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What features are worth paying for

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
With smart TVs, apps, voice control, fancy remotes a la LG, and all the other whiz waz that you can get on TVs now days what should be on an average buyers must have list. I was thinking things might be considered to be either:

1. Bad tech/soon to be outdated/waste of money/overhyped marketing
2. Cool tech but too expensive for the average buyer
3. Worth money

I'm trying to get a feel for what's worth spending money on when I buy my new TV. My uses I would think are going to be about what an average persons would be -
sun lit room during the day/lamps at night, 55" max(I'm basing this on 14' vewing distance), watching TV shows, sports and the occasional movie.

A couple of years ago I received some helpful advice here about contrast ratio and high refresh rates being bunk. Also that except for higher end LED that LCD were almost as good and considerably cheaper back than.

I figure if Ikept it general and not real high end maybe other people would find this helpful and maybe I would get an idea for something I might overlook.

Thanks!
Edited by Dahlyn - 11/5/12 at 7:56am
post #2 of 32
IMO

Dont waste your money on

3D (Passive 3D more desireable IMO if you go that route)
Smart TV/Internet WiFi (though this can be kind of unavoidable) (The many off board solutions are better and more easily (and cheaply) upgradeable)
Scanning Backlights Not yet ready for primetime
Yellow Sub Pixels (aka Quatron)
Light Sensor Auto Dimming (distracting and reduced image quality with fluxuating backlight level)


Desireable

LED Backlighting (though CCFL is serviceable) Full Array is more desireable than Edge Lit. Local Dimming not a necessity, but is a huge plus. Full Array a requirement for Local Dimming. Edge Lit Zone Dimming is problematic. Edge Lit No Dimming is OK, but can have backlight uniformity issues especially on larger sets.
120 Hz (though 60 Hz is serviceable) More than 120 Hz = rapidly diminishing returns.
1080p (there arent any 720p sets these days above 37" are there?)
Some level of Anti-Reflective coating
10 bit color processing and panel (though 8 bit is serviceable)
Advanced calibration tools, Color Management System, 10 Point Gamma Controls etc (though you can get by with more basic controls)
Defeatable Frame Interpolation (great for sports) Only available on 120Hz and up sets. Most all sets 120 Hz and up have this.
OTA tuner and Programming Guide (tuners are required in every set, but programming guides differ)
Low Input Lag (for Gamers)
Decent Sound Quality/Volume (though you can augment with a Sound Bar or Surround System, etc)
Good Panel (Late Gen S-PVA, Sharp X-Gen, LG S-IPS, AU Optronics MVA 3rd Gen)
Decent Blacks (all but the S-IPS have decent blacks native to the raw panel, the S-IPS can use other tricks but many times sets using them dont)
Bigger is Better (Most of the time, the cheaper value set with the larger but decent panel will be enjoyed more over the long term, by the vast majority of people).
DNLA functionality especially on the USB ports but this is often extremely buggy so...like the Smart TV/Internet WiFi is usually better implemented in Media Players and Laptops/HTPCs and what not.
Aesthetics do matter to some degree
Good Selection and Quality of Build and Implementation of Inputs/Outputs/Ports


Recommendations

Vizio E601-A3
Vizio M650VSE
Vizio M3D550KD
Edited by EscapeVelocity - 12/29/12 at 12:41pm
post #3 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

IMO
Dont waste your money on
3D (Passive 3D more desireable IMO if you go that route)
Smart TV/Internet WiFi (though this can be kind of unavoidable) (The many off board solutions are better and more easily (and cheaply) upgradeable)
Scanning Backlights Not yet ready for primetime
Yellow Sub Pixels (aka Quatron)
Desireable
LED Backlighting (though CCFL is serviceable) Full Array is more desireable than Edge Lit. Local Dimming not a necessity, but can be a huge plus, Full Array a requirement for Local Dimming, Edge Lit Zone Dimming is problematic....Edge Lit No Dimming is mostly OK.
120 Hz (though 60 Hz is serviceable) More than 120 Hz = rapidly diminishing returns.
1080p (there arent any 720p sets these days above 37" are there?)
Some level of Anti-Reflective coating
10 bit color processing and panel (though 8 bit is serviceable)
Advanced calibration tools, Color Management System, Gamma Controls etc (though you can get by with more basic controls)
Defeatable Frame Interpolation (great for sports) Only available on 120Hz and up sets.
Low Input Lag (for Gamers)
OTA Tuner and Programming Guide
Decent Sound Quality/Volume (though you can get a Sound Bar or use Surround System instead)
Decent Panel (Late Gen S-PVA, Sharp X-Gen, LG S-IPS, AU Optronics MVA 3rd Gen)
Decent Blacks (all but the S-IPS have decent blacks native to the raw panel, the S-IPS can use other tricks but many times sets using them dont)
Bigger is Better (Most of the time, the cheaper value set with the larger but decent panel will be enjoyed more over the long term, by the vast majority of people).
DNLA functionality especially on the USB ports (but this is often extremely buggy) so...
Recommendations
Vizio E601-A3
Vizio M650VSE
Vizio M3D550KD

Nice.
post #4 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Smart TV/Internet WiFi (though this can be kind of unavoidable) (The many off board solutions are better and more easily (and cheaply)

Thanks for your really helpful reply. Could you elaborate a little on the quote above.
What would some of them be.
Thanks
post #5 of 32
Go find yourself a good showroom locally and demo what is out there - build your own list of what appears to be a need, want and fluff. Experience it yourself.

Once you have a list of features and specific TV's, come back and ask questions as well as reviewing owners threads for a better understanding about each model.
post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dahlyn View Post

Thanks for your really helpful reply. Could you elaborate a little on the quote above.
What would some of them be.
Thanks

EVs list is a pretty good one. I too agree about Smart tv's. You're stuck with whatever the tv mfr gives you and they are usually not as robust (and can have update issues) as other devices that are "smart", blu-ray players, AppleTV2, etc. Besides, it's easier to repair/replace/upgrade a blu-ray player etc than it is your smart tv should it go dumb. I would rather spend more money on an advanced calibration system and some of the other features EV listed. However, I would look at other mfrs and not just Vizios (sorry EV wink.gif) Vizios seem to have quality issues on some models (more so than other tv's being reported here).
post #7 of 32
Thanks for the vote of confidence!
post #8 of 32
come back and ask questions as well as reviewing owners threads for a better understanding about each model.a112.jpg
post #9 of 32
[quote"Dont waste your money on Smart TV/Internet WiFi (though this can be kind of unavoidable) (The many off board solutions are better and more easily (and cheaply) upgradeable)"

Thanks for your really helpful reply. Could you elaborate a little on the quote above. What would some of them be.Thanks[/quote]

There are Smart TV/WiFi Blue-ray players and a host of $50 - $99 add on steaming media boxes (e.g. from Netgear, Western Digital, Roku , Boxee, Sony, LG etc.).

If your HDTV breaks, or you upgrade, these solutions are portable and can be used on your new set. However, you're limited by what channels, formats, web browser (if any) each supports and awkward menu navigation.

Given the money saved, I went with a Laptop and still saved a lot of money

I bought a Lenovo Windows 7 laptop for less than $350, with a dual core Intel i3 processing, 4 GB memory, 320GB hard drive storage, DVD, USB,15.6" screen, USB and HDMI connectivity.
post #10 of 32
I watch TWIT videos and Kevin Pollak's chat show from Internet on tv. I have had divx and xvid movies on flash drive play flawlessly with Samsung Internet tv. It connects to my computer for DLNA . It is better on flash drive for fast forward and play from last position. all in all I like most aspects of TV.
post #11 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Thanks for the vote of confidence!

No offense meant. Just an observation. smile.gif
post #12 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Otto Pylot View Post

No offense meant. Just an observation. smile.gif

No offense taken. I was thanking you for your vote of confidence in the list.

I guess Im a Vizio fanboy, but Im up front about it....and I dont run down anybody else's choices. And according to you, I do put out solid information/advice on technical issues. There are lots of good TVs out there each with their own pros and cons.

FWIW, Vizio's reliability and quality control, instance of issues, isnt any worse or better than the big boys. It's more a nature of the beast thing.
post #13 of 32
^^^^ agreed.
post #14 of 32
No offense Escapevelocity, but I disagree with some of what you've said.

I don't see the the advantage of LED over CCFL unless it does have the scanning backlight. I guess LED backlights last longer? But every LCD TV I've owned has developed panel issues long before the backlights died. Also, the scanning backlight is a must IMO. I am suddenly noticing the retinal smearing on all newer LCDs that have the low pixel response time and very sharp picture. I also don't see the point of 120hz without the scanning backlight either. There are tons of scientific studies that say the human eye cannot detect higher than 60hz. The retinal smearing is the #1 problem with modern LCD displays and if you aren't going to get one with a good strobing/scanning backlight then it's absolutely pointless. My problem is I can't find one that has a good scanning backlight that isn't absolutely too huge for any room in my house.

You're right about the smart features though.

I've owned one Vizio, from 2010, and I found the PQ to be terrible compared to any of the Sony's (or even Panasonics even which I think are mediocre except for their Plasmas) and I had to spend hours to get the colors to look even close to right. Both of the Sony's I've played with recently were almost perfectly color calibrated out of the box on the "cinema" or "custom" settings. I compared the same exact picture on them and on my professionally calibrated computer monitor and they look almost identical. Maybe Vizio has gotten better, but mine which was a E370VA (or a 371 I forget which) had some serious issues... Computer text was very unreadable on the HDMI inputs, it also had horrible banding and issues with jaggies. Then again it was a great deal back then on Black Friday sales and was a "value" 37" set.

Edit: More issues I had with the Vizio I forgot to mention.... The firmware was awful. It would randomly power off while I was adjusting picture settings. Also it locked out all of the important picture settings on the hdmi ports whenever anything was plugged into them. To calibrate it I literally had to unplug, change the settings slightly... plug it back in... rinse and repeat. It took me at least 5 hours to get it to look good on any particular hdmi input. Not only that each hdmi input looked different even with the same exact settings. When I called their tech support to ask for a firmware fix they just said I shouldn't question their almighty engineers. (The "engineers" in charge of that set's firmware should have been fired.) Unfortunately my health was bad then and I wasn't able to work a normal job, so I was very poor and I also didn't have the energy to return it and look for another set. Anyway, due to these issues and their smug tech support I will never buy another Vizio again.
Edited by damag0r - 11/6/12 at 1:27pm
post #15 of 32
Im very hard to offend. Disagreeing with someone is not cause for offense IMO.

Here is where LED has the advantage over CCFL.

They have a wider wavelength spectrum than MOST CCFL used in HDTV backlights. I think Sharp and maybe the others included extra wide spectrum CCFL's in a few of their high end models, years ago.
They run cooler.
They are more energy efficient.
They last longer.
They are true constant on lights....which may be highlighting the blur of the moving electro-mechanical lcd pixels, these days.

CCFL strobes at a 60Hz rate....I believe the frequency can be altered but there is no getting around the strobing.

I think CCFL is fine for use as a backlight. I just prefer LED. My comments above were prefaced with an IMO, In My Opinion.

Backlight scanning is still a work in progress, it's still too immature IMO....though I do think it has a bright future, pun intended. Losing half your lumen output needs to be rectified by more LEDs and of course powwer consumption goes up, which requires a more robust power supply, which is OK. Then there is perfecting the strobes themselves, apparently there are different methods being pursued currently. Im not down on Backlight Scanning, I just dont think the high prices for the emerging imperfect tech are worth it right now. That's a judgement call. You may disagree. We can agree to disagree.

Some of the ultra cheap smaller Vizios are what they are. They also put out some really great products, still value oriented in the larger sets.
Quote:
But every LCD TV I've owned has developed panel issues long before the backlights died.

Ive owned and still own 2 Vizios from 2006 and 2007 and both have zero panel issues. shrugs

The point of 120 Hz has to do with film and video cadence, dejuddering, video processing, reverse telecine, 5 to 5 pull down over 3 to 2 pull down, 24 fps film. I think 240 Hz may offer benefits to 3D, but for most 2D stuff, there is little benefit to be gained over 120Hz.. Though 120 Hz does offer clear benefits over 60 Hz with these issues I listed. 120 Hz also allows time for insertion of interpolated frames, black frames, etc. Greater than 120 Hz with regards to these issues offers rapidly diminishing returns.

As always, no offense, and in my humble opinion.

Best

EV
Edited by EscapeVelocity - 11/7/12 at 11:29pm
post #16 of 32
PS - Any list like I made in answer to the OP's querry was bound to be controversial with plenty of disagreement. But I dont mind discussing those disagreements. It helps everybody, especially noobs, learn. It even helps knowledgeable people learn. The Socratic Method! I include myself in that. Ive learned more from arguing with knowledgable people or listening to knowledgable people argue amongst themselves, than anything else.
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

PS - Any list like I made in answer to the OP's querry was bound to be controversial with plenty of disagreement. But I dont mind discussing those disagreements. It helps everybody, especially noobs, learn. It even helps knowledgeable people learn. The Socratic Method! I include myself in that. Ive learned more from arguing with knowledgable people or listening to knowledgable people argue amongst themselves, than anything else.

I wish more people around here had that attitude (and were also hard to offend wink.gif) Too often the discussions turn into pi$$ing matches because someones ego gets in the way and good information gets lost in the noise. It also deters noobs from asking questions (that's why we all came here in the first place, to learn) because they are afraid to anger the AVS gods.
post #18 of 32
EscapeVelocity.... maybe you are right about the Scanning/strobing backlight technology not being good yet. I'm pretty sure this "LED Motion Mode" on my Sony EX640 is this sort of feature and it really isn't helping any. I guess I was just hoping desperately I could get relief from noticing this motion issue inherent with all modern LCDs.

However, I still cannot tell the difference between a 60 and 120hz LCDs. I could sort of on CRTs... (I would usually run them at like 75hz on a monitor). I do not understand at all why anyone cares about 120hz over 60hz unless it is somehow needed for a good backlight motion clearing feature.
post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Otto Pylot View Post

I wish more people around here had that attitude (and were also hard to offend wink.gif) Too often the discussions turn into pi$$ing matches because someones ego gets in the way and good information gets lost in the noise. It also deters noobs from asking questions (that's why we all came here in the first place, to learn) because they are afraid to anger the AVS gods.

I discuss politics, religion and philosophy with people of wide ranging stripes. Technical discussions, even heated ones, pale in comparison to the bile and vitriol that can accompany such communications. Still, if you can learn to ignore the ugliness, there is much to be learned...and the exercise is not without it's rewards. You have to develop a pretty thick skin to pursue such discussion and interaction.
Edited by EscapeVelocity - 11/7/12 at 10:50pm
post #20 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by damag0r View Post

EscapeVelocity.... maybe you are right about the Scanning/strobing backlight technology not being good yet. I'm pretty sure this "LED Motion Mode" on my Sony EX640 is this sort of feature and it really isn't helping any. I guess I was just hoping desperately I could get relief from noticing this motion issue inherent with all modern LCDs.
However, I still cannot tell the difference between a 60 and 120hz LCDs. I could sort of on CRTs... (I would usually run them at like 75hz on a monitor). I do not understand at all why anyone cares about 120hz over 60hz unless it is somehow needed for a good backlight motion clearing feature.

Beware Of Phony LCD HDTV Refresh Rates


Search some of the terms that I threw out if you want to understand the deal with 120 Hz and 60 Hz and dejuddering.

Here is a google search of 3:2 pulldown, the first 3 hits are good sources. It's not the refresh rate per se that is important, but what that refresh rate allows you to do in the video processing to display native film material more correctly. That is what I am talking about.

While the refresh rate itself is beneficial with regards to motion blur, if that was the only benefit, then I would probably just recommend 60Hz as good enough. On top of the all this, 120 Hz allows the insertion of interpolated frames which can also be beneficial. 120 Hz really is worth paying money for over 60 Hz. That doesnt mean you cant live with 60 Hz. Both my sets are 60 Hz dinosaurs from 2006 and 2007.
Edited by EscapeVelocity - 11/7/12 at 11:09pm
post #21 of 32
I agree with you, if you're just watching movies, then the refresh rate doesn't matter nearly as much, but how they process 3:2 or handle 24p input, etc. Happened to notice that the original poster said "occasional movie", so that might not be a priority. And, for me, I want to use the display for interactive and fast-motion applications -- for example, sports, computers or video games -- so refresh matters a great deal. That said, the HDGuru article has some pieces of now-outdated info about the benefits of scanning backlights.

It's also true 120Hz has rapidly diminishing returns, so you need to do the big jump to 960Hz if you want startlingly clear benefit beyond 120Hz (Assuming material that meets (1) full framerate at input; (2) no built in motion blur in the frames; and (3) sufficient fast motion) -- "120Hz" has mathematically 50% less motion blur than 60Hz. Doubling it again, has 75% less motion blur. Keep doubling to 480, it's now 87.5% less motion blur. Then double one more times to 960Hz, and you've got mathematically 93.75% less motion blur than 60Hz (though CMR 960 and Sony Motionflow XR 960 comes nowhere this close, due to various limiting factors such as persistence, scanning backlight diffusion spreading between on-segments versus off-segments, motion interpolation algorithm limitations, etc). The point here being, the jump 120Hz->960Hz (43.75% addition motion blur eliminiation) has almost as big jump as the jump betwen 60Hz->120Hz (50% motion blur elimination). So if you go beyond 120Hz, don't bother going to 240 or 480 -- definitely go all the way to 960, for the massive upgrade, just to do an adequate jump in the graph of diminishing returns. As a result, mathematically, the 120->960 upgrade is nearly the same huge upgrade as the 60->120 upgrade ... The "960" can be emulated either via interpolated frames (true 960fps), or via 1/960sec strobes (black frame insertion or scanning backlight), or a combination thereof (e.g. 240fps interpolation, that are strobed with 1/960sec backlight flashes) -- that's the technique both Samsung and Sony does with their respective "960" rated displays, even though they often fall short of the actual measurments (much like contrast ratio exaggerations). CRT displays have a 1000 or 2000 "Hz equivalence" (not actual Hz, but motion resolution equivalence of a LCD running at X fps @ X Hz) due to their phosphor decay of 0.5-1.0 milliseconds; and it's only recently that technologies have been found to allow LCD to get into that ballpark equivalence.
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Beware Of Phony LCD HDTV Refresh Rates
In the past, most old scanning backlights don't do a good job of reducing motion blur - often only by an imperceptible ~25%. Since that HDGuru article was created, better scanning backlights have been made -- e.g. in Samsung CMR 960 and Sony Motionflow XR 960 displays. They benefit situations when you're running material that excel in motion clarity on CRT displays, which are (1) running full-framerate material (60fps), and (2) material that has no built-in motion blur (fast camera shutter, non-excessive compression, etc), and (3) the motion is very fast (e.g. alpine skiing races, red bull air races, NASCAR, fast football pans, etc). They don't benefit situations such as movies very much (except for things like projector style effect from strobes, etc).

I've got a FAQ about scanning backlights - presently, it's more geared towards the project I'm doing, but it's quite important to gain an understanding how the "ratings" like "Clear Motion Rate 960" came to being. In particular, read "Q: What is Samsung CMR 960 or Sony Motionflow XR 960?" ... They are sometimes viewed as marketing exaggerations by some reviewers. Measurements often show that they do not reflect real-world benchmarks (e.g. similiar exaggeration problem exists in contrast ratio claims versus actual measurement). However, there’s a honest actual scientific basis behind these numbers (it was very interesting when I figured out why they came up with the numbers), but measured numbers fall short of actual rating -- much like contrast ratio exaggerations. However, the science is sound and there is much improvement that can be done.

In the long term, a scanning backlight that equals CRT quality (without motion interpolation), needs approximately 150 watts per square foot (at current LED efficiencies), for the short single phosphor-style strobes required every frame, so scanning backlights optimized to run sequentially (CRT emulation scan pattern, at least at the millisecond granularity -- segment at a time, not scanline at a time) for motion blur reduction, are extremely challenging to create cheaply. Phosphor illuminates amazingly brightly on a CRT for a tiny time period, so backlights that simulate phosphor illumination, for as short as time period, to achieve the flicker stroboscopic sharpening of motion (ala CRT), need to be as bright as phosphor during a brief flash. 150 watts per square foot of LED backlight is incredibly expensive to manufacture -- imagine putting 800 watts of LED in a 47" HDTV (even if short strobes means it still averages out to 40 watts). In addition, the introduction of modern 120Hz 3D LCD's have enabled pixel persistence to be less than a frame of refresh (since they must refresh incredibly fast between frames while both shutters are closed during the first few milliseconds of a refresh), allowing an opportunity to completely bypass pixel persistence as the motion blur barrier (just keep it in total darkness), and strobe the backlight when the pixel persistence is practically (99%+) gone (Zero Motion Blur LCD!). This prerequisite has opened the door to ultrahigh-peformance scanning backlights to be possible (once wattage is cheap enough). So my experiments are being started on a small 3D-compatible LCD panel glass (modified 23" 3D 120Hz computer monitor, Asus VG236H or Samsung S23A700D) through my Arduino-powered scanning backlight project (project is on my BlurBusters Blog). You see many CRT users still using direct-view's in the Direct-View Forum because of excellent motion resolution. Some people hate the flicker, but my system is geared towards computer and at 120Hz native PC signal (which doesn't flicker to most people) -- for near-zero-added-input-lag motion blur elimination -- something that can't be done with interpolation (adds massive input lag). Obviously a niche "videogamer videophile" application, but interesting science behind it all. (See Science & References).

Ultrahigh-performance scanning backlights scientifically optimized for motion blur elimination (90-95% motion blur elimination for the "perfect CRT-style sharp motion on LCD") are not yet available in any HDTV or computer monitors yet today, but I am hoping manufacturers will begin introducing this (at least as a configurable "High Peformance Game Mode" setting). Albiet a niche for high-motion-resolution enthusiasts, it is applicable to both desktop monitors and full-screen HDTV's. Then, this indeed, will be a "feature worth buying" for computer users and video gamers looking for a high end LCD display that has no visible motion blur, without the input lag of motion interpolation. Until then, other attributes that you already mentioned -- your list is an excellent list of criteria.
Edited by Mark Rejhon - 11/8/12 at 12:17am
post #22 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Im very hard to offend. Disagreeing with someone is not cause for offense IMO.
Here is where LED has the advantage over CCFL.
They have a wider wavelength spectrum than MOST CCFL used in HDTV backlights. I think Sharp and maybe the others included extra wide spectrum CCFL's in a few of their high end models, years ago.
They run cooler.
They are more energy efficient.
They last longer.
They are true constant on lights....which may be highlighting the blur of the moving electro-mechanical lcd pixels, these days.
CCFL strobes at a 60Hz rate....I believe the frequency can be altered but there is no getting around the strobing.
I think CCFL is fine for use as a backlight. I just prefer LED. My commentes above were prefaced with an IMO, In My Opinion.
Backlight scanning is still a work in progress, it's still too immature IMOy..
EV

All good points, but you might look a bit more into the actual frequency that CCFL lights are illuminated with. The frequency used to light CCFL lamps or even Compact Florescent lamps for general lighting is no longer 60HZ for the most part. You might be assuming it is 60HZ since in the past, most florescent lamps used the raw 60HZ line voltage to run ballasts to the lamps. These days, inverters in CCFL TVs and even in Compact Florescent lights use higher frequencies not only to increase effeciency, but also gain more light output and/or more even spectrum. In many case, CCFL lamps use anywhere from 200HZ to 600HZ to light the bulbs.

As for LEDs, I agree that a full array or Direct Lit limited array such as Samsung uses on the EH TV series, now provides more efficient and even lighting. I'm not a fan of uneven edge lit.
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Beware Of Phony LCD HDTV Refresh Rates
.

I might ad, beware of phony anything. wink.gif

Some of this discussion of so called scanned LED back light leaves much to be desired and may verge on a gimmick as some members have commented in the past. Videos taken of a TV supposedly using "scanning" may be no more than the TV inverter circuits controlling the back light output and "beating" with camera shutter speed or frame rate. . . . not actually any scanning. There are lots of ways to fool or mislead the general public.
Edited by Phase700B - 11/8/12 at 6:51am
post #23 of 32
Thanks for the corrected info and comments Phase700B. I allowed for variation of the strobe to different frequency in my post, but did not know the specifics.
post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

It's not the refresh rate per se that is important, but what that refresh rate allows you to do in the video processing to display native film material more correctly. That is what I am talking about.
While the refresh rate itself is beneficial with regards to motion blur, if that was the only benefit, then I would probably just recommend 60Hz as good enough. On top of the all this, 120 Hz allows the insertion of interpolated frames which can also be beneficial. 120 Hz really is worth paying money for over 60 Hz. That doesnt mean you cant live with 60 Hz. Both my sets are 60 Hz dinosaurs from 2006 and 2007.

This is very true. My set is 120Hz but I think a lot of people don't like the way motion interpolation is implemented because it results in the SOE which some absolutely hate (or love). Some sets do a better job than others. I only use motion interpolation (TruMotion for LG tv's) for television and at a low setting. For movies (BD/DVD) I turn it off so that each frame is displayed twice (no artificial frame insertion) or for blu-rays, my tv will display the format in native 24p to preserve the natural 5:5 cadence.
post #25 of 32
Mark,

I doubt this is the best thread to ask this in, but since you seem to be the local expert on LCD motion blur. Could backlight brightness affect how badly the previous "steps" of motion stick on one's retina, so to speak? I dumped my backlight way down to "minimum" on this KDL-EX640... and suddenly the motionflow settings actually help with the blur to me now, and in general I notice the blur less. It's about how it was with my old TV. I'm thinking the LED backlight is just a lot more "intense".

The black frame insertion dims the picture more, but helps less than just simply dumping the backlight setting down to minimum without even entering BFI into the equation.

Have any explanation for this, or do you think I've just relaxed more now that I know there's not much I can do about it and I'm not actively looking so hard for it?

I noticed that the default backlight setting on this set actually makes me a little dizzy... at the minimum setting I don't get this effect at all.

To be honest I watch a lot of animated content, and it seems the type of blur I notice which is less "blur" and more like seeing "residual steps", because of the nature of animated content brings this effect out more than anything else.... as I was explaining in another thread... what I'm noticing isn't so much "blur" as seeing residual "steps" of motion. Of course I notice it with all types of source content, it's just the most noticeable to me on animated content.

It makes motion look "choppy" so to speak. I hope I'm making sense.

Of course bad animation can make things look "choppy", but it's the transition between each "step" that appears strangely on LCDs to me. It's like I can still see a couple of steps behind at times.

I don't remember ever noticing these "residual steps" on CRTs.
Edited by damag0r - 11/9/12 at 4:50am
post #26 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phase700B View Post

Some of this discussion of so called scanned LED back light leaves much to be desired and may verge on a gimmick as some members have commented in the past. Videos taken of a TV supposedly using "scanning" may be no more than the TV inverter circuits controlling the back light output and "beating" with camera shutter speed or frame rate. . . . not actually any scanning. There are lots of ways to fool or mislead the general public.
Correct -- you need to check specs that it's an actual scanning backlight (e.g. existing displays. However, LED's do not use inverters (that's for CCFL). LED's drivers are often PWM-controlled (pulse width modulation) for brightness control. High-speed video of the vast majority of LED PWM is a full-screen pulsating effect, so there's no "horizontal" effect between LED PWM and camera. Most "local dimming" displays (for enhancing contrast) are matrix controlled LED's (like a low resolution LED image behind the LCD glass), and those matrix controlled LED's presents opportunities for electronics to also sequentially scan-illuminate the LED's too -- the technique used in some high-end HDTV's. Even HD Guru acknowledges that there's /some/ minor improvement by backlight control techniques. Their skeptical quote is "At best, they are at least double the true number." (see last paragraph in their article). Credit where credit is due, even for a skeptic.

Also see manufacturer claims:
From Sony website (sony.com): “The model also features Sony’s MotionFlow XR 960 featuring a precise backlight control that is synchronized with the liquid crystal movement from frame to frame creating clearer, sharper moving images.”
From Samsung website (samsung.com): “Backlight technology: Samsung’s backlight regulates output precisely in synchronization with the screen refresh to lessen the time it is lit, reducing ghosting and motion blur.”
From Elite(tm) HDTV website (elitelcdtv.com): “FluidMotion, which combines an advanced frame creation system with unique scanning backlight technology, to create a greater than 240Hz effect – improving picture clarity and smoothness in movies and sports content.”
Panasonic's Own YouTube 1600Hz Scanning Backlight presentation. "scanning backlight" from Panasonic's mouth. (Though I need to study it more closely, to figure out if their diagram is inaccurate. For good motion resolution improvement: Only one segment should be illuminated at a time in their YouTube, rather than multiple esgments illuminated while only a few segments turned off. If the Panasonic HDTV sequential scanning operates according to the digram, motion resolution will NOT improve much.)

See? Words from actual manufacturers. Exaggerated claims in many cases (like contrast ratio), but the science is sound. Much like everyone agrees that local dimming improves contrast ratio, even though the manufacturer claimed contrast ratio are exaggerations. My duty is to call out the manufacturers on these exaggerations, while preserving the science. Even HD Guru agrees they do provide /some/ perceived motion resolution improvement.
Edited by Mark Rejhon - 11/9/12 at 10:12am
post #27 of 32
Good question. In fact, your question is actually not actually offtopic.
There are many people who like LCD much more than plasma, while hating LCD motion blur. So this kind of falls into "what features are worth paying for?"
Quote:
Originally Posted by damag0r View Post

...since you seem to be the local expert on LCD motion blur. Could backlight brightness affect how badly the previous "steps" of motion stick on one's retina, so to speak? I dumped my backlight way down to "minimum" on this KDL-EX640... and suddenly the motionflow settings actually help with the blur to me now, and in general I notice the blur less. It's about how it was with my old TV. I'm thinking the LED backlight is just a lot more "intense".
That's usually a side effect of the method of LED dimming. LED dimming use a pulse-width-modulation (PWM) method -- turning on/off LED's rapidly (at hundreds or thousands of Hz). The dimmer the LED's, the shorter the flashes. Shorter PWM strobes reduces motion blur. Even if it's multiple PWM strobes per refresh, there's still less blurring (at the expense of introducing double/triple/quadruple frame effect, for low-frequency PWM), even if motion resolution is not enhanced nearly as much when doing one strobe per refresh.
Quote:
The black frame insertion dims the picture more, but helps less than just simply dumping the backlight setting down to minimum without even entering BFI into the equation.
Doing both at the same time, actually has a huge effect. By necessity, LED PWM has to work in conjunction with backlight control techniques (black frame, scanning backlight, etc). It's a side effect of PWM dimming that benefits motion resolution -- dimmer backlight can lead to reduced motion blurring. (Apparently, this can also happens to some plasmas too -- when they compress the subfield refreshes into a shorter period during a dimmed picture setting). If you are using certain backlight settings in an LED-backlit LCD HDTV (if it is few strobes, or just one strobe per refresh), then reducing the brightness shortens that strobe, so a 50% dimmer setting sometimes leads to a 50% reduction in motion blur. So combining a strobed backlight, with a brightness reduction, also leads to significantly less motion blurring.

For your display -- temporarily turn off black frame insertion. You'll notice that dimming the picture is not as effective in reducing motion blur, as combining black frame insertion AND reducing brightness setting. When you do both at the same time, you get much less blurring.
Quote:
Have any explanation for this, or do you think I've just relaxed more now that I know there's not much I can do about it and I'm not actively looking so hard for it?
It's a real effect. It doesn't happen to all LED HDTV's (especially if they use high-frequency PWM that does many dozens of strobes per refresh (to the point where there's no equivalent of black frames, accidential or intentional). But if the PWM is sufficiently low frequency, or if the PWM dimming is integrated with the black frame (by necessity), you'll clearly get noticeably reduced motion blur.
Quote:
I noticed that the default backlight setting on this set actually makes me a little dizzy... at the minimum setting I don't get this effect at all.
To be honest I watch a lot of animated content, and it seems the type of blur I notice which is less "blur" and more like seeing "residual steps", because of the nature of animated content brings this effect out more than anything else.... as I was explaining in another thread... what I'm noticing isn't so much "blur" as seeing residual "steps" of motion. Of course I notice it with all types of source content, it's just the most noticeable to me on animated content.
This is normal. PWM dimming often reduces blurring and adds the stepping effect, so you are describing exactly the effect of PWM dimming of LED's. The stepping effect is reduced if you're using full framerate material, and the stepping effect is eliminated if it's one PWM strobe (or sequential scan) per refresh. (my backlight project)

The summarization: It's true that /some/ LED HDTV's have less motion blur at reduced brightness settings -- especially if adjusting brightness is also additionally combined with their black frame insertion/backlight scan settings. Depending on what you want, this is worthwhile feature.

So that means -- LED-backlight LCD displays that has reduced motion blur at reduced brightness settings, are appealing to people who run their display in a darker room anyway. The reduced motion blur makes the stepping effect more visible (Some people like that projector effect, some people hate it), unless it's full framerate material and one strobe per refresh (For that "CRT motion" zero-stepping zero-blur effect; very challenging for backlights to do with a bright picture). The problem is reviewer tests do not generally check for motion resolution changes at high-brightness versus low-brightness settings, combined with each different backlight setting. They interact with each other in surprising ways. Depending on what you want, this is a worthwhile feature.
Edited by Mark Rejhon - 11/9/12 at 1:32pm
post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon View Post

Correct -- you need to check specs that it's an actual scanning backlight (e.g. existing displays. However, LED's do not use inverters (that's for CCFL).


CORECT. Only CCFL use inverters which is what I was addressing to the particular poster [SEE POST # 15] . An assumption on your part that I applied it to LEDs.



LED's drivers are often PWM-controlled (pulse width modulation) for brightness control.

CORRECT. PWM for BRIGHTNESS CONTROL. .. . not Scanning LEDs. Whitch is confusing in all your profuse dialog in many , many threads now, as you seem to mix what is just PWM pulsing of LEDs for BRIGHTNESS control with so called scanning.



High-speed video of the vast majority of LED PWM is a full-screen pulsating effect, so there's no "horizontal" effect between LED PWM and camera. Most "local dimming" displays (for enhancing contrast) are matrix controlled LED's (like a low resolution LED image behind the LCD glass), and those matrix controlled LED's presents opportunities for electronics to also sequentially scan-illuminate the LED's too -- the technique used in some high-end HDTV's.

The fallacy I see in using high speed video of LED back lit LED panels is that the camera may only be showing the the result of the PWM back light BRiGHTNESS . . . not SCANNING.


Exaggerated claims in many cases (like contrast ratio), but the science is sound. Much like everyone agrees that local dimming improves contrast ratio, even though the manufacturer claimed contrast ratio are exaggerations. My duty is to call out the manufacturers on these exaggerations, while preserving the science. Even HD Guru agrees they do provide /some/ perceived motion resolution improvement.

The question I have is whether the tact you are taking is "calling out manufacturers on exaggerations" or contributing to it (or merely adding more questionable technology), and not really science. Pardons again, but I've seen to many times where folks just , let's say , are creative in making an opportunity with little or no benefit other than to themselves and some profit.


There is no question that the use of artificial use of back light control to simulate a higher contrast and/or blur reduction can and does mislead the buying public. Also, this technology often contributes well stated negative effects. Likewise, the "effects of some sort of sequential " scanning, if it is in fact really being implemented, is also in question as to it's value ( see HG Guru. . "some perceived effect").


No offense, but there is so much dialog in so many of your posts, it comes across as extreme "Hard Sell" accompanied by too much information often conflicting and going back and forth pro/con. . . . pro/con leaving an impression of what the real intent is. The bottom line is manipulation of LED back light control for LCD panels has some benefit to improve apparent contrast ratio, but not without negative effects. Overall, even an LCD with a good 60HZ unadulterated, full or partial direct lit LED array and S-PVA panel gives decent black level/contrast ratio along with acceptable viewing angle and no question of whether the TV owner paid for some questionable technology with added artifacts or negative picture qualities.
Edited by Phase700B - 11/10/12 at 9:16am
post #29 of 32
Quote:
CORRECT. PWM for BRIGHTNESS CONTROL. .. . not Scanning LEDs. Whitch is confusing in all your profuse dialog in many , many threads now, as you seem to mix what is just PWM pulsing of LEDs for BRIGHTNESS control with so called scanning.
TV manufacturers have to integrate the two. If it wasn't integrated properly, PWM would interfere with backlight techniques of improving motion blur. PWM can, and does, intentionally and/or unintentionally contribute to motion blur by adding multi-frame effects and reducing motion blur -- this is clearly seen in motion test patterns. A smart manufacturer integrates behaviours of both, so that they run in synchrony with each other, so that PWM benefits rather than interferes. All the strobing considerations interact with each other. Both PWM (for dimming) and impulse-driving (for motion blur elimination) both requires strobe illumination, and therefore, must be designed in consideration with each other.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phase700B View Post

No offense, but there is so much dialog in so many of your posts, it comes across as extreme "Hard Sell" accompanied by too much information often conflicting and going back and forth pro/con. . . .
I have not posted any conflicting information -- it is just a matter of misinterpretation. I do say a lot of generalities -- e.g. "phosphor decay is about 1ms". When in reality, it varies a lot -- and phosphor decay is quite nonlinear. Sometimes I write so fast, that I word in a way that is easily misinterpreted. Point the conflicting information out, either publicly, privately. I am guilty of derailing a few threads, of course, so sometimes I have to compromise between providing more explanations (to an otherwise complex science) or fewer explanations (to dumb things down).
Quote:
No offense, but there is so much dialog in so many of your posts, it comes across as extreme "Hard Sell" accompanied by too much information often conflicting and going back and forth pro/con. . . .
I'm just passionate about defending real sience, while being fair to pro/con. You have tried to punch a lot of holes. It's like the 90's where people were debating whether the human eye could tell apart 30fps versus 60fps, or the other threads a decade ago about not believing rainbow artifacts exists.

I'm a hobbyist, I have started a project, open-source, to fill a need that manufacturers have not yet addressed.
Quote:
Overall, even an LCD with a good 60HZ unadulterated, full or partial direct lit LED array and S-PVA panel gives decent black level/contrast ratio along with acceptable viewing angle and no question of whether the TV owner paid for some questionable technology with added artifacts or negative picture qualities.
Agreed. I'm being fair that there is no display solution to solve all problems. I'm not becoming a display manufacturer, but modifying a display to achieve an objective that manufacturers are not achieving for a specific niche of fast-motion gaming/computer use. So it is not a profit motive that drives me in the regards of scanning backlights, but actual observations combined with engineering knowledge, to meet a specific need. There is no one display that fits all.

Several have noticed the benefits/disadvantages of scanning backlights already if they go with LCD - even if others may disagree with them. What makes me different is that I'm one of the few who have the engineering skills to realize how they work, what the shortcomings are, and how they can be improved for a certain purpose, and also to realize that the algorithms behind a scanning backlights is compatible with computer/gaming use (little added input lag). It is quite useful for computer/gaming use when designed in a specific way. I designed video processing algorithms -- including the world's first open-source 3:2 pulldown deinterlacer, which John Adcock integrated into dScaler. So see, I'm just a hobbyist with good knowledge. For the territory, I clearly know and see the benefits, and know (as an engineer) how to optimize around many of the limitations. I used to be the Moderator of the Home Theater Computers forum here at AVSFORUM from 1999-2002, having helped launch AVS, before I moved on. My posts are honest. If you misinterpreted one of my posts, or if I misworded one of them, I can help reconcile the conflicting information. They are conflicting only because you believe them to be conflicting -- perfect example is both PWM *and* scanning backlight both involve "flashing" -- and are forced to be integrated carefully with each other if you design both in the same LCD display. All other of your misinterpretation will be clearly explained. Send me a PM.

There's a lot of niche demand for less motion blur by computer/game users, just visit the CRT forum here at AVS, or visit the high-end enthusiast gaming forums (e.g. HardOCP) where some users are using Sony FW900 24" CRT's and still pay over $200 (in year 2012) for a used high-rated widescreen CRT. First, and foremost, this is a hobby. The display I'm modifying as hobby, would be of more interest to such an audience, than to the audience in this thread. Eventually I hope to visit some convention (QuakeCon?) with my homebrew prototype, and 'show it off' -- and maybe convince a few manufacturers to start addressing this "niche" market of a near-zero or zero-motion-blur LCD for the gaming/computer market.

To you, my replies are long, only because you disbelieve a beneficial effect to even exist, for impulse-driving versus sample-and-hold. I've continued to be fair about the tradeoffs. The tradooffs exist for all sorts of technologies (some people won't do DLP because of rainbows, while others prefer DLP). It's like denying the difference between LCD and plasma, denying that rainbow artifacts exist, denying that human eyes can tell 30fps versus 60fps exists, etc. In year 1993, I created a motion test program that compared 30fps and 60fps -- and won the argument -- the MS-DOS program is still downloadable at my old (ancient) website at http://www.marky.com/programming/ (second file -- MOTION.ZIP, includes QuickBasic source code, running 30fps and 60fps side by side). That's how passionate I am, in proving that I'm right -- throughout the years, including my programming of video processors and watching test patterns over two decades, I became an expert in display motion.

But, let's move this type of discussion off this thread, because it's becoming non-relevant to this thread.

To others, apologies for derailing this thread.
Edited by Mark Rejhon - 11/10/12 at 12:03pm
post #30 of 32
Bump for the Christmas shoppers...
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