Abstract

Spectral lights, while constant in purity, differ in saturation. Saturation-discrimination experiments have not always indicated this variation of saturation with wavelength. For example, several early investigators determined the size of the first just-noticeable step from the spectrum locus and found it to be approximately constant as a function of wavelength. When we performed this experiment we found saturation functions with minima near 570 nm; however, the ranges of the functions were more compressed than saturation-discrimination functions near white. The saturation-discrimination function results are compared with saturation functions determined by several other empirical and theoretical methods.

© 1976 Optical Society of America

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  1. G. H. Jacobs, Percept. Psychophys. 2, 271 (1967).
    [CrossRef]
  2. D. Jameson and L. M. Hurvich, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 49, 890 (1959).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. I. G. Priest and F. G. Brickwedde, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 28, 133 (1938).
    [CrossRef]
  4. For a discussion of direct and indirect methods of psychophysical scaling, see T. Engen in Woodworth and Schlosberg’s Experimental Psychology, edited by J. W. Kling and L. A. Riggs (Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1971).
  5. In these experiments, the two halves of the bipartite field were always kept equally bright by appropriate adjustment of the spectral or white component.
  6. D. M. Purdy, Br. J. Psychol. 21, 283 (1931).
  7. W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London,  49, 329 (1937).
    [CrossRef]
  8. Nelson, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 49, 332 (1937).
    [CrossRef]
  9. L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).
  10. W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 47, 205 (1935).
    [CrossRef]
  11. L. A. Jones and E. M. Lowry, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 13, 25 (1926).
    [CrossRef]
  12. L. T. Troland, “Report of Committee on Colorimetry for 1920–1921,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. 6, 527–596 (1922).
    [CrossRef]
  13. D. L. MacAdam, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 32, 247 (1942).
    [CrossRef]
  14. The one exception is Jones and Lowry11 (Fig. 2, No. 3).
  15. R. DeValois and G. Jacobs, Science 162, 533 (1968).
    [CrossRef]
  16. P. Padmos and D. V. Norren, Vision Res. 15, 1103 (1975).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. This was determined by means of a Gaertner spectrometer, an EG and G spectroradiometer, and by visual observation.
  18. A movable ground–glass–mirror combination was placed between M3 and BS2 to divert chromatic light from channel 2 to the photometer for measurement of the chromatic light. However, this was installed only in the later phases of this research.
  19. G. Wyszecki and W. S. Stiles, Color Science (Wiley, New York, 1967).
  20. G. Westheimer, Vision Res. 6, 669 (1966).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  21. These data were often collected in conjunction with other experiments. Consequently, we did not use a constant illuminance level. The initial level was 50 td with later data collected at 100 and 150 td. Some observers were not available to be run under all conditions.
  22. There is an assymmetry of the variability bars about the mean. This is related both to the use of a logarithmic ordinate scale and to our normalization procedure. In this procedure, we divided the mean value for 570 nm by the mean value plus or minus one standard deviation for each wavelength used in the experiment. As a result, large indices of saturation are at the top of the graph. Had we performed this normalization on the raw data and then calculated means and standard deviations, the variability bars would have been symmetrical on a linear scale. Our purpose in presenting variability data is for interobserver and intermethod comparison. Because the plotted values were all computed in the same way, they are useful in making these comparisons.
  23. D. Regan and C. W. Tyler, Vision Res. 11, 1307 (1971).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  24. We are grateful to a reader whose comments prompted us to describe the precautions taken against such confounding variables. Although DMB is a coauthor, she was naive with regard to the theoretical issues and purpose of this research while she was an observer. Her major contribution to this paper is in the discussion of the Hurvich and Jameson model.
  25. These data were collected for a purpose unrelated to the problem of the saturation of spectral lights. When we examined the data, the relevance to the present paper became obvious. The stimuli were 1000 times threshold and subtended 0.7°. They were presented for 1 s in the center of four peripherally viewed fixation lights set to be slightly above scotopic threshold. The color-naming procedure used is similar to that used by P. Kaiser, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 58, 849 (1968) and also by R. M. Boynton, W. Schafer, and M. E. Neun, Science 146, 666 (1964). The only difference is that our observer could indicate the relative proportion of the component colors in four rather than three categories.
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. E. HeringOutlines of a Theory of the Light Sense, translated by L. M. Hurvich and D. Jameson, (Harvard, Cambridge, Mass., 1964); P. K. Kaiser, P. A. Herzberg, and R. M. Boynton, Vision Res. 11, 953 (1971); P. K. Kaiser and J. P. Comerford, Vision Res. 15, 1399 (1975).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  27. L. M. Hurvich and D. Jameson, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 45, 602 (1955).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  28. S. L. Guth and H. R. Lodge, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 63, 450 (1973).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  29. D. Jameson and L. M. Hurvich, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 45, 546, (1955).
    [CrossRef]
  30. A clear description of the Hurvich and Jameson model as applied to saturation is given in Ref. 31. We have added the ability of this method to account for the chromatic response resulting from white light. Hurvich and Jameson assumed that the chromatic component from broadband radiation is zero. (See Ref. 31 p. 435). The transformation from the CIE color-matching functions to (y–b), (r–g), and (w–bk) are presented in Refs. 26 and 31.
  31. C. H. Graham, in Vision and Visual Perception (Wiley, New York, 1965).
  32. R. M. Boynton and P. K. Kaiser, Science 161, 366 (1968); S. L. Guth, N. J. Donely, and R. T. Morroco, Vision Res. 9, 537 (1969); M. Tessier and M. Blottiau, Revue Opt. 30, 309 (1951).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  33. S. L. Guth, Color 69 Association Internationale de la Couleur Proceedings, V. 1, p. 172, (Muster-Schmidt, Gottingen, 1970). P. K. Kaiser, G. Wyszecki, and G. Fielder, Paper presented at Annual Meeting of Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, April, 1975.

1975 (1)

P. Padmos and D. V. Norren, Vision Res. 15, 1103 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

1973 (1)

1971 (1)

D. Regan and C. W. Tyler, Vision Res. 11, 1307 (1971).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

1968 (3)

1967 (1)

G. H. Jacobs, Percept. Psychophys. 2, 271 (1967).
[CrossRef]

1966 (1)

G. Westheimer, Vision Res. 6, 669 (1966).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

1959 (1)

1955 (2)

1942 (1)

1938 (1)

1937 (2)

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London,  49, 329 (1937).
[CrossRef]

Nelson, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 49, 332 (1937).
[CrossRef]

1935 (1)

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 47, 205 (1935).
[CrossRef]

1933 (1)

L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).

1931 (1)

D. M. Purdy, Br. J. Psychol. 21, 283 (1931).

1926 (1)

1922 (1)

Boynton, R. M.

R. M. Boynton and P. K. Kaiser, Science 161, 366 (1968); S. L. Guth, N. J. Donely, and R. T. Morroco, Vision Res. 9, 537 (1969); M. Tessier and M. Blottiau, Revue Opt. 30, 309 (1951).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Brickwedde, F. G.

DeValois, R.

R. DeValois and G. Jacobs, Science 162, 533 (1968).
[CrossRef]

Engen, T.

For a discussion of direct and indirect methods of psychophysical scaling, see T. Engen in Woodworth and Schlosberg’s Experimental Psychology, edited by J. W. Kling and L. A. Riggs (Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1971).

Graham, C. H.

C. H. Graham, in Vision and Visual Perception (Wiley, New York, 1965).

Guth, S. L.

S. L. Guth and H. R. Lodge, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 63, 450 (1973).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

S. L. Guth, Color 69 Association Internationale de la Couleur Proceedings, V. 1, p. 172, (Muster-Schmidt, Gottingen, 1970). P. K. Kaiser, G. Wyszecki, and G. Fielder, Paper presented at Annual Meeting of Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, April, 1975.

Hering, E.

E. HeringOutlines of a Theory of the Light Sense, translated by L. M. Hurvich and D. Jameson, (Harvard, Cambridge, Mass., 1964); P. K. Kaiser, P. A. Herzberg, and R. M. Boynton, Vision Res. 11, 953 (1971); P. K. Kaiser and J. P. Comerford, Vision Res. 15, 1399 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Hurvich, L. M.

Jacobs, G.

R. DeValois and G. Jacobs, Science 162, 533 (1968).
[CrossRef]

Jacobs, G. H.

G. H. Jacobs, Percept. Psychophys. 2, 271 (1967).
[CrossRef]

Jameson, D.

Jones, L. A.

Kaiser, P.

Kaiser, P. K.

R. M. Boynton and P. K. Kaiser, Science 161, 366 (1968); S. L. Guth, N. J. Donely, and R. T. Morroco, Vision Res. 9, 537 (1969); M. Tessier and M. Blottiau, Revue Opt. 30, 309 (1951).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Lodge, H. R.

Lowry, E. M.

MacAdam, D. L.

Martin, L. C.

L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).

Morgan, W. J.

L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).

Nelson,

Nelson, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 49, 332 (1937).
[CrossRef]

Norren, D. V.

P. Padmos and D. V. Norren, Vision Res. 15, 1103 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Padmos, P.

P. Padmos and D. V. Norren, Vision Res. 15, 1103 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Pitt, F. H. G.

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London,  49, 329 (1937).
[CrossRef]

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 47, 205 (1935).
[CrossRef]

Priest, I. G.

Purdy, D. M.

D. M. Purdy, Br. J. Psychol. 21, 283 (1931).

Regan, D.

D. Regan and C. W. Tyler, Vision Res. 11, 1307 (1971).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Stiles, W. S.

G. Wyszecki and W. S. Stiles, Color Science (Wiley, New York, 1967).

Troland, L. T.

Tyler, C. W.

D. Regan and C. W. Tyler, Vision Res. 11, 1307 (1971).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Warburton, F. L.

L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).

Westheimer, G.

G. Westheimer, Vision Res. 6, 669 (1966).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Wright, W. D.

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London,  49, 329 (1937).
[CrossRef]

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 47, 205 (1935).
[CrossRef]

Wyszecki, G.

G. Wyszecki and W. S. Stiles, Color Science (Wiley, New York, 1967).

Br. J. Psychol. (1)

D. M. Purdy, Br. J. Psychol. 21, 283 (1931).

Great Britain Medical Research Council (1)

L. C. Martin, F. L. Warburton, and W. J. Morgan, Great Britain Medical Research Council, Special Report Series, 1 (1933).

J. Opt. Soc. Am. (9)

Percept. Psychophys. (1)

G. H. Jacobs, Percept. Psychophys. 2, 271 (1967).
[CrossRef]

Proc. Phys. Soc. London (3)

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 47, 205 (1935).
[CrossRef]

W. D. Wright and F. H. G. Pitt, Proc. Phys. Soc. London,  49, 329 (1937).
[CrossRef]

Nelson, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 49, 332 (1937).
[CrossRef]

Science (2)

R. DeValois and G. Jacobs, Science 162, 533 (1968).
[CrossRef]

R. M. Boynton and P. K. Kaiser, Science 161, 366 (1968); S. L. Guth, N. J. Donely, and R. T. Morroco, Vision Res. 9, 537 (1969); M. Tessier and M. Blottiau, Revue Opt. 30, 309 (1951).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Vision Res. (3)

D. Regan and C. W. Tyler, Vision Res. 11, 1307 (1971).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

P. Padmos and D. V. Norren, Vision Res. 15, 1103 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Westheimer, Vision Res. 6, 669 (1966).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Other (13)

These data were often collected in conjunction with other experiments. Consequently, we did not use a constant illuminance level. The initial level was 50 td with later data collected at 100 and 150 td. Some observers were not available to be run under all conditions.

There is an assymmetry of the variability bars about the mean. This is related both to the use of a logarithmic ordinate scale and to our normalization procedure. In this procedure, we divided the mean value for 570 nm by the mean value plus or minus one standard deviation for each wavelength used in the experiment. As a result, large indices of saturation are at the top of the graph. Had we performed this normalization on the raw data and then calculated means and standard deviations, the variability bars would have been symmetrical on a linear scale. Our purpose in presenting variability data is for interobserver and intermethod comparison. Because the plotted values were all computed in the same way, they are useful in making these comparisons.

The one exception is Jones and Lowry11 (Fig. 2, No. 3).

E. HeringOutlines of a Theory of the Light Sense, translated by L. M. Hurvich and D. Jameson, (Harvard, Cambridge, Mass., 1964); P. K. Kaiser, P. A. Herzberg, and R. M. Boynton, Vision Res. 11, 953 (1971); P. K. Kaiser and J. P. Comerford, Vision Res. 15, 1399 (1975).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

A clear description of the Hurvich and Jameson model as applied to saturation is given in Ref. 31. We have added the ability of this method to account for the chromatic response resulting from white light. Hurvich and Jameson assumed that the chromatic component from broadband radiation is zero. (See Ref. 31 p. 435). The transformation from the CIE color-matching functions to (y–b), (r–g), and (w–bk) are presented in Refs. 26 and 31.

C. H. Graham, in Vision and Visual Perception (Wiley, New York, 1965).

This was determined by means of a Gaertner spectrometer, an EG and G spectroradiometer, and by visual observation.

A movable ground–glass–mirror combination was placed between M3 and BS2 to divert chromatic light from channel 2 to the photometer for measurement of the chromatic light. However, this was installed only in the later phases of this research.

G. Wyszecki and W. S. Stiles, Color Science (Wiley, New York, 1967).

For a discussion of direct and indirect methods of psychophysical scaling, see T. Engen in Woodworth and Schlosberg’s Experimental Psychology, edited by J. W. Kling and L. A. Riggs (Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1971).

In these experiments, the two halves of the bipartite field were always kept equally bright by appropriate adjustment of the spectral or white component.

We are grateful to a reader whose comments prompted us to describe the precautions taken against such confounding variables. Although DMB is a coauthor, she was naive with regard to the theoretical issues and purpose of this research while she was an observer. Her major contribution to this paper is in the discussion of the Hurvich and Jameson model.

S. L. Guth, Color 69 Association Internationale de la Couleur Proceedings, V. 1, p. 172, (Muster-Schmidt, Gottingen, 1970). P. K. Kaiser, G. Wyszecki, and G. Fielder, Paper presented at Annual Meeting of Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, April, 1975.

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Figures (9)

FIG. 1
FIG. 1

Previous saturation experiments. Group A–direct scaling of spectral lights: 1, Jacobs1; 2, Jameson and Hurvich.2 Group B–saturation discrimination near white: 1, Purdy;6 2, Priest and Brickwedde;3 3, Wright and Pitt;7 4, Nelson;8 5, Martin, Warburton and Morgan.9 Group C–MacAdam’s calculation from data on color matching near white. Group D–Troland’s12 data using constant critical-flicker frequency. Group E–Indirect scaling of spectral lights: 1, Jones and Lowry;11 2, Martin, Warburton and Morgan9 (two observers).

FIG. 2
FIG. 2

Previous saturation experiments: 1, Wright and Pitt10 for saturation discrimination near the spectrum locus; 2, calculations based on MacAdam’s13 data for color matching near the spectrum locus; 3 and 4, the magnitude of the first step from white (solid line) and the first step from the spectrum locus (dotted line) from indirect-scaling experiments; 3, Jones and Lowry,11 4, Martin, Warburton and Morgan9 (two observers).

FIG. 3
FIG. 3

The optical system. See text for details.

FIG. 4
FIG. 4

The reciprocal amount of white light required for a just-noticeable difference of saturation from the spectrum locus. The data have displaced arbitrary amounts for clarity. A. Bipartite field; observers, from top to bottom: PKK (150 td center, no surround), DMB (150 td center and surround), GQ (50 td center, no surround), JPC (150 td center and surround), JPC (50 td center, no surround), and JG (50 td center, no surround), B. Alternating fields, observers, from top to bottom: PKK (150 td center, no surround), DMB (150 td center and surround), GQ (150 td center and surround), JPC (100 td center and surround), PAB (100 td center and surround), and RB (100 td center and surround).

FIG. 5
FIG. 5

Saturation discrimination at the spectrum locus for DMB, plotted in terms of the change of calorimetric purity, and normalized relative to the change of colorimetric purity for 570 nm. - - - Bipartite-field method; –alternation method. Bars indicate variability about the mean.

FIG. 6
FIG. 6

A. Point values of chromatic and achromatic color names of spectral stimuli, Observer: DMB. B. Data transformed by dividing the total chromatic point value by the white-point value for each wavelength. Data are normalized at 570 nm.

FIG. 7
FIG. 7

The distance between white (u = 0.214, v = 0.324) and the spectrum locus for the 1960 CIE UCS diagram.

FIG. 8
FIG. 8

The reciprocal amount of white light (5000 K), Lw, minus a constant (0.9) added to spectral light to obtain a 10% reduction of the saturation ratio according to the Hurvich and Jameson opponent-processes model.

FIG. 9
FIG. 9

Weber’s ratio as a function of the saturation ratio calculated from the Hurvich and Jameson model obtained by adding empirically determined amounts of white light. (See text.)

Tables (1)

Tables Icon

TABLE I Relative amounts of white light necessary for saturation discrimination at the spectrum locus.

Equations (1)

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S λ = L λ ( y - b ) λ + L w ( y - b ) w + L λ ( r - g ) λ + L w ( r - g ) w L λ ( w - b k ) λ + L w ( w - b k ) w ,