THX the highs and the lows
THX is a certification system set up by George Lucas' company Lucasfilm in 1983. The intention was to create a minimum standard of picture and sound quality in cinemas. Since then, THX has branched out into consumer devices TVs, projectors, and speakers.
But what does the certificate mean about a product?
In the case of TVs, a THX-certified mode will mean you get a picture that roughly corresponds to what the filmmakers intended you to see.
This is a huge improvement on so-called shop floor modes, which manufacturers create simply in order to make their TVs stand out in the showroom the screen is too bright, the colours too gaudy, and the contrast too high.
But THX modes still fall short of guaranteeing a perfect picture. Ambient light, for example, can alter a picture's contrast ratio and colours. And even in optimal conditions such as those in our test cinema, THX doesn't always get it quite right. When we tested the JVC DLA-HD 750, for example, we thought they'd set the gamma a bit too low.
This brings us to one of the biggest disadvantages: THX modes forbid the user to adjust individual settings. So if, like us, you decide there's something wrong with their preset, you'll either have to live with it or start calibrating the screen yourself from scratch without using the THX-mode.We think there's room for improvement. What's your opinion?
Find out more in THX technology explained