Originally Posted by DaViD Boulet
We don't have ambient lighting in a movie theater. So why should we have ambient light in our home theater?
So with HD in our homes, it really depends on what you're trying to do.
Do you want a "home theater"? If so, watch movies wide-angle on a large screen in a darkened room and calibrate accordingly. I would assume that's what you mean when you suggest "some sample of viewers".
Do you want to watch your HD display in a semi-lighted environment so others can casually view while they perhaps read or carry on other activities while one or more viewers watch the primary feature? Then calibrate for ambient light. That certainly describes the real-world environment for most HDTVs out there. But hanging an HDTV on your living room wall is not "home theater" per-se. It's not a bad thing either, but it's not replicating the art of cinema and we need to keep the two enviornments very distinct when we talk about our goals for high-performance image reproduction as home-theater enthusiasts.
Typical commercial cinema image- 8 to 10 foot Lamberts of screen brightness.
Typical SMPTE screening room cinema- =/> 12 fL.
Typical calibrated professional monitor- 30 to 35 fL.
Typical uncalibrated consumer television- 40 to 80 fL.
"Some samples of viewers" refers to the fact that some individuals are less sensitive to the causes of eye strain or headaches than others. Remember, this is the "Flat Panel General...." section of the forum. We're talking about 3D TVs, not projection display systems here. I don't know of a TV that will look right, even in a light-less room, if the peak brightness is reduced to 12 fL.
Reference viewing conditions for a TV-type monitor are standardized in the HD program production community. Such conditions include bias lighting due to human factors. The human visual system has limitations that must be taken into account when designing electronic display systems and/or calibrating them.
Most consumers cannot properly accommodated a front projection system in their home. A large screen HDTV, with surround sound audio, can be a reasonable and fulfilling alternative method of communicating cinematic art. This methodology can be most effective when the viewing and listening environment are conducive. Understanding human factors is essential to getting the most out of any entertainment system. The user is as much a vital component in system design as the gear. Unfortunately, human factors are the least understood element in most systems. Not all practices in front projection cinema work in direct-view display systems. Film imaging and exhibition best practices are also not equivalent to video imaging. The specific context needs to be understood and tracked to avoid confusion.
Best regards and beautiful pictures,
G. Alan Brown, President
A Lion AV Consultants Affiliate
"Advancing the art and science of electronic imaging"