Limited/Full RGB Range chain with MPC-HC, LAV, mad-vr, ATI Radeon --> LG Plasma?

Discussion in 'Home Entertainment Computers' started by Flexy123, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. Flexy123

    Flexy123
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    The age-old confusion about setting RGB levels right (aka. limited 16-235 or PC levels 0-255).

    I currently have an old LG PK250 Plasma, which is connected ONLY to the HTPC, and I am using these settings in my chain. Wondering whether this alright.

    LAV Video Decoder
    RGB Output Levels "Untouched, as Input" <--- not sure whether I should touch this setting at all
    .
    .
    madVR
    "Display is expecting PC levels (0-255)"
    .
    .
    The ATI Radeon 6450 I now set to "Full RGB" in the drivers.
    .
    .
    LG Plasma is set to using "PC" input label on HDMI, means it's taking 0-255 (Other input labels like "Blu Ray" expect limited 16-235)
    .
    .

    The display this way subjectively looks fine and I also used the blinking blacks bar test clips, so black levels are good.

    Yet, unlike as connected using a different input label, like Blu Ray etc., setting the PC input level results in VERY saturated colours, although I cannot say whether this is actually good or bad. It's just much more saturated than using Blu Ray input level.

    Also, when using this chain (HTPC connected as "PC"), I don't have all the advanced settings on the TV like tint, colours etc....means even if I were to think that the colours would be too saturated I could not reduce them.

    Any input whether these RGB level settings are alright?

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2018
  2. noiseboy72

    noiseboy72
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    It depends on what you are doing. Films and TV should be limited, as the lower black levels are used to hide artifacts and unwanted details (Things like black patches hiding incomplete masking, that sort of thing), so you don't want to display this detail.

    Games should be set to Full, as such issues don't exist and as you have already made clear, you understand that all steps in the chain should be set to the same types, as otherwise black levels will be incorrect.

    You may be finding that the TV is expecting YUV rather than RGB with different labels, and this causes the over saturation - even though it is still displaying RGB in the correct colour space, the colour rendering is not quite correct.
     
  3. Flexy123

    Flexy123
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    I am doing only film on this TV. Yes I know that the movie/TV standard is limited, but this I set in the deeper settings of the plasma where there's a setting "black levels" high/low. And I set this so the test black levels showed up alright. So it's really just the very saturated colours currently. (I am not even saying the saturated colours are bad, they pop "well" although I am usually not a friend of overly-saturated colours, but this old set has very good/popping colours *without* the colours coming across as "overdone", and this actually surprised me.)

    Your tip with the YUV vs RGB input is interesting, will try this later whether I can change this with the GPU drivers.

    The reason I set all this like this is that I researched a little yesterday, and the common opinion was that one should never set the GPU/drivers to limited (which I had before), and also that the madvr settings should stay at 0-255.

    What irks me about all this is that there are so many settings just for the RGB levels, starting from your player and madvr to the the GPU and then the set AND then with the calibration settings, it's not exactly helping if someone wants to do it right.
     
  4. noiseboy72

    noiseboy72
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    Yes, not sure of the specifics, but I am aware that some settings can cause the black level to rise and show as dark grey - which looks awful.

    Might be worth a full RGB calibration, as at least then you won't be guessing in terms of colour, but black level is always fairly subjective. Maybe running at full and then setting the plasma to limited is going to give you the best result.
     
  5. Ivan Samuel

    Ivan Samuel
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    If you are optimising the HTPC purely for video content set the graphics card to full, madVR to limited and your TV to expect a limited range.

    This configuration allows for some headroom above white.
    If you set all parts of the chain to full there will be no allowance for any above white information.
    The headroom is necessary to display video at its best because it is present in some films even though technically it shouldn't be.
     
  6. Flexy123

    Flexy123
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    I will try this. Yesterday I switched the GPU in the driver for a test to YCbCr 4:4:4, but the difference to Full RGB was only very subtle, maybe a couple % of less intensive reds but overall still very saturated.

    Alternatively, I COULD reduce saturation in the ATI drivers (which I did yesterday), and I used flashing colorbars and a blue filter to find the right saturation (it turned I needed 5% less according to "by eye calibration)...but which is still too high, despite the calibration showing it should be optimal. We watched some movies yesterday and the colours were definitely too much for my taste.

    Anyway I will try your way since I am almost sure the intensive colours are not supposed to be like that.
     

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