Appearance of Maxwell’s spot in images rendered using a cyan primary

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The discovery of melanopsin as a third type of retinal photoreceptor, contributing to both perceptual vision and reflex light responses, represents a new opportunity to optimise the design of artificial light sources for practical applications and to generate experimental stimuli. In the case of emissive displays, multiprimary designs incorporating a cyan primary could be used to allow melanopic radiance to be controlled independent of colour and luminance. Here we explore the performance a 5-primary (violet, cyan, green, yellow, red) display device and find an anomaly in colour appearance when the cyan primary is employed. The anomaly took the form of a reddish/pinkish tinge in the central visual field, consistent with descriptions of Maxwell’s spot. This effect was apparent in some full colour images and in uniform discs over a range of chromaticities. Its appearance in coloured discs correlated with differences in calculated colour coordinate between central and peripheral vision. A simulation indicated that inclusion of any primary with predominant output in the 470-500nm range has the potential to produce such a discrepancy in central vs peripheral appearance. Applying an additional constraint in colour processing to reproduce naturally occurring differences in central vs peripheral colour coordinate eliminated appearance of the spot and produced acceptable colour images.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalVision Research
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 8 Oct 2019