Overwhelmed Newbie - Get me started - AVS Forum
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Old 04-27-2012, 05:52 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm in over my head. I just bought:
Samsung UN32EH5000 32-Inch 1080p 60 Hz LED HDTV

I use it to view over-the-air digital TV stations and watch movie and internet content via a laptop which has an internal blue ray DVD player. I plan to watch streaming internet content, watch videos from my hard drive (some HD), and the occasional blue ray DVD.

I've downloaded and played with AVSHD using the MP4-2c version with the HD Nation videos as tutorial and I've searched these forums and faqs but I find it all overwhelming.

I'm really only looking to get some basic fundamental calibration setup. Despite owning a few HD movies on DVD, I still don't have access to the THX calibration utility found on some.

I apologize if I've missed some obvious threads about starting out. My problem is that there's just too much highly technical information here (even in your faqs) and I'm not sure what information is current (2012).

Q: Can someone offer a CURRENT and newbie tutorial for how to use AVSHD or else recommend another thread/website that offers CURRENT calibration steps for newbies like me? I'll try other software or even buy a DVD if you recommend one. The calibration DVDs I've seen recommended here seem dated.

Q: If I buy a DVD, should I get a blu ray version? My laptop can play it, but most of my use will be via the internet or Hard drive based videos or just PC web browsing. I don't know if I'll be able to setup on-the-fly or quick-key types of configurations, so I guess I'll need to pick one kind of setup and use it for everything. Does this mean I should just buy a non-blue ray HD DVD calibration disk? Considering my usage, please recommend appropriate calibration software.

Q: Just to get me started so I can play around some more, I'm using the HDTV via an HDMI cable coming off my laptop. If I change the mode to PC it seems to get me a better picture, but I know these a pre-set tweaks and the samsung limits features I can calibrate unless I go to "standard" mode. As a starting point, should I use "standard" mode as a base and do everything from there?

Q: Seems I've complicated things by working from a laptop. Not even sure where to start. HDTV internal settings, graphics card software, application software, and maybe the blu ray hardware itself? Do I really need to go though all those levels and factors or is there an approach that will get me a decent basic picture without too much trouble and low expectations?

I'm sure I deserve any RTFfaq or RTFM comments, but please at least point me to a few good threads or websites. I'm in my 40s with a family, this is the first HDTV that I've tried to calibrate and I just want to get things decent, not perfect. Thanks for any help getting me started.
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Old 04-27-2012, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peteshd View Post

I'm in over my head.



Q: Seems I've complicated things by working from a laptop. Not even sure where to start. HDTV internal settings, graphics card software, application software, and maybe the blu ray hardware itself? Do I really need to go though all those levels and factors or is there an approach that will get me a decent basic picture without too much trouble and low expectations?

I'm sure I deserve any RTFfaq or RTFM comments, but please at least point me to a few good threads or websites. I'm in my 40s with a family, this is the first HDTV that I've tried to calibrate and I just want to get things decent, not perfect. Thanks for any help getting me started.

Unfortunately as nice as all this streaming stuff seems it does add a lot of variables into the mix.
I have not gotten into this area of calibration (PC as source) at all because I don't use it. There are tools and software that will allow you to calibrate the LUT (look up tables) of the computer graphics card, but that would be done after the TV was calibrated.

Since you are just getting your feet wet, and your config gets more complicated with the laptop here is what I would suggest as a start.

The inputs and modes have separate memory's for settings. So what you set for say the HDMI 1 with PC mode is not going to effect the OTH settings for Movie mode or whatever you have chosen.

Download the AVS 709 Disk AND the users guide (read it, it is very helpful)
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=948496
This is burned to standard DVD but is the read back as a BR disk.

Use the disk in your laptop to set the basic user settings for each mode.
I.E. Plug in to hdmi 1 then choose the first picture mode, run the 709 disk and set the Brightness, Contrast, sharpness, Over scan, Color and Tint if you have Blue only mode (check TV manual)
Then do the next mode.
This will get you familiar with the basic process of setting the user modes utilizing a calibrations pattern disk and you are done all of them, you can then choose the mode that looks the best for now.

I am sure there are many things to take into consideration on the PC side, but others will need to guide you in that area.

There is a boat load of stuff to learn, take your time, read and learn. I am only a couple of years older than you and I have been here for a long time and have only scratched the proverbial tip of the iceberg

One other thing, put your location in your profile so folks know what part of the country/world you are in. Personally I have purchases equipment and software for my own DIY use, but would be thrilled to help out others near by. I get to play with different displays and my equipment, the other person gets to see and play with the equipment and hopefully end up with a properly calibrated display, win win!

Anyway, I hope this gets you moving in the correct direction, unfortunately there is no FM for you to Read.. There are some sticky posts at the top of the of the forum that are helpful so if you have no looked at those, that would be a start. Unfortunately a lot of those go right into advanced stuff.

Good reading and good luck!
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Old 04-27-2012, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the help...

I understand the input modes for the physical cables have different settings, but from the laptop I'll be 1) playing movies off hard drive - VLC player or something like it 2) streaming movies - Amazon, etc.. non resident players 3) just doing PC desktop work and 4) playing blu ray disks off the player. So the problem is, as I understand it, these will all be under the same settings. Of course I'm not going to tweak the settings manually every time I do something different with the PC. I guess I could physically unplug the HDMI and insert it into a different HDMI slot depending on what I want to use it for.

The other problem is that I don't even know where to start. Just by telling the Samsung that the HDMI is a PC connection, it's tweaking my settings and disabling some tweak options. I could keep the HDMI connection to the PC without identifying it, and then all tweak options are enabled, but there might be some PC specific tweaks that the "PC" mode allows for that I'm not understanding or appreciating.

I've downloaded the ASVHD on two different computers, decompressed, and burned them to disks. My laptop says it can't read either. I tried the file designated for blue ray, downloaded, unzipped, and tried to burn it, but it gave me an error during burn. I'm guessing you need a blu ray burner for this while I just have a regular burner that plays blu ray disks. So the only AVSHD I've been able to use it the one you run directly off the PC harddrive.

I did manage to find an older version of the THX optimzer utility. I ran it and was at least able to adjust the brightness. I ran the AVSHD brightness chart but using that gauge gave me a different setting.

I think I need to turn off whatever is pre-setting my screen. For example when I test the brightness, I can't EVER see level 17 no matter how bright I make it. Similar for the contrast test. Something is blocking those levels no matter what I do. Could be I need better glasses, but adjusting the sharpness seems to have almost no effect at all from highest to lowest.

I live in Western PA and but while I appreciate the kindness and advice I get online, I'm not ready to have people come over. I really thought this would take an hour or two but I've already got 4-5 hours in and I can't say I've accomplished anything. Maybe I'll just be the guy who settles for the "movie/standard/vivid" settings. I just don't think I can justify the time.

That said, thanks for the advice. I'll see if I can turn off the auto-calibrations. Doesn't seem like much point in tweaking the HDTV until I have those under control.

Yeah, the stickies seemed pretty advanced... I'll check out the AVSHD manuals. I must have missed them.

Thanks for your time.
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Old 04-27-2012, 10:48 AM
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No problem!
Time is what it takes and a lot of it. Or you can hire a pro and pay the freight to get it done correctly and all at once.. typical cost for a pro calibration is $3xx and up depending number of inputs, and if audio needs to be done.. etc etc..
It isn't for everyone and certainly not "Needed" in the grand schema of things, it is a "Want" that can turn into a "Need" the more you read and learn!
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Old 04-27-2012, 03:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, I'm putting this on the shelf. Thanks for the advice and have a good one.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:29 PM
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I would start off with easy calibration like DVE use in combination with the free disc provided here on the forum. I was doing that for awhile, then I bought equipments to calibrate later. Took me three weeks to learn the badics , like grayscale, gamut, gamma level, colorspace (CMS), etc... still lot to learn. I have become a serial calibrator. if you're going to buy a bluray player, I would buy PS3 .
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