Originally Posted by kakihara1
Nice MississippiMan, I somehow understood that
It's always "Blackest" before the dawn.
Here's an interesting observation. For a spell now, Plasma/LCD mfg have been introducing a few sets with perimeter accent lighting behind the rear edge of the TV. The original goal was to offset the eyestrain many experience when watching a bright image in near/total darkness. However very quickly a more appreciative quality became the "cosmetic" aspect. It actually took a little longer for both the Mfgs and the buying public to realize that perceived contrast was also improved.....if certain conditions and balances were met and observed.
This has led many in Front projection to place Rope Lighting behind the forward Trim and between the Wall to create the same effect. When combined with a ultra dark Black Boarder that does not receive any of the effect of such lighting (...what with it being shielded by the Trim...) the lighter band of light does help make the "Blackness" of Trim, and hence the screen's content, take on a even more decided and deeper level of apparent "Blackness".
But the truth is, with many screens reaching out close to the side walls, reflected light from the Rope Lighting can easily wipe out any real advantage that was originally provided, leaving one with a pretty band of light around the screen, but decreased contrast (...browner blacks and 'tan looking whites")
The thing that is overlooked by so many is that most Rope lights are very much brighter than the lighting that is used on the TVs, as well as the fact that on some sets, the "Ambi-Light" has 'dimming" capability.
Once again, and as is always the case, "Balance" is the key to top notch results. A "Blacker than Black" boarder, back lit by indirect lighting of a low level can combine to produce a exceptional perceived increase in 'on screen' Contrast. But such "Ambi-Light" can also denude the image just as easily as having a Screen's reflected light hit a light colored surface and return to the screen and wash out contrast. Incorporating a "Dimmer" (...The Rope Lights must also be of the 'dim-able' variety) can bring the entire set up into a correct balance.
.......and that isn't as easy as it would seem to be.
In other words, there is nothing that bests Black for making Blacks seem Blacker. Unless you combine Black with just the right amount of "light". And in any case where considerable amounts of ambient light is unavoidably present, the presence of a "Reference Black" border will always work to improve the "appearance" of the "on screen Black levels" as much as can possibly be done based on just how much ambient light must be dealt with. It can still do that "because" the Reference Black Boarder gives the Eye/Mind something to use to "fool" the brain.
Shoot....my mind gets fooled all the time by such things....among other things.
Obviously enough ambient light to actually....and noticeably degrade the image will effectively reduce any perceived advantage a Black Border can provide, but even in those situations, a brighter Back Light can help mitigate such loss....but only to a point.
So get yourself back to Black and stay as Black as you can and you'll revel in the Blackest of Blacks possible in your given situation.