Gamma rages

It’s that time of the year again. Time for me to complain about the gamma settings of my desktop.

I am a gamma-conscious person. Ever since I learned about the issue, I always seek to configure my consoles to have the perfect gamma settings. I have these images to do the test, they are my “standard”, and I have set many machines using them, always successfully:

Gamma test with colors
Gamma test with hack
Gamma test with gray shades

In my new machine, though, it is not working. I believe there is something in gnome is messing with something in gtk that makes all my GUI programs look bad. All widgets are using the “wrong” color palette. The shades around buttons, for example, disappear sometimes. Some borders and focus lines around widgets use subtle colors, but because they are being presented to me with the wrong gamma setting, they vanish. I don’t use gnome, by the way, I use Awesome, but there is always some gnome crap lurking behind all more popular programs lately…

If I qiv these test images of mine they look perfect. That was putting my monitor in a certain gamma configuration, and finding the gamma for it. It worked at 1.6. If I open the images inside the browser is the same thing, they only look light if I do xgamma -gamma 1.6. My terminal screens look great, by the way. Perfect colors. Emacs is good also. And all fonts are rendered with a very neat anti-aliasing.

But if I open up mozilla with these settings. It looks AWFUL. Everything from the “chrome” is just grey, no border shadows, no nothing. Only the images get right. I have to move to gamma 1.0 for the interface to look good.

That’s why I suspect there is some other gamma-correcting mechanism somewhere, trying to fix my machine WITHOUT NEED. I already have a gamma-corrected system, so I don’t need the extra correction!

Now what happens? To use the browser I need to move to gamma 1.0, but then my terminal windows looks bad, too dark, and anti-alias is not good. So I have to go on switching.

I even tried another GTK theme, believing the default has been created for an incorrectly set machine. It fixes the problem, just a little… But for example, the wordpress site looks bad, all the buttons borders too light, for example.

I just don’t know what to do anymore. I’m sure there is another program in the way trying to fix the gamma from mozilla when it shouldn’t, and I just can’t find it to turn it off. And I don’t know how I could make an inverse gamma correction in my other applications, to make everything look good with the same settings. :/

That’s one reason I’m not one of these guys that recommend free software to everybody all the time… Although I know most people don’t use terminals, and wouldn’t even notice problem with their gamma settings anyhow. 😛


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