Originally Posted by Josh Z
There is a very simple fix for this, which is to leave the unit on for a few weeks until you finally stop obsessively scrutinizing every pixel in the image, and flipping the processing on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off trying to detect what it does. Eventually, you'll get over that and just watch what you want to watch, until you forget that the Darbee is even on at all, except that it makes everything look a little bit better.
15% is very low, almost at the verge of not being discernible at all. If your tolerance for any incremental change to what you expect is a "pure" picture is that small, you should probably not be using Darbee.
Every display interacts with the processing differently, but 30% to 40% is typically a safe zone. If you set it for 30% and are aghast that your picture is no longer pure... well, again, leave it like that for a few weeks and see if you still feel that way. Odds are, you probably won't.
Thanks for simplifying things for me Josh.
I've had the darbee processing for a long time, and have had a long time to use it, and I've tried living with it on at various settings for quite a while. But this is where I've ended up.
I remember back further in this thread (or another forum) there have been a range of reactions to owning the Darbee processing. Some like me, I remember, had become more conservative after an initial "wow" period.
Though with new, eye-candy SFX movies I sometimes pump up the Darbee some more. But for many older movies the Darbee effect I find feels less film-like. It's been a while so I was seeing how others stand. I'm not actually against processing per se. I actually use a similar contrast enhancing process on my JVC projector, called "Clear Black."
I actually like that processing better than the Darbee, as I find it more unobtrusive
while making a significant difference in clarity and dimensionality. (Not that everyone would agree). Though occasionally I like the Darbee over the JVC processing. I was simply seeing who else has come to a similar place with the Darbee.
(BTW, I'd say your estimate of 30% to 40% being a typical "safe zone" is a bit high. As I remember when I used to monitor the Darbee threads, not a few people ended up finding more like 20 to 30 in terms of adding some clarity with, to them, acceptable artifacts. At 30 to 40 I'm amazed if you don't notice how exaggerated bright areas become, especially light reflections on the faces of actors. The scene in Avatar where the Colonel finishes with the weights and sits up to talk to Jake has strong down-light accents on his face, nose, forehead, and they become seriously exaggerated and artificial looking at those "safe" numbers you mention. IMO. This is what bugs me on lots of material when I try to live with the darbee processing much higher than 15 or 20).