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Human Visual System
Human Vision
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Visual Displays > Human Visual System - 1 of 8

The Visible Spectrum

The human visual system is sensitive only to a small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. The visible spectrum ranges from about 400 to 700 nanometers. The wavelengths in the visible spectrum have no intrinsic color; we perceive color as a result of interpretation by our visual system. The lining of the eye, the retina, contains light sensitive cells which detect specific, but somewhat overlapping, ranges of the visible spectrum. The human eye can discern differences between 8 and 12 million colors; however, we can reliably recall and identify only 6 to 12 colors.

Electromagnetic Spectrum Diagram
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