I know this is an old thread (and an old projector) but this thread was a huge help to me in getting my PT-AE4000U calibrated. Before this I had only used the various calibration disks with color filters. I've had this projector a while but it was in a place where it got only sporadic use. Thus it only has about 300 hours on the original lamp (and I bought it when they were giving spare lamps for free so I have another lamp for it too). I always loved the image, though this one definitely isn't one of the best optically or in terms of panel alignment. Still it looked great for movies, but I wanted to see if it could do even better. I want this projector to last me until 4k is standard (and cheap!).
I started with the main guides (which are linked earlier in this thread). Most were close to what I needed, but there were a couple nuances I didn't understand. The main ones, which this thread explained to me, were the very low gamma of this display by default, running out of red up high, and the strong interconnection between controls (when setting greyscale/gamma).
I purchased a Colormunki Display for this calibration and used HCFR. The calibration took pretty much all day yesterday due to this being my first real calibration (so standard learning curve) and because for the three quirks of this projector listed above.
My final procedure (I won't detail all of the failed methods), from memory, was this:
First I set Cinema 1 to all defaults and then turned off dynamic iris, frame create, and detail clarity for the calibration. Lamp mode I set to normal as I knew I would be giving up lumens for red (and I have a free lamp sitting in the closet).
The only numbers I changed in basic were the overall brightness and contrast. Using the standard method (from any of the disks) I got a brightness of 0 and a contrast of 10 to get the full light output range of the projector. From some earlier testing I knew a contrast of 0 would limit lumens enough that I wouldn't run out of red much at all. So to compromise reds vs. lumens I chose a contrast of 5.
For this calibration I set to D75 rather than D65 to try to reduce how noticeable the red loss up high was.
I then did not touch any other color settings (in basic or advanced) and went right into the Advanced Gamma settings. In here I did two things at once using the 9 point settings curve. I set my gamma curve to the reference curve HCFR supplied using the Y gamma and then I tweaked the RGB gammas to set my greyscale. You should end up with fairly smooth curves - if there are any large outliers then something probably has gone wrong. It is also an iterative method - first get Y where it gets you the correct lumens output, then adjust R and B gammas to get your color percentages correct. Of course as you increase/decrease the RB gammas you will change your lumens output, so you will have to tweak Y, R and B until everything is balanced. For me I started running out of red around the 80% point. So at 80-90-100 I mainly focused on getting B to match G. For the red gamma I just set it to smooth my red gamma curve back to zero offset. The main goal here was to try to make the red dropoff as smooth as possible. I might have forgotten something here, so if anyone wants any details on when I did (if anyone out there is still trying to calibrate this projector
) let me know.
With that done I had what I felt was a very good greyscale and gamma (my gamma is a little below the reference curve, however I wanted that as my room has some lighter colored surfaces). Obviously the top two points aren't great due to the red loss, however I found that red cast whites seem to bother me more than blue cast whites, so the top end white still looks okay to me. I'll post all of the "FINAL" charts at the end of the post (I also have the "BEFORE" charts if anyone is interested, except for color saturation which I forgot to do).
After that I followed the forum post on color calibrating Epsons pretty much exactly. It was only a quick run through though I think the results were okay. Cyan is still off a bit, but the rest look okay on the plot to my untrained eye. The Epson guide said your 100% color saturations will be too high but 75% and lower should be pretty good. That I think I managed to do, though like I said it probably needs another pass to really lock things in.
After a long day of work I decided to use Interstellar as my "test disk". I have never seen it before (I wanted something "good" visually that I had not seen before, so that I would not have any preconceived "correct" colors). Probably a bad idea as I got pretty into the movie and stopped paying attention to what I thought of skin tone accuracy in every scene. However when I was paying attention to skin tone I thought it looked pretty good, so hopefully I have things set not too far off the mark (though I will tweak color a hair more - just not this weekend!). I will try these settings with a variety of movies to see if I am happy before I make any changes, but Interstellar definitely was a check-mark. I have no idea how much the changes to color will effect my movie watching, but with how far off Gamma was from preferred (I think default was way down around 1.5 or something like that) I know the image is VERY different from what I had before. And greyscale is drastically improved too.
As promised I've attached all of the "AFTER" charts to this post. Comments and critiques are welcome(ish)