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Are the Hisense QLED TV's worth the calibration expense?

904 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  Rolls-Royce
It's an open conversation. I currently own a Hisense U8G and have been told that color calibration wouldn't be worth my money on "budget tvs". While I understand that Hisense isn't exactly the electronics powerhouse like the flagship brands Sony, Samsung, LG, etc. I wouldn't exactly call the $1k I paid "budget". So I bring the conversation here to get everyone other opinions from some people in the field. When I talk about calibration I am also referring to complete display calibration in SD and 4k/HD for specifically the 2021- Hisense QLED line. Thanks!
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You do need to define your goal for calibration. If it's to make it look "better" to you, you may be disappointed if you've grown up watching, and are used to, out-of-the-box settings (super bright, all picture "enhancements" turned on, etc). If you want it to be as close to the standards as possible, that's another thing. My personal goal is to see that image the same way the colorist saw it on his calibrated display, which was used to make all the decisions regarding how the picture looks. This is separate from the artistic or director's intent issue.
In my case, I'd like it as close to the real colorists standards I was always under the assumption that was the proper way to go about calibration due to there not being 1 set standard in terms of how films/media are made. That being said, I also assumed doing a calibration would inherently increase the overall viewing quality of the TV. I don't use any of the enhancents or picture correctors anyways, besides maybe a low quality SD channel here and there from my cable box. The display is gorgeous imo, excellent color, and contrast but I can't seem to find a balance between grey's and blacks with basic adjustments so things can get very grey or washed out, even with dropping the backlight down and having local dimming on and off. RTings says that this tv out of box is like a 6.8 but after Calibration to a specific set of values it jumps to a 9.7 or something along those lines which is a massive jump. If a $1k tv isn't worth the calibration investment than at what point is it worth it?
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There absolutely were/are standards for displays, and colorists follow them. Where you run into issues is with the original content. For instance, depending on the goals of the director and the lead photographer, B&W film noir could have a different balance of black and white than the norm. Color films such as The Matrix can have a slight color cast applied throughout to render a certain look or feel. I happen to think you can't really approach it by ratio of display cost to calibration cost: you want accuracy to the standards, or you don't. Like any other hobby or pursuit that requires a significant outlay for equipment to start, the very first finished project is going to have a pretty high unit cost, but that will drop over time as you use the gear. If you aren't prepared for equipment expense and the time and effort needed to learn how to calibrate for yourself, hiring a pro may be your best option. Many of them offer an a la carte approach, with the customer deciding what inputs or scan rates he or she wants calibrated and will pay for.
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