Originally Posted by Michael TLV
...Contrast ratios get better on the TVs with every successive generation. For better viewing in a room with a lot of ambient light, look for displays with matte finishes rather than glossy/plexiglass fronts. Sharp uses matte finishes ... Sony does too. Samsung and LG seem to like glossy surfaces more....
This technical paper
contains a section graphically demonstrating screen reflection types, taken from an old article produced by the Flat Panel Display Laboratory, at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), titled: 'Tips On Buying A New Flat Panel Display.'
What it demonstrates is how anti-glare screen treatments cannot completely eliminate reflections, and introduce their own unique types of image interference. The more effective types of treatments or screen compositions to fight ambient light use a dark filter as one element in their construction. However, this reduces light output from the display as a consequence. We cannot defy the laws of physics, even though some marketing departments would like us to think they can. Not mentioning the side effects or consequences does not mean they don't exist.
Understanding what goes on in a video viewing environment allows us to choose how and when to juggle unavoidable compromises. Glossy screens can preserve maximum black level, contrast ratio, detail, and color saturation in controlled environments. In other words, they may not perform as well in a lighter viewing environment, but are superior in darkened viewing conditions, with the minimal light sources located strategically. This can be done in multi-purpose rooms if desired. The video system does not have to be in a dedicated room, as long as the room design is carried out intelligently for minimizing consequences during viewing sessions.
There has not yet been a video display invented that is impervious to ambient lighting. The so-called "black" projection screens on the market all have their own unique characteristics that can interfere with image quality. Some manufacturers offer outright false claims to the contrary. Even if the majority of a display owner's viewing is conducted in higher ambient light conditions, there are times at night when viewing is more critical. The finest subtleties and details in cinematic art are typically appreciated in movies, rather than sporting events, video games, reality shows, news programs, etc. Personally, I would rather have a display optimized for critical viewing in a darkened environment, than for "day" sessions when a more casual viewing of less critical programming is the rule. I would rather take extra measures to control the viewing environment to accommodate the display's performance than the reverse. Many display owners don't place a higher priority on image quality than room characteristics. That's a choice that fits their lifestyle and order of value.
Of course, this is not a strict either/or controversy, but a sliding scale that spans from the ideal to cataclysmic compromise of viewing quality. Education in imaging science fundamentals allows the video system designer, and/or owner, to reach the best balance of priorities and results. Trial and error experimentation might get one to the best result, but education in the theoretical principles involved helps focus and expedite the process in almost all cases. From the old CRT to the newest 4K OLED TV or laser projection system: black level, contrast ratio, color saturation, perceived color accuracy, etc. will all be compromised by conflicting viewing environment conditions in varying degrees. These are all reasons why a calibrated "day mode" only minimizes compromises, rather than fully compensating for them.
Best regards and beautiful pictures,
G. Alan Brown, President
A Lion AV Consultants affiliate
"Advancing the art and science of electronic imaging"Edited by GeorgeAB - 8/18/13 at 12:27pm