An evaluation of different measures of color saturation

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Abstract

We investigated how well seven saturation measures defined in CIECAM02, HSV, DKL, LAB, LUV, and CIE 1931 xyY color spaces correspond to human perception of saturation. We used a paradigm that allowed us to measure the perceived saturation of several standard color stimuli in many different directions of color space. We implemented this paradigm at different levels of luminance and varied background luminance relative to the luminance of our color stimuli in order to ensure the generality of our approach. We found that varying background luminance changed the relative saturation of the standard colors. Raising the overall luminance level did not have such an effect. We compared the results of our measurements to the predictions of the seven saturation measures. All of the measures could predict our observers’ judgments of saturation reasonably well. The measures that are based on measurements of discrimination thresholds (LUV, LAB, CIECAM02) performed best on average. However, some of the perceptual effects induced by changing background luminance could not be predicted by any measure.

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