Originally Posted by Dan54
Since I don't have a blu ray burner, I guess I should use AVCHD or PATCHED.
Is one easier or better to use than the other, avchd or patched?
Some players will only play one of the two versions, so refer to the Blu-ray players list. The Patched version has a few additional features listed in the downloads area if your player supports both, but generally the AVCHD will have better compatibility with a larger number of players.
And they're very small files under 60mb compared to DVE which I think is about 6gb. What am I missing if anything that DVE does?
Like mentioned in the introduction, one thing DVE has is audio patterns. The patterns are highly compressed, and the Blu-ray related versions unpack to over 2GB.
When I calibrate, does it matter which picture mode the tv is currently set to, ie, standard, movie or dynamic?
Not really, but some displays will perform slightly differently depending on the mode. To get more information on that sort of thing, and some of your other questions, a thread in the flat panels area might give more info on the available settings for your model TV. Sometimes reviews for a TV will also give information on specific controls.
When I calibrate, is it meant to be one setting for all sources, SD and HD?
Grayscale is expected to match. If your electronics handle things correctly then color should also match. Generally though you need a DVD calibration disk if you want to be sure and double check how your electronics perform, because for example it's possible that my computer can handle SD and HD differently.
Also, backlight, where exactly should it be? I mean it looks good to me anywhere between 7 and 10.
This somewhat depends on room lighting. Generally a higher setting will output more light, so both black and white are brighter at higher settings. If you watch in dim room lighting then the more light output for black can be an issue, and it may be beneficial to reduce backlight. On the other hand a backlight that is too low will make whites too dim.
Generally I would suggest setting black-level (brightness) to the lowest setting where 17 flashes. Set white-level (contrast) to a high setting so that only a few bars over 235 flash if possible (depends on display). Then set backlight depending on room lighting. Generally a lower backlight setting will help if you need to make near-blacks darker, and a higher setting will help if you need to make near-whites brighter. If you want for black to appear darker while still having a high backlight for brighter whites, then more light in the room may help to make the darkest shades appear darker.
Do I need to buy a colour meter tool?
The main advantage is that it gives you a reference for setting red, green, and blue in the grayscale, if your display allows you to alter the grayscale in that way (white balance). Gamma - how light increases between black and white - is easier to look at with a meter, and again not all displays will be able to adjust gamma. The meter will also give you an estimate of how bright white gets, which some suggest to use for setting backlight for example, but generally I use personal preference rather than the reported light output. I've read that some Samsungs have a blue mode for setting color controls, but if not then a meter offers an alternate to using a blue filter to set color and tint. I've also found a meter interesting because it allowed me to get a better idea of what was changing when I tried settings that weren't described well in my TV's manual. Anyway the main point is that a meter will allow for more fine-tuning of the display to suggested performance beyond what the Basic Settings area allow, but it certainly takes some time to learn to use.