It's not just for Trekkies and fraternities anymore. Find out what the third letter of the Greek alphabet means to photographers.
This excerpt from the Illustrated Dictionary of Photography is provided courtesy of Amherst Media. To purchase the book and learn more about the publisher, visit the Amherst Media website.
(1) A curve that describes how the middle tones appear in an image. Gamma is a nonlinear function that is often confused with brightness or contrast; however, adjustments to gamma leave the white and black of an image unaltered.
(2) Gamma adjustment is often used to control luminance on computer monitors. The standard gamma setting for Macintosh computers is 1.8. For television screens and PC monitors, the standard gamma setting is 2.2. This disparity can cause an image to look fine on one computer but too dark or light on another.
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