Currently, I implemented a rudimentary brightness and contrast algorithm that changes brightness and contrast pixel by pixel. This was super inefficient performance wise and the algorithm looked a bit strange.

I heard that I can use a lookup table to get values brightness and contrast for a texture 2D image. How can I do something like this in Unity?

Currently in Unity, I have a prefab in which I load a texture 2D image on top of it. That's the image i want to apply brightness and contrast changes to.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Can you post your current code? On a modern system it would probably be a wash between a look-up table or just doing the math. So if you've profiled it and found that it truly is your brightness/contrast adjustment that's slow, let's see what that looks like. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 30, 2016 at 5:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ less than a wash, the math doesn't cost memory latency \$\endgroup\$
    – MickLH
    Commented Feb 29, 2016 at 6:27

1 Answer 1


Something like the following:

public void addContrast(float Contrast)
    byte[] contrast_lookup = new byte[256];
    double newValue = 0;
    double c = (100.0 + Contrast) / 100.0;

    c *= c;

    for (int i = 0; i < 256; i++)
        newValue = (double)i;
        newValue /= 255.0;
        newValue -= 0.5;
        newValue *= c;
        newValue += 0.5;
        newValue *= 255;

        if (newValue < 0)
            newValue = 0;
        if (newValue > 255)
            newValue = 255;
        contrast_lookup[i] = (byte)newValue;

At this point , for each pixel yuo replace G B R with contrast_lookup(G) contrast_lookup(B) contrast_lookup(R)

  • \$\begingroup\$ Do I need to change each pixel if I'm using a lookup table? Wouldn't that be slow? Also, how do I access the color curves lookup table in Unity? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kala J
    Commented May 3, 2015 at 15:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ sorry .. never eart of "color curves lookup table" in Unity \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 3, 2015 at 19:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ No problem. Btw, what do you mean by, "At this point , for each pixel yuo replace G B R with contrast_lookup(G) contrast_lookup(B) contrast_lookup(R)"? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kala J
    Commented May 3, 2015 at 20:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ And how would you do it for brightness? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kala J
    Commented May 3, 2015 at 21:14
  • 8
    \$\begingroup\$ SetPixel() is fairly slow. You'll either want to batch it up using SetPixels(), or better, do this with a Shader as an image effect on the GPU - this is exactly the kind of thing your graphics hardware was made to do. \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    Commented Jun 2, 2015 at 17:20

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