Samsung and SpectraCal: Q Series TVs Support AutoCal with Color Volume Measurement

CalMan Samsung Color Volume and AutoCal

When Samsung’s QLED Q9, Q8, and Q7 TVs ship, one of the coolest new features they will possess is support for AutoCal using SpectraCal’s popular CalMAN software. Portrait Displays—which recently purchased SpectraCal, the makers of CalMAN—will introduce an update that makes getting the most out of Samsung’s top TVs a lot easier by automating much of the measurement and calibration process.

Not only will CalMAN automatically adjust color settings on Samsung’s latest TVs, it will add color volume measurements to its toolkit.

You may be wondering, what is color volume and what can it do for me? Technically, it is the representation of the maximum color-reproduction capabilities of a given display throughout the entire range of brightness levels. Click here to read a post by Scott Wilkinson describing Samsung’s color volume demo at CES 2017.

The resulting color volume measurements can be expressed in a 3-dimensional graphic and can even be 3D printed. Measuring it matters to AV enthusiasts because to properly reproduce HDR content, you want a display that can not only get really bright, but also maintain richly saturated color in those bright areas. To read more about color volume, check out this article.

On the left is the DCI/P3 gamut expressed in a 3D color volume diagram. On the right is a 2D color gamut chart showing BT.709, DCI/P3, and BT.2020 gamuts.

As you’d expect, the news was accompanied by kind words from both companies:

“Portrait Displays is honored to have been chosen by Samsung as its color measurement and calibration partner,” said Martin Fishman, Portrait Display’s co­CEO. “Our technical team is working closely with the experts at Samsung to easily calibrate the wide color spectrum of the Samsung QLED display.”

“We are excited to partner with Portrait Displays, the world leader in color accuracy,” said John Ryu, VP, Visual Display Samsung. “With the increased color volume in our QLED TV lineup, we are providing a stronger, more vibrant picture quality experience that can be measured in more detail.”

2017 is the year things get serious when it comes to calibration and HDR. As soon as I can get my hands on the new CalMAN software and a Q series Samsung that supports AutoCAL, I’ll post an article and a video about how it works. According to Portrait Displays, AutoCal will be available to enthusiasts licenses for CalMAN, not just pro licenses.