THX supports the Picture Perfect campaign
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Entertainment Driven Technology
Entertainment technology should be inspired, and designed by those who appreciate and understand the creative process. THX is at the intersection of art and entertainment, collaborating with filmmakers, consumer electronics manufacturers and cinemas chains to develop Certified products and THX technologies that tell stories and stir emotions.
A properly set up TV will allow you to see films as the director intended
Why is it important to have a properly calibrated display?
High definition content (i.e., content on Blu-ray discs) is created using a set of predetermined production standards. HD video content is created using the Rec. 709 color space and for movies, it is recorded in a native format of 24 frames per second. A properly calibrated display will mimic the Rec. 709 color profile of the post production studio display. The intent is to be able to replicate exactly what the film’s director sees in the post-production studio on the display in your home. This is the only way to make certain that all the detail originally captured by the film’s creators is rendered back on your display. For example, if your contrast levels are set too high, you will lose detail in lighter images - the moon across a night sky will look like a plain white object instead of having various craters across its surface. If the brightness level is too low, you might not see some of the artifacts within a dark scene - for example, a villain lurking in the shadows.
Film by design has natural grain and judder. This is what makes films look and feel like films. Many new displays incorporate features designed to improve watching various types of content - including sports. Technologies such as frame interpolation can improve the viewing experience by making the soccer ball fly across the screen in one smooth motion - but if left on while viewing a film, this same technology will make a film look more like a soap opera rather than a Hollywood movie.
Consumers are using an increasing number of complex and sophisticated media devices, with content coming from an ever-expanding list of services. In the near future we are going to see content with higher frame rates, 4K resolution, and possibly new color space standards, such as xvYCC. These will add to the complexity of video content making it even more difficult for consumers to individually manage the playback details of each piece of content, on each particular device. To manage this complexity and combat inconsistent consumer experiences, THX is launching a new technology named THX Media Director™.
THX Media Director technology can be encoded into nearly any CE device or form of media - including streaming content, Blu-ray and DVD discs, CDs, audio files, downloads and more. In content creation, THX Media Director captures specific creative and technical characteristics of audio and video content (i.e., content type, aspect ratio or size, film grain, 2D/3D, surround/room size, etc.). These characteristics are recorded by content creators to ensure that viewers receive the most accurate depiction of the creators intended experience. When viewing the content, CE devices (i.e., Blu-ray players, set-top boxes, AVRs, HD displays) recognize these characteristics which enable the device to auto-select the most appropriate playback settings.
Click here to download the THX Media Director Info-sheet and check out some Media Director Test Bench blog posts:
- THX Media Director™ Takes Flight on Upcoming Red Tails Blu-ray & DVD
- THX® announces first THX Media Director™ enabled consumer electronic devices from Dune HDTM, Epson®, Indy audio labs and Sharp®
- THX @ CES 2012 - THX Media Director™ Technology
As an additional strategy of simplifying the user experience while preserving artistic intent, THX partners with numerous television manufacturers to offer THX Certified Displays. Owning one of these displays ensures that if properly calibrated and configured, you can experience the video content just as its creator intended. THX Certified Displays offer:
- Quality brand recognition: Products featuring the THX logo define quality in their class with only 10% of consumer electronic devices capable of receiving THX certification. THX certification ensures sound and picture remains true to original source; THX Certified displays deliver movie experiences with the same stunning color and detail found in filmmaker’s studio
- Meticulous quality testing: With more than 400 laboratory tests performed, including evaluating Left and Right Eye images for color precision, cross-talk, viewing angles and video processing, THX 2D and 3D certification ensures accurate images and pristine video performance in every frame
- Accurate artistic representation: THX certification closely reproduces the HD Color Standard used by filmmakers for broadcast and Blu-ray Discs in both 2D and 3D Modes. THX certification also improves 2D and 3D de-interlacing and jaggies, ensuring sharp images and smooth motion
- Ease of use/installation: THX 2D and 3D Movie Modes deliver the closest thing to professionally calibrated video setting out-of-the-box
A properly calibrated display uses less energy and helps save the environment
The findings of a THX test indicate that a calibrated viewing mode consumes less energy than a display’s “Vivid” or “Dynamic” mode. The approximate savings were measured to be as low as 15% and as high as 50% between the two different picture modes.
The primary benefit of professional video calibration is to improve a display’s picture quality for the room in which it resides. While professional calibration is performed post-sale, THX Certified Displays have a pre-calibrated THX Cinema Mode that achieves studio color, deep black levels and energy efficiencies out-of-the box. This setting may also be tuned by a professional calibrator to further improve picture quality in your viewing environment and improve energy consumption. For non-THX Certified displays, research demonstrates that professional calibration can improve energy efficiency by optimizing picture controls. Click here to read more on how THX recommends getting the most out of your display.
Having a display that’s too bright can make your Star Wars marathon an exhausting experience for your eyes
Though different people may react differently to prolonged watching of oversaturated or high contrast images, it’s an easy to understand fact that constantly changing light levels cause your eyes to dilate and constrict. Since your eyes are doing more work, having a display that’s too bright or set to high contrast can make your Star Wars marathon an exhausting experience for your eyes. This is yet another reason why your home display should be properly calibrated to your viewing environment.
THX Certified Displays have THX Cinema Mode which is designed for viewing films in low ambient light environments similar to that of a post production facility or movie theater. This mode has the added benefit of not only conveying all the detail and emotion of the film’s creators, but by eliminating oversaturated color and excessive contrast levels, the viewing experience is a bit easier on your eyes.
In addition to ambient light and the calibration of your display, there are numerous other factors that affect your comfort during the film viewing experience. Having a display that’s mounted too high or too low can cause discomfort to your neck. We recommend that the center of your display is mounted as close as possible to a 0 degree horizontal plane with your eyes. It should not be mounted more than 15 degrees above or 7 degrees below the horizontal plane.
As well, sitting at the optimal viewing distance is crucial to experiencing the full effect of a film while at the same time reducing the amount of eye movement that will occur if sitting too close to the display. To determine the optimal viewing distance, take the diagonal size of your display and divide it by .84. This will be your optimal viewing distance in inches and should represent an approximate 40 degree lateral viewing angle.
THX Certified Displays
THX has been synonymous with great movie sound for decades. Now, THX sets the bar for picture quality for the world's top TV manufacturers, including Panasonic and LG.
Here are five reasons why THX Certified Displays/HDTVs kick ass.
1. 400 Tests, 1,000 Data Points
The THX certification process is like boot camp for HDTVs and projectors. It covers 30 test categories, 400 bench tests and more than 1,000 data points. THX video engineers analyze almost every aspect of a TV's performance, from contrast and color to de-interlacing, jaggies and scaling. Testing is rigid, precise and only the best TVs make the cut.
2. Accurate Color
The very foundation of THX display certification is recreating the filmmaker's vision in your home. THX testing and certification closely reproduces the HD Color Standard (Rec.709) used by filmmakers for Blu-ray Disc mastering. The result? Rich color and detail practically puts you in the director's chair.
3. Sharp Pictures and Clean Video Processing
Jaggy lines and image blurring can occur as motion becomes too intense when watching action movies. THX improves each TV's software to minimize these types of digital artifacts-presenting clean, vibrant pictures in every frame.
4. THX Movie Mode
THX Movie Mode offers the closest thing to a pre-calibrated setting out of the box. This reproduces the Rec.709 color gamut, luminance levels and other settings used by filmmakers in the mastering studio-with the push of a button. And, if you want further fine tuning, all THX Modes can be accessed by THX Certified Professional Calibrators.
5. THX Certification = High Quality
Navigating the "wall of HD drool" at your local electronics retailer isn't easy. TVs from a variety of brands often line the walls, all showing stunning visuals. THX certification offers a straightforward value proposition to simplify your shopping experience.Click here to download the THX Display Certification Info Sheet.