Samsung’s Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge have a special Screen Mode setting that you can use to pick your favorite type of display calibration on its AMOLED display.
Samsung has been criticized for its over saturated AMOLED displays for years. If you asked the average customer who doesn’t know much about color accuracy and display calibration, and they’d probably tell you the display on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are bright, vibrant and beautiful. However, if you ask a professional photographer or someone who knows and values color accuracy, then they’d probably tell you the display on these two Samsung devices are inaccurate and saturated.
I understand the reasons behind those who do not like the displays but I think this is a fantastic marketing strategy.
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Think about it, your average customer doesn’t know or even care about color accurate or display temperature. They’re going to be walking into a retailer or carrier store and see a line of smartphones on display as they cycle through their demo modes. Some might put the phone in their hand to see how it feels, but others will just look at the displays and watch the demo mode as it goes from screen to screen. Unless another smartphone OEM has calibrated their screen to look as colorful and vibrant as the AMOLED displays on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, they’re probably going to think these have the best screens.
And they really wouldn’t be lying either. DisplayMate has ranked the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge to have the very best screens on any smartphone, ever. They feel this way for different reasons than the average customer would though and that’s because Samsung makes colors on their devices pop. This can b mimicked on LCD displays, to a degree, but we never really see an OEM use an LCD display and calibrate it like the default Samsung display is. As I mentioned though, Samsung has been criticized for their over saturated displays for years and they finally did something about it when they launched the Galaxy S5.
So today I want to show you the different Screen Modes that the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge has, and then I’ll explain how each of them are different.
Galaxy S7 Screen Mode
- Launch the Settings Application
- Scroll Down and Tap on the ‘Display and Wallpaper’ Option
- Scroll Down Again and Tap on the ‘Screen Mode’ Option
- Then Choose the Screen Mode that You Feel is Best
For the explanation, I just want to dive into what each of these Galaxy S7 Screen Modes mean and how they differ from each other. The first option you’ll see, and it’s the option that is set by default, is the Adaptive Display option. This option will dynamically change depending on what you’re looking at and what your environment is like at the time. For example, if you’re out in the bright sun, the display will recognize this and make it brighter for you(similar to auto-brightness but more complex). This setting will also adjust various other display variables like saturation and contrast depending on where you are and what you’re doing.
Measurements show this is the most color inaccurate Screen Mode because it changes so often. It will all depend on what you’re doing though and if you’re willing to sacrifice the color accuracy for a more visible display. For example, if you’re out in the bright sun, you might not care that greens are perfectly green or reds are perfectly red because at least you’ll be able to see the screen when you need it. It’s just a trade off that some will be willing to make but again, it all depends on what your lifestyle is like and what you expect when it comes to color accuracy and display calibration.
The second Screen Mode you’ll see on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge is called AMOLED Cinema. The main idea behind this mode is for those who want their colors and saturation to be more in line with movies and photographs. The AMOLED Cinema Screen Mode has a color temperature that is much cooler than some would prefer. This means that whites and grays will actually look more like light blues than pure white. This Screen Mode will also crank up the saturation across most of the colors. So you’ll see colors like Green and Yellow and Blue actually look more vibrant than how it’s supposed to.
This will be a horrible Screen Mode on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge for those who are into photography and need their phone to show more accurate colors. On the other end of the spectrum, this might not be a big deal for the average customer because they might actually like to see the colors pop on the screen. This type of preference is purely subjective so don’t ever let someone tell you one way is right or one way is wrong. Whichever look you enjoy the most from your smartphone is the one you should go with.
Next up we have what Samsung calls AMOLED Photo. While this Screen Mode for the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge sounds like it would be for professional photographers, it’s not quite there. It definitely is an improvement over AMOLED Cinema(when it comes to color accuracy and display temperate), it’s still not as good as it should be. This Screen Mode is said to be calibrated more toward the Adobe RGB color space than sRGB, but again, this is all a preference as to what you feel looks the best and what works best for you everyday usage. AMOLED Photo brings the color temperature very, very close to ideal.
So whites and grays look more white and gray than AMOLED Cinema, but this time things are leaning more toward the warmer side. So whites can sometimes look more Yellow, Green or Red tint to it. This is definitely less apparent than how whites and grays look blue in the AMOLED Cinema Screen Mode, but for those who need colors to be as accurate as possible, it still isn’t the best that Samsung has to offer. I actually like this one the most as it seems to be about the middle of the road. It’s not completely accurate, but it still gives colors enough punch to stick out.
The Basic Screen Mode for the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge is where those who want accurate colors will be praising Samsung for their work. Granted, if you switch between Basic and any of the other Screen Modes, then you might feel the Basic setting is dark and bland. This is only by comparison though because the Basic Screen Mode is actually the most color accurate mode that Samsung offers. Screen temperature is so close to ideal that they’re only off by less than 100k and this Screen Mode is calibrated for the sRGB color space. Most of the internet uses the sRGB color space too, so you’ll be seeing what the web developer intended when using this Screen Mode.
If you’re just browsing through these modes, you might be put off by how this mode looks when compared to the others. However, if color accuracy is important to you then I suggest switching to this Screen Mode and using it for a day or two. Let your eyes adjust to how it displays colors and see if you can grow to like it. This mode does come with its drawbacks though. As mentioned about using the Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge under the bright sun, it could be difficult for you to see the screen when using the Basic Screen Mode. The other two AMOLED Screen Modes don’t get much brighter, but the Adaptive Display Screen Mode almost gets twice as bright.