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The way brightness is distributed across the intensity spectrum by a monitor, printer or scanner. Depending on the device, the gamma may have a significant effect on the way colors are perceived. Gamma is technically the relationship between the input voltage and resulting intensity of the output. A perfect linear device would have a gamma of 1.0 and be plotted on a graph called a "tone curve" as a straight line. Although a scanner is fairly linear, the tone curve of a monitor or printer is bent, yielding a gamma in the range of 1.8 to 2.6, which effects midrange tones. See gamma correction.

gamma correction

An adjustment to the light intensity (brightness) of a scanner, monitor or printer in order to match the output more closely to the original image. A gamma correction imposes the complement of the "tone curve" in order to flatten the line and bring the gamma closer to the ideal 1.0 (see gamma).

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