Wide Color Gamut – What is it?

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Updated January 24, 2023

Many TV manufacturers acknowledge that even the best TVs may not show as many colors as the eye can see. However, with the use of technology such as the wide color gamut (WCG,) they may come closer than ever before to this goal. The eye can only see a range of colors, referred to as “visible colors,” though more colors exist. WCG often allows viewers to observe images with color that would be closer to real life.


  • Wide color gamut (WCG) TV enhances the color gamut on a TV with up to 75.8% of colors that the human eye can see.
  • WCG attempts to showcase these colors, often accompanied by high dynamic range (HDR.)
  • TVs with WCG cannot show broadcast content with the standard Rec. 709 color space in WCG.

What is Wide Color Gamut?

For TVs, different color gamuts refer to the colors which can be represented accurately on the TV. Therefore, TVs with WCG show more colors than those in the previous color spaces on television. In fact, a wider gamut allows for more accurate color generation, bringing out more saturated and vibrant colors than previously possible. Additionally, TVs with wider color gamuts also offer a wider range of colors to choose from when viewing content.

For example, in coverage of the CIE 1931 color space, the Rec. 2020 color space covers 75.8%, the DCI-P3 digital cinema color space covers 53.6%, the Adobe RGB color space covers 52.1%, and the Rec. 709 color space covers 35.9%.

Several color spaces include WCG, including Rec. 2020, which refers to ultra-high definition (UHD,) Rec. 2100 featuring high dynamic range (HDR,) DCI-P3, and Adobe RGB. Many TVs with WCG also feature HDR. However, consumers cannot watch all content on a TV with WCG or HDR in these formats.

The actual colors, channel color depth, and color on screen are determined by the TV’s hardware. A higher number of actual colors means that the eye can see more subtle differences in shades and tones, creating a more immersive viewing experience.

Often, broadcast TV does not utilize the expanded color space, choosing instead to use the Rec. 709 standards. Also, any manufacturing defect in a TV might prompt you to learn how to repair a black spot on the tv.

What Is High Dynamic Range?

HDR enables an image to represent a more natural illumination of content. HDR TVs require extra headroom in terms of brightness to showcase different elements. With HDR, you may be able to see more detail in the images on the TV. It also features significantly brighter highlights, darker shadows, and vivid colors.

Because of the different contrast between aspects of the image, viewers should also experience increased in-depth perception, which aids the eye’s observation of dimensions like 2D or 3D imagery. If you are not sure if your TV is HDR, it is very simple to check.

HDTVs are comprised of a set of display technologies that produce HD-resolution images, while broadcast HDTV is what you receive when you tune into HD channels. The primary colors that HDTV can project are red, green, and blue, which helps increase the accuracy of color when watching HD content.

HDR-enabled TVs often have high brightness, contrast, and color capabilities. HDR TVs are available that do not include WCG, but they often go hand-in-hand. Additionally, scenes filmed in different lighting have a more significant variation. To maintain the artists’ visions, companies have created several formats of HDR, including HDR10, HDR10+, HLG10, and PQ10. Each format helps to preserve the image when the dynamic range is less than what was created. In addition, some of these formats feature dynamic metadata that adjusts the image throughout the content instead of only at the beginning.

HDR will usually be on widescreen TVs. As such if you notice there are black bars on your screen you can check out our guide on how to get rid of black bars on the top and bottom of the TV. Additionally, if you notice your picture appears to be fuzzy, there are a number of culprits it could be. Don’t worry, we have a guide you can follow on troubleshooting why your TV is fuzzy.

You can also check out why your TV won’t turn on if you are having power issues but still need to enjoy your TV viewing experience. And if you are in the market for a new TV you will notice there are a ton of options to choose from. You may wonder if you should invest in new TV technology or not. This will of course depend on your personal preferences.


Which color mode has the largest color gamut?

WCG offers the largest range of visible colors, surpassing DCI-P3, Adobe RGB, and sRGB.

Is HDR the same as a wide gamut?

No, HDR stands for high dynamic range and refers to the contrast between an image’s brightest and darkest parts. Therefore, WCG enables more vivid and accurate colors to be seen in the picture.

Does a 4K UltraHD Blu-ray really look better than a regular Blu-ray?

4K UltraHD Blu-rays feature a higher resolution on a 4K TV than regular Blu-rays, meaning that the image should be enhanced if you are sitting at the optimal viewing distance for your TV.

STAT: In coverage of the CIE 1931 color space, the Rec. 2020 color space covers 75.8%, the DCI-P3 digital cinema color space covers 53.6%, the Adobe RGB color space covers 52.1%, and the Rec. 709 color space covers 35.9%. (source)

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