I'm using both Neovim/Vim and VS Code.

With both editors using the gruvbox theme, I noticed Neovim/Vim use fewer colors than VS Code when using the same theme. I have the same issue with the solarized theme.

enter image description here

Is there any option to activate in Vim that will enable more colors?

1 Answer 1


Do you mean less colors than VS Code? This is an artifact of (n)vim’s regex/contains/follows-based syntax highlighter. VS Code uses TextMate Grammars which are inherently better for parsing language-elements. I think nvim was talking about switching to a tree-sitter parser (the work in progress is here).

As Mass mentions, there are a number of js plugins which greatly extend the syntax highlighting for javascript. I’ve been happy with pangloss/vim-javascript from github.

VS Code also appears to be using rainbow parens, plugins for which exist in the vim ecosystem as well.

  • Worth mentioning there are a number of javascript syntax files which improve upon vim's built-in one. Also, the vs code screenshot uses some type of rainbow parens.
    – Mass
    Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 15:30
  • That's true. I forgot to mention it. Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 15:40

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