Hi I'm a physics grad student who has lots of interest on color perception.

I have recently learned that some people (mostly women) have another active cone cell which makes them possible to discriminate more colors than usual people like me.

Is it possible to discriminate tetrachromacy using sRGB color, I mean, is it possible to test it out on computer monitor? I guess so, because even though computer use combination of only 3 colors, it seems possible to make 2 combinations different in which is only perceptible to tetrachromacy. However, I'm not sure about that point because I'm not expert on that.

Anyway, if I'm right, it would not be so hard to make a test which resembles dyschromatopsia test, that can distinguish trichromacy and tetrachromacy. I couldn't find such a thing on internet. Test I could find seemed not valid. Even I could pass all the tests, but I'm not clearly tetrachromatic person.

Can somebody help me?


1 Answer 1


All the combinations of three sRGB primary colors are distinct for a trichromat. This immediately precludes any way to find out whether you are capable of more: if even a trichromat can distinguish all the colors, tetrachromat even more so.

But in principle, three colors are sufficient to check for tetrachromacy, but they can't be the sRGB primaries. The three colors you need must lie on one line on the chromaticity diagram, so that multiple mixtures of them could appear as the same color to a trichromat. Then a tetrachromat may be able to distinguish the two mixtures, which are metamers to a trichromat.


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