Slightly disappointed with the F8500...why am I not wowed? - AVS Forum
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Old 10-28-2014, 08:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Slightly disappointed with the F8500...why am I not wowed?

I've been fiddling with mine for the past couple of weeks since I received it and I think I finally dialed it in but I'm always still going between a couple of settings. I hate to even say it but I haven't been quite wowed yet, I've seen most people say that it's just jaw-dropping even out of the box and I don't know if it's just me or what but I'm slightly disappointed for some reason. Even other people that have seen it or like "yeah man, looks pretty good" but I was expecting the picture to just be unbelievable.

Settings I have right now are...

Picture mode: Standard
Cell light: 20
Contrast: 100
Brightness: 49
Sharpness: 20
Color: 51
Tint: G51
Dynamic contrast: Low
Black tone: Off
Flesh tone: 0
Color space: Native
White balance: Default (25)
Gamma: -1
Color tone: Warm1
Digital clean view: off
MPEG noise filter: off
Film mode: off
Motion judder canceller: off
Black optimizer: auto

I used to have the Color Tone on Standard and just moved it to Warm1 San I think I like it a lot better. Warm2 looks nice some times too but the whites look too yellowish. The other setting I kept going back and forth on was the Dynamic Contrast and I think I've settled on Low.

I've been testing with the Oblivion bluray and am about to pop Skyfall in and see how that looks. Also watched most of the scenes on the Disney WOW disk and I'm not sure if those are supposed to be reference material or are supposed to be just amazing but some look great (the cartoons) while ares are just ok (Surrogates clips) and others are downright bad (Pirates of the Caribbean).

BTW the set I have now only has about 30 hours on it had this set since Friday, returned the first set to Frys), I've heard the picture gets noticeably better with more hours on it?

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Old 10-28-2014, 08:22 PM
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I'm sure standard is one of the worst settings you can use, check the F8500 thread for proper settings.
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Old 10-28-2014, 08:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Latinoheat View Post
I'm sure standard is one of the worst settings you can use, check the F8500 thread for proper settings.
I have tried a few settings in Movie mode and to me it's much too dull.
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Old 10-28-2014, 08:39 PM
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Have you tried these settings? Remember that with plasma, the picture gets better and brighter with more hours. It really becomes alive. I'm sure there are other settings available, check the owner & settings thread.

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Old 10-28-2014, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by HX_Guy View Post
I used to have the Color Tone on Standard and just moved it to Warm1 San I think I like it a lot better. Warm2 looks nice some times too but the whites look too yellowish. The other setting I kept going back and forth on was the Dynamic Contrast and I think I've settled on Low.

I've been testing with the Oblivion bluray and am about to pop Skyfall in and see how that looks. Also watched most of the scenes on the Disney WOW disk and I'm not sure if those are supposed to be reference material or are supposed to be just amazing but some look great (the cartoons) while ares are just ok (Surrogates clips) and others are downright bad (Pirates of the Caribbean).

BTW the set I have now only has about 30 hours on it had this set since Friday, returned the first set to Frys), I've heard the picture gets noticeably better with more hours on it?
I used the Disney WOW disc in order to do my initial "calibration" of my set. When I was done following all the guides, Pirates looked very nice. Sounds to me like there's some more adjustments to be made for your panel.
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Old 10-28-2014, 09:55 PM
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Perhaps you're coming from a really great TV? I wager a lot of the people who rave about this TV came from either an LCD/LED set or another (dimmer) plasma. Most people who come from LCD are probably wowed by the black levels and viewing angle alone. Even if this TV is otherwise on par with other plasma sets, the 3D, smart features, and brightness set it apart. Just some thoughts.
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Old 10-28-2014, 10:07 PM - Thread Starter
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I came from a 55" Samsung B6000 LED which really impressed me with its picture quality, flash lighting and black levels were another issue but overall the picture looked fantastic to me.

I will say that with these new settings (Warm1 and Dynamic:Low) I'm really liking how it's looking. Also, I looked thru my setting on the Denon X2000 receiver and I had Video Processing on which I guess did its own processing before sending the signal from the bluray player and sat box to the TV (I run all inputs thru the receiver). Anyway, I shut that off so the signal goes thru unmodified and not sure if it's a placebo effect but it seems to look better.

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Old 10-28-2014, 10:23 PM - Thread Starter
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One other thought is the screen size...my viewing distance is 14' and I think the smaller screen looked a little better quality wise as with the F8500, I actually feel it looks better if I get further from the screen and especially off angle.

I moved the LED to the master bedroom and that's a 15' viewing distance and it looks very very good.
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Old 10-29-2014, 01:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Changed Dynamic Contrast back to "Off" while watching Skyfall tonight in a completely dark room. The blacks seems too light in the dark scenes and turning off the Dynamic Contrast actually seemed to make a very noticeable difference for the better. Bright scenes do seem better with it set to "Low" so I guess it's a trade off but I think it's better to have better blacks.



Pirates off the Disney WOW disc still looks terrible, is this scene particularly hard for plasmas to process or does this actually look great on other people's sets?






I'm contemplating getting the set professionally calibrated once it has some hours on it as my tweaking could be way off it seems?
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Old 10-29-2014, 04:55 AM
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If you prefer Standard to Movie, then a professional calibration probably wouldn't be to your liking. Based on your settings, it seems like you prefer an artificially punchy and sharpened picture. There's nothing wrong with that if that's your preference, but I wouldn't expect you to appreciate the results of a calibration in that case.
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by tbird8450 View Post
If you prefer Standard to Movie, then a professional calibration probably wouldn't be to your liking. Based on your settings, it seems like you prefer an artificially punchy and sharpened picture. There's nothing wrong with that if that's your preference, but I wouldn't expect you to appreciate the results of a calibration in that case.
I agree with this. If you like standard mode and color punched up to 51 you are probably looking for a fake, non realistic LED picture. Nothing wrong with that but quite the opposite of what a calibration will do.

A calibration will give you the look that you might consider dull, what the rest of us would consider realistic.
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Old 10-29-2014, 06:04 AM
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Did you shut off all your Eco modes?

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Old 10-29-2014, 06:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HX_Guy View Post
Changed Dynamic Contrast back to "Off" while watching Skyfall tonight in a completely dark room. The blacks seems too light in the dark scenes and turning off the Dynamic Contrast actually seemed to make a very noticeable difference for the better. Bright scenes do seem better with it set to "Low" so I guess it's a trade off but I think it's better to have better blacks.



Pirates off the Disney WOW disc still looks terrible, is this scene particularly hard for plasmas to process or does this actually look great on other people's sets?






I'm contemplating getting the set professionally calibrated once it has some hours on it as my tweaking could be way off it seems?

I am agreeing with the other comments

I had a Samsung B8000..46" at one time and this F8500 is better in every way...to my eyes
In fact you have the most LED "like" plasma there is...based on this you would really dislike the Panasonic VT/ZT

though you might be just more on an LED person who likes a really bright saturated picture

Skyfall on an F8500 is a stellar movie...just in the shadow detail alone


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Old 10-29-2014, 06:49 AM
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Maybe the increase in screen size (I assume you have the 64"?) is revealing flaws in the source material that you were not previously accustom to. The superior black level, which is arguably the most important aspect of perceived picture quality, yields significantly better contrast and should be enough to "wow" you vs the LCD. Movie mode too dim you say? Sounds like you're watching in a very bright environment where lower black levels yield less advantage.

Is reducing ambient light an option? - That'd be my suggestion, alongside properly setting up movie mode.
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Old 10-29-2014, 08:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Latinoheat View Post
Hello,
Question, aren't these settings from the 1st version of the panels firmware?
I read on another thread that this calibrator re-calibrated the panel for the 2nd shoot out that was held this year? Also how do I read the settings in the movie mode,
High Red: 25/3=*1,6=*4,8=*1,9=*2
Is this a combination of the 2 point and 10pt white level? If so how do I do this?

Regards,
Jeff
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Old 10-29-2014, 08:36 AM - Thread Starter
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I agree with this. If you like standard mode and color punched up to 51 you are probably looking for a fake, non realistic LED picture. Nothing wrong with that but quite the opposite of what a calibration will do.

A calibration will give you the look that you might consider dull, what the rest of us would consider realistic.
I set the Color at 51 based on the blue filter adjustments with the WOW disc, not by eye. If I were to bring it down, then the colors using the filter would no longer look like they are supposed to.
For comparison, on the B6000 LED, I have the color at 43, set with the same method. Is that blue filter test not an accurate way to set the color?
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Old 10-29-2014, 08:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Did you shut off all your Eco modes?
Yes, they were actually all off by default, aren't everyones? Both sets I've had were had Eco modes off, unless there are modes I'm not aware of?
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Old 10-29-2014, 08:43 AM
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Also, color space set to "Native" widens the color range to panel maximum which results in excessive saturation. "Auto" will bring it back closer to the rec709 spec.

You didn't mention overly saturated colors but may as well get it right. Improper saturation can really mess up important things, like skin tone.
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Old 10-29-2014, 09:03 AM
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Some people expect a home TV to be "punchy" as we are referring to it here. But, if you ask yourself, "Does this look like what I see when I go to a movie?" A high quality AMC theatre (as an example) looks much more natural than what you see when you are looking at the hundreds of TVs showing wow wow punchy demos at (for example) Best Buy. Think about it - when have you went to see a movie and watched what is typically playing in demo mode at Best Buy?

Anyway, My F8500 more closely approximates the natural look of things, in a similar fashion to a high quality movie, than any TV I have ever owned. And, since we LOVE movies, we love our F8500!
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Old 10-29-2014, 09:55 AM
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if dynamic contrast makes blacks darker, you likely have brightness set too high.

the 'black' should be the same regardless of 'features'. dynamic contrast will crush details above black, so if you're brightness is too high, it might 'crush' your too bright black back to correct black. but the real solution is to set brightness correctly so that 16 doesn't flash on the test pattern.

just a thought

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Old 10-29-2014, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HX_Guy View Post
I set the Color at 51 based on the blue filter adjustments with the WOW disc, not by eye. If I were to bring it down, then the colors using the filter would no longer look like they are supposed to.
For comparison, on the B6000 LED, I have the color at 43, set with the same method. Is that blue filter test not an accurate way to set the color?
Why wouldn't you use the blue only mode on the TV, along with the built in expert pattern and adjust the color that way?

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Old 10-29-2014, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Why wouldn't you use the blue only mode on the TV, along with the built in expert pattern and adjust the color that way?
I've done both and it gives the same results.
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Also, color space set to "Native" widens the color range to panel maximum which results in excessive saturation. "Auto" will bring it back closer to the rec709 spec.

You didn't mention overly saturated colors but may as well get it right. Improper saturation can really mess up important things, like skin tone.
Hmm, I tried Auto instead of Native and to me, it actually looks like it it saturates the skin tones more than Native? Seems to make skin a little richer, more yellowish/beige. Also seems to brighten up the image a bit, but only bright areas like the sky, while a dark scene it seems to make no difference at all between Native and Auto. Does that sound right?
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by fierce_gt View Post
if dynamic contrast makes blacks darker, you likely have brightness set too high.

the 'black' should be the same regardless of 'features'. dynamic contrast will crush details above black, so if you're brightness is too high, it might 'crush' your too bright black back to correct black. but the real solution is to set brightness correctly so that 16 doesn't flash on the test pattern.

just a thought
Dynamic Contrast ins't making blacks darker, it actually seems to be lighten them up but it makes the scene more contrasty, more "pop" I guess? Sometimes it seems to look good but other times not. I seemed to have liked the effect more when I had the Tone set to Standard, but on Warm1 I seem to like the Dynamic Contrast turned off more.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarends View Post
Some people expect a home TV to be "punchy" as we are referring to it here. But, if you ask yourself, "Does this look like what I see when I go to a movie?" A high quality AMC theatre (as an example) looks much more natural than what you see when you are looking at the hundreds of TVs showing wow wow punchy demos at (for example) Best Buy. Think about it - when have you went to see a movie and watched what is typically playing in demo mode at Best Buy?

Anyway, My F8500 more closely approximates the natural look of things, in a similar fashion to a high quality movie, than any TV I have ever owned. And, since we LOVE movies, we love our F8500!
This is probably going to get me some backslash but I'm usually not impressed by the PQ at movie theaters.

I'm someone that usually uploads photos to my computer and then clicks on "Enhance" to every photo to give it more punch. I was actually SUPER impressed with the LED display models setup at Best Buy (in the "special" Samsung only section where they are feeding it specific material), I thought it was jaw dropping. Same with the LG OLED they had on display, I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I guess I was expecting a similar picture from the Samsung and that's why I'm disappointed.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:11 AM
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It's been a while since I used it but the WOW disc should have a test pattern for setting black level. I would reset gamma to 0 and then use the black level test pattern to adjust brightness and cell light. After that is set properly you could experiment with turning gamma to -1 or turning dynamic contrast on if the picture still looks too washed out to you.

I would suggest doing all this in Movie mode...that will give the best results...but I would think the same method would be useful in Standard as well.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:14 AM
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This is probably going to get me some backslash but I'm usually not impressed by the PQ at movie theaters.

I'm someone that usually uploads photos to my computer and then clicks on "Enhance" to every photo to give it more punch. I was actually SUPER impressed with the LED display models setup at Best Buy (in the "special" Samsung only section where they are feeding it specific material), I thought it was jaw dropping. Same with the LG OLED they had on display, I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I guess I was expecting a similar picture from the Samsung and that's why I'm disappointed.
I tend to HATE the picture at most movie theaters (dim, washed out...no shadow detail) but I love the picture on my F8500. But then again what you prefer seems to be quite a bit different than my tastes. I watch in Movie with Warm 2.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:31 AM
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Hmm, I tried Auto instead of Native and to me, it actually looks like it it saturates the skin tones more than Native? Seems to make skin a little richer, more yellowish/beige. Also seems to brighten up the image a bit, but only bright areas like the sky, while a dark scene it seems to make no difference at all between Native and Auto. Does that sound right?
according my meter, native is WAY off, and auto is actually pretty close to the rec709(once gamma and greyscale are set) at 100%.

this is tough, cause there seems to be a dis-connect between what is 'correct/accurate' and what is 'preferred'.

still, I think it's best to use the industry standards as your starting point. it's better to make adjustments from there to suit your tastes.

if you start from rec709, make the adjustments to suit your tastes, and still can't get what you want, it's probably time to move on. there's a reason lcd's sell so much, you're certainly not alone in wanted something that even the best plasmas can't provide. but i'm curious, what's the approx. time for those screenshots of pirates? i'll load it up tonight and have a look myself. I know the f8500 struggles with holding deep blacks in mixed content, but even with that in mind, those pics do look pretty bad. so it's still possible you're not getting everything you could out of the f8500. worth a look before you return it I guess.

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Old 10-29-2014, 11:43 AM
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This is probably going to get me some backslash but I'm usually not impressed by the PQ at movie theaters.

I'm someone that usually uploads photos to my computer and then clicks on "Enhance" to every photo to give it more punch. I was actually SUPER impressed with the LED display models setup at Best Buy (in the "special" Samsung only section where they are feeding it specific material), I thought it was jaw dropping. Same with the LG OLED they had on display, I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I guess I was expecting a similar picture from the Samsung and that's why I'm disappointed.
No backlash. You like what you like, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Honestly, The PNxxF8500 is currently the punchiest, highest contrast plasma available today.

There could be something wrong with your display, but from what I'm reading, you're coming from and LED LCD, and based on your likes, you might be better suited for an LED LCD or an OLED, ....and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

In the end, it's you who has to be satisfied with your purchase, no one else. After all, you'll be viewing the content on the screen through your eyes, not theirs.

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Old 10-29-2014, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by RyanHomsey View Post
Also, color space set to "Native" widens the color range to panel maximum which results in excessive saturation. "Auto" will bring it back closer to the rec709 spec.

You didn't mention overly saturated colors but may as well get it right. Improper saturation can really mess up important things, like skin tone.
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Agree with Ryan and the rest of the folk here. Could you let us know what your typical viewing situation is? Dark room or very bright room?

You could look at the basic settings in my sig as they should likely translate reasonably well to the F8500. Definitely set Colorspace to Auto. Also, don't use the Blue Filter. Instead, use the Blue only mode (I think the F8500 has this?) on the set as that should be a lot more accurate.

It's your TV and your preference, and what you like is ultimately all that matters. It does seem that your preferences are perhaps not in line with most of us here who do like a calibrated to rec709 display with no artificial sharpness/contrast enhancement. That being said, like others have suggested, I'd recommend starting with the basics and a baseline setting close to a "calibration" and then tweak from there till you can get the picture as you like it. FWIW, prior to calibrating my set and tweaking the CMS settings, dynamic contrast on low actually did improve the look on my set without looking too artificial. This was primarily due to my 25-75% saturation colors being undersaturated w.r.t the rec709 targets with out of the box settings while 100% saturation targets were quite close to the rec709 targets. After I calibrated and tweaked my settings to improve color saturation in the more important 25-75% saturation range, I found that the picture looked excellent without dynamic contrast as it now had more pop to it and didn't have a whitish haze to images due to the chronic undersaturation of colors. Once calibrated, dynamic contrast, even on low looked worse and led to visible color clipping.

So what you are experiencing may also have something to do with an uncalibrated set that may have slightly undersaturated colors by default that lead to this lack of pop that you are experiencing.
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