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Ophthalmic Physiol Opt. 1983;3(2):137-52.

Validation of the Holmes - Wright lanterns for testing colour vision.


The recently introduced Holmes - Wright Type A and Type B lanterns and the Farnsworth lantern were administered to 100 observers with normal colour vision and 100 observers with defective colour vision. With the fail criteria adopted, all normals passed the Holmes - Wright Type A lantern and with one exception all normals passed the Farnsworth lantern. However, 8% of normals failed the more difficult Holmes - Wright Type B lantern. It is noted that the normals who fail this lantern test appear to do so not because of poor colour discrimination but because the coloured stimuli presented by the lantern have a point brilliance close to the average chromatic threshold. About one-third of the colour vision defective group passed the Farnsworth lantern and between 14 and 17% passed the Holmes - Wright Type A lantern depending on the test procedure used. Only two mild deuteranomals in the sample of 100 colour abnormal observers succeeded in passing the Holmes - Wright Type B lantern. Dichromats and severe anomalous trichromats fail all three lanterns so that those who pass are all mild anomalous trichromats. A significant proportion of protanomals pass the Farnsworth lantern and some protanomals pass the Holmes - Wright Type A lantern despite their reduced sensitivity to red light and correspondingly reduced signal range for red signals.

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