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XPS 15 9500, color banding

Is anybody else struggling with a new XPS 15 9500 and the quality of the display drivers?

I picked one up for work and noticed instantly that the display had real problems with darker color gradients. At first I assumed that OS was running at a low bit depth but after checking several times, it was not the issue as the OS was running at 32-bit color depth.

This is a problem for me as I editing photos on this laptop from time to time and need the color reproduction to be accurate.

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Seems to me that there are too many conflicts with the different managements, between Dell, Intel and Windows 10... I've worked through many different configurations and calibration methods, and I think I have found something that works for me as a photographer and printer. I will run with it for a while a see how it works out, but colors and tonalities look very good, and having gone through a LR library with monochrom and color images, I am not seeing any banding.

Below are the different steps I took. I created a ICC profile with DisplayCal and a i1Pro spectro-densitometer, which I am happy to share. I cannot attach it here, so just send me a PM.

The profile has a Gamut coverage/Gamut Volume of: sRGB: 99.9%/157.5% Adobe RGB: 99.5%/108.5% DCI P3: 91.2%/111.5%

Windows 10 Display settings: - disabled HDR - I tried to do calibrate the screen in HDR and it was awful - disabled auto brightness - Windows HDR settings: Battery Option > Optimize for Image Quality - I am not sure if this doing anything since HDR is off, but I noticed banding occurs if it is on the other settings. - Advanced Display Setting > Display Adapter Properties for Display 1 > Color Management > Color Management: remove all profiles and keep only the one you've made or the above.

Dell PremierColor: - deleted the app

Intel Graphic Command Center: NOTE: you need to have an external monitor hooked up and MIRRORED because the screen will turn black after adjusting the saturation slide. When the screen turn black, open Dell Cinema Color and the screen will turn back on. - Adjust slider saturation to 0 - System > Power: turn everything OFF as it also controls auto-brightness.

I am not sure how all this will affect the battery life, but I prefer a shorter battery life over a poor image quality. It should be simpler... and good enough right out of the box for a system which is supposed to be best solution out there for photographers. Like I said above, I will run with it for a little while to see if it holds, otherwise I will look into the FHD+ as @ObstacleJid suggested...

I hope Dell and Intel will provide a more viable solution soon!


I ended up just conceding and doing a full windows reinstall. The darks were so bad it was like a garbled mess of Minecraft blocks when showing dark shades and also had dark greenish toned areas mixed in with the terrible black. I have the 32gb, i7, 1TB, FHD+ model. I'd say it's 90% better now after the reset, there's just something missing though. But overall I'm not in complete despair anymore that my sisters £600 inspiron had a superior screen to mine. I've got lots of optional intel updates I'm too scared to install, I've also not installed many of the Dell specific apps. I'm happy to wait it out with what I've got. There has to be a solution. I've got years of onsite support left so I'll either get it fixed or never buy a Dell again it's quite simple.

I made my way to the colour profile section you mentioned and was going to play around with the settings but was too scared incase anything else went wrong. After getting black screen repeatedly from the previous suggested tip of removing premier colour and restoring Intel settings to factory I wasn't risking it. 

Luckily I chatted with Adobe and got 3 months free credit as I've been unable to edit photos. The reinstall has massively increased my hard drive space and I swear it's faster even though I hardly had problems in that area anyway. 

It shouldn't be a solution though what I did. It costs me days and days of time and hard drives to backup and to get the windows install media prepared.

*Invalid HTML removed? That so happened to be important to the whole message. Am I being censored?


@lensbaby thanks for sharing, it actually worked for me too, vastly improving color banding!


Applied the fix from @lensbaby yesterday and haven't noticed any banding since. Also the audio jack is active the first time I insert a headphone, before I applied the fix I had to insert it 2 or 3 times before the headphone was detected.


@lensbaby This worked great! Thanks



Did you manage to get all applications (not just color managed) to show correct colors by doing all that procedure?

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Hi all,

I'm late to this conversation and new to support forums.

I'm running a brand new xps 15 (9510) with a UHD display and the Nvidia 3050 TI. I'm having the color banding issue, but there's a twist that I haven't yet seen mentioned on this topic. The issue disappears when I unplug whatever is plugged into the USB-C ports (thunderbolt or otherwise), whether it's the charger or the WD 19 Dock with no screen attached. Also, the color banding and overall degraded image carries through in applications that use the 3050 TI. Needless to say, the issue is more pronounced on lower resolutions, but again, it disappears altogether when the laptop is unplugged.

Any insight or advice would be much appreciated! 

Btw, firmware and drivers are all up to date as far as I can tell. 



I have just bought a Dell XPS 15 9510 3.5K OLED and I noticed the awful banding on YouTube videos. I tried what Omzes said above and the banding instantly disappears after a flash of black screen. When plugged back in to any of the 3 USB-C ports the banding instantly appears again after a flash of black screen. 

I am still in the grace period for return until January 2022. I hope you can find the proper solution on this banding problem before that time. Thank you.


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I have the same problem my dell xps 9500. @Dell support what I can do how to fix this problem?

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