version (3.45 KB) by David Powers
A continuous colormap that goes from light to dark, cold to warm discriminating all hues


Updated 13 Jul 2016

View License

This bright and vivid colormap spirals from black through blue cyan green yellow orange red magenta to white. The colour shades are rotated smoothly through the full 360º range of hues as perceptual lightness varies in a decaying sinusoid from black to white while emphasizing with pure strong well-saturated primary and secondary colours.
This is something I've used for years, and although R2014b includes revamped graphics and a smoother parula colomap replacing jet as the default, the nearest is still jet in terms of the colour gamut, or hot in terms of going from black/dark to white/light. This should work with any version of Matlab and dependencies on toolboxes have been removed. Examples are given that illustrate how to combine colour maps or adjust the gamma to emphasize parts of the spectrum or have a more uniform gradation from light to dark. Jetwhite is designed to maximize the clarity available with colour while providing a reasonable compromise when rendered/copied in greyscale, with adjacent shades differing in both brightness and hue, an maximizing the colour distinction available in the RGB color gamut.

Note that assuring a linear lightness scale tends to produce colours that are muddy or pastel rather than the clear primary and secondary colours jetwhite is designed to punctuate with, e.g. at 64 colours we have 4-10: Blue, 14-20: Teal/Cyan, 24-30: Green, 34-40: Yellow/Orange, 44-50: Red/Pink, 54-60: Magenta. 1-32 are dark/cool colours, 33-64 are light/warm colours - it is designed so that symmetric plots are centred on the yellow/green transition.

Cite As

David Powers (2022). jetwhite(Colours) (, MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R2007a
Compatible with any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux

Community Treasure Hunt

Find the treasures in MATLAB Central and discover how the community can help you!

Start Hunting!