Chromapure vs. Calman - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 07-21-2013, 01:06 PM - Thread Starter
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I am a calibration newbie and I am thinking of buying myself one of the Lumagen Radiance units. Which software would you suggest to go with? Chromapure or Calman. As said I read a lot online about calibration but have no experience in doing so. So it would be nice if the software would be to a certain point explainative? Iknow that both programs can do autocalibration.
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post #2 of 21 Old 07-21-2013, 01:26 PM
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You will find many fans of either one or both on this site and will never get a clear cut answer to your question. Both work well with a Radiance. I have a Radiance and use Chromapure and am very happy.
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post #3 of 21 Old 07-22-2013, 08:48 PM
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Greetings

This article gives you an idea about the two choices.

This article is about how people get mad when the hammer they buy does not teach them how to build a house.

And this article talks about what your learning options really are out there.

You can learn to do it yourself ... and spend a long time scrounging around for tidbits of information ... but this approach is free and pretty much assumes that the value of your time is ZERO. And that you are in no hurry to ever arrive at a result for the display.

But if your time is worth more to you, then you can consider real training.

regards

Michael Chen @ The Laser Video Experience
ISF/THX/TLV Video Instructor
The Video Calibration Education Hub - www.TLVEXP.com

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post #4 of 21 Old 07-22-2013, 10:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Michael,
thanks for your reply I actually read your free ebook already last week. I had my projector already professionally calibrated and looked that guy a little bit over the shoulder. What i would only like to add is Lumagen's colorcube calibration which is as far as I understood an autocalibration anyway?
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post #5 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 04:48 AM
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Greetings

Yes, it is auto, and it only uses the internal patterns of the lumagen ... which always makes me uncomfortable as those patterns therefore do not go through the entire video chain and are not necessarily representative of any real video signal you send the unit. Add to that ... the measuring tool. 125 points of light ... only as good as the tool you use. Start with a yardstick that really measures 38" but says 36" ... and I don't care how carefully you measure with that stick ... the end result is still wrong.

regards
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post #6 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael TLV View Post

it only uses the internal patterns of the lumagen ... which always makes me uncomfortable as those patterns therefore do not go through the entire video chain and are not necessarily representative of any real video signal you send the unit.

If you compare it's internal generator to an external generator hooked up to an input of the lumagen, they should measure exactly the same on the other side.

The lumagen itself has some processing, so it would look different than a reference pattern generator if you plugged the generator in straight to the TV. Since the lumagen will be part of the final signal chain, this really isn't an issue. After that, I would say make sure your Blu-ray player has a mode that does reference output and you are well on your way to having professional level color accuracy. Home Theater secrets does a great job of comparing Blu-Ray players to reference http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/blu-ray-players/blu-ray-players-reviews.html.

Joel Barsotti
SpectraCal
CalMAN Lead Developer
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post #7 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 03:24 PM
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I can't speak to Chromapure, but I just did my first 125 point calibration with a Radiance and Calman 5, and the results are nothing short of stunning. I could go on for pages describing why, but I'll just say that my wife, who cares very little for such things usually, literally gushed about how much better the picture is.

The workflow in Calman 5 for the autocal is very easy to use. It walks you through each step of the process. Start out by getting 100% white right using the display's controls. Set brightness and contrast. Then, I found it easier and got better results doing a 21 point autocal of the grayscale. Yes, this is redundant because you do that in the 125 point process. Still, I think it helped me out anyway. Following that, get color and tint right using basic patterns and a blue filter. Next, using your display's CMS if it has one, do a very basic gamut calibration. You don't have to sweat getting super close at all here, just get it in the neighborhood with the colors preferably over saturated. (That gives the auto cal something to work with.) Now start the 3D LUT workflow and follow it step by step. Go do something else while it's working on the grayscale and again while it's doing the gamut.

The 125 point calibration can make once really poor modes beautiful. I calibrated Dynamic on my Epson PJ and the result is an near perfect color accurate picture with 1200 lumens in Eco mode. You can get a good picture out of Dynamic using a hard to find filter, but not near as good as the 125 point calibration does without the filter. Without that filter or a radiance, Dynamic mode is really only useful for sports. That leaves you with only 600 lumens in ECO mode to play with, not enough for a really big screen. The Radiance was money better spent than upgrading the PJ. Besides, try and find a PJ putting out 1200 lumens in ECO mode with perfectly balanced color.

I agree that you're not going to get good results without a good meter. I used an i1 Display Pro profiled against my i1 Pro. Are there better meters for a lot more money? Sure. But for a consumer grade setup I think you'll be hard pressed to get a better picture.

The autocal definitely makes things easier, but there is still a learning curve. If you enjoy stuff like this it can be a fun hobby and you'll enjoy learning about it. If you don't relish the though of the time spent learning, your best bet might be a professional calibration. I'd still recommend the radiance so that the pro can do a 125 point calibration, but consider the two meters and the software will set you back close to two grand. Well worth it in the long run if you enjoy it, not so much if you don't.
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post #8 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael TLV View Post

Greetings

Yes, it is auto, and it only uses the internal patterns of the lumagen ... which always makes me uncomfortable as those patterns therefore do not go through the entire video chain and are not necessarily representative of any real video signal you send the unit. Add to that ... the measuring tool. 125 points of light ... only as good as the tool you use. Start with a yardstick that really measures 38" but says 36" ... and I don't care how carefully you measure with that stick ... the end result is still wrong.

regards

Somehow I read this message and the preceding as largely ambiguous and it felt to me at least like they are intended primarily to just raise uncertainty levels. I have had pro level calibration done before and I have seen the results of ChromaPure and Lumagen using a 125 Point Calibration and I have to say if you have a projection based device their just is no reason to be nervous about either ChromaPure or the results running auto-calibration on the Lumagen. Sure a much more expensive meter might get some very slightly better results but a profiled D3 whether that is profiled on the display with an i1 or Tom's tables you can get just brilliant results.

I really have to wonder going forward as the home cinema enthusiast gets better and better tools exactly how the pros roles will change. At some point there will a Radiance with large LUT and ChromaPure and SpectraCal will get even more polished at this auto-cal business...

Just another blank signature.
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post #9 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 10:41 AM
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I really have to wonder going forward as the home cinema enthusiast gets better and better tools exactly how the pros roles will change. At some point there will a Radiance with large LUT and ChromaPure and SpectraCal will get even more polished at this auto-cal business...

Lumagens (et al) will have to come *way* down in price ... and the tools will need to be at least as "foolproof," low-cost and "integrated" as an "Audyssey" solution, before the pros need to worry about being kicked to the curb. ... That being said, technology advancement does tend to move at exponential rates ... wink.gif

IOW, I'd be interested in a fully automated solution, OTOH I'm not going to spend upwards of $2500(ish) to "fix" my $500 display. wink.gif
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post #10 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 11:44 AM
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Lumagens (et al) will have to come *way* down in price ... and the tools will need to be at least as "foolproof," low-cost and "integrated" as an "Audyssey" solution, before the pros need to worry about being kicked to the curb. ... That being said, technology advancement does tend to move at exponential rates ... wink.gif

IOW, I'd be interested in a fully automated solution, OTOH I'm not going to spend upwards of $2500(ish) to "fix" my $500 display. wink.gif

You will note I mentioned projection systems.. The UHP lamp light source case is not set it and forget it. So while the display might be expensive it needs expensive maintenance periodically if a pro is going to keep it calibrated.

On the other hand a pro calibration on some displays has a pretty long shelf-life. Others not so much. Assuming one does not go 4k anytime soon the Lumagen may last through more than one display. One of the problems is that many displays have problems that cannot really be fixed without 3D LUT. Until such time as 3D LUTs are internal to displays and user accessible, external boxes will be necessary solutions that even a pro would have to use to properly fix many displays. You can have a 10 million dollar probe and all the experience in the world but if the display is not linear you need a color cube to fix it. Some would say you need another display... but there are many expensive projectors with wonky Color Management Systems that need 3D LUT.

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post #11 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 01:40 PM
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You will note I mentioned projection systems.. The UHP lamp light source case is not set it and forget it. So while the display might be expensive it needs expensive maintenance periodically if a pro is going to keep it calibrated.

On the other hand a pro calibration on some displays has a pretty long shelf-life. Others not so much. Assuming one does not go 4k anytime soon the Lumagen may last through more than one display. One of the problems is that many displays have problems that cannot really be fixed without 3D LUT. Until such time as 3D LUTs are internal to displays and user accessible, external boxes will be necessary solutions that even a pro would have to use to properly fix many displays. You can have a 10 million dollar probe and all the experience in the world but if the display is not linear you need a color cube to fix it. Some would say you need another display... but there are many expensive projectors with wonky Color Management Systems that need 3D LUT.

You said it better than me. I have had a Radiance since 8/07 and used it on a 65" Panny without a CMS (600u) and on my current Sharp Elite. The 3D LUT (free from Lumagen) fixed the Elite's color tracking issues. Love my Radiance.
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post #12 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 06:11 PM
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You will note I mentioned projection systems.. .

I didn't see that "specification," but I agree within the context ... From personal experience I would even say that any display with some form of florescent backlight probably falls into the same category. wink.gif

Still, there's no substitute for performing due diligence when choosing a display. In 2013, there's simply no excuse for making one go spelunking through hidden service menus or slapping "wonky," ineffective color management systems on an otherwise "state of the art" display.

Frankly, there's only one CE manufacturer that actually makes the process of calibration relatively "easy," straightforward and painless (though not without a few "quirks.") Everyone else seems to demand at least a $1500 investment just to get a "simple" 10pt greyscale control.
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post #13 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 06:21 PM
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You said it better than me. I have had a Radiance since 8/07 and used it on a 65" Panny without a CMS (600u) and on my current Sharp Elite. The 3D LUT (free from Lumagen) fixed the Elite's color tracking issues. Love my Radiance.

There is a case to be made there. You are postulating that the video processor and calibration tools are more important than the actual display. This is the same as saying that having a well designed AVR with Audyssey is more important than the randomly selected speakers you buy, or any haphazard attempts at applying "room treatments." ... I can certainly agree with that hypothesis. smile.gif

Yet the question remains, will the Lumagen + 3D LUT calibration be worth the price, when you can already get your greyscale points < 1 dE and your primary/secondary color sweeps < 2.5 dE with the display's built in controls? Aye, there's the rub. wink.gif
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post #14 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 08:19 PM
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Yet the question remains, will the Lumagen + 3D LUT calibration be worth the price, when you can already get your greyscale points < 1 dE and your primary/secondary color sweeps < 2.5 dE with the display's built in controls? Aye, there's the rub. wink.gif

Depending on the display and your finances, I'd have to answer with a resounding "yes". Just because the primaries and secondaries line up where they should at 100% saturation, or any given saturation, does not say all the colors in between will. For instance THX mode on my Epson is very close to perfect if you only consider grayscale and the color gamut at 100% saturation. And yet, the 125 point calibration makes an absolutely stunning difference in picture quality. Flesh tones never looked so good. if you've never seen it, you seriously don't know what you're missing. I'd have a hard time going back now. As far as cost, My $3200 PJ now has a picture to rival or surpass a $10,000 projector, so benefit per dollar is pretty high. With one touch of a button on my Harmony One remote, I can go from 1200 nearly color perfect lumens, in ECO no less, to 2200 pretty darn close lumens. That's hard to do at any price with a PJ. And completely impossible without the Radiance on my Epson. So yeah, well worth it.

Of course, if you're happy with a $500 display it wouldn't be worth it at all.
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post #15 of 21 Old 07-24-2013, 11:02 PM
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Depending on the display and your finances, I'd have to answer with a resounding "yes". Just because the primaries and secondaries line up where they should at 100% saturation, or any given saturation, does not say all the colors in between will..

Did you not see the word sweeps in my post? smile.gif As of the last calibration run (early June), the average color gamut dE on my display is 1.6 over 25% saturation intervals and six axis (that's 30 measurement points,) the average greyscale dE is 0.43 from 10% to 109% stimulus at 10% intervals.

The maximum error (dE) is 6.6 at 100% saturated magenta, which is due primarily to an under-saturation of the blue-red side of the gamut triangle. There's absolutely *nothing* that can be done about that with any type of LUT correction, it's a physical limitation of the display ... fortunately, it's also one of those errors that doesn't really matter visually. wink.gif

PS: Of course those numbers above assume that my meters are reading within specs. wink.gif

PPS: If I were to kick out the all of the 100% saturation points from the calculations, then the average gamut dE falls to 1.2 ... so apparently that "horrendous" 6.6 dE isn't all that significant in the larger scheme of things. smile.gif

So squawketh the Parrot. ... YMMV
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post #16 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 12:02 AM
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Did you not see the word sweeps in my post? smile.gif

Nice display. biggrin.gif My 6020 is also about that good if you ignore 100% Cyan. If you just look at the Primaries and secondaries. That's why I thought I'd never need a Radiance... Then I got a deal on one and thought I'd play with it before I resold it. Turns out all the rest of the colors weren't so close... Like I said, the improvement is vast. Your display may not need a 125 point cal, it may be completely accurate throughout the spectrum. If so, no need. Of course you really shouldn't run a full color check, sometimes blissful ignorance is better. biggrin.gif I could have saved a bunch of money if I'd never seen the difference. In the long run though, I'll save money because I won't need a new PJ for a long while now. biggrin.gif

BTW, have you checked your sweeps at 5 different luminence values for each of the five different saturations for each of the six primary and secondaries? tongue.gif
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post #17 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 11:09 AM
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BTW, have you checked your sweeps at 5 different luminence values for each of the five different saturations for each of the six primary and secondaries? tongue.gif

I have no reason to, since

a) There's nothing I can do about it even if something were "wrong,"
b) I don't have the necessary calibration targets on any of my test disks and
c) Based on what's been measured to-date, there's no reason to believe a display with mostly accurate greyscale, gamma response and gamut performance (0 to 75% saturation) would "suddenly run off the rails" somewhere between all the points that have already been measured.

PS: If the set has a "fatal flaw" it's the black-level or more specifically the black-level vs. scope movies and letterbox black bars. Since I use the set almost exclusively for Satellite/Broadcast TV (as opposed to scope BD movies) it turns out that this isn't as big of a problem as one might initially think. wink.gif
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post #18 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 12:15 PM
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PS: If the set has a "fatal flaw" it's the black-level or more specifically the black-level vs. scope movies and letterbox black bars. Since I use the set almost exclusively for Satellite/Broadcast TV (as opposed to scope BD movies) it turns out that this isn't as big of a problem as one might initially think. wink.gif

not the point of your post, but the black level was enough of an issue for me since I watch BD movies and play video games that have a lot of dark scenes in them and my viewing environment is pretty dim/dark nearly all the time... so black levels need to be decent and is why I'm currently using a Samsung LED LCD instead (and S-PVA does blacks better than S-IPS, about 2.5 to 3 times better in my specific case)
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post #19 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 08:51 PM
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I have no reason too, since

a) There's nothing I can do about it even if something were "wrong,"
b) I don't have the necessary calibration targets on any of my test disks and
c) Based on what's been measured to-date, there's no reason to believe a display with mostly accurate greyscale, gamma response and gamut performance (0 to 75% saturation) would "suddenly run off the rails" somewhere between all the points that have already been measured.

OK, so by your own admission, you have zero way to know if the lumagen would or would not make a difference with your own display, let alone the OP's display. You have zero experience with the 125 point autocal on the lumagen. Your only information is based on your opinion which has no basis in experience or education with the Lumagen. And yet you still felt compelled to advise the OP on the subject???

There's nothing wrong with being satisfied with what you have. I have a 50" Toshiba LED in our family room that I haven't bothered to try and adjust at all. The colors are oversaturated, but who cares? It's fine for the news and sitcoms. I am somewhat more demanding with my Home Theater setup. That doesn't mean everyone should be. Whatever floats your boat. However, trying to give advice about something you have absolutely no knowledge of-- or experience with-- is curious, to say the least. Better you should leave the answers to someone that does have some knowledge on the subject. At the very least, preface your post with "I have no idea what I'm talking about, but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night...) wink.gif
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post #20 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 10:20 PM
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OK, so by your own admission, you have zero way to know if the lumagen would or would not make a difference with your own display, let alone the OP's display. You have zero experience with the 125 point autocal on the lumagen. Your only information is based on your opinion which has no basis in experience or education with the Lumagen. And yet you still felt compelled to advise the OP on the subject???

Actually, I wasn't responding to the OP at all, I was conversing with gtgray ... until you butted in. smile.gif

I'm well aware of what the Lumagen (or eeColorBox) + 3D LUT can do in theory. I just don't think it would be worth it on my display, mostly because I know that there's absolutely nothing that a LUT can do for the two so-called "big" errors/issues left. So what's left would, at best, be an incremental improvement, like going from 95% "right" to 97% "right."

To borrow a phrase, 'there's things you can fix and there's things ya can't, and the smart calibrator (hopefully) possess the wisdom to know the difference ... and refrains from throwing money at a "lost cause" (for lack of a better term.)' wink.gif

PS: I'm not currently an engineer, but I did once go to an actual (5yr degree) engineering school. And to be honest, I don't really know what specifically is going on "under the hood" of these modern digital displays, but it seems to me that one would actually have to put considerable extra effort in to designing a display that measures as well as my example does at all the points I measured, but then somehow does something completely "whacky" in between all of those points. You'd really would *have* to invent some kind of "new math" to make that happen. wink.gif I'm saying it's impossible, I'm just saying it's not exactly the path of least resistance. smile.gif
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post #21 of 21 Old 07-25-2013, 10:36 PM
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not the point of your post, but the black level was enough of an issue for me since I watch BD movies and play video games that have a lot of dark scenes in them and my viewing environment is pretty dim/dark nearly all the time... so black levels need to be decent and is why I'm currently using a Samsung LED LCD instead (and S-PVA does blacks better than S-IPS, about 2.5 to 3 times better in my specific case)

At least you know the history. smile.gif Yeah, I seem to recall that my first impression of the set in question was that it would be totally inappropriate for a light controlled home theater as a primary display, but as you also know, that's not the application I had in mind. For the most part, I've learned to forgive the black-levels, it's just that scope movies have a nasty way of calling attention to the problem.

The time will come when I finally build out with projector and screen, but for some reason I'm not expecting the black levels to improve all that much going to the FP. wink.gif

Since it's almost impossible to find a reasonably priced FP with 10pt (or more) greyscale, I might eventually find the "need" to add a VP into the mix, but that time is not now. wink.gif
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