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All this calibration lark...

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Meddy, May 12, 2005.

  1. Meddy

    Meddy
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    So having finally got myself into a position whereby I can sit down and enjoy watching a film from start to finish (something I haven't yet managed to do due to rearranging my bedroom furniture and installing Dolby Digital 5.1 and getting some blackout lining for my curtains) on my Z3 I'm wondering whether I should spend any time on callibrating my Z3, something that all the reviewers seem to do. It's true that you could spend quite a lot of time twiddling with this projector but as long as the picture looks OK should I bother? Is it worth my while in terms of picture quality and cinematic experience to get myself a calibration disk and go through the calibration process? How many of you newbies actually do this? Or is this something that you do after owning the projector for a while? :rolleyes:

    Meddy
     
  2. EnglishJohn

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    Well my Z3 turned up yesterday and i certainly will give it a goning over with AVIA, will only my second time at doing this - 1st on tv and i noticed a noticable improvment. SO yes i would buy a disk and have a twidle whats an hour or so to enjoy the picture so much more.
    Has anyone got any settings they can recomend to start with though, as i sure we could both do with a little setup help/advice!

    Cheers. John
     
  3. UrbanT

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    Hi Meddy,

    I've used the calibration discs like Avia previously, and I'm being perfectly honest, I didn't really like the results. I have a few films that I know really well, and just fiddled with the settings until I got a picture I liked. I'm sure the Z3 has several user setting buttons. I would get a picture I was generally happy with and save it to one user setting. I would then change it slightly, maybe a bit more contrast, a bit less brightness and so on, and save that to the 2nd user setting. Then flick between the 2 to see which I preferred....and repeat the same process, just experimenting, until I was happy.

    Chris
     
  4. PJTX100

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    Totally agree. Adjust it so that it looks best *for you*. Don't forget to save the default settings in memory 1 so you have a reference...PJ
     
  5. cyberheater

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    Happy. Happy! Come come now. Surely you meant that you had achieved a brief hiatus in your continual search for visual perfection. A temporary pause from tweaking to observe the results. Possibly even a mild acceptance that you had reached the next step in squeezing every ounce of performance out your equipment but happy, no. Never.

    Once you've achieved that I believe the mods are forced to remove your account so you can never infect you contentment to other forum members.

    You have been warned ;)
     
  6. dave_h34

    dave_h34
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    I'm a newbie, I have tried calibration using DVE and I must admit the settings hardly moved from the default (tw10h, theatre black setting). It can't harm to try it for £13 though can it.
     
  7. GrahamMG

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    :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

    Excellent post, best of the week by a long way and absolutely spot on....
     
  8. ZippyCat

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    I calibrated my MT200 with DVE a few months back, but I must admit the image was less impressive than what I achieved by eye. In the end, I settled for a tweaked DVE calibration where I reduced the brightness to a lower level. I think we all need to take the calibration discs with a pinch of salt, but they are a good starting point. There are far too many people (mainly on AVS), who are more concerned about the measurements & levels they are achieving, than they are at actually watching movies.

    BTW. Does anybody else think the DVE green filter is a little off?
     
  9. GrahamMG

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    Yep I would go along with that also but anyone that shows their digital pictures may want to set the thing up accurately (and their PC monitor as well of course) so that when they have finished playing with photoshop etc. the image looks like it did on the PC screen. I must admit that once I had all the screens dotted about my house setup the same at least I knew that moving the stuff from unit to unit resulted in the same viewed image.... Of course if you only have one display device that doesn't matter one jot.... If you have a DVD player and an HTPC you might wish to level the playing field though? Countless fiddling with the image settings whilst the rest of the family/friends are trying to watch the film doesn't get your shirts ironed in my experience :( But certianly agree that "each to his/her own" on picture settings, after all it is their device.....
     
  10. hornydragon

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    But without a reference you dont know what you are supposed to be looking at............
     
  11. GrahamMG

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    Yes, dead right...... You always need a point of reference that you can return to and judge if your tinkering "off test disk settings/lineup" is actually an improvement. Sitting an living with a setting fro a few days is also worthwhile as many spot on settings take a little while to adjust to.
     
  12. gingerone

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    I set up my plasma with DVE with excellent results but I found it better to just fiddle with my Z3.
    I will say that it looks far better to my eye with the auto black stretch on and the contrast enhancement set to L1.
    Also set the iris to -53, and use the theatre black mode as well.
    I'd also use the creative cinema as well.
    This should give you lovely deep blacks.
     
  13. PJTX100

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    I thought I said the default was the reference? :confused:

    In so much it's a point from which you can see if things are getting better or worse!

    ...PJ :)
     
  14. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    but the default is not reference to the real world, Better is not necassarily accurate
     
  15. PJTX100

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    I'd rather have inaccurate and be pleased than accurate and think "but that looks cr@p" :) ...PJ
     
  16. Meddy

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    At the moment I'm doing what UrbanT suggested and just fiddling here and there. For instance, I know what a crap picture would look like, e.g. if I turned the Blue all the way up. That would look rubbish. But if I started from a default then did a slight tweak here and there to get it to look 'better' then that would do me. It's not as if I'm going to be able to visually tell the difference between a Red value of 1 and a Red value of 2, etc. I might get into calibrating a bit later as i look into it deeper but for now I'm just going to enjoy watching movies on the big screen. :smashin:

    Meddy

    PS. I've been watching The Contender on my 15" LCD TV since it started here in the UK. But last Monday I hooked up the video recorder to the projector and watched it on the big screen and the difference is quite noticiable. You 'feel' the punches and it appears to be a lot more brutal. Just thought I'd share that with you. :thumbsup:
     
  17. PJTX100

    PJTX100
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    As we're in a sharing mood the kids nagged me to put Spongebob Squarepants The Movie on the PJ last night. That was pretty brutal too.

    :D ...PJ
     
  18. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    Have you ever seen an Accurate display???
     
  19. UrbanT

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    I feel slightly embarrassed to admit I watched that with my daughter a couple of weekends ago...and laughed all the way through :rotfl:
     
  20. CrispyXUK

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    wa it any good? wanted to see it for a while. Why would you feel embaresed?
     
  21. UrbanT

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    I thought it was great :). I only felt embarrassed laughing louder than my daughter, when Spongebob swings in on a rope with a flag on a pole wedged between his butt cheeks :D
     
  22. Meddy

    Meddy
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    Hopefully, I'll be able to get an episode of Postman Pat, Bagpus, and Trumpton just to see how they fare on the big screen. Oh, and not forgetting Rubarb. I'm betting they will look pretty good. Calibration probably won't matter so much when watching these.

    Oh no!! I've just had some thoughts. How about all those different TV series I used to watch, like the A-Team, Starsky and Hutch, The Professionals. I'm wondering, now, how they would look on the big screen. Oh no! What have I done. These thoughts are going to keep on nagging me now until I actually do watch them. Oh well. This is bad. I only bought the projector so I could watch films, not TV. :eek:

    Meddy
     
  23. Peter Parker

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    If you don't calibrate your black level correctly, Postman Pat would have a black and black cat. :D

    Gary.
     
  24. PJTX100

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    :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:
     
  25. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  26. Peter Parker

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    That's true - if his brightnes was too high. I was of course assuming too low. :)

    Maybe I should make up a calibration image with a 0ire cat that has 1 and 2 ire stripes. :D

    Gary.
     
  27. GrahamMG

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    I made a Postman Pat red van once with a 32" SONY widescreen TV in one side and calibrated it so the MPEG stream feed looked like the original video so that all the kids that would see it wouldn't complain.....SAD or what..... :rolleyes:
     
  28. johnnyhaynes

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    Absolutely agree with this post - AND it seems nobody is watching anything else other than The Incredibles , LOTR ,Shrek
     
  29. Peter Parker

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    Calibration disks do serve a useful purpose - if used correctly they allow you to see shadow and bright detail as intended. If you reduce the brightness too much (below the level of the calibration disk) then you're missing shadow detail. I wonder if the reason you needed to lower it was because it was an NTSC disk and you'd set the black level with PAL DVE?

    I've seen set-ups where detail was obviously missing from shadows and all that was visible was large areas of black. I found that frustrating because I like to see what's going on in a movie and not have to guess at what should be visible.

    I do agree that some settings are down to personal taste, so having it technicaly correct may not be everyones idea of a good picture, but I do feel having white and black levels set correctly is a minimum with digital displays. Once they're set, you shouldn't have to touch them again.

    Gary.
     
  30. ZippyCat

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    Gary, I just felt the colour was a little washed out with the brightness set at the “correct level”. BTW, I have the PAL edition of DVE not NTSC.
     

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