Projector Mini-Shootout Thread - Page 371 - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #11101 of 11276 Old 05-09-2015, 12:26 PM
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Lots of new features in the latest release of MadVR:

Quote:
Originally Posted by madshi
madVR v0.88.0 released

http://madshi.net/madVR.zip

Quote:
* added Direct3D 11 presentation path
* added support for native 10bit output
* added NEDI image doubling option
* added "image enhancements" settings page for source enhancements
* added "upscaling refinement" settings page for upscaling post processing
* added FineSharp to source enhancement and upscaling refinement
* added LumaSharpen to source enhancement and upscaling refinement
* added SuperRes to upscaling refinement
* added chroma upscaling option "activate SuperRes filter"
* added Shiandow's deband algorithm
* removed chroma image doubling options
* fixed some 64bit stability issues
* fixed crash when two madVR instances had the same parent (DVBViewer BiB)
* fixed one potential DXVA decoding freeze
* trade quality option "lose BTB and WTW..." is disabled by default now
* added SettingsSetBoolean("FinalizeOnWMClose") option
* (un)install.bat now complains if you don't run them as admin
* (un)install.bat now doesn't try to install madVR64 on a 32bit OS, anymore
Many many new features and options for you guys to play with - enjoy!

Some random comments:

1) The Direct3D11 presentation path seems to work very well for me, maybe even better than the D3D9 presentation path. Please give it a try and let me know how it works for you. I've noticed that on my PC the D3D11 path seems to react a bit faster when switching between windowed <-> exclusive mode. Also it has two advantages: First of all, it allows native 10bit output (see below). Secondly, in FSE mode D3D11 allows me to skip some VSyncs without having to present a frame, while still being able to present frames in advance. Which means that GPU performance in D3D11 FSE mode should be slightly better compared to D3D9, if you have a display refresh rate which is higher than the source frame rate.

2) Now native 10bit output is supported. Interestingly, my JVC projector looks bad with 10bit output, it looks much better with 8bit output. My LCD monitors look fine with 10bit output, though. So this may vary from display to display. AFAIK, most displays today do *not* have a native 10bit panel yet. So in many cases it is possible that you'll get a better image quality outputting dithered 8bit from madVR. But let your eyes be the judge.

3) I've decided to offer sharpening in two different places: In the "processing\image enhancements" page. This page applies sharpening to the source video, when it is still in its original resolution. And in the "scaling algorithms\upscaling refinement" page. The algorithms on this page can be run during/after upscaling. The general idea is that there are 2 different causes of blurred video: Either the original source is already soft/blurred. In that case it makes sense to sharpen the original sources. This will vary from source to source, though. The other cause of soft/blurred video is if you upscale. The larger the upscaling factor, the blurrier the result. So my thinking is that it makes sense to apply a certain amount of sharpening as part of the upscaling process to make sure that upscaling doesn't make the image blurrier than it originally was.

4) All the algorithms in the "upscaling refinement" page can be applied either just once, after upscaling is done. Or alternatively you can tell madVR to upscale the video in multiple steps, each one with a 2.0x scaling factor, and to apply upscaling refinement after each step. This makes sense because all the refinement algorithms work better that way. They are less effective if you run them after e.g. a 4.0x upscaling.

5) Please note that currently there are tons and TONS of options. This definitely is overkill and needs to be cleaned. This is a task we have to work on together. For each algorithm I'd like to define max 3 options (e.g. low, mid, high) and that must be sufficient. Otherwise the sheer amount of options will shy new users away.

-------

Now I need FEEDBACK from you guys. But since there are so many new features/options, it doesn't make sense to just collect feedback from everyone about everything. That just wouldn't work well. So please allow me to coordinate testing and feedback:

I would like to start with evaluating the new "DEBAND" algorithm written by Shiandow. Please could you guys try it with your various sources and let me know how it compares to madVR's other debanding algorithms in terms of quality and performance? Based on your feedback I will either remove the new algorithm again, or I will replace one or multiple of the old options with the new one. I want to end up with only one Deband option with max 3 different settings. Your feedback is very welcome - thanks!
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post #11102 of 11276 Old 05-09-2015, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blee0120 View Post
The main reason for me changing screens from the HP because I wanted there not to be a shift from bright to dim in my theater room. In two years, I was the main person in there watching movies. I just made the choice to satisfy myself first and the best seat in the room is going to be mines. I'm using the JVC RS35, and it looks great. Even tho its an older JVC, there isn't much difference to my eyes without an A/B comparison from the newer generations. With the Darbee, the picture is just as sharp. I do wish I had my DP LED projector now. Watched two of my best looking movies, Lone Survivor and Oblivion, and the HP screen material was never noticed. I robbed my eyes for 2 years using my Carada CW LOL
Until I can get a brighter projector I have to stick with the 2.4 HP. The only artifact that bothers me is when there is a bright scene with the sky in the background and the camera pans and I see vertical lines that you don't see with low gain screens. The brightness advantage still outweighs this artifact for me though. I will be either getting a Sony 4k this fall or if a brighter 4k JVC with improved ANSI contrast comes out then I will be shopping for a new low gain screen........probably ...hard to give up the HP.

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post #11103 of 11276 Old 05-09-2015, 02:44 PM
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[QUOTE=zombie10k;34100578... Professor Millerwill was a lone soldier in the VW1000 thread for years defending his decision to keep the HP. ... [/QUOTE]

Ho, ho! I suppose ignorance is bliss, as I'm not nearly as a sophisticated videophile as many of you here.

I recently had cataract surgery/lens replacement (with the fixed lens focused for distant vision) and the HP2.4 looks even more spectacular than ever (now without glasses!) I had a smaller HP2.8 earlier, but this material was not available when I decided to go larger several yrs ago. I think the 2.4 gives a smoother pic than the 2.8, though I liked the 2.8 just fine.

If I do later move out of my longtime home (45 yrs) into something smaller, I may go with the Stewart 1.0 screen that Mark Haflich raves about, but so long as I have the big screen (12x6 ft) the HP2.4 is the best for me. (My Sony 1100 is on a stand just above and behind my head, at the closest throw and set up for the pic to just clear my head.)
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post #11104 of 11276 Old 05-09-2015, 09:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post
I love my High Contrast High Power (grey base) 2.4 gain screen. I understand the point others make about "smoother" screens, though.
I can see my high power 2.8 gain screen. It does not totally disappear.

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post #11105 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 02:51 AM
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The brighter the projector, the worse off you are with seeing the screen texture.
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post #11106 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 06:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post
The brighter the projector, the worse off you are with seeing the screen texture.
True, but I have been able to see the screen with every projector (low lamp mode) I have used on it. Epson 400, Marantz VP12S4, Marantz VP15S1, JVC RS45, Sony HW55, Sony HW40, ViewSonic 8100, Planar PD7130 and a few others. Some of those projectors have pretty low lumen output in low lamp mode. The High Power throws a nice image, but the fabric does not disappear.

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post #11107 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 06:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post
True, but I have been able to see the screen with every projector (low lamp mode) I have used on it. Epson 400, Marantz VP12S4, Marantz VP15S1, JVC RS45, Sony HW55, Sony HW40, ViewSonic 8100, Planar PD7130 and a few others. Some of those projectors have pretty low lumen output in low lamp mode. The High Power throws a nice image, but the fabric does not disappear.
I'd make the argument that unless you go with something like ST100 material all screens will show themselves in one form or another. Even the popular ST130, FireHawk, CenterStage XD, Black Diamond, and other screens have visible features such as texture, hotspotting, moire and sparkle. It's just unfortunate that materials like the ST100 cost as much as they do.

With the High Power material you a gain substantial increase in brightness over these materials so despite some visual artifacts it's a trade off many are willing to make to get the benefits and I think this is why it's been such a popular material.
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post #11108 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 06:16 AM
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How does the Enlightor-4K material look? Does it give you a "looking through glass" transparent image?
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post #11109 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 07:03 AM
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I asked this in another thread, but it never got addressed:
Now that Da-Lite no longer makes the HP screen, what is there best and brightest material?
I want to go to a 2.39:1 scope Comopolitan Electrol. We have the controls and I like the Da-Lite electric screen design. I've waited for them to bring back the HP material, but it looks as if it's not going to happen...
Any thoughts on the best Da-Lite alternative?
Thanks
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post #11110 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 07:09 AM
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I think any screen with gain/above 1.0 will show some texture especially if you are sensitive to it like me.

I think the ST130 is about the same price as the ST100, but don't quote me.

I own the ST100 and compared it to a sample of the ST130. The difference between two in terms of texture is apparent, but the ST130 was not bad considering a 1.3 gain screen. The Carada Classic Cinema White which I also have a sample of is just about as clean from 9 to 10 feet back as the ST100, but is a step dimmer and just kind of duller (but great value for the price).

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post #11111 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 07:41 AM
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Some people are distracted by screen sparkles like the ST130 or most gain screen, texture, or dimmest of the screen. Everybody has a trade off with a screen. Everyone with an AT screen is supposed to be compomising picture quality for audio. There is no right screen anyways. Even the ST100 is limited by most due to size and cost. To be honest, I can't remember seeing any screen material on my Caradw CW in the last two years. Most will find a 120in 1.0 gain screen to dim but it worked for me. Now having my HP screen back up that's the same size, I can only see a punchier picture. At the moment, I will take the much brighter screen. It seem like it someone is not using a ST100, they are not getting the best image.
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post #11112 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 08:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by humbland View Post
I asked this in another thread, but it never got addressed:
Now that Da-Lite no longer makes the HP screen, what is there best and brightest material?
I want to go to a 2.39:1 scope Comopolitan Electrol. We have the controls and I like the Da-Lite electric screen design. I've waited for them to bring back the HP material, but it looks as if it's not going to happen...
Any thoughts on the best Da-Lite alternative?
Thanks
There is a current discussion on HP alternatives in the Screens forum:

Dalite Hi-power alternative?

Da-lite is still telling people that the material is still being reformulated, not discontinued but it's been a while since it's been available. Someone claims they ordered cut-to-fit from http://www.avoutlet.com so maybe they still have old stock.

I found my photos from years ago of the 2.8HP sample on a 1.0 gain screen. With the right room setup, the gain is dramatic and makes a big impact when watching 3D.






My 142" 16:9 Cinema Contour is the largest 2.8 that HP made because they were telling people that 133" was the limit for the 2.8 material when it was actually larger with no seams.

choose your battles when picking a screen, every single one has compromises in some regard. The HP is dead, long live the HP.
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post #11113 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombie10k View Post
There is a current discussion on HP alternatives in the Screens forum:

Dalite Hi-power alternative?

Da-lite is still telling people that the material is still being reformulated, not discontinued but it's been a while since it's been available. Someone claims they ordered cut-to-fit from http://www.avoutlet.com so maybe they still have old stock.

I found my photos from years ago of the 2.8HP sample on a 1.0 gain screen. With the right room setup, the gain is dramatic and makes a big impact when watching 3D.





My 142" 16:9 Cinema Contour is the largest 2.8 that HP made because they were telling people that 133" was the limit for the 2.8 material when it was actually larger with no seams.

choose your battles when picking a screen, every single one has compromises in some regard. The HP is dead, long live the HP.
Those pics really are 'worth a thousand words'!

The EluneVision PureBright 4K 240 screen material certainly sounds like the HP2.4; maybe some of you in the business know. ?
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post #11114 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 06:52 PM
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Bright does not always mean its better. In a completely dark bat cave room. Unity white or 1.1 is the best.
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post #11115 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post
I'd make the argument that unless you go with something like ST100 material all screens will show themselves in one form or another.
Yup.

In certain ways I should be in an almost ideal position to get the ST100 - a pure black pit for watching. But I would just have a hard time giving up that extra gain of my ST130, which really does make a difference, especially for when I want a larger image (not to mention watching 3D). Given it's a screen with gain, and how sensitive I am to screen artifacts, I'm amazed how little I'm aware of the ST-130 when watching. (Vs many other screen in which I see the screen texture omnipresent over everything).
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post #11116 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tanwn1 View Post
Bright does not always mean its better. In a completely dark bat cave room. Unity white or 1.1 is the best.
I appreciate your point. It depends on the size of the screen one has/wants. Below a certain level of brightness the pic just looks dull, no matter what else.

But how come is it that in comparing projectors, everyone is adamant about making sure that they are 'brightness matched''; it's because the brighter projector will always be perceived as 'better', more dynamic. If it's better, for whatever reason, isn't better 'better'?
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post #11117 of 11276 Old 05-10-2015, 10:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millerwill View Post
But how come is it that in comparing projectors, everyone is adamant about making sure that they are 'brightness matched''; it's because the brighter projector will always be perceived as 'better', more dynamic.
I would say it is because the human visual system is largely based on taking clues from things within the field of view or things it has just seen and the brighter projector will change how the dimmer images are perceived compared to how they will be perceived when viewed on their own.

Isn't how a projector will look when it is the only display being watched what we most care about, or is how it looks when there is another image next to it the answer we are really trying to get to?

I realize this is a complicated subject and basically a can of worms, but I'll stop there.

--Darin

This is the AV Science Forum. Please don't be gullible and please do remember the saying, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."
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post #11118 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 04:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millerwill View Post
I appreciate your point. It depends on the size of the screen one has/wants. Below a certain level of brightness the pic just looks dull, no matter what else.

But how come is it that in comparing projectors, everyone is adamant about making sure that they are 'brightness matched''; it's because the brighter projector will always be perceived as 'better', more dynamic. If it's better, for whatever reason, isn't better 'better'?
Because it all depends on what you're trying to compare, and why you're trying to do it. The biggest, or maybe simplest to understand, reason you want two projectors brightness matched is because as Darin says, our perception is all relative. Take white for example, what we perceive as "white" is absolutely relative. I'm looking at my LCD screen typing this in a white text box. It's white because it's the brightest thing in my current field of view. If I took this screen out in the sun, didn't change anything, that "white" would appear gray because there would be brighter things in my field of view.

If one projector is brighter than the other, than necessarily one will appear to be able to produce white, while the other won't. It's just a fact of how we perceive things.

If you don't brightness match the two projectors it will skew all sorts of things, relatively between the two, contrast perception, color perception, and of course the ability to produce white. So if you're comparing two projectors, especially if your goal is to do a writeup, to report to others, you have to brightness match them to accurately evaluate how they handle color, contrast, etc.

After that you throw brightness into the mix, because that is more of a "tool" than a measure of quality. What I mean is brightness isn't a quality in and of itself, and it's the one thing you have control over when you design a home theater system. You can use a screen with more gain, that's a smaller size, etc, to adjust for projector brightness. Or, if you've just got a big screen, you'll know you need a lot of brightness and to go with the brighter projector.

Lastly, if you're "just" comparing for yourself, in your own theater, of course you don't ignore brightness, nobody is say you should. I would recommend you brightness match first to get a sense of the relative attributes of both projectors, but of course, if in your theater you find brighter to be better, then absolutely consider that, you'd be silly not to.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #11119 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 05:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tanwn1 View Post
Bright does not always mean its better. In a completely dark bat cave room. Unity white or 1.1 is the best.

If you are a 3d fan, I would disagree with that statement. A 1.0 gain screen will be a HUGE compromise when watching 3d while I don't find hardly any compromise on the 2d front with my 2.8 HP vs my old ST130 screen. Not saying the HP is perfect since it's not, but as Zombie says, EVERY screen will be a compromise in one way or another.

JVC 3D: Been there, done that, bought a DLP
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post #11120 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post
How does the Enlightor-4K material look? Does it give you a "looking through glass" transparent image?
From 9' the screen does not totally disappear, but close.

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post #11121 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 07:24 AM
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Its hard to comprehend what you guys are talking about after owning a ST 100 for almost 3 years now. Can you really see screen fabric? Doesn't that spoil the illusion a bit?

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post #11122 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 07:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2 View Post
I would say it is because the human visual system is largely based on taking clues from things within the field of view or things it has just seen and the brighter projector will change how the dimmer images are perceived compared to how they will be perceived when viewed on their own.

Isn't how a projector will look when it is the only display being watched what we most care about, or is how it looks when there is another image next to it the answer we are really trying to get to?

I realize this is a complicated subject and basically a can of worms, but I'll stop there.

--Darin
Brightness matching and screens (my take):

You brightness match two very good projectors compare them. Of the two projectors, projector B appears overall better to your eye -- a little better contrast, colour, and so on. So you decide to purchase projector B. A few weeks latter you visit a friend's place and he has projector A and you watch a movie and conclude that you actually like projector A better than projector B, which you now own. You now conclude that the extra brightness of projector A makes all the difference to you -- it overcomes the slightly better contrast, etc. of projector B and opens up the image and makes for a better viewing experience. Now you think, "why oh why did I handicap projector A when I compared the two". No matter what you do you can't increase the lumens of projector B (it is what it is) -- but wait, you go to the AVS forum and find a used HP 2.8 gain screen and buy it. Now projector B produces a brighter image than projector A and you can even watch some 3D. Your friend with projector A sees your image and is now trying to figure out how he can obtain the image you now have!

The above pretty much sums up my feelings about brightness matching and screens.
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post #11123 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombie10k View Post
There is a current discussion on HP alternatives in the Screens forum:

Dalite Hi-power alternative?

Da-lite is still telling people that the material is still being reformulated, not discontinued but it's been a while since it's been available. Someone claims they ordered cut-to-fit from http://www.avoutlet.com so maybe they still have old stock.

I found my photos from years ago of the 2.8HP sample on a 1.0 gain screen. With the right room setup, the gain is dramatic and makes a big impact when watching 3D.






My 142" 16:9 Cinema Contour is the largest 2.8 that HP made because they were telling people that 133" was the limit for the 2.8 material when it was actually larger with no seams.

choose your battles when picking a screen, every single one has compromises in some regard. The HP is dead, long live the HP.


Wow, was the image behind how bring you were previously watching movies? That seems incredibly dim to me....

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post #11124 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 07:42 AM
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Wow, was the image behind how bring you were previously watching movies? That seems incredibly dim to me....
Those pictures were posted a LONG time ago in an age when home theater projectors were no where near as bright as they are today. Back then a lot of people were using high gain screens so they could go with larger screens.
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post #11125 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 08:22 AM
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Its hard to comprehend what you guys are talking about after owning a ST 100 for almost 3 years now. Can you really see screen fabric? Doesn't that spoil the illusion a bit?
You can't really see the fabric, but in scenes with white snow or white clouds and a slow pan, you can tell there is a screen.
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post #11126 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 08:36 AM
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Lots of new features in the latest release of MadVR:

Interesting that Madshi says that a 10 bit output to his JVC projector looks bad. The JVCs are end to end 10 bit with full 10-bit capability at the LCOS panel.

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post #11127 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 08:40 AM
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Brightness matching and screens (my take):

You brightness match two very good projectors compare them. Of the two projectors, projector B appears overall better to your eye -- a little better contrast, colour, and so on. So you decide to purchase projector B. A few weeks latter you visit a friend's place and he has projector A and you watch a movie and conclude that you actually like projector A better than projector B, which you now own. You now conclude that the extra brightness of projector A makes all the difference to you -- it overcomes the slightly better contrast, etc. of projector B and opens up the image and makes for a better viewing experience. Now you think, "why oh why did I handicap projector A when I compared the two". No matter what you do you can't increase the lumens of projector B (it is what it is) -- but wait, you go to the AVS forum and find a used HP 2.8 gain screen and buy it. Now projector B produces a brighter image than projector A and you can even watch some 3D. Your friend with projector A sees your image and is now trying to figure out how he can obtain the image you now have!

The above pretty much sums up my feelings about brightness matching and screens.
I agree with you to a point here. You should only be brightness matching two projectors to compare them to each other directly. If you are comparing them to figure out which one you actually want to own you should be doing this at the desired fL that you plan on running them (this will quickly tell you which can or can't work) preferably on a screen with the gain you plan on using. One should always take into account the screen, room and capabilities of the projector they are considering when making decisions on what they are buying. Simply A/B'ing the projectors doesn't always tell you everything unless you've eliminated all the other variables.

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post #11128 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 08:47 AM
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Wow, was the image behind how bring you were previously watching movies? That seems incredibly dim to me....
But it probably only comes off as dim because of the obvious difference to the HP screen sample section. I remember when most people thought 8 to 10 fL looked great. In the right room with nothing else to compare to directly it probably does.
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post #11129 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 09:40 AM
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Because it all depends on what you're trying to compare, and why you're trying to do it. The biggest, or maybe simplest to understand, reason you want two projectors brightness matched is because as Darin says, our perception is all relative. Take white for example, what we perceive as "white" is absolutely relative. I'm looking at my LCD screen typing this in a white text box. It's white because it's the brightest thing in my current field of view. If I took this screen out in the sun, didn't change anything, that "white" would appear gray because there would be brighter things in my field of view.

If one projector is brighter than the other, than necessarily one will appear to be able to produce white, while the other won't. It's just a fact of how we perceive things.

If you don't brightness match the two projectors it will skew all sorts of things, relatively between the two, contrast perception, color perception, and of course the ability to produce white. So if you're comparing two projectors, especially if your goal is to do a writeup, to report to others, you have to brightness match them to accurately evaluate how they handle color, contrast, etc.

After that you throw brightness into the mix, because that is more of a "tool" than a measure of quality. What I mean is brightness isn't a quality in and of itself, and it's the one thing you have control over when you design a home theater system. You can use a screen with more gain, that's a smaller size, etc, to adjust for projector brightness. Or, if you've just got a big screen, you'll know you need a lot of brightness and to go with the brighter projector.

Lastly, if you're "just" comparing for yourself, in your own theater, of course you don't ignore brightness, nobody is say you should. I would recommend you brightness match first to get a sense of the relative attributes of both projectors, but of course, if in your theater you find brighter to be better, then absolutely consider that, you'd be silly not to.
Very well put, and I obviously agree with your main point (and others made above). I.e., to compare contrast, color, and other pic quality attributes, brightness matching is the intelligent thing to do (to study one attribute at a time in this many-dimensional space). And then after that the question of brightness can be added to the overall evaluation depending on one's own room, screen, and preference (or not) for the 'giant plasma' picture.
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post #11130 of 11276 Old 05-11-2015, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Deja Vu View Post
Brightness matching and screens (my take):

You brightness match two very good projectors compare them. Of the two projectors, projector B appears overall better to your eye -- a little better contrast, colour, and so on. So you decide to purchase projector B. A few weeks latter you visit a friend's place and he has projector A and you watch a movie and conclude that you actually like projector A better than projector B, which you now own. You now conclude that the extra brightness of projector A makes all the difference to you -- it overcomes the slightly better contrast, etc. of projector B and opens up the image and makes for a better viewing experience. Now you think, "why oh why did I handicap projector A when I compared the two". No matter what you do you can't increase the lumens of projector B (it is what it is) -- but wait, you go to the AVS forum and find a used HP 2.8 gain screen and buy it. Now projector B produces a brighter image than projector A and you can even watch some 3D. Your friend with projector A sees your image and is now trying to figure out how he can obtain the image you now have!
Firstly, I don't know how a weeks later you'd have any clue if your friends projector, on a different screen, in a different theater is brighter/dimmer/whatever than yours. But regardless, I haven't seen anyone, ever say discount the brightness advantage, I think the "anti-brightness-matching" crowd is missunderstanding the intent and use-case for brightness matching. You don't "handicap" the brighter projector, you eliminate variables that contaminate the results. Consider this alternative scenario:

Say you're looking at two projectors, one is 50% brighter with 30% better contrast. Well if you don't brightness match you'll see that the dimmer projector has a better black level. Say the dimmer projector has "enough" brightness for your screen size/environment, so you pick that, for the better black level. Then you see the brighter projector dimmed down to your desired level end realize you were wrong, that it actually has a better black level (more contrast) than the one you bought. If you'd brightness matched them in the first place, you'd realize the brighter projector had significantly better contrast, and probably would have picked that.

You have to do both, you have to look at both brightness matched to understand how they handle color, contrast, grayscale, etc. But you also have to figure in brightness as well.

But maybe here's the biggest reason. If I'm reading someone's report on seeing two projectors and they weren't brightness matched, I have to throw out almost the entire review because I don't know what differences were due to the extra brightness (if seen in isolation are the colors actually better, or is it just an illusion due to brightness difference).

It's easy to adjust your expectations for brightness based on a brightness matched review, but you really can't do the reverse. What I'm saying is if you look at a brightness matched comparison that says projector x has better contrast

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Wow, was the image behind how bring you were previously watching movies? That seems incredibly dim to me....
This is a prime example of why you should brightness match. Yeah, that other screen looks dull, but that may only be because of the relative difference between the two. I bet that other screen looks great if you don't have the HP skewing your perception.

Again, I'm not, and I don't think anyone is saying to ignore brightness differences, but brightness differences skew perception of every other image attribute, so if you don't brightness match, the conclusions you draw for every other attribute, sharpness, contrast, colors, etc, are all suspect and can't be trusted.

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