When you turn on the SMPTE bars, they will look like this image above on yourmonitor screen. Now locate the controls for CONTRAST, BRIGHTNESS, andCHROMA (they maybe on an external remote control unit that plugs into themonitor). If you look directly below (or nearby) each of these knobs, you willusually find a corresponding two-position, push switch, probably marked "Auto"and "Manual". The "Auto" position, applies a standard reference signal, which hasbeen set up during the alignment of the monitor by a technician i.e. Auto = Preset.And as the name suggests, the manual position allows for user adjustment of theContrast, Brightness, and Chroma.If the preset has been configured properly, it provides a good starting point forfurther adjustment. If for any reason you can't fine tune your monitor for theparticular viewing conditions, then rely on the Preset value. If set up properly, theywill be pretty close (especially the Contrast and the Chroma settings). If you findyour settings vary greatly from the presets, then this may indicate you are mis-adjusting the monitor because you are getting too far removed from the baseline.The Contrast is the hardest adjustment to set up by eye, as the correct level is very,very subjective. Be strongly guided by the Preset value for the Contrast, inparticular. Adjusting the Brightness and Chroma by eye, is comparatively easy andprecise.
(1) O.K. firstly the hardest one, adjusting the CONTRAST. You adjust this usingthe white box at the bottom left of the color bars screen (under the yellow, cyanvertical bars). You need to get this box (outlined here in red) to look nicely white,but not blooming too much (...I told you it was subjective). For the novice, it isprobably several steps lower than what you think is the best level.Technicians set