03-24-2014 09:49 AM
52 123
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  1. MBytes's Avatar
    I have found a fix! maybe....
    I'll need some assistance with some one who has time to play around with the Intel drivers, and testing.
    02-03-2014 06:23 PM
  2. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Trying the Intel 15.33.8.64.3345 driver now. The Surface immediately reinstalled its old drivers after I uninstalled them, even with auto update off. But it turned out I was able to install the "new" drivers anyway without uninstalling the regular ones.

    So... I can now see all of these dark shades Black level - Lagom LCD test
    And everything looks good. That is to say it looks less contrasty and all over duller and less saturated than before, but this is probably a lot more accurate for photography even though the desktop environment is a little less flashy to look at. One gets used to such changes after a short time.

    Have set my color space to Adobe RGB and relative colometric. I may give my Spyder a go and calibrate the display properly but I am uncertain about the starting contrast and gamma settings for this display. Another thing to look into.

    But this computer is finally taking shape as something that can be used for graphic work. :)
    02-04-2014 02:26 PM
  3. MBytes's Avatar
    I fixed the problem on my side, and figured out where the drivers settings are stores. Now I need to do 3 things.
    -> See if I can carry the settings to the Surface Intel drivers, and have them applied correctly
    -> Test to see if I can get battery life with it back. If not, then identify which exact set of options disables the "Intel contrast enhancing" feature.
    -> Make a program that will apply/revert the changes, because it is not an easy thing to do manually, and can't do a reg file. I could do a Intel Control Panel for Surface users, but I see that, beside you, no one is interested, so I refer to work on my other idea. Change Windows Power plan based on what you run and if you are plugged in or not, with balloon notification (if you want), when the battery reach a certain level when charging, for those who wants to disconnect to stop charging their Surface.
    02-04-2014 02:51 PM
  4. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    But will it really use a lot more power when in actual use? Or just when not sleeping inbetween use? Hibernation still works. I have my power button set for that so whenever I put it down for something longer than a few minutes, I set it to hibernate. Booting is only some four seconds anyway.

    And what about the tray Intel control panel's power settings? I know the advanced settings are disables on this display but there are some simple power settings there it seems. I'm more worried that these drivers have more power management in terms of auto brightness going up and down.

    I like your idea but I think it may be a bit too ambitious for something like this. Since I have a feeling that new drivers will arrive soon that are better for this display. They simply cannot leave the original drivers like this with no shadow detail and that much banding. Well, it seems impossible but then again who knows. Like I said, the apps and tiles do look better with more of a punch to the look, even though that is incorrect representation of colors and wouldn't work for a designer or photographer. But I'm sure games look good with richer deeper blacks and more vivid colors.

    As for participation, yes there is little activity here. Then again it is mostly a Windows Phone community, so maybe I at least will look for another place with a bit more Surface action.
    02-05-2014 02:10 AM
  5. MBytes's Avatar
    So far I can't say, as I haven't got the time to do the point I mentioned above.
    Basically what I am doing, is that I figured out where the driver settings are stored. Now I need to make a monitoring tool to know which value represent (as they don't have nice understandable names), the option that enables and disables that features which creates the banding.

    Once I know what the option is, I can put back the Surface Pro Intel drivers that is provided by Microsoft, and apply the setting there, which will disable the banding option. Basically, all I'll be doing is an Intel Control Panel program with 1 option, which is to enable/disable that option that creates the banding. It will have 1 limitation, and that is, because I can't know the Intel drivers API code ('cause Intel is not giving it), I won't be able to say to the Intel drivers "Hey! Look! Options has changes in your settings! Do you mind reloading them to apply them now? Cool awesome, thanks!", Sadly you'll have to restart the system so that the drivers load its setting at boot up, to have the changes take affect.

    It will have no affect on anything else on the system. So your sleep, hibernate, etc. function will work exactly the same way as before, same for the rest.
    It only affects the banding.
    02-05-2014 08:05 AM
  6. MBytes's Avatar
    02-05-2014 04:30 PM
  7. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    I calibrated my Surface Pro 2 (Intel drivers) with a Spyder 4 Elite. It looks a lot nicer although these results are probably aren't reliable either for accurate printing and such. Looks like the display is far off reproducing Adobe RGB so I'm back to sRGB for now. This doesn't solve missing power options of course, but at least the display doesn't look as dull as when I first installed the Intel drivers.

    I haven't yet measured how long the full battery actually lasts so I'm not sure what the actual loss is. Hard to test exactly too when you use it for different things all the time. But it doesn't seem like it was much better before.
    02-09-2014 07:49 AM
  8. MBytes's Avatar
    The Surface Pro 2 display is a 6-bit+FRC display, not a true 8-bit display.
    And as it uses white LED backlight and not high-grade CFL, or GB-LED or RGB-LED, it is also not wide gamut.

    So in other words, you wont' be able to get Adobe RGB
    02-09-2014 08:43 AM
  9. Kevin Rush's Avatar
    Thank you, Mbytes and random... and others for all your work on this. Most people don't comment unless they have something to contribute, but we do appreciate reading your valuable comments.

    Best Wishes, No Worries.
    MBytes and randomscandinavian like this.
    02-09-2014 08:52 AM
  10. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Anybody tried today's patches? I'm not installng anything now unless I know for sure that there are actual shadow details and no banding. What are these new tuning options?

    I realize that the rest of you aren't my personal crash test dummies but I figure that most people will have upgraded anyway and so I thought I'd ask before spending an hour installing and configuring it and then disappointedly reverting to what I have now. :)
    02-11-2014 03:36 PM
  11. MBytes's Avatar
    Anybody tried today's patches? I'm not installng anything now unless I know for sure that there are actual shadow details and no banding. What are these new tuning options?

    I realize that the rest of you aren't my personal crash test dummies but I figure that most people will have upgraded anyway and so I thought I'd ask before spending an hour installing and configuring it and then disappointedly reverting to what I have now. :)
    I am about to try, but apparently it's not fixed.. but there is my solution as you know, which, for me, has been working awesomely.
    02-11-2014 03:46 PM
  12. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Have you tried your fix with the latest official drivers? I'm vurious as to how the new graphic controls will work with tour solution.

    I haven't even turned my Surface on for over a week but I do think your idea of using the native Surface drivers and then tweaking them is interesting. I think the Intel drivers with a calibrated display seems promising, but I am very bothered by the idea of poor battery performance. And I hate not being able to have the latest official bug fixes. So an enhanced official driver that can be updated normally would be best.

    Haven't had the time to tinker a lot with any of this. Will start working with photography again soon now and I'm trying to set up the Surface as much as possible so that it will just function for my work at that time, without me having to tweak and fix anything. I just want to use the Surface Pro for actual work and not do tweaks and maintenence.
    02-14-2014 05:16 PM
  13. MBytes's Avatar
    Yea it works great!
    Still looking into improving it. After further testing, it would seam that only 'DCUserPreferencePolicy' needs to be change to not have Intel auto contrast adjustment thing kick-in on battery.
    Still doing testing, but so far so good (current fix, and also only changing 'DCUserPreferencePolicy' value).
    randomscandinavian likes this.
    02-14-2014 10:24 PM
  14. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Finally updated to the latest firmware and fixes (because after being turned off for some ten days the Surface wouldn't even boot at first without cryptical error messages).

    To my surprise the driver and settings and calibration was retained although the Intel control panel is now gone. As far as I can tell I now have the latest official everything (allbeit with an older display driver signature date than the Intel one) and I have all the contrast range without missing dark shades and so on.

    Will have to test further and see but at first glance it looks like the original problems was either fixed in the latest update or fixed as a result of installing the Intel drivers, calibrating to an icc profile and then updating to the official drivers.
    02-17-2014 05:17 AM
  15. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Well, so today I got brave and installed the latest Microsoft updates. Hadn't had my Surface Pro 2 on for twelve days I see.

    That completely undid all of the fixes I had applied and I'm back in banding hell. The screen looks ridiculous to a fairly trained eye. As it is now with its factory settings (albethey calibrated by a Spyder) this thing is completely useless for any kind of graphics work. I cannot use a device that needs a couple of hours service and work every time I turn it on so it will probably remain unused.

    (I actually tried giving it away to my girlfriend who needs a new laptop but she didn't want it).

    Perhaps after the upcoming Windows update, I will reinstall the working drivers (Intel) and calibrate it anew and then never do any kind of system update ever again except for virus definitions. I have never in my life spent this much money and time on something so completely worthless out of the box as a Surface Pro 2.
    03-22-2014 03:29 PM
  16. MBytes's Avatar
    Well, so today I got brave and installed the latest Microsoft updates. Hadn't had my Surface Pro 2 on for twelve days I see.

    That completely undid all of the fixes I had applied and I'm back in banding hell. The screen looks ridiculous to a fairly trained eye. As it is now with its factory settings (albethey calibrated by a Spyder) this thing is completely useless for any kind of graphics work. I cannot use a device that needs a couple of hours service and work every time I turn it on so it will probably remain unused.

    (I actually tried giving it away to my girlfriend who needs a new laptop but she didn't want it).

    Perhaps after the upcoming Windows update, I will reinstall the working drivers (Intel) and calibrate it anew and then never do any kind of system update ever again except for virus definitions. I have never in my life spent this much money and time on something so completely worthless out of the box as a Surface Pro 2.
    Ok here are things you need to know:
    - The panel is a 6-bit IPS panel like all tablets. Entry level IPS display is what it is. So, already you can't do color critical work (let alone even have uniform backlit and color processor). It's out of the question. You should seek for a true 8-bit panels to start with. While I don't know for sure, I don't even think the Wacom Cintiq Companion Pro has a true 8-bit IPS panel, as it doesn't seam that Samsung or LG makes them.

    - Get the March firmware update.

    - Open the Intel integrated graphics panel, which is now available, and go through every option, and disable all the Intel ****ty "color enhancement/modification" crap features, everywhere you see it. I have asked a friend, and it looks like it's feature that Intel enables by default and shoves this crap in our face to "enhance the display", while it does is turn a fine IPS panel to a mess. It MIGHT be helpful for ****ty TN panels that other manufactures loves to put in, but on IPS panel, its horrible. On the Intel panel, when you click on a section, they are hidden options (on some sections) by clicking the section name at the top right.
    03-22-2014 03:50 PM
  17. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    I don't expect this display to perform like a professional monitor. Out of the box it is far too green and calibrated it somehow becomes far too red. More pleasent to look at but wrong. But if I look at the color picker panel in Photoshop the way this thing is now, it is like looking at a computer that has been booted into 16 bit safe mode. Same with my desktop background. I find nothing in any control panel to improve that. I don't find any enhancement settings to disable. Except that I have removed all the power saving options and put everything to best performance.

    There are so many banding lines that it is like looking at a topographical map of a mountain or a valley.

    I am unable to find any of the hidden settings you speak of.

    Including a phone screen shot, which is completely unscientific but actually shows the problem well. I figured that if I took a regular screenshot then it would display correctly on other computers with better displays.
    Attached Thumbnails wp_20140322_22_41_49_pro-1-.jpg  
    03-22-2014 04:50 PM
  18. MBytes's Avatar
    Can you send me the background?
    03-22-2014 05:07 PM
  19. HeyCori's Avatar
    Sad to see such lovely devices hampered by color banding. I have a Surface 2 and the color banding is atrocious. It gets even worse when I'm outputting to a second monitor.
    03-22-2014 08:22 PM
  20. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    It's included in Windows. It'z one of the default wallpapers.
    03-23-2014 03:47 AM
  21. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    It appears that I can choose: If I delete the graphics driver altogether I get no banding but no optimizations for the Surface Pro 2 either. Resolution seems a bit off. If I install an old October 2013 Intel driver things also look pretty good. But in the test page with grayscale swatches the five deepest ones are not visible. I found that the desktop looks best if I delete the graphics driver and then do the March 11 update anew. No banding at all on desktop. Well very little at least. But that leaves 14 gray shades rendered as just black. Which is where all of this started.

    So perhaps this is the best option. To simply forget about shadow detail for this device. Will do some photo comparisons later between the SP2 and my Mac with the wide gamut display I have.

    Black level - Lagom LCD test
    03-23-2014 09:30 AM
  22. MBytes's Avatar
    Here is how the background looks like:

    Desktop - Dell U2410 - 24inch true 8-bit H-IPS panel - using DVI - 1920x1200 (I don't know why the colors appear off when I take the picture (red'ish). Too lazy to fix my camera. But the point is the stepping, not color accuracy)
    http://www.helpweaver.com/P1000205.JPG

    Surface Pro 2
    http://www.helpweaver.com/P1000203.JPG

    As you can see, I don't have the problem.
    It is like I said, you have the option(s) in Intel Control Panel which does this enabled. Disable all image processing, and "Display Power Saving Technology" (does not save anything)
    03-23-2014 10:33 AM
  23. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    Thank you for the feedback! Very helpful to see! :)

    As for the Intel panel, I still cannot find these enhancement features. Under Color/Advanced there is just one setting. I have it set to natural colors and not Vivid Colors (these settings are all translated to Norwegian so it may not use the same words exactly).

    Under basic Color Settings we simply have 32bit and Color improvement, which os set to its default of Brightness zero, Contrast 50 and Gamma 1.0.

    Under Screen Settings/Advanced it simply says that the screen does not support any advanced settings.

    Basic screen settings only has Resolution, scaling etc. Nothing to set here. And that's about it, isn't it? There are also the Windows controls for the driver.
    03-23-2014 04:19 PM
  24. MBytes's Avatar
    You owe me a thanks for this:
    http://www.helpweaver.com/Intel/Intel/Intel.htm
    Make sure that every option are matching mine

    [Edit]
    Just noticed I forgot to go through 1 section. In the last one at the end of the video, I go under "Display" section, I go under "Color" sub section, where you see I show the Intel color adjustment (Brightness, Contrast and Gamma), I forgot to click on "Advanced", and show that your want the slider bar for Color Gamut on maximum "vivid colors" The setting is on REVERSE. Natural Color over-saturates all colors, Vivid Color puts them right. It's Intel. What can we expect?

    And be sure to hit that Apply button each time, before changing sections. I don't do it, as its already set. Be sure to do it.
    Last edited by MBytes; 03-23-2014 at 05:24 PM.
    03-23-2014 05:13 PM
  25. randomscandinavian's Avatar
    I am grateful but there is nothing here that affects the banding problem. The settings you go through only applies to video (hence it is listed under video) and not to desktop graphics. Video runs in an environment of its own and has nothing to do with this. Interesting what you say about natural and vivid color settings. Mine are not reversed. Actually the vivid setting is useful for detecting color casts, as a slightly too red display setting will go all reddish in vivid mode.

    oh well... I keep returning to the web page with the greyscale swatches. It actually varies how many shadow tones are visible. It is not a very capable piece of display hardware. Perhaps because it needs to be a touch screen, a pen tablet and display stuff accurately at the same time. Bottom line: it doesn't.
    03-23-2014 08:45 PM
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