MBP Display different than Dell External Monitor U2410


macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 11, 2011
For Photography editing I have my MBP 2011 connected to a Dell U2410 IPS display. I've calibrated both with an X-Rite i1 Display Pro. But if I drag a Photoshop and/or Lightroom image that was edited on the dell to the MBP display the image looks washed out, loosing it's detail.

Any ideas what might be causing this? Other photographer professionals that have been provided the images also say the image is washed out.


macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
It sounds like a color management issue, but I should also ask what settings you use for calibration. This isn't so much of a losing detail issue as it is an issue of Adobe grabbing the wrong display profile somewhere. The MBP screen is significantly different, so they'll never completely match, but you should be able to get it close enough. With both I would probably set color temp and gamma to native in i1 profiler. Brightness should be controlled via the backlight. I would probably aim for around 100 cd/m^2 for a decent representation. That display will probably turn muddy below that range. You might see 160 noted in some places, but that is intended to match the light reflected by a print under very bright very expensive lighting systems. When you calibrate, allow a MINIMUM of 30 minutes warmup time. Disable any power saving features. Get the room as dark as possible to prevent as much light leak as possible with the sensor. This has nothing to do with your normal viewing conditions. Light leak is always bad.

Also make sure the display you intend to calibrate is set as the primary display in preferences.

Okay so those are the suggestions in terms of calibration to make sure you're starting from a good point. After that take an image into photoshop. Drag between the two. On either screen, you should be able to go

View --> proof setup ---> monitor rgb

then toggle

View-->proof colors

on and off. You should see little shift on the Dell. Your mbp screen might have a bit more, but if the Dell is making a big jump, you have a color management issue. I've seen a lot of very subtle ones. You don't always encounter them. You can reboot or replug the display.

From finder, under

system preferences --> displays ----> color

two windows should pop up when your external display is plugged in. One is typically on each display if they aren't mirrored, which in your case they don't seem to be. Make sure the right profile is set for each display. It should always be the one you create in i1 display for that display. Last thing is to ensure an image isn't between two windows. The program needs to be maximized in one window. If it's slightly in between, it can cause issues. When dragging an image from one to the other, it should look weird for about half a second, then update to the new screen profile. If it was a profile mismatch on the other, that could explain your issues. I know I've seen that before.

Edit: also if you are on mavericks, check the adobe forums for mavericks specific bug reports
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