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HC4900 Tweakers and Calibration Thread

post #1 of 104
Thread Starter 
Ok everyone it is high time that we had a thread for this wonderful 1080p offering from Mitsubishi with everyone buying them, and since I'm installing mine within the next week I will be posting my results very soon. I would ask for the benefit of all that we keep the discussion focused on the 4900 as there are threads for all of the other major pj's already started. There is a great deal of potential with this pj and it will take time and experimentation to get the best settings so let's get started!

The HC4900 is essentially an HC5000 minus the HQV processing and 1080p/24 compatibility - so it will accept a 1080p/24 signal but it converts it to 1080p/60. The contrast ratio is also rated a little lower but many feel it is very, very close if not equal to the 5000. It is a brighter projector than the HC5000 and the HC6000 making it good for larger screens (120-159"). The HC4900 is HDMI v1.2 so while no reviewer considered it an issue affecting picture quality that may be something that is important to you. This projector is a perfect choice for anyone with native sources 1080i & 1080p through cable, blu-ray/hd-dvd, PC use (will do 1920x1080), and upscaled dvd content. It does not have a 2.35 CIH option but it can be zoomed to eliminate the black bars on anamorphic content.

There is a $500 rebate through 3/31/08 which brings the price to $1328-$1499 depending on who you buy from - please search for the best deal at the time you plan to purchase as vendors constantly change prices up and down.


Manufacturers link for the HC4900 ** Product spec sheet, owners manual, and rebate form available through this link **

http://www.mitsubishi-hometheater.com/hc4900.asp


Video links explaining differences between HC4900 / HC5000 / HC6000

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/807281...00_projectors/
http://techvideoblog.com/ifa/mitsubi...ic-projectors/


Professional reviews for the HC4900

http://www.projectorcentral.com/mits...me_theater.htm ** 5-star Editor's Choice Award **
http://www.projectorreviews.com/mits...4900/index.php ** Hot Product Award **
http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/hdt...projector.html


Reviews from other forum members

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post12738853
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...9#post12618799
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post12690747


Information to order dust filter from the HC6000 (prevent dust blobs better!)

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...r#post13341879


Calculator for general overall setup and configuartion possibilities:

http://www.carltonbale.com/ht/calcul...lator_v3.6.xls


Throw distance calculator link for the HC4900:

http://www.projectorcentral.com/Mits...ulator-pro.htm


I used this angle calculator to plan my setup accordingly:

http://www.1728.com/angsize.htm


Excellent screen gain calculator found here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=966057



Please post the following if possible:

1) Screen size, type, gain, color (white, grey), etc.

2) Room setup (dimensions) and conditions (in regards to ambient light)

3) Ceiling mount or shelf/table mount

4) Detailed settings including any explanations for specific changes you found helpful

5) Additions such as ND filter, anamorphic lens, etc. which you may be using or have tried along with your findings

6) Pictures of your setup!



If you guys think of other things please let me know and I will modify the post to accomodate the most detailed header possible. Best of luck to all

Chris
post #2 of 104
Thread Starter 
My setup is as follows:

1) Da-Lite Hi-Power 159" Electric Screeen with built-in trigger

2) 17' x 23' light controlled room

3) Ceiling mounted - NPL series from mount direct with 42" pole. Ceiling height is 120" and center of lens should be 72" from the floor. For reference I anticipate center of the screen will be at 66" or only about 6" lower than the lens. I will set up so that there is virtually zero horizontal lens shift.

4) COMING SOON!

5) Nothing planned yet but stay tuned!

6) Pictures to come
post #3 of 104
Thank you for starting this thread. I believe it is time for us who are keeping this wonderful projector to help get the most out of it. I am growing weary of the "owners" thread or should I say "former owners" thread.
post #4 of 104
i am using it on a 97 inch behr silver screen painted wall. It is ceiling mounted in a room with some ambient light during the day. I am thinking about going to a high power screen, even though it is ceiling mounted I should see some benifit
post #5 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by osilee View Post

Thank you for starting this thread. I believe it is time for us who are keeping this wonderful projector to help get the most out of it. I am growing weary of the "owners" thread or should I say "former owners" thread.


Yes I agree with you that those who love this fine unit need a helpful place to share calibration and setup info together. It is for those who want to maximize the performance of it as I personally believe the HC4900 is the best deal in front projection right now with the $500 rebate.

Just a couple potentially useful side notes - I found the best price on the Da-Lite screen at finalclick.com and I am using the NPL series mount from mountdirect.com - I got a custom length extension made out of 1.5" NPT pipe at the Home Depot which works perfectly with the mount I bought.

This way I can ceiling mount while hiding the wires and cables and still shoot near straight on to the center of the screen. I talked to a very helpful rep at Da-Lite and he said with the high power that if I could keep the seating within 18 degrees of the reflection back off the center of the screen I would really get a nice ** POP ** out of the picture.
post #6 of 104
First off, I raised my projector by shortening the extension. Because I have a 119" High Power screen, this eliminated most of the increased gain of the fabric. I would estimate that it is now a 1.3-1.5 gain at most (too tired to calculate tonight).

The 77mm Tiffen ND .3 filter is mounted at an angle to decrease internal reflection (which reduces contrast). Coated ND filters will decrease the possibility of reflection.

My settings are as follows:


Gama: Auto
Contrast 7
Bright 0
Color 0
Tint 0
Sharp -3

COLOR TEMP: USER
Contrast
R -3
G 3
B 0

BRIGHT
R 0
G 2
B 2

Auto Iris 2
NR on
Input level normal
Low Lamp Mode
Setup off
Computer Input Auto
Overscan 100%



Auto Iris 2 seems to improve dark scenes when compared to Auto 1. However, Auto 2 is visibly slower and can often be noticed. Auto 1 does not appear to be as effective but is not as visible in action.

Noise reduction eliminates most of the noise from clean sources that should otherwise not be noisy.

Careful with setup: 3.75% and 7.5% may really crush the blacks and eliminate otherwise good shadow detail.


To prevent dust blobs, I'm using a Bissel Style 8 HEPA filter, cut in half and mounted over the filter cover. Lamp and internal temps remain the same with it's use. For anyone considering adding the HEPA. The lamp temperature after 3 hours use was 64 deg C and internal temp measured 36 deg C when using the filter. Fan mode started at 14 and stayed around 24-25.

After 6 hours straight use: Lamp temp was 63 deg C and Internal temp was 37 deg C while fan speed stayed at 25

To check:

go to MENU POSITION, then on remote hit AUTO POSITION->ENTER->AUTO POSITION


1/16/08 filter update: Used flattened out hepa paper from filter and placed inside the filetr cover: Internal temp: 32 deg C and Lamp 63deg C with fan at 12-15.



Also, I am masking my 119" screen for 2.35:1 films. For me, this is a must. The bars are very gray and distracting. There is a night and day difference in the viewing experience when masking.
post #7 of 104
Robz,

so are you going to keep the 4900 or go for the 6000?
post #8 of 104
In case this helps anyone with their tweak settings I just posted this in the 4900 owners thread:
=======================
Ok,
So I started messing around with settings a bit more and increased by black level quite a bit. First I used Robz setting as a base which worked well, then I remembered, at least on my source (PS3) the HDMI settings.

Under "Display Settings -> RGB Full Range HDMI" there are two settings, one is limited and the other is full. Just for fun mine was set to limited (for my television) and I changed it to "Full" which immediately blacked everything up (a bit crushing IMO) then on the PJ I changed my "Input Level" to "Enhanced" and that really added some black and brought back the detail. Its a very visible switch between the two "Full and Limited" setting for my HDMI line.

Perhaps what we are dealing with is some sources sending "limited" signals vs. "full"? (Possibly burried in their menus?) Still don't know if this is "inky" enough for some but I think it added a whole other shade level that might help a few out. And i'm sure this will only help those with a PS3 as a source but who knows if other sources have this option.
post #9 of 104
Thanks for starting this thread. I'll be trying out some of these settings myself tonight.
You guys are great!
post #10 of 104
Thanks for the thread.. I look forward to tweaking mine!

My setup includes a 110" Htdepot electric screen with a 1.3 gain 106" viewable. I am projecting from a distance of 12'. (plenty of zoom left) The projector is ceiling mounted using a chief universal mount for vaulted ceilings.

I hope to purchase some sort of calibration tool / software but I must admit I am still a noob when it comes to pj's . But I learn fast and I am a network admin so I am defiantly computer / electronic savvy.
post #11 of 104
Is there some way to make this thread a "sticky?"

I would like to see this back on the first page.
post #12 of 104
Had mine 8 days. Seems like I'm changing my settings every 5-10 hours of viewing and also very source dependent for me. If you want to adjust to the basic settings suggested on an AVIA DVD, it doesn't need much adjustment out of the box. If you want you picture to look appealing to you, then you may need to do more than that. I have not come up with a universal setting I am happy with.

I set everything to RobZ settings last night and most sources looked pretty good except I do not have a screen with his gain so I upped my brightness about 5.

I watched football last Sunday and set Color Temp to High Brightness and then messed with the other settings until the color was not so blue/cool and it looked great also.

I also found a way to increase my black levels - I surf AVS with a white background on my lap top and when I look up at my screen 12 feet way - the black levels look better for awhile - now if I could figure out how to keep the iris of my eye closed down I'd be about where I want.
post #13 of 104
With the HEPA filter flattened out and placed inside the cover, do you leave the original foam filter in place? If so, do you position the HEPA filter in front or behind the foam filter?
post #14 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by bayn View Post

I changed my "Input Level" to "Enhanced" and that really added some black and brought back the detail. Its a very visible switch between the two "Full and Limited" setting for my HDMI line.

Perhaps what we are dealing with is some sources sending "limited" signals vs. "full"?

Yes, especially when you have for example a DVD player with an Enhanced vs. Normal Black setting you can end-up with a mismatch between source & pj. The best article I have found on this subject is here by Guy Kuo of ISF. A small excerpt:

"So it comes down to the proverbial newbie question - Should I set my DVD player to "enhanced black" or not?

For display systems which can handle either 0 or 7.5 IRE as black, the answer is that it really doesn't matter. You can select either standard for black. You just have to calibrate your display's brightness control to behave correctly with the type signal you are feeding it. The picture ends up the same either way because proper calibration removes the difference. You can of course decide to improperly calibrate the display and allow your picture to look different, but that is up to you. I personally, tend to recommend people stay with 7.5 IRE as black from the DVD player because that matches all their other video sources. That allows the same settings to be used with other video sources."

Point being you want to start by matching source/player Output to pj Input and then calibrate properly from there. You'll still have variations from DVD to DVD but at least you should only need to "fine tune" with Brightness settings.
post #15 of 104
Great find Laser! This *may* very well explain some of the post we've seen in the Owners thread!
post #16 of 104
I dunno, everyone thinks they have everything set right, but then nobody talks about calibrating black levels with a calibration disc!? Setting black levels to "taste" it seems like.

Knowing that every disc (and movie/cinematography) is different, I just set the player & pj according to the THX test screens and then leave the settings alone. After 30 hours of watching & tinkering all I change now is Zoom settings (between 1.77 and 2.35).
post #17 of 104
Does anyone else find using a low-gain gray screen (0.9 GrayHawk) that the image is just too dark in anything but "High Brightness" mode? I just set up the 4900 and love the PQ over my four year old Epson TW100 but am very surprised that I don't seem to be getting anywhere near 14 fL as suggested by the PC calculator. Judging from comments folks have made about being able to tolerate some ambient light in their rooms, I thought this would be light cannon (in comparison to the TW100's 700 lumens).

I'm trying to get a read on whether anyone believes the 4900 should be bright enough for a gray screen (admittedly low gain). In my case, I'd even suggest, imo, don't count on having any ambient light (thankfully we have full light control). Does that square with what others have found? I'm just feeling like there is a big discrepancy with what I've read.

System:
Mitsu 4900 ceiling mount 11 feet from screen (near full wide angle)
Toshiba XA2 (with Enhanced off)
100" GrayHawk screen (0.9 gain)
12 feet viewing
Full light control

Thanks!
post #18 of 104
how about somebody posts up whats the best calibration tools and software for this unit so I can buy it and start fiddling. About 250 hours on my PJ so far and no issues..
post #19 of 104
All you need is a Display LT sensor under $140. Software and patterns are available free on this site.
post #20 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by rrgordon View Post

Does anyone else find using a low-gain gray screen (0.9 GrayHawk) that the image is just too dark in anything but "High Brightness" mode?

Hi rrgordon--no one else has responded and I can only say "thanks for the report". I have a temporary piece of Gatorfoam board, which has a bright white surface, and while the blacks aren't Stupendous I do find them Wonderful i.e. highly acceptable, but I do run in Low lamp mode and I'm not gonna singe anyone's eyeballs with brightness!

Was gonna originally get a .8 screen and at this point don't know WHAT I'll end-up with myself yet!
post #21 of 104
Quote:


Please post the following if possible:

1) Screen size, type, gain, color (white, grey), etc.

120" Focupix, Retro Relective, 1.8, Grey

Quote:


2) Room setup (dimensions) and conditions (in regards to ambient light)

13.5'x23'. Projector will have a 12.5' throw(maybe 12.3' with cables connected)

Quote:


3) Ceiling mount or shelf/table mount

Shelf, 1-2% above screen

Quote:


4) Detailed settings including any explanations for specific changes you found helpful

I'll update when I get it setup and turned on.

Quote:


5) Additions such as ND filter, anamorphic lens, etc. which you may be using or have tried along with your findings

I attached the entire Bissel #8 HEPA filter (which just covers the serial number panel, not the exhaust). I also added a carbon filter on top to make it the fourth air cleaner in my house. And it makes it black so it looks good.

Quote:


6) Pictures of your setup!

On Sunday.
post #22 of 104
Laserfan, my GrayHawk is now looking sharp with low lamp and "Cool" mode.

As for the brightness, it's odd, I'd say that either my eyes have adjusted to the new brightness level or something is happening that has improved the contrast (is that possible with lamp usage?) -- I now have the same amount of room lighting as with the old Epson (too dark to read but enough light to walk around easily) though I still find the supposedly best mode (Cinema) too dark for the typical film with this screen. My screen is 0.9 gain if that helps you decide. I think most people are going with + gain though.

I will post my image settings to this thread over the weekend.

As a side note, after the final ceiling mount, I ended up with inches of horizontal lens shift to spare. That was cutting it pretty close for comfort.
post #23 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caps18 View Post

120" Focupix, Retro Relective, 1.8, Grey



13.5'x23'. Projector will have a 12.5' throw(maybe 12.3' with cables connected)



Shelf, 1-2% above screen



I'll update when I get it setup and turned on.



I attached the entire Bissel #8 HEPA filter (which just covers the serial number panel, not the exhaust). I also added a carbon filter on top to make it the fourth air cleaner in my house. And it makes it black so it looks good.



On Sunday.

You're using a retro reflective screen with your projector mounted just above the screen height (top I assume)???? Is your viewing position high?
post #24 of 104
When I view night/dark scenes, green always seems to be the dominate color. I have to reduce the "Tint" to at least -7 for things to look natural. I notice most owners have their HC4900 Tint setting at "0". When Gamma is set to "Sports", things look really bad. Do you think my unit might be faulty?

Here are my settings:

Gamma = Cinema
Contrast = -1
Brightness = +4
Color = -2
Tint = -7
Shaprnesss = 0
Auto Iris = 1
Gamma (All Colors) = 0, 0, +3
Setup = Off
Input Level = Normal
post #25 of 104
Thread Starter 
Ok I got everything setup finally although it took 4 of us to mount this 159" screen as it is like 13' wide at the top and weighs a ton. The image is absolutely stunning! Very sharp with a nice pop to it, although I have not calibrated it at all yet.

The HP screen does very well with ambient light in the room compared to the piece of junk Focupix I just sent back for the second time. The first one popped when going up and down and the controls were wired backwards - up for down and down for up. They made me pay freight back on a 150" screen and sent another piece of junk that worked a few weeks and then quit working most of the time and was switched backwards as well. I had to pay freight back again and may have to dispute the charge. I'm done there....

thefinalclick.com had the best price on Da-Lite screens and it works absolutely perfectly. Its amazing how much better the HP rejects ambient light while reflecting back the image to the pj lens. Center of lens 70" high and center of screen 64" high - that is the best I could do. Throw distance is around 22 feet....

The black levels are fairly impressive but that may be because I am running such a big screen. Shadow detail is a little lacking but with some tweaks I'm sure it will improve noticeably. Looking forward to a full report after I play with it over the next few days. What an amazing deal for 1080P

Chris
post #26 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by OBSSSD View Post

...159" screen as it is like 13' wide ...Chris

That sounds very cool If you get a chance- please take couple of pics to post. Maybe rent a dwarf (sorry if there are any reading) for the pics to make the scale all the more impressive.

Cheers!
post #27 of 104
Soon to joint the 4900 Club---its on order already, should get it next week.

I will be pairing it up with my PS3 and Comcast HD via a Yamaha receiver.
All suggestions will be welcome re: settings on the PS3 and on the PJ when doing this pair.

This thread is losing steam---I am told they are selling this pj like crazy, so the default settings must be quite satisfactory!

I have an ACE HARDWARE close by and will visit them to get the filter spray to help reduce the likelihood of instant dust blobs. On my Sanyo Z2 I got those after about 3 months, but I rarely notice them.

Any calibration images/mp4 files? Please post links that work well with this pj

Thanks in advance.
gasdoc
post #28 of 104
I put on a HEPA filter (Bissel #8, uncut) and a black carbon filter on top of that. It is attached with black duct tape.

I will be getting a filter (ND or red) in a few days.

My settings are quite different for my Grey 1.8 gain screen. But the picture looks really good. I do have to adjust it still for different movies, so it isn't in the perfect spot yet. I haven't done any calibration images (Because I don't have my Mythbuntu box working right now), but I will have to set it up using that once everything is working.

Current settings:

Gamma: Cinema
Lamp: Low
Contrast: 24
Brightness: -12
Color: -3
Tint: 2
Sharp: 5

Color Temp: User
Contrast Red : -22
Contrast Green: -18
Contrast Blue: -18

Brightness Red: -4
Brightness Green: -4
Brightness Blue: -4
post #29 of 104
Thanks,
gasdoc
post #30 of 104
With my full HEPA (Bissel #8) filter & a carbon filter on top of it, after running for 7 hours straight, the temps are:

In-temp : 25.0 C
Lamp-temp : 69.0 (or 65.0 C the second time I checked while watching something in high lamp mode)
Fan Mode : 2


Here are my new settings that were changed when I raised the projector up 18 inches.
It solved all of my problems with making the blacks darker, not being able to see the screen material, no more horizontal banding, and a perfectly smooth picture with amazing colors.

Gamma : Cinema
Contrast : -1
Brightness : -3
Color Temp : User
Contrast Red : 14
Contrast Green : 14
Contrast Blue : 14
Brightness Red : 20
Brightness Green : 20
Brightness Blue : 30

Color : 5
Tint : 4
Sharpness : 5

Iris : Open
(I may play with this still)

Lamp : Low
(Standard looks absolutely amazing, and is reserved for special movies and guests. I'm not going to be 'cheap' and hold it back just to extend the bulbs life.) The main difference is about 5% brighter whites, without the whites being crushed and blurred (aka the Giants jerseys in 720p on Fox were difficult unless the camera was zoomed in on them.)


Setup : Auto
(3.75 does make blacks blacker, but you lose a little shadow detail. And the whites can't get bright enough on my grey screen.)

Over Scan : 99%
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