Mr. Bob does Atlanta - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 02-13-2007, 03:23 PM - Thread Starter
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I didn't see a dedicated topic yet, so I'll start one to describe Mr. Bob's visit to calibrate my Elite 710 (6 yrs old):

Bob did 4 sets during his visit I think, and I was the last in line this Tuesday (just dropped him off at the airport). He arrived around 7PM at my house, and didn't leave until 3PM the next day. Now, he did sleep :-), but other than that all of his time was taken up with the calibration process.

I had the basic calibration done, plus overscan (my set had a bad overscan, cutting off almost half of most station logos), and also the deep optics cleaning.

Now, I know next to nothing about calibrating, but here's what I think Bob did to get my 710 to its current state:

- Rip off the front - heart-stopping moment right there...
- Clean the guns (surface and deep optics) and mirror (while he cleaned those, I used markers to blacken some of the light-colored metal and wiring around the guns and mirror that had been the cause of halo-like white arcs whenever a bright surface was shown on the screen). The guns were pretty dusty, and after seeing the dust on the deeper optics, I decided to have those cleaned too)
- adjust each gun's focus (by adjusting the guns' hardware)
- Fix the overscan
- Set convergence for all three colors
- Set the color, brightness, etc

There may have been more, but as I said I am not an expert, and I also wasn't with him the whole time (Bob, chime in if I am leaving out anything...)

Anyhoo; the net result after calibrating (the 1080i input) and cleaning my 710 was:

- a cleaner picture with a LOT more depth to it
- no more murkiness that hides details in dark parts of the screen
- a more film-like experience when watching movies (we watched Star Wars Ep. 3 for a while)
- a much less 'fuzzy' picture - much smoother for movie sources (Star Wars), much crisper for video sources (DiscoveryHD, for instance)

The greatest surprise was the improvement in the picture from my Samsung 850, an upconverting-over-component DVD player I bought specifically for the input-challenged 710. I popped in 'Fifth Element', and it was incredibly good picture. Again, like the pure HD sources, it was a brighter picture with more detail and truer colors. Not quite HD but, to the eye,very close.

So, even though a calibration is a sizeable investment, I am glad we had Bob bring out the best in our 710, which now looks better than ever before. I understand that many of you out there may hesitate to invest that much in your RP units, but if you plan on keeping it for a while, it is worth it.

I had been eyeing the new sets (LCD and plasma), but now no longer feel the urge to go out there and get a new one.
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post #2 of 7 Old 02-13-2007, 04:20 PM
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Rino, you beat me to it.
I was the first in line in Atlanta. I had him do all the same things to my Pro510, and the results you report are EXACTLY those that I found! EXACTLY! Bob put in something on the order of ten or eleven hours working on my set, for the same procedures, except that I had him calibrate the 480p scan rate as well as 1080i, since I don't have a DVD player that upconverts over component.
As you reported, the image I get now is FAR superior to that which I have had, even when the set was new in Y2k. Even after I had it calibrated back then (granted that there was no way to cal. 1080i at that time). After Bob was done, I watched MI:3 on HD-DVD, and I was completely blown away by the depth, detail, and color accuracy that I now have!
I used to sit about 10-11' from the screen, as that was what my room layout supported. Now I'm sitting 5-6' from the screen, and damned if I won't re-arrange the room to support that viewing distance from now on! I also had been toying with the idea of replacing the Elite with a new LCOS or DILA set, and I couldn't be happier that I didn't pull that trigger before hiring Bob.
In sum, I hope all owners of aging CRT sets hire Bob or some other "anal retentive calibrator" to work over their sets before "upgrading". You won't be sorry.
Also, a word about Bob: He is a great guy, and almost obsessed with the nth detail of picture quality. He sweated the smallest of details in my picture, and wasn't happy until he felt it was absolutely perfect. I knew that there was picture quality left in my set, but I had no idea how much! I couldn't be more pleased with his services. I just want to thank him again for his efforts.
Rino, I'm glad you were able to get in on this tour, as I know how close you came to missing out while I made his travel arrangements. And I'm glad to hear that you're as happy as I am, too.
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post #3 of 7 Old 02-13-2007, 06:44 PM
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I've just included both of your reports in the "Owner's List" linked at the bottom of my post. Enjoy.
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post #4 of 7 Old 02-13-2007, 11:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KKop View Post

I didn't see a dedicated topic yet, so I'll start one to describe Mr. Bob's visit to calibrate my Elite 710 (6 yrs old):

...

There may have been more, but as I said I am not an expert, and I also wasn't with him the whole time (Bob, chime in if I am leaving out anything...)


I think it's important to point out that once overscan has been reigned in to tolerable levels, where you have finally recovered all that lost real estate and tightened up your resolution by exposing lots more pixels per square inch, you have only begun the process. Taking in the overscan is the easy part. Reassembling your picture is where the skill comes in.

Taking in the overscan on a Pioneer CRT RPTV completely hoses your picture. The lines become unparallel with each other, they curve very unsymmetrically, and that's just within each individual color. The way they do it becomes opposite when you talk about red vs. blue, since one image comes from one side of the screen and the other is on the other side, exacerbating and doubling the incoherence issues.

Once you have taken in your overscan to tolerable levels, your picture is a MESS. Not just unenjoyable. I'm talking completely UNWATCHABLE. But necessary, if you want the benefits of overscan reduction.

Add to this the fact that on a Pio, the SIZE register becomes a LINEARITY register once you have gone down in size a great deal on the horizontal. It no longer simply reduces the size, it starts widening the left side as it is narrowing the right side, on the way towards shrinking the pic horizontally.

Suffice it to say, it took massive GEOMETRY re-doing to get it right, before ANY convergence could be done.

Just wanted to add that one little facet, that had been skipped when Rino went immediately to mentioning the convergence. Redoing the geometry on all 3 colors was responsible for a MAJOR part of the overscan reduction op, and took many extra hours to achieve.

Was incredible fun, tho! These things are like chinese boxes, and I am always finding new ways to accomplish the same thing!


Rino's looked so bad when I began the job that even I was wondering, "How am I gonna pull THIS one off???" But I stuck with it, and the proof is always in the pudding. It took time, but step by inexorable step, I finally wrestled that beast to the ground. It has NEVER gotten the best of me, and never will.

He now has a luxuriously depthy and punchy picture to watch, from now on, and was incredibly appreciative of my work.


The best part is afterwards, when all is said and done and we are all kicking back and watching some delicious HD. I ask, "Been awhile since you saw it this way?"

Their answer - both Rino and his wife, and several others on this trip - was the kind of thing that makes it all worthwhile:

They both said, "Oh, it's NEVER looked THAT good, before."


Mr Bob

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post #5 of 7 Old 02-14-2007, 07:06 AM
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Bob, I knew I wasn't painting the whole picture :-) Thanks for completing the story.

Just to add to my earlier post:

We watched '24' last night, and I noticed for the first time that Jack Bauer has some pretty bad acne cratering on the tip of his nose. My wife and I also both commented on the fact that the outdoor and indoor scenes in '24' were obviously shot to look different: indoor scenes are cold, clear and very crisp, outdoor are warm, sunny and pretty grainy. Another thing we had never really noticed before the calibration.

After that, we watched 'House'. Well, what can I say other than it looked incredible.

Again, the calibration is really paying off in increased viewing pleasure.

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post #6 of 7 Old 02-14-2007, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rino van Dam View Post

Bob, I knew I wasn't painting the whole picture :-) Thanks for completing the story.

Well, you had said "fix the overscan" before mentioning convergence. It's just that most people don't have any idea what that entails!

Quote:


Just to add to my earlier post:

We watched '24' last night, and I noticed for the first time that Jack Bauer has some pretty bad acne cratering on the tip of his nose. My wife and I also both commented on the fact that the outdoor and indoor scenes in '24' were obviously shot to look different: indoor scenes are cold, clear and very crisp, outdoor are warm, sunny and pretty grainy. Another thing we had never really noticed before the calibration.

After that, we watched 'House'. Well, what can I say other than it looked incredible.

Again, the calibration is really paying off in increased viewing pleasure.

After calibration, I often point out how the fleshtones in the faces can be different, face to face, in any given scene. You look at one, then you look at another, and the first one has a completely different tonal quality from the other one. Each person's fleshtone has become individually distinctive, on that particular person's face.

Before calibration, they all pretty much looked the same.

You have taken that observation to a completely new level! Even I hadn't noticed that about Jack's nose!

Good eyes!


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post #7 of 7 Old 02-16-2007, 11:03 AM
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2 more reviews have come in from the Atlanta tour:

post 901 here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...r+510+problems


and post 139 here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...80#post9794280


Mr Bob

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Image Perfection
510-278-4247
650-333-4808 cell
bob at imageperfection dot com
www.projectiontvtroubleshootingadvice.com
YouTube channel: mrbobbigscreen

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