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For those who recommend turning sharpness to 0

post #1 of 62
Thread Starter 
Check out this quick video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rnAaqy7mRLQ

I have seen post after post, of members recommending that the only correct setting for sharpness is 0/OFF. Then when someone says that their display then looks "fuzzy or out of focus" at 0, they are told that "you'll get used to it" and "it's the correct way to watch digital TV." The video above clearly demonstrates what can happen when the sharpness control is set incorrectly, and yes, incorrectly does include 0/OFF.

On my Samsung 60" 6420 LED/LCD, all ringing disappears around 12-18. At 19 on up, I can see a little ringing, but it only gets really bad around 60 on up (0-100). At 11 or below the image gets noticeably too soft or out of focus. I settled on 15 as it balances both issues perfectly.

Anyway, I'm sure there will be some posters that still hang onto "turning it to 0 is the only correct setting" and that the TV in the video "must be defective" and that's fine, but if you have turned your sharpness control down too far on the advice of many, and you think it doesn't look right, well you're correct, it doesn't look right!

Bring it on!!
post #2 of 62
The correct seting is not always zero. It depends on the display.
post #3 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McC View Post

The correct seting is not always zero. It depends on the display.

You know that, and I know that, but a quick search of these and other forums, indicate that we are the minority.
post #4 of 62
Jim is correct, it depends on the display's behavior for the control. A proper pattern, from a generator and/or disc, needs to be used.
post #5 of 62
Anyone that says that 0 is always the correct setting should not be listened to, and obviously has never used an LG display.
post #6 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by D Bone View Post

Unless I'm missing something, it's the same video that I posted?

oops, I didn't check your link before posting since I thought it was some random video that said to always leave sharpness at zero.
post #7 of 62
Sharpness at 0 (zero) should not be taken literally, it just means use the setting that has no added sharpness (this is a given but it's easy to see how it could be misleading). As noted there are displays out there where a setting of 0 would actually make the image less sharp than it should be (in other words it's actually processing and blurring the image versus simply leaving it alone).

Jason
post #8 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by D Bone View Post

You know that, and I know that, but a quick search of these and other forums, indicate that we are the minority.

Welcome to the world of public internet forums! There's certainly no shortage of contributors who make statements, however self-assured, based upon faulty information, opinion, fads, presumptions, misunderstanding, etc., etc. Yes, even on the AV Science forum! Even when corrected, some will claim they are being attacked, rather than simply learning from the encounter and change their thinking. Humans can be like that.
post #9 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeAB View Post

Welcome to the world of public internet forums! There's certainly no shortage of contributors who make statements, however self-assured, based upon faulty information, opinion, fads, presumptions, misunderstanding, etc., etc. Yes, even on the AV Science forum! Even when corrected, some will claim they are being attacked, rather than simply learning from the encounter and change their thinking. Humans can be like that.

very true, those who frequent AVS represent a minority and those who actually know what they're talking about on AVS are a minority within a minority

learning requires an open mind
post #10 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smackrabbit View Post

Anyone that says that 0 is always the correct setting should not be listened to, and obviously has never used an LG display.

Also, just because it has been found that a sharpness setting of "50", or the halfway point on one individual TV in a model line or even similar model, does not mean it would be the same for ALL TVs in that similar model line. Not to mention the type of "sharpness test screen" being used.

And then there is the matter of individual visual acuity.

I know this many times causes squeamish reactions in those desiring "exact" numerical values. . . but no one can determine this particular value but the person viewing it.

Ok. . .. here it comes.
post #11 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phase700B View Post

Also, just because it has been found that a sharpness setting of "50", or the halfway point on one individual TV in a model line or even similar model, does not mean it would be the same for ALL TVs in that similar model line. Not to mention the type of "sharpness test screen" being used.

And then there is the matter of individual visual acuity.

I know this many times causes squeamish reactions in those desiring "exact" numerical values. . . but no one can determine this particular value but the person viewing it.

Ok. . .. here it comes.

I agree that calibrating sharpness on your actual TV is more reliable than copying the setting from another set of the same model. It may not be necessary in all cases but it certainly is worth the extra time to be 100% sure.

I disagree that individual visual acuity is a factor since there is a point where artifacts start appearing (ringing) that indicate the sharpness control is set too high and there may be a point where the lines begin to blur that indicates sharpness is too low. The ideal setting is the highest one that doesn't cause any ringing and/or the lowest one that doesn't cause blurring. Sometimes there is one exact value for both condtions and sometimes it is a (small) range of values. However, this has more to do with the internal design of the sharpness control in the TV than differences in visual acuity of the people watching the display. Otherwise, the professional calibrator would not be able to set the sharpness control for the customer (without having the customer tell them where to set it).

If you have less than 20/20 vision and cannot see ringing as it starts to appear on the test pattern that doesn't mean you'd want to go with a higher sharpness setting than if you had perfect vision and could the first signs of ringing instantly. If the correct setting for sharpness on your TV is 32/100 when set by someone with perfect vision it is still the correct setting for someone with less than ideal vision. Just because they can't see the ringing doesn't mean it isn't there or that it would be beneficial for them to use a higher sharpness setting, such as 40/100.
post #12 of 62
I agree there is usually a "range" of values for sharpness settings on a particular model of TV.

There is still the question of what test screen to use. And I have used several. A few "agree" and a few do not. So it still is somewhat inexact. And, regardless of what you believe, what one person "sees" is often different than what another does. And then there is the tendency to "want" to attain an expected "neutral" point.

Besides, sharpness is not as critical a setting as most other parameters.

I won't debate this further. Because all it will do is go on and on. As Micheal Chen pointed out in the video. . . the correct setting for sharpness is where ringing disappears. . . to the observer.
post #13 of 62
This subject has already been hashed out:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...ight=sharpness

Bottom line: set sharpness using a test pattern while viewing at the screen. This assures that the control will be defeated (or minimized if it's poorly designed) and will not add artifacts to the picture.

Visual acuity is irrelevant to the discussion, unless one is setting the controls on their display for only themselves and no one else. Also irrelevant to the discussion is what one person deems "reasonable" as this is different from one person to the next.
post #14 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by HogPilot View Post

Visual acuity is irrelevant to the discussion, unless one is setting the controls on their display for only themselves and no one else.

+1, what I was trying to say
post #15 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by PlasmaPZ80U View Post

+1, what I was trying to say

My statement wasn't directed at you, sorry if you thought it was. It was meant to pre-empt the usual remarks that surface in this discussion which really have nothing to do with the issue. Statements of visual acuity and what is "reasonable" or "sensible" (perhaps two most overused and irrelevant words thrown around here) are inconsequential because they vary from person to person, especially for any display that will be watched by more than one person (which is most displays).
post #16 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by HogPilot View Post

My statement wasn't directed at you, sorry if you thought it was. It was meant to pre-empt the usual remarks that surface in this discussion which really have nothing to do with the issue. Statements of visual acuity and what is "reasonable" or "sensible" (perhaps two most overused and irrelevant words thrown around here) are inconsequential because they vary from person to person, especially for any display that will be watched by more than one person (which is most displays).

Yes, I know.

I was just stating that I agree that visual acuity is not a factor for setting sharpness properly on a display and that I was trying to explain that to Phase700B in my earlier post.
post #17 of 62
If we want to get technical...

It is a factor if the person setting it does not have the visual acuity to set it properly.

Jason
post #18 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaGamePimp View Post

If we want to get technical...

It is a factor if the person setting it does not have the visual acuity to set it properly.

Jason

Ha that would have to be bordering on legally blind if you were right at the screen and still couldn't set it properly
post #19 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaGamePimp View Post

If we want to get technical...

It is a factor if the person setting it does not have the visual acuity to set it properly.

Jason

post #20 of 62
I remember when I was calibrating my first big screen rear projection about fifteen years ago, one of the two big calibration discs at the time (either Avia or Video Essentials - at the moment I can't even remember if it was eveb DIGITAL Video Essentials back then) recommended setting sharpness to as close to 0 as possible. They listed all the normal arguments about reproducing a more accurate picture and having to let your eyes adjust to the settings before cranking the levels back up. Anyway, since those discs were so prevalent back then, I've always guessed that they were responsible for the wide spread, blanket statements I've heard countless times since. Although the display technology shifting so drastically from three guns to flat panels - and my first attempt at calibrating a HD plasma with an old AVIA DVD - was the first time I realized that the adage was extinct.
post #21 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Malone View Post

I remember when I was calibrating my first big screen rear projection about fifteen years ago, one of the two big calibration discs at the time (either Avia or Video Essentials - at the moment I can't even remember if it was eveb DIGITAL Video Essentials back then) recommended setting sharpness to as close to 0 as possible. They listed all the normal arguments about reproducing a more accurate picture and having to let your eyes adjust to the settings before cranking the levels back up. Anyway, since those discs were so prevalent back then, I've always guessed that they were responsible for the wide spread, blanket statements I've heard countless times since. Although the display technology shifting so drastically from three guns to flat panels - and my first attempt at calibrating a HD plasma with an old AVIA DVD - was the first time I realized that the adage was extinct.

It's my observation that it's rarely of much value to guess. I don't agree that any tutorial program can be blamed for anyone's misunderstanding or dogmatic misinterpretation of its contents. Can you provide a quote from either 'AVIA' or 'VE/DVE' that was in error? Humans have an innate capacity for misinterpretation, distortion, and misunderstanding of even the simplest instructions.

Lots of consumers fail to properly apply the instructions in the available audio/video tutorial optical disc programs currently available. Well known calibrators, with literally thousands of customers in their many years of experience, have testified that roughly half of hobbyists using the discs haven't applied the instructions correctly. There is also no shortage of home theater hobbyists satisfied to simply copy the settings from another TV, rather than use test signals to adjust their display properly. It's human nature to look for short cuts. Unfortunately, many people lack due regard for the discipline it takes to achieve excellence in an endeavor.

It's rare that I spend much time in other sections of the AVS forum any more. It has been my experience that this 'Display Calibration' section has the least amount of weak thinking and poor logic within it. I can't remember the last time I encountered any controversy here about whether "0" should always be the proper setting for sharpness/edge enhancement.
post #22 of 62
With AVSHD it is sometimes a little difficult to find that exact point where sharpening begins using the Sharpness & Overscan pattern with the medium gray background. I'm unsure if the following works on all displays as I've only recently started observing. Pull up the Black Clipping pattern in a dark environment. Turn up the Sharpness control. When haloing begins to occur it stands out like a sore thumb.

Edit: Today on one of my personal TVs I reduced Sharpness from 20 (out 100) to 6 as a result.
post #23 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzard767 View Post

With AVSHD it is sometimes a little difficult to find that exact point where sharpening begins using the Sharpness & Overscan pattern with the medium gray background. I'm unsure if the following works on all displays as I've only recently started observing. Pull up the Black Clipping pattern in a dark environment. Turn up the Sharpness control. When haloing begins to occur it stands out like a sore thumb.

Edit: Today on one of my personal TVs I reduced Sharpness from 20 (out 100) to 6 as a result.

The pattern is being used in this video appears to be a good one. Anyone know where it's from?

Also, how do you use the black clipping pattern to set sharpness? I'm confused.
post #24 of 62
Ahh. . . I see the preferences on "what test pattern" to use for sharpness has been mentioned again.

The results can vary with sharpness test patterns . Oh the conundrum! Which one to use!

I know one TV owner who set sharpness by how George Stephanopolis's hair looks on TV. When his hair starts to look like "straw" and looks "streaky". . . he stops and turns it down a notch or two.

Oh the insecurities of it all. . .
post #25 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzard767 View Post

With AVSHD it is sometimes a little difficult to find that exact point where sharpening begins using the Sharpness & Overscan pattern with the medium gray background. I'm unsure if the following works on all displays as I've only recently started observing. Pull up the Black Clipping pattern in a dark environment. Turn up the Sharpness control. When haloing begins to occur it stands out like a sore thumb.

Edit: Today on one of my personal TVs I reduced Sharpness from 20 (out 100) to 6 as a result.

I have DVE, AVS HD709, AVIA, and now Disney WOW. I;ve actually found the later to work the best since it has both fine lines and pregressively smaller black lettering against a light gray background. Very easy to tell any enhancement. And the variance on two LCD panels I have can be as much as + or- 6 clicks when using the other discs mentioned. . . .
post #26 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by PlasmaPZ80U View Post

The pattern is being used in this video appears to be a good one. Anyone know where it's from?

Also, how do you use the black clipping pattern to set sharpness? I'm confused.

Michael TLV posts here a lot, so you can ask him. He's the owner of the linked web site and the voice in the tutorial video. Since the SpectraCal attribution appears in the image, it may be from one of their test pattern generators.
post #27 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by PlasmaPZ80U View Post


Also, how do you use the black clipping pattern to set sharpness? I'm confused.

When the sharpness halo is introduced when the control is turned up it is easier to see on the line separating the two dark grays than on the Sharpness & Overscan pattern. To reiterate what I said earlier I thought I had sharpness set correctly at a setting of 20 but the clipping pattern taught me that the real introduction of haloing was at 7 so my setting is now 6.
post #28 of 62
Yikes, so many posts for such an EASY issue... EASY EASY EASY

OFF is ALWAYS the right setting ALWAYS, 100% of the time.

The issue is that "0" is not always OFF. Sometimes 0 defocuses the image, sometimes 0 does not disable all the sharpening.

The only way to find "OFF" is to use a sharpness evaluation pattern.

Any Sharpness setting that is NOT the "OFF" setting is adding distortion to the image. The Sharpness control for video would be like a distortion control for audio. The only right setting for an audio distortion control would be when there's no added distortion.

Sharpness adds contouring that does not exist in the original image and it does NOT make images look sharper. Some Sharpness settings may defocus the image (or something that looks a lot like defocusing). That's also not in the original image so that's a form of distortion also.

The Sharpness control is STUPID. It is SO stupid that some product engineers leave the control in the user menu so the marketing people stay happy, but the Sharpness control does NOTHING no matter where you set it. Hooray for those guys for doing the right thing.
post #29 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Blackburn View Post

Yikes, so many posts for such an EASY issue... EASY EASY EASY

OFF is ALWAYS the right setting ALWAYS, 100% of the time.

The issue is that "0" is not always OFF. Sometimes 0 defocuses the image, sometimes 0 does not disable all the sharpening.

The only way to find "OFF" is to use a sharpness evaluation pattern.

Any Sharpness setting that is NOT the "OFF" setting is adding distortion to the image. The Sharpness control for video would be like a distortion control for audio. The only right setting for an audio distortion control would be when there's no added distortion.

Sharpness adds contouring that does not exist in the original image and it does NOT make images look sharper. Some Sharpness settings may defocus the image (or something that looks a lot like defocusing). That's also not in the original image so that's a form of distortion also.

The Sharpness control is STUPID. It is SO stupid that some product engineers leave the control in the user menu so the marketing people stay happy, but the Sharpness control does NOTHING no matter where you set it. Hooray for those guys for doing the right thing.

it would be nice if they could get rid of the control altogether or make it do absolutely nothing

I believe my 2008 Panny Plasma has a sharpness control that does nothing at all on the HDMI inputs, which is nice.

my 2011 LG LCD has annoying sharpness settings (H and V) that can either result in edge enhancement or blurring the image, a poor design choice IMO
post #30 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Blackburn View Post

Yikes, so many posts for such an EASY issue... EASY EASY EASY

OFF is ALWAYS the right setting ALWAYS, 100% of the time.

The issue is that "0" is not always OFF. Sometimes 0 defocuses the image, sometimes 0 does not disable all the sharpening.

The only way to find "OFF" is to use a sharpness evaluation pattern.

Any Sharpness setting that is NOT the "OFF" setting is adding distortion to the image. The Sharpness control for video would be like a distortion control for audio. The only right setting for an audio distortion control would be when there's no added distortion.

Sharpness adds contouring that does not exist in the original image and it does NOT make images look sharper. Some Sharpness settings may defocus the image (or something that looks a lot like defocusing). That's also not in the original image so that's a form of distortion also.

The Sharpness control is STUPID. It is SO stupid that some product engineers leave the control in the user menu so the marketing people stay happy, but the Sharpness control does NOTHING no matter where you set it. Hooray for those guys for doing the right thing.


I am only an amateur enthusiast, and all due respect to you, but this argument doesn't make a lot of sense to me. This argument to me is the same as someone saying that "Audyssey XT should never be used, because that +7db @ 120hz and -5db @ 50hz to fix room modes, were never in the original signal, and is nothing more than distortion".

If turning the sharpness control to a setting that doesn't induce haloing or ringing, but is still "ON", looks best to the users eye at their regular viewing distance, then that seems like it is the correct setting to me.
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