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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been looking for the best calibration device for being able to calibrate Front Projectors, Rear Projection, LCD, and Plasma.


I have looked at the Sencore Video Suite. They claim to have a professional solution that includes everything I need. Including special codes to enter into service menu's on a lot of displays. They also tout a NEC/Prioneer auto calibrate with a special interface cable.


I've read where datacolor ColorFacts Pro is good but don't know much more than that.


Please don't offer advice to "just hire an ISF calibrator". I want to learn how to use this so I don't need to rely on another person.


If anyone has real world experiences on test equipment. Please share your thoughts and opinions. I'm not looking for the $200 all in one package. And I prefer not to rely on a VE HD-DVD, or AVIA. I don't mind using them as a supplement, but not as the main choice of calibration.


My priorities are as follows: accuracy, then ease of use, and finally cost. It would be nice to use a computer screen and generate reports, etc.


I appreciate your help.


Jim
 

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You want to buy expensive gear and not hire an ISF calibrator to learn how to use it?


Otherwise I would say take the ISF seminar - one sponsored by Sencore - the other sponsored by DataColor - making you a certified pro on their gear (so maybe you want to take both!). That would not only teach you all about video and how to calibrate it - but gives you hands-on opportunity to see which works for you, as well as ask calibrators experienced with both the honest pros/cons of your choices which may be dependent on display technology.


Most people in the learning process do need to rely on another person to teach them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by krasmuzik /forum/post/0


You want to buy expensive gear and not hire an ISF calibrator to learn how to use it?

Yes.


I already own a Sencore 395, DAG, and MIC 399 for my audio calibration. I'm comfortable with audio calibration, acoustic analysis and treament. I know video is different, but it's easier to learn than audio. Plus I've already played with keystone, overscan, brightness, contrast, smpte test patterns, blue filters etc. I'm looking to take it to the next level.


What does your company use/recommend for your video calibration?


I might go to a seminar, but when you add in the flight etc, I might as well apply the money I would spend on a flight/seminar/hotel/meals/car/gas/parking and apply it to a device and learn how to use it.


Jim
 

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I personally use DataColor Colorfacts with Spyder - but others will have different opinion. The main advantage of their software over Sencore is the support for more sensors/generators than just Sencore ones.


If you already have Sencore audio gear it should not be that hard to get your Sencore rep to deal on the video gear with seminar "included". ISF is generally scheduled around tradeshows or at local reps/manuf so you can cut down on the travel budget.


Part of learning is making mistakes others have already made - seminars help you skip past the mistake part of the process.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by krasmuzik /forum/post/0


I personally use DataColor Colorfacts with Spyder - but others will have different opinion. The main advantage of their software over Sencore is the support for more sensors/generators than just Sencore ones.


If you already have Sencore audio gear it should not be that hard to get your Sencore rep to deal on the video gear with seminar "included". ISF is generally scheduled around tradeshows or at local reps/manuf so you can cut down on the travel budget.


Part of learning is making mistakes others have already made - seminars help you skip past the mistake part of the process.

I agree 100% with you. There is value to attending a seminar and I would greatly benefit from one. You bring up a valid point. After they discount, I should ask for a free seminar. At least I can try it. Not sure it's going to work



I appreciate your input. Thank you.
 

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And of course there is the option of calling up DataColor and saying "I have Sencore audio gear - if you can 'convince' me to go with DataColor for video - say maybe throw in the seminar" you would be open to that....
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Here is the datacolor bundle I am looking at:
Code:
Code:
Datacolor ColorFacts Professional 7.0 + Accupel HDG 3000 (CFH201)
Includes: SpyderTV Platinum Colorimeter, ColorFacts Professional 7.0 Software CD, DVD test patterns, Tripod mount, hardware dongle, RS-232 Cable, Null modem adapter, USB to Serial adapter, Blue Filter Glasses, manual, Custom Aluminum Carrying Case + Accupel HDG 3000 Signal Generator
Is this a complete solution?


Also does Datacolor offer service codes for display devices like Sencore promises? I will need to call Sencore on that for verification. IE: JVC RS-1, Sony Pearl, etc.


I will do more homework on both. Thanks again.
 

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I doubt Sencore stays on top of codes for all displays - your best bet is either AVS or ISF forums. The LionAV group is supposed to start a ColorFacts PRO forum - tracking codes there would be a good idea.


You may want to down the road get a spendier spectroradiometer to keep the spyder in check- but you should be planning on gear upgrades anyways as they always get new gear you just have to buy. DataColor hinted they might do spyder checks at trade shows if you don't have reference sensors available, and they will do warranted replacements if it drifts (an issue with any filter based sensors)


I use the Accupel - but be aware it does not do HDMI auto format since it is DVI based - an issue if your display does not have manual RGB or YCbCr selections but relies on HDMI to tell it what to do - but I am not sure what generator does do that even if it has HDMI ports (political licensing fees not technical reasons). Highdef test pattern DVDs are just starting to come out in consumer versions - not sure when the pro versions will be out - but you will want that along with all the standard testpattern DVDs. The generator does not take the place of adjusting the source/display setup.


Make sure the laptop you use has enough ports for sensor/generator/dongle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Alright after doing some homework, I would like to see what the general consensus is?


Sencore Solution:


CP5000U Transducer $3,000.00

VP401 Generator: $3,000.00

ACP6500 Software: $995.00

Case: N/C


TOTAL = $6,995.00


The alternative:


Progressive Labs C-5 transducer + Software: $1,800.00

Accupel HDG-3000 Generator: $1,299.95


TOTAL = $3,099.95


Saving = $3,895.05, over 50% off.


It looks like the transducers are similar is spec. And the generators are similar.


Does anyone have experience with both and can attest to which one they prefer and why? Besides cost. That is obvious. I don't want to sacrifice quality to save a buck, but I don't want to be overcharged either.


I appreciate your input.


Jim
 

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Jim,


I have not used all of the equipment in question, but I have a few thoughts. I would look at a spectroradiometer instead of a filter based device if you want consistently good results. Good color measurements are not cheap. My Photo Research PR-670 with all of the attachments and 5nm option was about $24,000 and is exceptional in accuracy at light levels above about 0.5 fL. The next option I would consider and also own is a Gretag Macbeth Eye-One Pro at about $1000. The Eye-One Pro is much faster than the PR-670 and can work at levels as low as 0.2 fL. My experience with filter based devices is not very encouraging outside of LCD and CRT direct view displays.


I use both the HD-G3000 and a VP403C. They are both good video generators. I prefer the Accupel for speed and accuracy. I use the VP403C for ATSC, composite and S-Video.


Good luck on your endeavor.
 

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Jim,


As UMR stated, if you are looking for a calibration device that offers reliable and repeatable results on various types of display devices a spectroradiometer is the way to go. We currently use the Photo Research PR-655 for our field calibrations, along with various options, the cost was approximately $19,000 each.


The Accupel is a much more efficient and convenient generator than the Sencore product as well. We have the Sencore VP403SH generators and at a cost of over $6,000 they do not include a remote control! Picture having to get up and walk over to the display everytime you would like to change a test pattern, or plan on carrying a long set of cable for the various inputs you could be working on.


Best,


Dave
 
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