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Do you adjust settings on a film by film basis ?

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Tempest, Sep 21, 2004.

  1. Tempest

    Tempest
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    Before I start, let me say I have a Pannie AE200 which although not cutting edge by todays standards still never fails to impress.
    No screen door effect, res could be a bit low up close but apart from that great.

    Anyhow, I do find often I'm rather overwhelmed with SETTINGS for video.
    What I mean is, the projector itself has (of top of my head)

    Normal
    Dynamic
    Cinema1
    Cinema2
    Music

    I have (in the past) been watching in Dynamic, though now I am using WinDVD which gives a brighter picture it was TOO bright, with bright areas being burned out.

    Going thru all the modes tonight (again and again) I think Cinema1 may give the nicer image, albeit Music gives a blue hint which could be nice on some things.

    This is without even making any CUSTOM adjustments in the projector for contrast, brightness, RGB levels etc.

    Then we have WinDVD and it's many settings.
    Default (which does nothing)
    CRT which seems to boost contrast/brightness and gamma a little

    All this equals confusion.
    Especially when the settings for 1 film may not look the best for another film.

    On Gladiator during an indoor scene looking out of the window at the sky, there was little detail in the clouds on WinDVD's CRT setting, but changing to default lowered the levels and you could see the clouds.

    However, this at times took some brightness away from other scenes, it's difficult to get 1 exact RIGHT setting.

    Then you take Gladiator out, and put something like Shrek, or Bugs Life in, and the image can seem a little dull.
    Changing can really make the image jump out.

    I almost feel I need to put a sticker on DVD cases saying what settings to use on a film by film basis.

    Do I adjust Windows colours
    Do I adjust the Projector Colours
    Do I adjust the Projector Modes
    Do I adjust WinDVD's settings.

    How does everyone else get around this problem/issue ?

    Do you use different settings for different types of films ?


    Then, going into WinDVD we have complete control
     
  2. theritz

    theritz
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    Hi,

    On my setup with the AE100 (similar specs and vintage, more or less) I have the software player on default, "Normal" on the projector (the Dynamic seting is excessively "contrasty" imo), the Cinema has too much Red in it (waaay too much, orange skintones - yeuuch...). I set Brightness, Contrast and Sharpness on the projector using Avia, and haven't touched them in absolutely ages, adn have reset the White Balance values for Blue and Green to compensate for using a Hoya FLD filter. No matter what I put on, the colour and general image performance is spot on.

    This set up has meant an end to tweaking a long time ago - the only pre-movie adjustments are to cater for masking 2.35:1 stuff. Going from something like Gladiator to Shrek is a big difference in the essential material but I make no adjustments - the brightness etc. correctly set by Avia and the colour fix with the FLD should mean that the PJ is displaying what comes off the dvd without "artificially" tweaking it. With the AE200, I would strongly recommend you try this route, particularly the FLD filter as you are using a hcpc and will have access to the White Balance controls in the projector menu.

    I have tried Powerdvd4 and 5, Windvd Platinum and NVdvd 2.55 as software players. For picture performance I prefer NVdvd - it has an indefineable quality to the detail of the image that i can't put my finger on but has an annoying interface which cannot be banished from the screen by a mouse-click. It goes away by itself after a number of seconds, but it's enough to irritate me. Powerdvd continues to the do the job 80% of the time, but whichever I use the video settings are always at default.


    Sean G.
     
  3. Tempest

    Tempest
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    Thanks for the posting theritz.

    I agree with you about Cinema being on the RED side. Using past software to playback "Dynamic" looked impressive for things like Shrek and Bugs Life, but with WinDVD which gives brighter playback using Dynamic makes many bright scenes go way OTT, totally blinding out any detail.

    I do have the Hoya Filter, but took it off as I thought it made the image dull. (will try it again) and I also have the Avia DVD but to be honest I didn't think that much of it really. I'll have to run thru it again, perhaps I missed some aspects of it as I did only give it a quick play last time when I 1st got it.

    Something that confuses me slightly is how massivly different the different modes are (Dynamic,Cinema etc) but to be honest, when you are adjusting the RGB settings you can go from min to max and the change seems very subtle.

    I still don't quite understand HOW the projector does these different modes.
    Are we assuming that you can get NORMAL to look like DYNAMIC by just upping the brightness and contrast, or is something more technical happening inside the machine?

    Back to the Avia DVD. As you are far more used to it than me.
    Which parts of it, are the most usefull for getting the brighntess/contrast/sharpness correct ?

    It SEEMS more setup for Cathode Ray projectors.

    Oh yes.. That software player you use: (Nvidea one) is that cos you use a Nvidea graphics card ?

    I'm using a ATI X800 Pro now.
     
  4. theritz

    theritz
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    As far as the settings on the projector are concerned, these are set in the firmware afaik so mightn't be replicatable by the settings on the projector.

    There are separate sections on AVIA for Brightness, Contrast and Sharpness - just follow the instructions in the relevant sections on the disk.

    While it has sections aimed at CRT projectors, it is just as capable for seting up a digital projector.

    I use a Radeon 9000, I just tried NVdvd to see what it was like after reading about it on avsforum. I tried it with an nVidia card but it didn't seem to make a whole lot of difference compared with the Radeon. Still like it's performance.

    Sean.
     
  5. pez

    pez
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    what about the individual THX setups on the discs that have it?

    once youre done with avia, taking into account that the THX routine is slightly different on every DVD (apparently, ive only seen 2), should it not still be tweaked that little bit more?

    pez
     
  6. Tempest

    Tempest
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    Ahh, right, well been playing with AVIA and various DVD's tonight.

    Now I remember why I was not that impressed with all the talk about using AVIA to set up.... (I'd forgotton why)

    Basically, as my AE200 appears to be setup 99% perfect out of the box.

    The contrast, brightness, sharpness, colours are/were all virtually dead on with the Avia basic test patterns.

    In the end on NORMAL mode I increased the contrast +4 and the brightness +1
    I could have left them as it's a fine matter of judgement.

    To be honest the projector is about dead on out of the box. Which I recall was why I was not that happy with Aria as I was expecting lots of tweaking but found nothing really to do.

    Re DVD playback software.

    I was using Theatretek but it does not want to run on my current setup (no idea why)
    Anyhow......

    I've tried the very latest PowerDVD and WinDVD software.

    Power DVD suffers from showing decoding (mpeg) artifacts in dark areas. plus it's picture modes are somewhat suspect. (too vivid colour) etc.

    WinDVD on the other hand on exactly the same scene seems even brighter/clearer, yet there are no decoding (mpeg) artifacts.

    Really werid, as I naturally assumed it was due to the dark area being too light and needing adjusting down (with PowerDVD) yet with WinDVD they were gone!
     
  7. theritz

    theritz
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    pez,

    Nope.....

    Tempest,

    I found the much the same with the AE100 - I didn't want to say because I was interested to see how you'd fare with your own machine - just a slight adjustment in the range you indicate.

    Can't say I've noticed artifacts with Powerdvd..... I wouldn't use the video modes anyway - you're right, they look cack.... :D

    Have you checked that you've got Hardware decoding turned on with Powerdvd ? (just a thought....)


    Cheers,

    Sean.
     
  8. donmc

    donmc
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    Theritz - could you elaborate on this - what values do you use? I also have a AE100 with a Hoya and would like to tweak the optimum performance out of it!

    Thanks
    Don
     

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