Acer Predator CG437K color calibration — Micro Center

Acer Predator CG437K color calibration

JeroenJeroen North Bergen, NJ

Hello all,

I recently bought this monitor and am trying to figure out what the best calibration is.

I'd like to play my games in HDR (when possible) but noticed that (at least out of the box) the screen looks grayish and washed out when set to HDR mode in Windows 10.

I've tinkered with NVIDIA control settings and got it somewhat decent, but it is still not great.

My current settings are : 

Brightness:

Brightness 50 %

Contrast 87%

Gamma  1.10

Digital Vibrance  70%

Hue  0 degrees

 

I've read that Windows 10 HDR settings still don't work well and may want to consider going back to SDR.

Can anyone give me tips to make the screen look the best it can be?

 

Thank you,

 

Jeroen

Comments

  • What refresh rate are you currently running on the monitor? If you've "overclocked" it through the on-screen menu up to 144Hz, apparently that prevents you from using HDR and G-sync on this display. Also, the on-screen menu has an HDR setting you can enable or disable, have you checked that? It should be under the picture menu. 
  • JeroenJeroen North Bergen, NJ
    Thank you for replying.
    I actually don't have the 144Hz function enabled. As you said, it prevents G-Sync and HDR. So now I am running at 3840*2160 (native) at 120Hz. I have turned on the HDR function on the monitor and also in Windows display setting. By default, it looked grayish and washed out a bit. I read about changing the NVIDIA control panel settings. (running a RTX 2080 Super). I've been tinkering with the settings above, but even though the screen is vibrant, the dark colors are not dark at all. I guess I've never really changed the default settings in Nvidia before as my previous monitors didn't really require it. 
    I know it's in the eye of the beholder, but what would you recommend that the settings should be in overall? Should I go to 144Hz and disregard HDR and G-Sync?

  • Jeroen said:
    Thank you for replying.
    I actually don't have the 144Hz function enabled. As you said, it prevents G-Sync and HDR. So now I am running at 3840*2160 (native) at 120Hz. I have turned on the HDR function on the monitor and also in Windows display setting. By default, it looked grayish and washed out a bit. I read about changing the NVIDIA control panel settings. (running a RTX 2080 Super). I've been tinkering with the settings above, but even though the screen is vibrant, the dark colors are not dark at all. I guess I've never really changed the default settings in Nvidia before as my previous monitors didn't really require it. 
    I know it's in the eye of the beholder, but what would you recommend that the settings should be in overall? Should I go to 144Hz and disregard HDR and G-Sync?

    These are all great questions. As you mentioned, this can be pretty subjective. Normally I would recommend looking at RTINGS for their settings with this panel, but it doesn't appear they've reviewed this model as of yet. That said, they do have their calibration guide available to help you calibrate with their downloaded patterns: https://www.rtings.com/monitor/learn/how-to-calibrate-your-monitor-settings

    Also keep in mind that when you tweak your settings, your ambient lighting will impact your viewing experience. A screen calibrated in a dark room will look dramatically different than a screen calibrated in a bright room and vice versa. I use an OLED TV for gaming, and I ended up calibrating multiple profiles, one for a dark room and one for a bright room, as the difference between the two can be staggering depending on the scene you are viewing.

    As for why your colors are washed out when enabling HDR, this is unfortunately a normal side effect of HDR. When you enable HDR, non-HDR content (SDR, standard sRGB, etc) are going to look washed out in comparison. It's only recommended to enable HDR when you are preparing to consume HDR content. More information on this can be found in the following resources: https://www.asus.com/support/FAQ/1041845/https://www.dell.com/support/article/en-us/sln308136/colors-are-faded-and-washed-out-when-high-dynamic-range-is-enabled-in-windows-10?lang=en, and https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4040263/windows-10-hdr-advanced-color-settings#:~:text=Make%20sure%20your%20display%20or%20TV%20has%20HDR%20turned%20on.&text=Go%20to%20Settings%20%3E%20System%20%3E%20Display,if%20your%20display%20supports%20HDR10..
  • JeroenJeroen North Bergen, NJ
    Thank you TSMichaelB
    That makes sense, even though it sounds ridiculous on Microsoft's end.  You'd figure that they'd find a solution for that.  I will keep HDR turned off in Windows unless I will view HDR content. I guess games nowadays have settings to turn HDR on within games. 
    You're absolutely right about the ambient lighting. My computer is near a large window, which the sunlight would directly beam in the mornings. I like your idea to make a few profiles. Looks like this monitor can save these profiles. I'll give that a shot.

    I went to the Micro center store today and asked them about color calibration. They stated I should buy this color calibrator and download software for it. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0055MBQOW?tag=georiot-us-default-20&th=1&psc=1&ascsubtag=dcw-us-6106266316775397000-20#ace-6003953244

    I don't know if it is worth to buy this unless one is a graphic designer or something. Wonder if there is an easier way. I will check out the RTINGS site you provided.

    Thanks again for your input.

  • Jeroen said:
    Thank you TSMichaelB
    That makes sense, even though it sounds ridiculous on Microsoft's end.  You'd figure that they'd find a solution for that.  I will keep HDR turned off in Windows unless I will view HDR content. I guess games nowadays have settings to turn HDR on within games. 
    You're absolutely right about the ambient lighting. My computer is near a large window, which the sunlight would directly beam in the mornings. I like your idea to make a few profiles. Looks like this monitor can save these profiles. I'll give that a shot.

    I went to the Micro center store today and asked them about color calibration. They stated I should buy this color calibrator and download software for it. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0055MBQOW?tag=georiot-us-default-20&th=1&psc=1&ascsubtag=dcw-us-6106266316775397000-20#ace-6003953244

    I don't know if it is worth to buy this unless one is a graphic designer or something. Wonder if there is an easier way. I will check out the RTINGS site you provided.

    Thanks again for your input.

    You're very welcome. I wouldn't recommend buying a color calibration tool unless you do work that requires extreme color accuracy. For the most part, you should be fine to eyeball it using the sample images available on RTINGS. As for the HDR issue with Windows, I agree entirely. I would imagine they could build a Windows theme around HDR content, and have it enable the moment you enable the HDR settings. This would force the desktop and settings to utilize HDR. The only issue with this idea is that there are still integrated Windows applications that wouldn't support HDR, and those would still look washed out in their individual application windows, but that would still be a far better compromise than the current solution. Hopefully we see better HDR support going forward, as I would like to utilize it more often on my OLED display as well. For gaming, it really is great technology.
  • edited January 3
    This is the only thread I could find discussing settings for this monitor so I hope people are still looking. I've been playing with the settings on this monitor for months second guessing myself. As it is for most the time I owned the monito I wasn't using HDR correctly. I too thought things were way too washed out. When I called Acer support they told me the monitor had its own algorithm and not to enable HDR in windows or console or it would double interpret. When you put the HDR setting on the monitor only it is slightly brighter and sharper than SDR (and SDR is supposed to be phenomenal on this monitor) so I believed him. It never set right with me though, HDR is supposed to be different enough. After I got my LG CX I realized I was lied to. Well long story later I ended up enabling HDR and fine tuning my calibrations. I had been playing with brightness and contrast independent but not at the same time. It wasn't until I set mine to B=37 C=87-100 G=.87-1.0 DV=.5 that I was like OK that looks about right!. I used some test patterns and games and what not to get where I was. I came across this thread seeing if I could find further tweaks. I got the brightness from test patterns, but there is the occasional game that needs me to set it higher (45-50 Witcher 3). If I go over 87 contrast it starts to black crush a little too much but sometimes it kills washed out blacks. The gamma I am going to tinker with now as I lowered mine to kill washed out blacks, but I see raising it makes things pop a little more and the is more details in the dark areas. DV I thought anything over 50% looked fake before, but I will check it out. Hope everyone is enjoying their monitors as I am. It is pretty nice when you get it set right and NO BURN IN! LOL Just have to sit back a bit or it burns the eyeballs. Share more comments please.
  • edited January 3
     Just to follow up, after playing with it a little more I am floating around:
    B=45-47
    C=95-97
    G=1.03-1.05
    DV=57-64
    I like the Pop the DV adds. The gamma kind of offsets the brightness reduction (I did for some washed out blacks). It seems my eyes change from day to day as to what looks right but this seems to look decent to me right now LOL! I tried it in a few games and checked SDR as well and they seemed pretty usable with some tweaks within games. Witcher 3 needed contrast cut back to low 50s to look good, so I don't know how often that sort of thin will come in to play.
  • JeroenJeroen North Bergen, NJ
    Hey DarthMadMatt,
    You're right, I couldn't find anything on the net on this monitor. It's like people would like to forget about this thing lol. Thanks for responding though.
    I have tried your settings stated above. They seem to look better than what I had. To tell you the truth, I gave up on HDR with this monitor. There is so much hassle to get this monitor to look respectable. I tried with the settings above (HDR enabled in Windows) but it still was giving that washy look. With HDR disabled in Windows (but enabled on the monitor itself, HDR-1000), it actually doesn't look half bad. I will keep these settings until more refined.  Now to see if I should go to 144Hz (and giving up G-sync/freesync) or to stay on 120Hz with both options on. Thanks for sharing
  • edited January 28
    I like the 120hz with everything. I'm glad for your original post as its got me messing around more with the monitor and liking the results. So now I'm trying to lock-in some settings and forget it lol. I now have set the monitor on HDR and set to auto not HDR 1000. Also with Windows HDR enabled the monitor's brightness locks at 100 but when HDR mode is not enabled in windows I have it set at 70. I am trying to keep things as constant as possible so B=50 C=(75-80 for SDR or 95-100 in windows HDR mode)  G=.91-.92 DV=73. So the only thing I am changing right now is the contrast depending on if it is actual HDR content or not. The rest I set in game.  Good luck and thanks for the thread(s)!
  • Hi all,
    I have the exact issue with the washed out black colours on the CG7. Where do you go to change the colours individually as mentioned by @DarthMadMatt and how?

    Thanks
  • @BrutalBipedal

    Should be under color in the OSD.

    You can find the manual here: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/support-product/8138?b=1

    Also, Acer does provide a color calibration tool. This is really for desktop apps, but I'll link it: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/color-calibrator 
  • The settings I posted were through the NVIDIA control panel
  • The settings I posted were through the NVIDIA control panel

    Where?
  • Adjust desktop color settings in the NVIDIA control panel. This is for my RTX 3080.
  • TSMikeW said:
    @BrutalBipedal

    Should be under color in the OSD.

    You can find the manual here: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/support-product/8138?b=1

    Also, Acer does provide a color calibration tool. This is really for desktop apps, but I'll link it: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/color-calibrator 
    Thanks I've tried the tool and my monitor is not supported. 
  • This is such an odd issue, when HDR is turned on within the monitor and the Windows HDR is turned off it looks beautiful but then the game settings don't pick up HDR? 


  • Have you tried turning off HDR in Windows and in the monitor settings? Then turning on HDR in the game settings?
    Sometimes the settings in the system or in the monitor will override the settings of the game.
  • edited January 31
    You have to have HDR mode on auto or on on the monitor for HDR to be an option in most games. Something is just not quite right with the HDR on this monitor. Some things look pretty good but a lot of things look washed out and fuzzy when things are set correctly. I think some of this has to do with the state of HDR in general, but also to do with only 8bit color and the lack of ability to adjust HDR settings on this monitor (there is a gamma or white point problem). My PS5 didn't look near as good on this monitor as it does on my OLED (which is why I started searching for other peoples settings). Like the OP, I am starting to say screw fiddling with HDR. You have to adjust every time game specific. I am setting it to HDR AUTO on the monitor and leaving it at the Nvidia settings I posted earlier (B=50, C=75-80 65 for Witcher 3, G=.91-.92,DV=72-73). Some games need tweaking of the contrast setting, but thats all I have been changing. Also with the monitor set to auto and HDR off in Windows you can do as you mentioned and turn HDR on in games that support it (very few), but you have to adjust the contrast and everything anyway so you may as well just enable HDR in Windows when you intend to use it (whats one more click?). 
  • Glad to have your input here @DarthMadMatt. Thanks for sharing!
  • edited May 4

    SDR:

    User mode (monitor) Gamma 2.0 WARM Brightness 100

    B=50

    C=55

    G=.63

    DV=47

    HDR

    HDR 1000 mode (monitor and Windows)

    B=50

    C=100

    G=1.25

    DV=80

  • edited May 4

    I gave up on the HDR because Windows HDR is too finicky and when you get SDR looking good, it looks nearly as good on this monitor IMO. So I created my own user profile by going to Standard and changing the brightness (automatically changes to User). First turn the brightness all the way to 100 (adjust for preference and room light). In monitor color settings change to WARM and change the Gamma to 2.0 (this is what makes it pop like its supposed to). Make sure you have adaptivesync enabled. Now this is for NVidia only since I don't have AMD. In NVidia control panel adjust color: Brightness 50 Contrast 57 Gamma .63 DV 47. For scaling I have mine set to Full-screen performed on Display. Gsync is on. Now this is preference, but if you want to get rid of the black smears etc you need to be close to the displays native refresh rate (120). Trust me, it took a while for me to get that 60fps does not necessarily mean smooth, crisp graphics. If you get a lot of smearing, ghosting etc, do what I have done and set the monitor at 1440p. At least for games. The smoothness trumps any extra detail you see when standing still. I have been using it as 1440p only for desktop as well and its nice not having to scale anything.

  • Want to see something cool? Set Nvidia settings to default (50, 50, 1, 50). Put monitor in STANDARD mode and change the COLOR SPACE to DCI.

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