Low=16-235, Normal=0-255 brightness range (used by PCs). The "normal" option should be disabled with most cableTV, satellite, bluray, and DVD set top boxes. If this option is greyed out for you, then regardless of what you see, the setting IS low.
"Low" is what you're supposed to use for cableTV, satTV, bluray, and DVD set top boxes which output at 16-235 brightness range.
You should be able to adjust your brightness, contrast, and white balance to see most of the detail you see when you switch the setting to "normal". Believe it or not, on a perfectly calibrated TV, you're not supposed to see some of that detail; as there is such a thing as "blacker than black" and "whiter than white" detail. Some content providers tend to record information which peak beyond the normal brightness range in order to avoid brightness level clipping.
Having said that, just set your TV to "Low" and just use a bluray/DVD calibration disc to adjust the brightness range of your TV. Or, you could just "eyeball" it and select the color settings; especially brightness and contrast to what looks best to you; however, if you're going to eyeball it, you need to use various different types of content to get the best average setting. Personally, I just used the calibration settings I posted
several pages back. Mine currently is almost identical to that; however, since I'm using a PC as my source, I had to set HDMI = Normal with a brightness much lower than what was mentioned.
As far as clouding/uniformity goes, that's caused by having poor calibration settings. You should be able to have full detail with super deep blacks and no clouding. The settings related to the LEDs can drastically affect how the picture looks.
Originally Posted by mdchaser
After having my H301 un60d8000 for about a week I may have found a problem...
With the HDMI Black Level set to low I get an amazing image with no uniformity issues, blacks look pretty much black. BUT, I lose all low light detail. I watched Super 8 last night and couldn't make out half the movie because it appears to clip all detail below a certain threshold (I may be explaining this wrong).
With HDMI Black Level set to normal I can see all of the low light detail but the entire screen looks washed out and there are MAJOR screen uniformity issues and clouding. The screen is essentially unusable in this mode but I can at least see all of the detail.
I've used a spyder 3 pro to calibrate the screen (this is all run through a PC via HDMI) using both settings and even with calibration a setting of normal just looks terrible. Is there a way to bring back the low light detail on the low setting? If not do I just have a bad panel that the low setting was disguising? I can exchange it through amazon but I'd rather not unless there really is a problem. Here are a couple of images to show you the difference:LowNormal