My JVC DLA-X55R (RS4810) Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 08:49 PM - Thread Starter
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I know this is long and for those TL;DR members I apologize, but I feel the explanation needs to be lengthy:

I received my refurbished X55R last night. I just want to say that I am extremely impressed. I spent about 6 hours last night viewing a wide variety of mixed content with it. This will be my 5th JVC projector that I've owned. In chronological order it has been a RS10, RS20, X3, X30, and now this X55R. Each one has had its own subtle picture quality increase over the previous model. I just sold my Planar PD8150 DLP projector which I have lauded as my favorite overall projector out of the 25 I've owned for quite some time now. Out of all 5 JVC projectors the two favorites that I've had are the X3 and now this X55R. The key reasons behind this are because both of them have had perfect convergence without the need to use the convergence shifting software and both had a fantastic lens sample. Pixel delineation/focus is simply astonishing for a 3 chip solution at this price point. If you get lucky enough and get a JVC unit with a good lens sample and great convergence it will be a definite step up in perceived sharpness (and pixel sharpness) over any .65" DMD DLP projector and as sharp as most .95" DMD projectors with the exception of a few key projectors from Runco, Marantz, and Samsung. In the under $10000 market you'd be hard pressed to find a noticeably sharper image. With video content the .95" DMD models from the companies I've mentioned will only look slightly sharper in appearance with actual content. I feel lucky that my unit is so well converged but have seen other JVC units that didn't fare so well and in comparison looks much softer overall. YMMV and keep that in mind with this review as this is one of main reasons I think this specific unit compares so well to the PD8150.

What I find funny (and most likely more of a coincidence) is that the X3 and X55R were both refurbished units. Oddly enough the other three that were "A-Stock" non-refurbished units had softer lens samples and less than ideal convergence. Let's chalk this up to coincidence, but with that said, for anyone worried about buying a refurbished unit from JVC you really shouldn't as I find JVC to be particularly good when it comes to QC during their refurbishment process. I'm a huge advocate for those interested in buying a refurbished/b-stock JVC.

Now I still feel there are a few key advantages the PD8150 has over this X55R. Like I said before, each generation has brought a small refinement to the image over the previous generation so these advantages are fairly small and would only be seen with a direct side-by-side comparison or those with enough experience with a good DLP projector to know from memory. Many argue ANSI contrast is a trivial thing and shouldn't be taken seriously when comparing two projectors. I call BS on this because brighter scenes definitely do look more "3D" and dimensional on a projector that has a substantially higher ANSI contrast ratio. This is the case when comparing to the PD8150 or one of the Marantz models or even the Sharp Z20K. Without that side by side comparison the X55R still looks amazing with brighter content by itself, but from memory I've definitely seen better. Whether that matters to you is subjective as most people who buy these projectors are buying it for opposite reason; low APL performance. There is absolutely no substitute for great native on/off contrast performance and these JVCs have that quality in spades. This reason alone is what intrigues me about the JVC as it does to many. As much as I love the great DI performance on the PD8150, clipped whites during particularly low APL scenes stick out like a sore thumb and look rather odd in comparison to it's almost always natural looking picture. Not having spent a lot of time with one of Sony's newer SXRD machines I'm wondering if during low APL scenes where the DI is used to the fullest they also suffer from clipped whites to compensate for such a decrease in brightness?

Motion handling on the RS20 was the main reason I decided to sell it and give the PD8150 a chance. I guess the technical term for what I saw with the RS20 is called "motion induced contouring". This issue gave the image a blurry look with certain types of motion. To me, this artifact was over the top with the RS20 and other models previous to the RS35. JVC has made some large strides to reduce this as much as possible and while motion handling isn't perfect I think that, for 24p content at least, the performance is adequate enough to not be annoying like it was on the RS20. I've heard reports the e-shift processing, and I think more importantly, flashing the image twice as fast with eshift enabled increases perceived motion handling performance. I have not spent a lot of time with eshift yet and saw no obvious motion handling improvements with it enabled. That isn't to say there aren't any improvements, as this is something that only time will tell me if there is. While we're on the topic of eshift, I think Kris Deering's review of the X55R is spot on in regards to eshift. Like him, I don't really notice a whole lot of refinement to the image with it enabled. I do have a fairly small screen (by todays standard) at 80" wide. Maybe the effect is more pronounced as you increase picture size? If you like the lack of pixel structure it definitely gets rid of it without adding any noticeable artifacts to the image. Though, like with motion handling, this will be one of those things that will be revealed to me as I spend more time with it enabled.

There is one issue that I keep seeing pop up with these new generation JVCs (RS40 and newer). There is a fair amount of image noise present in the picture. If I go up to my screen there is a fair amount of "dancing" noise. This noise is sometimes visible during real world content. I'll have to take a video and try and capture what I'm seeing. This was there with the X3, X30 and now the X55R. This is something that is not there with the PD8150, Marantz or Sharp projectors. They offer a much cleaner stable" looking picture because of it. I'm assuming the noise is being created by the image processing going on inside the projector. The noise was there with sharpness set to 0, CMD off, and all other image processing features turned to off or 0. It's something that is just there and doesn't seem to be defeatable. This one should be an easy fix whenever JVC decides to do a full overhaul on the projectors design which I'm assuming will wait until they release a true 4K model.

To sum this up I have to say that the overall package you get at the price they're asking for is quite staggering. While I think JVC can improve a few areas by designing a better (read more expensive) light path/optics it would be hard to do this without their products going up in price by a large amount which I'm sure is the opposite of what they're looking to do. I think their upcoming UHD model would be a perfect time to do this though. By making their D-ILA panel slightly thinner they could increase motion handling performance to an ever better level. While this would lower the potential on/off contrast of the panel they could design an even more efficient wire grid polarizer and light path to compensate. Better motion handling would also make 3D performance much better with less ghosting and reduce other artifacts like flicker. The lens, while great already, could use an upgrade which would hopefully raise ANSI contrast. If they were to hit somewhere around 500:1 I think most people, including me, would be extremely happy with this kind of a performance upgrade. I think these three improvements alone would all but kill DLP as a viable reference solution for front projection and shut up people like me, who still fight for DLP because of these advantages, for good. For now, I think I'll stick with this projector as I see no immediate reason to switch back to a DLP projector like the PD8150. Are there differences? Sure, but my specific X55R brings the performance so close that I don't think I'll be missing those slight advantages enough to push me back to the DLP side. This is something only time will tell. For now, I'll be happy being addicted to the drug known as high native contrast!

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post #2 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

Pixel delineation/focus is simply astonishing for a 3 chip solution at this price point. If you get lucky enough and get a JVC unit with a good lens sample and great convergence it will be a definite step up in perceived sharpness (and pixel sharpness) over any .65" DMD DLP projector and as sharp as most .95" DMD projectors with the exception of a few key projectors from Runco, Marantz, and Samsung.

See it's all about the convergence, one thing I would note though is blue doesn't matter much, mainly it is RED. Also convergence drifts according to room temp and how much lens shift you use. People thought I was crazy when I said my JVC (in the right room temp) is as sharp as the w7000, but not crazy, just fact.

Though I wouldn't say a JVC is sharper than a w7000, so there are still some projectors (at least one .65" DLP) that is as sharp as a JVC.
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Many argue ANSI contrast is a trivial thing and shouldn't be taken seriously when comparing two projectors. I call BS on this because brighter scenes definitely do look more "3D" and dimensional on a projector that has a substantially higher ANSI contrast ratio. This is the case when comparing to the PD8150 or one of the Marantz models or even the Sharp Z20K. Without that side by side comparison the X55R still looks amazing with brighter content by itself, but from memory I've definitely seen better.

Most of us never argued that it couldn't matter, our argument always was that the measured numbers are always wrong, and so measuring it is nearly pointless, and I stand by that argument. i also think it is a tad presumptuous to assume a perceived increase in the picture is always a direct result of ANSI contrast, there are so many variables at work.

You are still quoting randomly measured ANSI numbers, and I continue nothing that they are NOT accurate measurements (have you read the different ANSI of each projector from 10+ sources, they won't even be close to the same). There are VERY VERY VERY VERY few people that have the correct setup and equipment to do ANSI measurements. It requires VERY expensive equipment and a very special technique.

BTW, doubtful Runco is only 600:1 ANSI, it is more like over 1000:1 if measured correctly. If you really want to see the different results of contrast, watch the universe series. Maybe quit A/B'n stuff with gamma bias, you cannot really precisely judge differences in ANSI and On/Off contrast on ANYTHING but rendered content, I don't care what kind of superman perception you have (heh sorry have to stress this).



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post #3 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:07 PM - Thread Starter
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When I look at ANSI contrast numbers I almost always look at hometheater (now soundandvision) reviews. This way I'm staying consistent with room conditions and measuring methods being used. I think this is the only way to judge comparatively between two models. If the person doing the measurement of both projectors is doing it under the same conditions and with the same meter at the same distance ect, even if the numbers are not correct the difference between the two should be a good indicator as to the percent in performance difference. Does that make sense? But I agree, most of the ANSI contrast measurements are completely off. Either way, my eyes tell me there is a big difference and I think most people will agree. smile.gif

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post #4 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:10 PM
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ANSI measurements come out inherently non-linear due to meter errors and light bleed. I posted a PDF which I wish I would have saved by an absolute expert at taking measurements, who had examined about 5 different ways of doing ANSI measurements. Heck if I remember where that PDF is now, but sure would like to find it to post it again.

Next time you see the Planar 8130 or LS-3 for sale under $1000, PM me (oh nm you will have already bought it to resale :P)
I heard Zombie picked one up under $1000,that is ridiculous (unless I heard wrong).

I mean for under $1000, their is nothing even close to an LS-3 in performance. Like I said, I liked the LS-5, but not for $4,500. Also, I didn't get to do "The Universe" series test on it myself, until I see it for myself on this specific test, I won't believe this SUPER ANSI difference. I didn't notice it in Falling Skies, but that show doesn't need ANSI contrast, needs On/Off mainly.



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post #5 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:25 PM
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So you like a JVC and I like the Planar 8130. The HT universe in once again in balance. cool.gif

With the low APL content the JVC looks great but there are a number of mixed scenes in Oblivion that looked like it had more depth on the Planar vs. the JVC. My recently room treatments are making these differences more noticeable.

coder - what part of the universe series are you referring to?


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post #6 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:28 PM
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I'm planning to buy a X55R and I would like to know if the x55r has a good vertical and horizontal lens shift. My room shape is not perfect so that is a deal breaker for me. Also what mount are you using? and if you have time can you measure the size from the ceiling to the middle of the lens and from the ceiling to the bottom of the projector. Where I'm putting the projector is going to be a low ceiling, so I will like to know the head room. Thanks
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post #7 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

If the person doing the measurement of both projector is doing it under the same conditions and with the same meter at the same distance ect, even if the numbers are not correct the difference between the two should be a good indicator as to the percent in performance difference. Does that make sense?

Here is what I remember from reading about how to take ANSI measurements the right way. I do not believe anyone is taking the ANSI measurements correctly, because it is virtually impossible to do so (see below to see what is really involved)... I think Zombie could probably do it since he owns the projectors.

1) It depends on the technique, the projectors have to be measured one after another with the tripod never having been moved at all, and both projectors must be measured at min and max throw as a minimum. This is the first mistake by 99% of reviewers. The only way to try to fix the tripod issue is to use an angular level laser that can show the angle of the tripod in all directions or to use a tripod that has this built in, so that you can reproduce the exact same angle to the screen. However, I have heard that most tripods are not accurate enough to give this info correctly, so this is probably easier (I've only owned cheap tripods, so no idea really).
http://www.amazon.com/Bosch-GPL3-3-Point-Alignment-Self-Leveling/dp/B001U89QDI/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1380169901&sr=8-14&keywords=laser+level
(This still is not likely to be as good as leaving the tripod and meter alone. )

2) You need multiple measurements just to get some of the horrendous errors out that will occur because of the size of the pattern. The projectors should FIRST be measured near the same fL for the BLACK LEVEL (2nd mistake made by 99% of reviewers) and both should be at least somewhat calibrated (doesn't have to be absolutely perfect). Having the black level at the same fL is a big problem, if not the same fL, then you need to move the projector much closer until it is very close to the same. Take the black level reading AMP'd up so to speak when needed. Do not take the reading with both projectors at the same WHITE Level fL until you ALSO measure them at the same Black Level fL (big mistake commited by nearly ever reviewer). Now you can measure them at near the same white level fL, and check the black level readings. You compare the difference in readings of each projector to itself (at closest to farthest, at the lowest white peak reading to brightest, at the lowest black peak reading to brightest). You can next create a differential error with these multiple measurements based on how much light bleeds at different black vs white peaks. Last but not least, you can now measure them at the same throw disregarding the difference between their white and black peaks (both with the checkerboard and without), use the differential error to compute the real ANSI contrast.

3) A more accurate method is by creating a specifically shaped angular tube that has a heavy black filter in it, and then placing using a printer to cut an exact grid pattern which matches the ANSI squares on the screen. Cut the light absorbing material into the checkerboard pattern, and place in front of the lens the correct distance to block the white squares. Now take the black reading through the black tube. Remove it so the white squares are visible on the screen again, then take the black reading again (how far is it off). Now taking the white reading is relatively simple, the black reading is the problem with ANSI contrast measurements.

The above steps are to ensure that you can actually even take the reading correctly in your environment. I probably did not explain it that well since I didn't feel like editing this 100x, because it is pretty confusing how to do it. Once you do enough averaging and measuring, you can eventually be certain you are getting correct results within the meter's measurement error and the light bleed symptoms.

Contrast perception isn't linear and either is the ANSI error of meters. Meters have different errors at different light spectrums as well (the meter is tuned to like 2800k I think), the cheaper ones (sub $500) can easily produce crazy off results. I have tried it a few times using a very expensive Sekonic light meter, it is very difficult to get repeatable results even if you just angle the thing a bit differently.



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post #8 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by zombie10k View Post

So you like a JVC and I like the Planar 8130. The HT universe in once again in balance. cool.gif

I'm waiting to see your avatar be the PD8130. I see you've went with the middle ground and chose a different DLP. tongue.gif

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post #9 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 09:42 PM
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If you get lucky enough and get a JVC unit with a good lens sample and great convergence it will be a definite step up in perceived sharpness

I don't believe I've ever seen lens variability mentioned as a significant factor.

In any case, seems to me the only way to separate it from misconvergence is if you see blurry white lines; I don't see how you could distinguish between misconvergence and chromatic aberration.
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Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

Many argue ANSI contrast is a trivial thing and shouldn't be taken seriously when comparing two projectors. I call BS on this because brighter scenes definitely do look more "3D" and dimensional on a projector that has a substantially higher ANSI contrast ratio.

It's been awhile and this may have been taken care of on more recent models, but I read more than once where optimizing gamma (increasing IIRC) gave bright scenes more pop and depth and took a big step toward closing that gap with DLP.
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Not having spent a lot of time with one of Sony's newer SXRD machines I'm wondering if during low APL scenes where the DI is used to the fullest they also suffer from clipped whites to compensate for such a decrease in brightness?

There's no way around that unless the whites in the scene are significantly below 100 IRE.


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By making their D-ILA panel slightly thinner they could increase motion handling performance to an ever better level. While this would lower the potential on/off contrast of the panel they could design an even more efficient wire grid polarizer and light path to compensate.

Noah
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post #10 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 10:00 PM
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I'm waiting to see your avatar be the PD8130. I see you've went with the middle ground and chose a different DLP. tongue.gif

I'm going to have bad dreams and nightmares about all those ANSI contrast threads and PDF's I read as now it is coming back to me, man that was true boredom. I think one of the PDF's was pretty entertaining though, because the guy had created all these different shapes and showed how even the shape of a screen can change the measurement.



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post #11 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 10:04 PM - Thread Starter
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I don't believe I've ever seen lens variability mentioned as a significant factor.


You would think that but the X30 I had was fantastic with convergence and there was very little CA, but pixel focus was nowhere near as tight. This created a much softer looking image by comparison. My RS20 was similar, but that was using a much older design and I think most units performed like that.

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post #12 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 10:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by amb1s1 View Post

I'm planning to buy a X55R and I would like to know if the x55r has a good vertical and horizontal lens shift. My room shape is not perfect so that is a deal breaker for me. Also what mount are you using? and if you have time can you measure the size from the ceiling to the middle of the lens and from the ceiling to the bottom of the projector. Where I'm putting the projector is going to be a low ceiling, so I will like to know the head room. Thanks

The user manual has all that information. Try and find a PDF of it online. I have a retroreflective screen so the projector is shelf mounted. Chief makes a ceiling mount for these units, though.

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post #13 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 10:18 PM
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There's no way around that unless the whites in the scene are significantly below 100 IRE.

Exactly, that is when the dynamic gamma boost kicks in to increase the white levels to match their previous state before the IRIS closed in...
Cannot do it when it is already near white peak simply because gamma cannot be raised up over the peak.



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post #14 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 10:26 PM
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coder - what part of the universe series are you referring to?

It's been a while since I've had this disk out, probably over a year. I have seasons 1-3 on Bluray. I think it was the first season, maybe even the Sun on the first episode, but I don't recall unless I checked it again. But you would know when you see them.

Generally, it is the CG stuff of burning stars and planets with pure 0 black rendered in the background that slowly pan into VIEW. This is where you can literally see where ANSI takes over and Native On/Off dies. The panning of the CG of like a SUN (very close to 100 IRE) against a pure black rendered background (very close to 0) is the key. There is very little range in these shots, they are almost all rendered at or near maximum white peak and black floor levels for their respective colors. That is why it works (because it pans into the max)...

I could make up my own test simply by panning different white squares across the screen on the PC in an animated fashion, but I have better things to do (well not really, but you know what I mean).

I use a completely weird gamma curve on my JVC (would have to measure it again to see what it looked like), but it is a modified Gamma Curve based on the GAMMA D PRESET, this produces the highest intrascene contrast. You have to fix the D-Gamma manually though. This helps the perceived contrast tremendously on my JVC (at least on my RS-45, cannot speak to every JVC).



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post #15 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

As much as I love the great DI performance on the PD8150, clipped whites during particularly low APL scenes stick out like a sore thumb and look rather odd in comparison to it's almost always natural looking picture. Not having spent a lot of time with one of Sony's newer SXRD machines I'm wondering if during low APL scenes where the DI is used to the fullest they also suffer from clipped whites to compensate for such a decrease in brightness?
Just a side note: white clipping should not occur with a proper DI implementation, as on the Planars/Runcos or Sonys. I've seen the term "brightness compression" used to describe the relative lowering of brightness that occurs as a DI closes down, which I think is more correct and probably what you mean to say.
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post #16 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

Now I still feel there are a few key advantages the PD8150 has over this X55R. Like I said before, each generation has brought a small refinement to the image over the previous generation so these advantages are fairly small and would only be seen with a direct side-by-side comparison or those with enough experience with a good DLP projector to know from memory. Many argue ANSI contrast is a trivial thing and shouldn't be taken seriously when comparing two projectors. I call BS on this because brighter scenes definitely do look more "3D" and dimensional on a projector that has a substantially higher ANSI contrast ratio. This is the case when comparing to the PD8150 or one of the Marantz models or even the Sharp Z20K. Without that side by side comparison the X55R still looks amazing with brighter content by itself, but from memory I've definitely seen better.
i thought your room wouldn't allow much ANSI CR off the screen anyway, so if projector ANSI is the difference how would that really show up in your room?

Have you tried the JVC with sharpness at say 10 or 20? That shouldn't affect ANSI CR, so I wonder if it would affect what you are perceiving as better ANSI CR.
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Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

As much as I love the great DI performance on the PD8150, clipped whites during particularly low APL scenes stick out like a sore thumb and look rather odd in comparison to it's almost always natural looking picture. Not having spent a lot of time with one of Sony's newer SXRD machines I'm wondering if during low APL scenes where the DI is used to the fullest they also suffer from clipped whites to compensate for such a decrease in brightness?
My perception/experience/speculation is that Sony's first implementation did have near white compression, Greg Rogers pointed it out (along with scenes to look for it) in a review, Sony decided that wasn't a good thing and so they decided to not get as much advantage from their DI, but instead reduce the near white compression. I say not as much advantage because the theory behind a DI is not just to reduce the absolute black level, but to increase the contrast ratio between say 5% video level and black. You don't have to though. You can just let 5% video level pixels dim down as the iris closes. Few people will notice, your measured numbers look good, and there is less near white compression, which more people will notice.

I don't have actual measurements from the last Sony I had, but from memory Sony did not fully compensate as the iris closed. I believe the Planar did, which meant a 3x reduction in black from the iris was also a 3x increase in the CR between 5% video level and black. It also would crush whites in some scenes though. I recall it being especially bad in the Underworld release from a few years ago (maybe the third movie).

The 2nd version of the Spears & Munsil disk has a 4x4 checkerboard where the brightest rectangles are 5% video level instead if 100% video level. It would be interesting to try that on a Sony and see how the ft-lamberts for some 5% rectangles would vary between DI enabled and disabled.

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post #17 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Noah View Post

Just a side note: white clipping should not occur with a proper DI implementation, as on the Planars/Runcos or Sonys. I've seen the term "brightness compression" used to describe the relative lowering of brightness that occurs as a DI closes down, which I think is more correct and probably what you mean to say.
DI implementations are about trade offs and with the Planar implementation the compression was to the point where the bright pixels were the same value. Or the clipping described. I think of compression as reducing the CRs between levels, not making the CRs 1:1 (which it is when those input levels have the same output).

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I don't know how Sony does it, but there was a great write up about how TI's Dynamic Black works in the PD8150 review in WideScreen Review magazine:
Quote:
DynamicBlack™ is Texas Instruments’ trademark for a dynamic iris system. The Planar version utilizes custom-tuned algorithms and
proprietary hardware to minimize image artifacts. The PD8150 dynamic iris is in the light path before the DMD™ (Digital Micromirror Device). When DynamicBlack is disabled the iris aperture is fully open, which maximizes the projector’s brightness but minimizes its full-field contrast ratio. When DynamicBlack is enabled the iris aperture size is changed dynamically, depending on image content, to improve the black level and the contrast ratio. I will try to briefly explain how that works.

The smaller an iris aperture the less light it passes, which reduces the overall image brightness and the stray light emitted from the lens when the projector tries to produce black. The black level is proportionally reduced more than the maximum image brightness, so the full-field contrast ratio increases as the aperture size is reduced. A fixed iris projector requires a small iris aperture to produce a high full-field contrast ratio, but that also greatly reduces its brightness. In a dynamic iris projector, the aperture size is increased for bright images to produce higher brightness, and reduced in dark images to lower the black level.

The projector must produce the intended image brightness even as the iris aperture size changes. Conceptually, the PD8150 identifies the peak signal level in each image frame and then amplifies all the signal levels in that frame so that the peak level drives the DMD to produce maximum brightness. Simultaneously, the iris aperture is reduced so the image brightness is restored to the same brightness it would have been with the dynamic iris disabled.

For example, if the peak signal levels driving the DMD are 50 percent of the maximum signal levels, all of the signal levels in the frame are multiplied by a factor of 2. Then the iris aperture is reduced to produce only half of the full aperture brightness. Hence, the intended brightness of the image is produced even though the iris aperture is reduced. But most importantly, the smaller aperture also reduces the black level, so the contrast ratio increases between all of the illuminated pixels in the image and the lowered black level. The darker the peak level in each frame, the more the aperture size is reduced and the lower the black level becomes. In the PD8150, the iris aperture can be reduced to improve the black level by a factor of about 3.5.

As you might expect, the PD8150 dynamic iris process is actually more complex than the simplified explanation given above. A peak level must occupy a sufficient number of pixels before it is used as the control level, otherwise, small bright pinpoints of light in a star field would elevate the black level. As a consequence, small bright features can be clipped if a signal level below the absolute peak level is used as the control level. However, it is difficult to visually detect such clipping when it is confined to small image features. The process is also not always instantaneous from frame to frame to help mask “black-level pumping,” which could result if peak brightness levels suddenly change within a predominantly dark scene.

Another interesting characteristic is that the dynamic iris is reduced slightly more than would be necessary to restore the original intended image brightness. If the original image is near maximum brightness, the full image brightness is retained. But as the original image brightness decreases, the dynamic iris image brightness gradually decreases to around 70 percent of the original brightness for the darkest images. It appears the dynamic iris aperture is reduced “a little extra” in darker images to further improve the black level. Although the intra-image gamma is not changed (the PD8150 does not dynamically change gamma), darker frames are slightly darker than they would have been without the dynamic iris. This effectively allows a lower gamma to be used, which improves the shadow detail in dark scenes, without dark scenes appearing too bright.

The most significant difference between the PD8150 DynamicBlack and some other dynamic iris implementations is that the PD8150 doesn’t use dynamic gamma. Dynamic gamma can cause brightness compression, where the distinction between the brighter details in some images becomes less visible. That compression artifact does not occur in the PD8150, but as a tradeoff the PD8150 is less aggressive at reducing the black level and improving the contrast in moderately dark or dark scenes that have significant bright areas.

As you can see, the way dynamic black works there can be clipped whites as brighter levels in the image are boosted so they won't appear dim as the iris closes.

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post #19 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2 View Post

i thought your room wouldn't allow much ANSI CR off the screen anyway, so if projector ANSI is the difference how would that really show up in your room?

Have you tried the JVC with sharpness at say 10 or 20? That shouldn't affect ANSI CR, so I wonder if it would affect what you are perceiving as better ANSI CR.
My perception/experience/speculation is that Sony's first implementation did have near white compression, Greg Rogers pointed it out (along with scenes to look for it) in a review, Sony decided that wasn't a good thing and so they decided to not get as much advantage from their DI, but instead reduce the near white compression. I say not as much advantage because the theory behind a DI is not just to reduce the absolute black level, but to increase the contrast ratio between say 5% video level and black. You don't have to though. You can just let 5% video level pixels dim down as the iris closes. Few people will notice, your measured numbers look good, and there is less near white compression, which more people will notice.

I don't have actual measurements from the last Sony I had, but from memory Sony did not fully compensate as the iris closed. I believe the Planar did, which meant a 3x reduction in black from the iris was also a 3x increase in the CR between 5% video level and black. It also would crush whites in some scenes though. I recall it being especially bad in the Underworld release from a few years ago (maybe the third movie).

The 2nd version of the Spears & Munsil disk has a 4x4 checkerboard where the brightest rectangles are 5% video level instead if 100% video level. It would be interesting to try that on a Sony and see how the ft-lamberts for some 5% rectangles would vary between DI enabled and disabled.

--Darin

Even in my less than ideal room the differences in ANSI contrast can be seen, but obviously no where near their full potential respectively. Before I moved I was able to compare the X30 and X3 to the PD8150 side by side in my light controlled surfaced dampened room. The differences were clear. Don't get me wrong the JVCs still looked fantastic, but fell behind with real world brighter material in comparison.

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post #20 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coderguy View Post

There are VERY VERY VERY VERY few people that have the correct setup and equipment to do ANSI measurements. It requires VERY expensive equipment and a very special technique.
I'm not sure it takes very expensive equipment to get numbers that are reasonably close for projector ANSI CR for a specific lens position (and you can just repeat the procedure for other lens positions if you want).

Here are some things that can be done:

- Buy a black sheet, cut a hole in it and put the hole over the center of one of the rectangles in the ANSI CR checkerboard, with the rest of the sheet covering the rest of the screen. Might have to buy 2 sheets if one isn't big enough. Keep moving the hole over each rectangle and measure the center of each.
- Cover the screen completely with a black sheet or black velvet to reduce room reflections. Use an illuminance meter to measure the light on the way to the screen, wearing black or covering the meter or tripod with black material if you need to.
- Buy a black piece of cardboard maybe 2'x3'. Put a hole in it a little off center that is maybe .75"x1". Cover with black velvet, leaving the hole for light to go through. Put this in front of the projector with the center of one rectangle in the checkerboard going through and all other projected light hitting he black velvet. Have somebody measure off the screen or measure the light on the way to the screen. Repeat for the other 15 rectangles and then the 16 for The inverted checkerboard if you want to go that far.

Or do the above but just measure the 4 center rectangles and make it clear that this is the modified ANSI CR that Greg Rogers would do.

I like the black board with a hole because I can use it to show people that the black rectangles can look very black when the checkerboard is shown on the screen, but with the board blocking all except part of one if the black rectangles that part will generally look really grey. I can then ask people if they would be happy if that was actually their black floor. Goes toward showing people how ignorant the position of many of the experts in this field is when they claim that ANSI CR is all that matters and on/off CR is irrelevant.

--Darin

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post #21 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

Even in my less than ideal room the differences in ANSI contrast can be seen, but obviously no where near their full potential respectively. Before I moved I was able to compare the X30 and X3 to the PD8150 side by side in my light controlled surfaced dampened room. The differences were clear.
I didn't argue that you didn't see something, but you are attributing it to ANSI CR and it doesn't sound like you have a lot of evidence that the difference you are seeing is because of ANSI CR. Would you see what looked like high ANSI CR if you had the 8150 in your low ANSI CR room?

Basically, what I'm saying is that if you attribute a sharpness to ANSI CR, but that sharpness is maintained even when you have low ANSI CR off the screen, high ANSI CR can't really be the reason for the sharpness. Although it can get a little bit complicated.

Are you going to try any other sharpness settings?

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post #22 of 25 Old 09-25-2013, 11:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2 View Post

DI implementations are about trade offs and with the Planar implementation the compression was to the point where the bright pixels were the same value. Or the clipping described. I think of compression as reducing the CRs between levels, not making the CRs 1:1 (which it is when those input levels have the same output).

--Darin

Ahh, interesting. Somehow, I thought the intra-image dynamic range was compressed and not clipped with the better DI implementations. I suppose DIs can be more effective at lowering black floor if peak values are ultimately clipped. I'm sure the compression does occur as well.

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Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

I don't know how Sony does it, but there was a great write up about how TI's Dynamic Black works in the PD8150 review in WideScreen Review magazine:
As you can see, the way dynamic black works there can be clipped whites as brighter levels in the image are boosted so they won't appear dim as the iris closes.

That's helpful. I had read that, but needed a reminder. There's some good stuff here from Bob Williams, too.
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post #23 of 25 Old 09-26-2013, 12:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2 View Post

I didn't argue that you didn't see something, but you are attributing it to ANSI CR and it doesn't sound like you have a lot of evidence that the difference you are seeing is because of ANSI CR. Would you see what looked like high ANSI CR if you had the 8150 in your low ANSI CR room?

Basically, what I'm saying is that if you attribute a sharpness to ANSI CR, but that sharpness is maintained even when you have low ANSI CR off the screen, high ANSI CR can't really be the reason for the sharpness. Although it can get a little bit complicated.

Are you going to try any other sharpness settings?

--Darin

I've had the PD8150 and the X30 in both, as you would put, high and low ANSI CR rooms. The X3 was only tested side by side on my old light controlled room. I still witnessed the same visual cues for differences in ANSI contrast in both rooms, but the difference in my old room was more distinct.

I'm a little confused by your questioning. Are you skeptical of ANSI contrast differences in general or just about my specific methodology of observation? I will try and turn the sharpness control up to 10 and then 20 to see if I can see any difference.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2 View Post

I'm not sure it takes very expensive equipment to get numbers that are reasonably close for projector ANSI CR for a specific lens position (and you can just repeat the procedure for other lens positions if you want).
....
Or do the above but just measure the 4 center rectangles and make it clear that this is the modified ANSI CR that Greg Rogers would do.
....
Here are some things that can be done:

--Darin

Thanks for the info. I never did many ANSI measurements (a few times) since I would always lose the patience because it is too much work measuring all those squares. I am not sure, but I just got a lot of weird results depending on the technique. I have never tried the hole in the black board technique, maybe one day if I do it again. I used to have access to better light measuring equipment too, but right now all I have here is a Spectracal c6 which is ok but not optimal for light readings.



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post #25 of 25 Old 10-01-2013, 10:19 AM
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Hey Seegs, do you still have this PJ - or did you sell it already? wink.giftongue.gif

If you STILL have it, what size is your screen and how close are you sitting?

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