Colours on Monitor Unnatural


I have just bought a Dell Inspiron 14 7000 (7400) and am using Ubuntu MATE for the first time. I love it, but there is a problem with the monitor. The colours are unnatural, some seem faded and others too bright. Peoples faces look yellow and some pics are slightly blurred.
On Dell specs the Graphic/Video Intel(R) Iris(R) Xe Graphics with shared. On Ubuntu MATE Graphics: Mesa Intel® Xe Graphics (TGL GT2)
I have spent days trying to fix this and looking up help websites. But because I only know computer basics, I am hesitant using the Terminal very often, as I am unlearned in that area.
I tried Software/Updates --> Additional Drivers with the answer 'No Propriety Drivers Available'.
Then 'Available Software out of date'. I tried to update and received 'error while refreshing the cache'.
I hope that someone can help.

What version of Ubuntu MATE are you using? 20.04 or else?
Also, is it that the colours are faded on the built-in screen or is it on an external monitor?

Thanks for your reply.
Release 20.04.2 LTS (Focal Fossa) 64-bit
Kernel Linux 5.11.0-25-generic x86_64
MATE 1.24.0
The colours are incorrect on the laptop built-in monitor. I am not using any external monitor.
The screen mostly has a yellow tinge and is especially noticeable when watching videos or with pics. But on some websites the colours also are faded/incorrect. But then on some others the colours like red and yellow are iridescent. Hope that helps.

Okay, based on the info you've provided I'd say the problem is with the built-in colour profile of your screen.
Three suggestions I'd recommend you to try.
1.) Try connecting your laptop to an external monitor if possible. If the colours work there with no yellow tint, then we know it's the colour profile assigned to your built-in screen.
2.) Try installing Gnome Colour Manager with 'sudo apt-get install gnome-color-manager' then launch it and try to configure something else. Should be under System Tools in the Menu.
3.) Try a newer version of Ubuntu MATE. 21.04 is the newest, with 21.10 on the way soon. Since your machine is very recent, the kernel used with 20.04 might not have the latest drivers. It is possible in theory, that using a newer edition with a newer kernel fixes this.
Definitely worth a try, before we'd go on troubleshooting any deeper. Let me know.

Thanks for the suggestions

  • I connected my lap top to the tv monitor and the colours were normal on the tv

  • I downloaded the Ubuntu MATE 21.04 and tried it out, but the colours were still wrong. They were exactly like my present Ubuntu MATE 20.04.2, so no change

  • finally I downloaded the Gnome Colour Manager. There are a lot to choose from, but found that the CIE 31 2D representation were iridescent on all of them. But I will try and choose the most compatible one from the images. It will not be perfect, but could be slightly better. So I am getting encouraged :slightly_smiling_face:
    I will report back if I choose one and how it looks.

I appreciate your input. Thank you!

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With checking out the Gnome Colour Profiler I found the best is the Blue Profile.
But now I don't know how to change my screen display with it. I clicked the blue + button (below left), but it says that it is already installed.

Help please!

Unfortunately MATE does not have any built-in colour profile tool.
The Gnome Color Manager was just to check if the problem is with the colour profiles or not.
Now we know it is, but as it seems, Gnome Colour Manager won't help you change it.
This is a recurring problem on MATE forums and unfortunately I'm at the point where I'm not sure I could help any more since I don't have a proven solution for this issue.
Maybe others do have one.

Most of the users recommend DisplayCAL for this purpose, but you have to test it yourself:


Or an other option if everything else fails is to try the "plain" Ubuntu 20.04, which according to my knowledge, has a built in colour profile manager called 'Color':

I hope I could help, good luck!

Once again, thanks for your suggestions. I downloaded the DisplayCAL. I tried to work out how to load the icc profile. But, with no success. Also I do not have a colorimetric device.
My computer knowledge is not that advanced. So I think I need to give up at this stage.
I appreciate the time and effort that you extended to help me.

You're welcome, I'm sorry that we could not find a solution for you.
Do not give up on Linux, though.

Few suggestions for the future, if I may:

  • look into purchasing Linux compatible hardware which is supported
  • the more open, the better, avoid proprietary hardware (& drivers) if possible
  • try alternative vendors with Linux focus, like i.e. TUXEDO Computers
  • among mainstream vendors, don't buy the newest, shiniest, I've had good experiences with Thinkpads for example
  • if you'd like to stick with Dell, look into laptops with a factory default Ubuntu option i.e. Certified hardware | Ubuntu
  • try Ubuntu and the built-in Color profile app, that I suggested before: Get Ubuntu | Download | Ubuntu
  • when Ubuntu MATE 22.04 LTS comes out next year in April, try that, it might have a solution for the colour profile
  • You could also try asking for help at they might know more than myself.

Sorry for your experience with this, I hope it does't affect your relationship with Linux in general.
Keep on researching (you'll learn a lot at your own pace, no pressure) and good luck again!

Thank you for those wonderful tips!

Yes, I have now learnt with Dell. I had bought a Windows one as there was a huge discount and because I have never had a problem before changing from Windows Dell to Linux on a Windows bought computer before. But that will change from now on and I will next time buy a Ubuntu one.

I have been with Linux for many years and will never go back to Windows. I love Linux :slight_smile:

I first tried Linux Mint, then Linux Lite because I preferred the graphics and being lightweight. Then Linux Lite changed to those ugly flat icons and went 'modern'. So I found Ubuntu MATE, which I love. I love it because of all the different choices especially different types of the classic look. As you can see I am very much interested in appearance first and foremost. :slight_smile: This is why I found it difficult with unnatural the colours.

So, yes - I will continue to persevere! If I do find a solution, I will share it with you and the rest Ubuntu MATE family!

Thanks once again.

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The same problem in ubuntu mate 22.04.1 with intel iris video card. Yellow screen. and if I activate night light or disconnect the laptop from the current charger, it turns even more yellow

Dell vostro 3400 corei5 gen11 iris video card 16 gb ddr4 ram, ssd nvme kingston nv2

There is no color-bug on either mate 22.04 or 20.04 w.r.t. intel iris video.
I have near perfect color on a N6000 without tweaks.

The problem you describe is most probably faulty monitor settings or old age of the monitor.

Have you tried to adjust your monitor-settings ?
There should be a menu option for color on your monitor.
On most monitors you can adjust R, G, B seperately.
If you have that settings, increase 'Blue'

Also, in your monitor settings, check your setting for colortemperature, it should be at least 6500K, preferrably higher.

If you have none of those settings, use 'xgamma -bgamma 1.4' to make things less yellow. (or use xrandr)

Also, check this link:

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With xgamma -bgamma 1.4 it looks less yellow. Could you provide a help link or tell me how to make this permanent change permanent? Thank you

workaround: sh the command and schedule it in cron

PD: my laptop is brand new and its features I described before, so it's not old or flawed. I still think this is a bug (I don't know if it's from ubuntu mate 22.04 or from the intel driver), but I have no way to prove it.

Since I use, on several machines, the same ubuntu mate version with the same iris driver and without getting a yellowish display i rather suspect a hardware issue due to a manufacturing glitch.
(If I use xgamma -bgamma 1.4 everything turns insanely blue)

Nevertheless, here is how to set 'xgamma' permanently.

Also, check the manual pages on 'xgamma' and 'xrandr'
man xgamma
man xrandr

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I got a similar problem and after contacting Dell support they told me, they have a built in yellowing feature, to protect your eye from blue light. The feature cannot be switched off, so I am slowly getting in touch with that. If this is your problem I don't know, but the colors are different.