Originally Posted by DSperber
Looking for feedback, and perhaps some editorial commentary.
I'm now almost 2 weeks into my new 65VT50 ownership being "installed and operational", so far watching almost nothing except HDTV. After some initial comparison of 1st-time setup STANDARD picture mode to the other modes available, I quickly settled on CUSTOM (as preset by Panny at the factory to be essentially flat-0 color) as what I clearly preferred. Coming from a Sony 34XBR960 (also set to PRO for "flat" everything, ready for "tweaks") the overall color, brightness, contrast, etc. of "factory CUSTOM" on the 65VT50 looked almost "perfect" to my eyes, although I did make just a few minor adjustments (e.g. reducing SHARPNESS, turning off "motion smoother" and "noise reduction", etc.).
I have an ISF calibration scheduled for Feb 15, but for now I'm still just playing around on my own. I've purchased ControlCAL to have the additional two ISF presets available for use, at least to try settings setups of others on this thread to decide what I might like or prefer more than something else... and certainly to compare it to CUSTOM (slightly tweaked from Panny factory preset, but very little).
I have explored watching some 2D BluRay movies I'm very familiar with from watching on the XBR960 (e.g. "Toy Story 3") and it's stunning. Of course the XBR960/CRT is limited to 1080i, whereas the 65VT60 is 1080p/24... and also significantly larger screen size. The visual difference is substantial. I'm definitely "at the movies" now.
I've never seen home 3D before but with the 65VT50 I've now sampled "Up (3D)" and it seemed a bit dark to me ("3D THX Cinema" picture mode setting) but that may be from the Panny Real3D glasses. Or, maybe it's just the nature of home 3D, or "Up". I also have "Brave" and "Avatar" in 3D to try, so maybe it's just a matter of getting used to it. Anyway for the moment I'm not at all concerned about 3D. And in 2D, 1080p/24 (from my Oppo BDP-103) looks astounding on the 65VT50.
99.9% of my viewing is HDTV from my HTPC, via Linksys DMA2100 Windows Media Center Extender. Cable channels are from TWC/LA, and network channels are from OTA/ATSC roof antenna (which provides superior picture quality to TWC's re-compressed delivery of those local networks). Source 720p/1080i is being passed HDMI from the DMA2100 through the external HDMI input of an Oppo BDP-103 where it is upconverted to 1080p, and then on through HDMI-1 output from the 103 to a Yamaha RX-V867 for video HDMI delivery to the 65VT50.
So the BDP-103 is my sole source device, both for movies (from the player itself) as well as for HDTV (passed through from my DMA2100 via external HDMI input to the 103). And it delivers 1080p to the 65VT50 through the RX-V867.
I've now watched a fair amount of assorted HDTV (film, tape/live, 720p, 1080i) on the 65VT50, including numerous recordings from the London Olympics on NBC, whose indoor/outdoor venues were lit to perfection and provided amazingly real-looking HDTV images, with perfect colors and perfect skin tone... as shown on my XBR960 originally. I have to say I'm amazed at how the 65VT50 renders these same images... because it is just like the "almost 3D-like" image on the XBR960. There is essentially zero off-angle fall off of brightness on the 65VT60/plasma (just as there is not on the XBR960/CRT), something which is of course horrible on LCD/LED sets I've seen. This is hugely important to me and makes the 65VT50 just a stunning successor to my "HDTV reference" 960.
Ok. Enough well-deserved accolades for the 65VT50. It is simply remarkable, and I obviously made the best possible choice as the successor to my 9-year old 34XBR960. I'm in love.
I just cannot seem to accept the look of the image when I try the various assorted settings of others which have been posted here, including the recently posted D-Nice setup. I suspect it's probably a matter of just getting used to how they look, but at the moment I cannot.
These other settings setups all look to me to be much too "jaundiced", with skin tone much too red/yellow. Seems too dark as well.
I'm sure this is primarily from the color temperature selected in these other setups, which is either STANDARD, WARM 1 or WARM 2. I personally never cared for this "color bias" on my XBR960 either, and I don't care for how it looks on the 65VT50. I much prefer to start from COOL 1. I just like the blue-white appearance, as I also do on my computer monitors which I have set to 9300K.
Is this just me? Am I going to have to learn to accept the "other look"? Is that what my ISF calibration will produce?? If so there will certainly be plenty of discussion at that time.
Is that really intended for watching movies, and if you watch "live" HDTV (like Olympics swimming pool coverage and indoor volleyball coverage, Super Bowl, etc). that the CUSTOM + COOL 1 color on the 65VT50 is simply much more comfortable and human-like and like "window onto the real world" as my XBR960 has been?
Note that I have no day/night or windows and bright sunlight issues in my room. I watch essentially always in the dark. Certainly that's how I prefer to do any serious watching, but even in the daytime the location of windows and outside day light is essentially a non-problem for both my XBR960 and now 65VT50 (both of which are in the same room). No sunlight on either screen, no ambient lamp issues reflecting, etc. Essentially this is an all-night setup, so color and brightness/contrast is always ideal.
For the sake of discussion here, the Panny factory-provided CUSTOM preset has ZERO color adjustments. It is absolutely FLAT-0 for all CMS and other WB, 10-pt WB, and 10-pt Gamma settings.
Panny factory CUSTOM does have a few non-0 non-OFF slightly "biased" values in Advanced Picture and Pro Settings (see below), but I still much prefer this CUSTOM "flat-0 color" + COOL1 against any of the other three user-contributed setups I've seen, all of which have significant changes to all of the color tweaks and use STANDARD or WARM 1 or WARM 2 color temperature.
So, is it just me? Why does everybody rave about what to me seems like "red push" (non-realistic skin tone)?
Look at the "Panny CUSTOM setup" shown below (again, with ALL other individually adjustable WB and color-related Pro settings still at 0) which is what I'm currently using. I suspect I may feel differently after my ISF calibration gets done, but note that I've made very few changes from Panny factory CUSTOM preset as initially delivered.
In particular, what obviously distinguishes the whole CUSTOM color-appearance and brightness/contrast of this on my 65VT50 from the color-appearance of other users' settings is due to my going to COOL 1 temperature, along with Panny factory values of (a) gamma 2.2, (b) black extension +5, (c) contour emphasis ON, and (d) AGC +7... along with the fact that ALL OTHER CMS AND INDIVIDUAL COLOR-TWEAKS ARE SET AT 0 with Panny CUSTOM as delivered!
Am I alone here??
PICTURE MODE: STANDARD -> CUSTOM
SHARPNESS: 50 -> 20
COLOR TEMP: NORMAL -> COOL1
VIDEO NR: WEAK -> OFF
BLACK EXTENSION: +5
PANEL BRIGHTNESS: MID
CONTOUR EMPHASIS: ON
BLOCK NR: OFF
MOSQUITO NR: OFF
MOTION SMOOTHER: WEAK -> OFF
BLACK LEVEL: LIGHT
3:2 PULLDOWN: AUTO