacs, and both display full P3 gamut. You may not believe Apple calibrated the displays to non-standard gamma, but fact is they do that to varying degrees on all of their displays. IPads sure don’t have standard srgb gamma, nor do they have 2,2 gamma (and no, these are not the same thing), and iMacs sure don’t have a standard gamma either. Apples likes a gamma curve that that rises more slowly out of black, as this gives the impression of higher contrast and punchier colors. The closest you get to a standard gamma is with the OLED iPhones, since they can display the lowest levels of black.

    IMacs, unlike iPads, also have different display modes and it’s harder to tell to what extent, if any, they are color manages in the store. On top of that it’s very difficult to match brightness by eye, with different screen sizes and trying to do a side by side comparison. Again, that’s why you measure. Otherwise you can’t tell if it’s just metameric effects fooling with your perception.
     
  11. Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #11
    I have seen the Ipad pro's 2018 and they have lower contrast than the 27" 5K. Also compared to my own professional 4K IPS 2.2 and 2.4 gamma screens the Ipads have less contrast in the lower value ranges. They seem more washed out (especially the 12.9" model). If I hold two devices next to each other in the same lighting and adjust the brightness, there is a clear difference, subjective or not. So my question remains, maybe I have seen Ipads with less than optimal screens. Since there can be quite a variety in units due to the production process.
     
  12. AlexiTQ macrumors member

    AlexiTQ

    Joined:
    May 22, 2016
    #12
    Is this a theme of yours? 2 out of 2 threads started discussing the same thing...
    https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...pressed-by-screen-contrast-and-color.2064563/

    Yes, you have seen the iPad Pro's and the 27" 5K iMacs. I have MEASURED the first and second generation iPad Pro's and I know what the MEASUREMENTS say about the 27" 5K iMacs. Only iPad Pro that has lower contrast than the 5K iMac is the 9,7". First gen 12,9" and the 10,5" have significantly higher contrast. Newer iPad Pro's have somewhat lower contrast ratio but still higher than the iMac. 2017 and 2018 iPad Pro's have very similar characteristics.

    Now, I'm not going to pay for Duet Display just to profile the devices and prove you wrong. I'm sure this information is available elsewhere on the interwebs, at least in bits and piece, if you care to exercise some google-fu.

    Talking about color gamut and saturation is completely useless without measurements. The iPad Pro's and the iMac's can display full sRGB and they are at least close enough to full P3 gamut that you can't tell them apart in a store environment. And more saturation does not equal better. More accurate equals better. Considering there's a lot more that can get messed up on the iMac, it's most likely the iMac at fault. You can't very well do much about the iPad, but you can certainly mess up the colors on an iMac.

    It's quite possible that Apple sources displays from different manufacturers, though I seem to recall Apple has been trying to get rid of Samsung in favor of LG. Even so, Apple would source displays to quite an exacting standard. You could certainly get variations, but those would be fairly small unless something went wrong in the manufacturing process. In fact, Apple is quite unique in that you can put displays from different devices side by side and they still match quite well. Apple is the only manufacturer I know of that has such demanding standards. You could perhaps do the same with high end NEC or Eizo displays, from the same line, but you'd find that difficult comparing different lines. This is one area where Apple doesn't mess around.

    Is the 11" different from the 12,9"? Quite possible. The 10,5 inch was slightly better than the 12,9"(2nd gen, first gen was pretty bad). You'd have to measure to find out. Either way, differences should not matter in any purchasing decisions. Both have excellent displays.

    In fact, iPhone's and iPad's have among the best consumer displays you can buy.

    And by the way, LCD's and OLED's don't have native gamma. That's something CRT displays had.
     
  13. Robertjan88, Dec 7, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018

    Robertjan88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    #13
    It is almost impossible to compare displays with the naked eye. Apart from that enabling Apple's True Tone can mess up the color accuracy.

    As for actual measurements, the iPad Pro 12.9 has a 20-25% higher contrast than the 11 inch. The washed out factor you are experiencing might be the result of apps not being optimized. This will be more noticable on a larger display.

    Please have a look at actual data posted on Notebookreview (and other websites). :)

    12.9 inch: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Apple-iPad-Pro-12-9-2018-LTE-256-GB-Tablet-Review.357701.0.html

    11 inch: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Apple-iPad-Pro-11-2018-WiFi-64-GB-Tablet-Review.357931.0.html
     
  14. AlexiTQ macrumors member

    AlexiTQ

    Joined:
    May 22, 2016
    #14
    Almost 2000:1 contrast ratio on the 12,9". I wasn't expecting that, but then the difference isn't that big compared to last years model (what you actually see in difference is small). Checking some reviews of the iMac 27" 5K most report a contrast ratio of 960:1. My guess is that it's what they arrived at after profiling, which typically yields a lower contrast ratio. Still, the iPad Pro 12,9" has around double the contrast ratio than the iMac.

    Fascinating how the OP managed to get things completely backwards.

    It's a shame though that when reviewers actually measure displays, they do such a poor job. These reviews measure far too few patches and these pantone patches are a piece of cake for well calibrated displays. They should use at least a few hundred patches, preferably a thousand or so, to get a better idea of the displays accuracy.

    Still... it's clear that the iPad Pro's use some of the very best LCD panels out there.
     
  15. Lobwedgephil macrumors 601

    Lobwedgephil

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2012
    #15
    Well I guess that is why OP wanted subjective opinions and not actual data or facts.
     
  16. Sephrioth, Dec 8, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018

    Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #16
    @Lobwedgephil I care about actual data and I am also very happy with the informative responses and links to the objective reviews. Especially about the measured gamma en contrast. Seems like it does have a 2.2 gamma.

    But that still does not change my actual question though, especially since the display is supposed to be so fantastic. I still have the feeling that there might be a sub-optimal batch of screens. I am in Europe (Netherlands), so maybe we got different batches of screens, from different producers.

    I do have a colorimeter: x-rite i1 display (pro). So if someone can give me a tip how to measure with that one. I know it's only an indication since the color-i meter is also supposed to be re-calibrated, but it might give an objective indication. What is the best way to connect the iPad display without color reduction/compression? I think Duet Display, but that does not work 100% in Windows.
     
  17. aevan macrumors 68040

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #17
    Not debating you, but Anandtech's review says it's the best consumer screen they tested, especially in terms of color accuracy.

    https://www.anandtech.com/show/13661/the-2018-apple-ipad-pro-11-inch-review/7

    The warmer screen on the 11" is most likely variations.
     
  18. augustya macrumors 68030

    augustya

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2012
    #18
    Never really thought 11" had a warm display now I will have to watch it more carefully ! Man ! I hate those warm display !!
     
  19. aevan macrumors 68040

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #19
    Interesting. I prefer it to cold ones any day of the week.
     
  20. augustya macrumors 68030

    augustya

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2012
    #20
    Apple is known for it's Blueish White Displays !!
     
  21. aevan macrumors 68040

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #21
    I’ve never known them for that.
     
  22. Robertjan88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    #22
    When checking the screens inside an apps store, please be aware that True Tone in on 99.999999% of the time. This is impacting the display temperature and color accuracy (hence the reason you need to switch this off when editing videos and photos).
     
  23. Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #23
    Just to iterate my previous question, because it got kind of lost in this thread:

    But that still does not change my actual question though, especially since the display is supposed to be so fantastic. I still have the feeling that there might be a sub-optimal batch of screens. I am in Europe (Netherlands), so maybe we got different batches of screens, from different producers.

    I do have a colorimeter: x-rite i1 display (pro). So if someone can give me a tip how to measure with that one. I know it's only an indication since the color-i meter is also supposed to be re-calibrated, but it might give an objective indication. What is the best way to connect the iPad display without color reduction/compression? I think Duet Display, but that does not work 100% in Windows.

    And I always turn off Truetone, also in the store...
     
  24. Robertjan88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    #24
    To be honest, I don't have a clue as to how to measure the screen with x-rite.
    Please get in touch with Notebookcheck. They are always very helpful and can surely explain how they tested the iPad's display. :)

    Otherwise, maybe the manufacturer of the x-rite tool itself can give you some advice.
     
  25. Sephrioth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    #25
    Does anyone else know how to measure the Ipad pro screen with a x-rite i1 display (pro)? Preferably with free software.
     

Share This Page

25 December 5, 2018