I have a monitor that has been calibrated and renders colors correctly (or at least close to it). I use it to edit my photos, which I'm happy with the results. When I upload the final image online and view it on other devices (phone, tablet, some other monitor, etc.), however, it usually looks flat (or sometimes oversaturated).

That part, I think, is understandable - not all screens are properly calibrated nor display colors accurately. My problem is that if I try to re-edit my image so that it would look good on other devices, it would then look over saturated on my calibrated monitor. If I don't re-edit it, then I know that people could be viewing the image as dull (color wise).

How do you guys cope up with this dilemma? Is it just a state of thinking where "as long as I know that I got the colors right, then it won't matter to me how it would show up on other devices"?

Similarly, when I see professional's images online, it's like the images would always look vibrant regardless of the device I use to view it. Is it just me, or is there really a technique on how to do this?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ What profile are you exporting with? I’d suspect something other than sRGB. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jun 28, 2018 at 6:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ If you edit a photo to look good on someone else's uncalibrated screen, then what about a third person's screen, that displays colours slightly differently again? And a fourth person's screen? And a fifth person's screen?... \$\endgroup\$
    – osullic
    Commented Jun 28, 2018 at 8:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Tetsujin I'm exporting it with sRGB. And I've also set the monitor to use sRGB. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 28, 2018 at 22:57

2 Answers 2


The only way to overcome this dilema would be that everyone use calibrated monitors of the same type. If you have a calibrated monitor by yourself, than you can produce a color correct photo, but you have no chance to have it presented the same way on all other devices, because of individual color management (using or not color profiles), display types (crt, tft, led, qled, plasma, ect.), condition of that devices (age, (de)calibration, color cast, etc. ) and even the environment light at every device.

The best you can do is producing good pictures, that have the colors, which you think they should have.

E.g. I have an fairly good (but not calibrated) monitor to edit on. There the colors seems good and the final result represent what I want, but every other device I have shows the colors a bit different. The side monitor is old and shows a warmer color, my smartphone (oled) shows a more saturated but never burned out colors and my cheap tv is a mess by its own.


Perhaps you are editing with AdobeRGB or ProPhotoRGB color profiles. When using any different profile than sRGB, your images may look nice on your screen, but once exported, they will look dull.

It is OK to assign those different profiles while going through your editing process, but you should assign sRGB when exporting the final image. (Unless you are taking that image to print and you know for sure that the printing lab uses any other specific profile).

  • \$\begingroup\$ I do use ProPhotoRGB when editing in Lightroom or Photoshop, but I export the jpg file with sRGB. I've also set the monitor to use sRGB. It was set to Adobe RGB before but I realised it's only making my issue worse. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 28, 2018 at 23:00

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.