Yesterday and last night I finally was able to watch the VW95 with everything dialed in. The picture is very impressive. There were a few things I saw that were truly jaw-dropping, including a commercial with super zoomed in silver and black watch set against a black background. It was like a watch and a sharpness pattern all in one.
The clarity, image depth and detail was so fine that it looked 3D. It was really popping off the screen. There were other scenes like this too like when they focused in on the cheerleaders during a football game.
The blacks are very impressive. However I will saw that FROM MEMORY they are not as deep as with my RS20. This seems to be the case when there is a scene that is mostly black with a few objects in it. Even with a DI I don't think that can complete with the 30K:1 on/off I measured from my JVC. Remember that even with a DI on any given frame your CR is still limited to the native on/off of the pj. I haven't measured mine yet.
That said, I seem to have been able to largely (if not entirely) compensate for this by running a higher gamma which effectively raises the contrast of the image. For instance a 2.4 and even a 2.5 gamma.
Also the Lumagen has something very cool I started playing with called Adaptive Contrast. The Lumagen manual describes it as: "Adaptive Contrast varies the contrast based on the average level of the central 60% of the picture."
I am not sure how it works exactly, but the effect is promising. Essentially it acts like a dynamic gamma adjustment from scene to scene. Sort of like an electronic iris I suppose? I did some A/B/C testing with a gamma of 2.2 and no adaptive CR, a 2.2 gamma with adaptive CR set at the minimum, and a 2.4 gamma. Compared to the 2.4 gamma the 2.2 with adaptive CR retained more detail but did not provide quite the same pop as the 2.2 adaptive CR. The downside of the 2.2 adaptive CR is that it does crush blacks and whites some. I will post in the Lumagen forums about this (on their website) to ask for clarification and tips on how to use it.
The sharpness is very good and from memory is a little sharper than my RS20. The sharpness still left me wanting a bit more. I put the internal sharpness controls down to Min and turned to the Lumagen's controls for this. I used a value of 4 for all 6 sharpness controls/switches in the Lumagen. This did the trick without introducing any ringing. Sweet!
I tried 3D for the first time with the Sony last night. i was very impressed. I get about 24ftL (without the glasses) in high lamp mode. I haven't measured through the glasses but the picture was plenty bright and punchy. I am familiar with 3D at home because I have a 63" Samsung plasma (PN63C8000). The 3D on that is excellent, but the 3D on the Sony easily beats it because it is bigger and somehow even seems brighter? :yikes: . That said I also have the brightness up on the Monster glasses and therefore was getting a bit of ghosting in places. I will play with it but I'm sure if I turned down the brightness on the glasses that it can be fine tuned further. Also as has been said many times, the Monster/Optoma glasses are WAY BETTER than the Sony. I did some A/B and the Sony's will be used when we need a few extra pairs but that's it.
I still plan to soon compared it directly with my RS20. Only then will I be able to say definitively who beats who in where.
I have to run now, but I'll have more impressions to give later.
Also I have a few screen shots I wanted to post, but the max resolution here is 1280x720 and my pics are like 3,5000 x something (from iPhone 4S). Can someone recommend a free service online where I can post these too and link to them from here where it will retain the full resolution or at least something high? I looked at Photobucket but the resolution was still pretty low.