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How to turn on or turn off adaptive brightness on Windows 10?

By Katrina Pascual | October 12, 2018 |

greater than 3 minutes

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Too bright or too dark? Here’s how to enable or disable adaptive brightness on Windows 10

Displays on gadgets such as laptops and tablets may use ambient light sensors in order to detect and adjust to surrounding levels of light. The adaptive brightness feature in Windows tracks ambient light sensors, identifying changes in ambient light and automatically adjusting the brightness of display based on natural lighting conditions around.

Many users, however, would rather manually adjust the screen brightness. Depending on the circumstances, adaptive brightness can be distracting or annoying, such as when Windows constantly adjusts the screen brightness for you.

Here’s a quick guide on how to enable adaptive brightness on Windows 10, as well as how to disable the same feature on your computer.

Adaptive brightness in Windows 10: How it works

Adaptive brightness in Windows 10 works similar to how your phone adjusts the brightness of the screen depending on the light it perceives. This prevents the screen from being brightly lit at all times and saves battery life when the computer isn’t being charged.

Microsoft first introduced the feature in Windows 8. In Windows 10, though, adaptive brightness seems to be buggier than the earlier version. If you’re using a touchscreen device, for instance, it might occasionally happen that adaptive brightness messes with the desktop display, like having a mind of its own.

Learning how to enable adaptive brightness on Windows 10 gives you what the system believes is the ideal level of brightness based on the surrounding lighting conditions. If you’re running on battery, it will help conserve battery life through reducing screen brightness, undeniably among the biggest battery drainers out there.

You may also wonder: Should I disable adaptive brightness on a Windows computer? The answer is yes, if you seek total control over what the brightness your screen sits at while you use it.

If your computer is unable to properly adjust the brightness, it might be your use of multiple monitors or the video drivers getting in the way of the brightness level enabled, to name a few possible reasons. We’ll get to PC performance checks and optimization later.

Tips on how to enable or disable adaptive brightness

Here is a quick, convenient way to enable or disable this feature on Windows 10.

  1. In the Start menu, search for “Control Panel” and open it.
  2. In the Control Panel, look for “Power Options.” Ensure that the Control Panel view is set to Large or Small icons. You may also open the Power Options window through right-clicking on the battery icon in the taskbar, and afterwards selecting “Power Options.” Click on it.
  3. In the Power Options window, click on the link “Change Plan Settings” next to your current power plan. This opens the current power plan settings.
  4. Click on the link “Change advanced power settings” found at the bottom of the window. This will open the Advanced Power Options window.
  5. Scroll down, locate the “Display” option, and expand it to show the “Adaptive Brightness” option. Expand the option to enable or disable the feature for both the battery power and when the computer is plugged in.
  6. Save the settings through clicking “Apply” and then “OK.”

In case you have difficulties locating the Adaptive Display setting, it’s likely that your laptop may not have a built-in ambient light sensor.

What if disabling adaptive brightness didn’t change anything? Here’s where you need to disable the Sensor Monitoring service by pressing “Win + R” and typing services.msc. Press the “Enter” button.

In the services window, double-click on “Sensor Monitoring Service,” which will lead to the service settings window. Click “Stop” and select “Disabled” from the drop-down menu found next to “Startup type.” Save the changes by clicking “OK.”


Adaptive brightness proves to be a great, intuitive feature on smaller gadget screens, such as on smartphone. But depending on how you’re using your PC and what you’re using it for, this feature might not be as dependable as you’d prefer.

The key is to learn how to turn on or turn off adaptive brightness, eliminating the extra eye strain and discomfort through brightening or dimming your screen as you please.

Properly adjusting screen brightness is just one way to optimize battery life and improve your PC’s performance. Optimization software such as Auslogics BoostSpeed safely and intelligently diagnoses your Windows system, cleans out junk files, improves computer speed and stability, and guards smooth performance for all your important tasks.


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Besides cleaning and optimizing your PC, BoostSpeed protects privacy, diagnoses hardware issues, offers tips for boosting speed and provides 20+ tools to cover most PC maintenance and service needs.

Fed up with your slow PC? Tired of waiting for Windows to start up? Take a look at the most common reasons behind poor performance and the best ways to deal with them here.

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