Craig Weber

Force RGB-mode (fix pink tint) in macOS in 3 easy steps

For whatever reason, macOS Catalina and Big Sur were both tinting my external monitor pink. Some research indicated that it had to do with the color mode, notably that I needed to force RGB. MacOS’s UI doesn’t give the user the ability to change the color mode directly, so you have to hack around the display profile files directly.

This post and its comments from 2013 seem to be the authoritative guide on forcing RGB mode; however, these steps (and the variations found in the comments) make you do a lot of things, including disabling the System Integrity Protection (basically the stuff that prevents even the super user from changing certain files and directories), booting into recovery mode, changing boot files (which can put your system into a boot loop, as I discovered the hard way), and a number of other dangerous, arcane things.

Fortunately, I found a sequence that is much safer and easier (tested on both Big Sur and Catalina on two distinct MacBook Pros):

  1. From your home directory, run:

    $ curl -LO`
    $ chmod +x ~/patch-edid.rb
    $ ./patch-edid.rb

    This will download and run the patch-edid.rb script that the various guides around the Internet direct you towards. This script will create a directory in your home folder that looks like DisplayVendorID-172.

  2. Make the Overrides directory. By making this directory, we don’t have to use the original Overrides directory which would require disabling SIP and other steps: sudo mkdir -p /Library/Displays/Contents/Resources/Overrides/.

  3. Move the generated DisplayVendorID-* directory into the Overrides directory: sudo mv ~/DisplayVendorID-* /Library/Displays/Contents/Resources/Overrides/