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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a calibration disc awhile ago. I forget the name but it was the one everyone on avs recommended. Anyway for contrast, it had this grey/white like piano keys type thing, or like rectangle bar after rectangle bar, and they actually described with a voice over what it was supposed to look like after you calibrated, but they didn't include like a picture or anything on paper of what the test is actually supposed to look like after you calibrate it correctly.


Does anyone have a picture, or can tell me better than they can?


I have an infocus in83 and have had a terrible time trying to calibrate it. I don't know if it's my (not top of the line) elite high contrast grey screen, or bad calibration, or my projector was broken, but i was getting terrible blacks and terrible shadow detail. All the black was really grey, much more so than the screenshots in the in83 reviews online, and any time anything was dark, nothing could be seen in the dark places of teh screen. It was like if you viewed the picture with lights on in the room, except I was watching in the dark. My walls are white maybe that's it, but I have black non-reflective frame on my screen. I don't think it should be that bad. I mean really it was like the black was not even close to black, as well as the shadow detail. Both were worse than any screenshot of any projector I have seen.


Is this a contrast problem?


So I'm looking for advice on that, a picture on how the contract piano test/rectangle bars next to each other over and over test is actually supposed to look like, and/or if someone who has an IN83 or calibrates them can just give me their calibration settings for IN83's, that should work pretty well for me.


On Art's review on projectorreviews.com, he posted the calibration settings for color gain and... the other color setting, and contrast settings, but he didn't post brightness settings, or specify whether he had brilliant color on or not.


and out of 100, his contrast setting was at 19. With me that jsut meant even worse black levels, or just the plain usual black levels but with an all around dark picture. Plus who wants to waste all of that contrast? There's probably a way to use your projectors contrast and have it calibrated effectively too .. . . no? either way, if someone could point me to calibration settings for the IN83, that would be incredibly helpful to me.
 

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I'm not sure what test disc you're talking about, but because of the audio instructions it would have to be either Avia or Digital Video Essentials (DVE). There are pictures of either at http://www.ramelectronics.net/Video-calibration.ep and I'm not really sure how that would help beyond the audio instructions. I'm also confused how someone else's settings would help either, because you already have an example of that from the review.


Unless you want to have someone setup your display, my point is just that it's probably best to understand the major function of the controls that could affect what you're seeing. I've looked at the review you mentioned, and there are a number of settings that will affect how grayscale is displayed on the projector.


"manual iris" - This will increase or decrease the light output for the entire image. By reducing the iris the entire image will get darker. Turning down this setting will cause black to get darker, but the entire grayscale also gets darker so it will also cause white to get darker at the same time. Just think of this control as causing the entire image to get brighter or darker.


"lamp" - Like with the iris, turning down the lamp power will also cause the entire image to get darker. The benefit is that black will get darker, but the rest of the image also gets darker so white will not be as bright. It's possible that color temp might change depending on lamp power, but in order to set gain and offset controls you generally need some way to take measurements.


Contrast - This will generally control the brightest part of the image, or how bright white gets. Because you have an iris control you want to set this as high as possible, so long as you are not cutting off information below white or causing other problems by too high a setting. If you are using Avia II the top box has some vertical bars that move left and right, and commonly you can keep turning up contrast as long as you can still see those small moving bars.


Brightness - This will set where the darkest part of the image begins. Ideally you want for the darkest part of the image to be at the level for black. Basically you would want to set the brightness control to the lowest setting where black is the darkest level that the display can produce. On the AVS HD 709 pattern we have tried to make this adjustment as simple as possible with flashing bars, but you need some HD player like a Blu-ray player or Xbox 360 to use that pattern.


Gamma - This will adjust how the image changes in brightness between black and white. I'm going to guess that the "bright room" setting comes out of black the quickest and that "CRT" comes out of black the slowest. What I mean is that if black and white remain the same brightness, a middle gray will likely be brighter with gamma set to "bright room" than with "CRT".

Quote:
All the black was really grey

If you have set brightness correctly and the room is dark, then you might want to try turning down the iris or lamp.

Quote:
nothing could be seen in the dark places of teh screen.

This might have to do with brightness, but if you have set brightness correctly then you might want to see what happens with different gamma settings.
 

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Hi Shark7,


alluringreality has provided you with some very good info, but I would also like to add....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/16924399


My walls are white maybe that's it,

[/u]

...as far as contrast, black level, shadow detail, and color saturation are concerned....I dare say BINGO to this quote! (...My apologize for yelling
...)


Having white walls, and especially a white ceiling, can have very adverse effects on the performance of your projector/screen's performance. One way of combating this (...besides "blacking out" your room...) is to use a gray hued screen, the darker the hue, the better the screens ability to combat ambient light "washout" (...light reflected off of walls/ceilings and back onto your screen's surface is indeed considered "ambient light"...). But a gray screen can only do so much, and with that, darkening your walls and ceiling can make all the difference....picture quality wise.


This may not always be possible due to many factors (...a room's location, significant other, etc...) but if it is, it should improve black level, shadow detail, and color saturation. I personally fixed black fabric covering half of my room from the screen wall out, on my ceiling, side walls, and also covered my screen wall. You may not need or want to go to such "extremes", but it definitely made a world of difference.


If you would like more info, here's a link to a thread in the "DIY Screen" section. "Black is Beautiful"
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for getting back to me. I think I use the DVE blu ray. And yes that link with the picture of the contrast test is what I was looking for. The way that it looks there... that's how it's supposed to look after calibration, correct? With the 11 different types of "grey" starting at black going to white, or from white to black. But do you know how much differnt each should be? because there is probably more than one contrast setting where there will still be 11 different types. How do you get it exact?


The contrast thing was the big thing i need help with. Getting that sorted should help the blacks and shadow detail.


I also agree the ambient light is a problem from the walls and ceiling. I have an elite light grey screen but the problems im having definitely sound like "washout." i mean thats what the darks look like. washed out. anything that is dark is all the same color and no detail at all can be seen in the dark areas.


So how do I go about darkening hte room? Besides painting it, what are my options regarding blacking out half of the room's wall and ceiling (the half where teh screen is).


Also, there is some light leakage fromt he projector that goes straight up to the ceiling just a few feet in front of the pj. it's not near the screen but do i need to cover that up? That could be also partly be due to the fact that i use keystoning so the projector is tilted up towards the ceiling a bit. I know keystoning is supposed to be awful for the image but i honeslty can't see any difference at all when i unkeytone it or keystone it. and i have to unless i put the screen really low to the ground.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/16928738


I think I use the DVE blu ray.

I just looked at the instructions for this disk. It uses the following image to set contrast.


The image has bars in the middle, with a ramp at the top and bottom, and there are three dots at the left and right to indicate black and white. According to the review your display will clip whites. What clipping means is that if you set the display to the highest contrast setting the brightest part of the image is expected to run together, which you don't want. In the DVE pattern description they try to show this happening. In their demonstration if you watch the bright part of the pattern change you will see that the brightest bars disappear while the ramp blends together and ends up the same brightness instead of a changing brightness. You can generally turn up contrast as long as you can see the bars and ramp between the left and right dots.


Quote:
The way that it looks there... that's how it's supposed to look after calibration, correct?

You want to be able to see the bars and ramps between the left and right dots. If the bars or ramps near the dots that indicate white run together, then contrast needs to be reduced. The difficulty in using the pattern is that only a small portion of the DVE image shows near whites.

COMPUTER IMAGE

The following image is how the DVE pattern will display on most computers. The left and right dots indicate black and white. You should be able to see a bar and ramp between the outside dots and the edge of the image, which is above white and below black information.


CORRECT CONTRAST SETTING

On your projector you do not need to show above white and below black information. If your computer has brightness and contrast set correctly, the following image is what your projector should look like. Note that there is no part darker than black, and there is almost no difference between the bar at white and nearer the edge (above white). Also note that the ramp changes in brightness all the way from the dots that indicate black to the dots that indicate white, and you can also tell a clear difference between the bar at white and the one darker. You want your projector to look like this so you can see all the ramp and bars between the outside dots, and generally you can keep turning up contrast as long as that's the case.


INCORRECT CONTRAST SETTING

The following image indicates a contrast setting that is much too high. Note that you cannot make out the ramp around the dots that indicate white, all the area near the dots for white is the same shade. Also note that the bar darker than white has blended with the bar for white. You do not want the image to look like this.



The above is the best I can do to explain how to try to set contrast with DVE. Personally I think the AVIA II pattern is easier to explain if you use Netflix, but I'm not sure their descriptions are necessarily any bettern than DVE. If you have a DVD burner you could probably check out the AVS HD 709 pattern. The third chapter in the Basic Settings area of AVS HD 709 is the same idea as DVE, but it only shows near whites and uses flashing to make clipping easier to see. Because the whole image is dedicated just to white clipping there is simply more precision to the adjustment, so for example I could say to keep turning up contrast so long as 238 barely flashes.

Quote:
With the 11 different types of "grey" starting at black going to white, or from white to black. But do you know how much differnt each should be?

I take it you're talking about a bars only image like the following.


This sort of image is not useful for setting contrast. Ideally one step to another should appear to be approximately equal on this sort of image, but it will be influenced far more by gamma than contrast.


Quote:
The contrast thing was the big thing i need help with. Getting that sorted should help the blacks and shadow detail.

DVE does go over what it labels computer contrast, but on most modern displays contrast does not make near blacks any darker. Your display really has five primary grayscale controls, or four if you set the lamp and ignore that one.


What I would do for settings is:

- set brightness to the lowest setting where black is the darkest shade (DVE pluge will be close)

- set contrast high enough to display very little information above white (DVE ramp can be used, but there are better patterns elsewhere)

- set the iris to choose a balance between dark blacks and bright whites (bars, ramps, or a movie could be used to see effect of iris)

- for gamma I would either use the setting from the review or else see how the settings nearer bright room affect the image (either bars or a movie could be used to look at effect of gamma)


 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/16928738


So how do I go about darkening hte room? Besides painting it, what are my options regarding blacking out half of the room's wall and ceiling (the half where teh screen is).

You could buy some black fabric (...the more plush the better, but "plushness"= money, and you can still get incredible results with normal black cloth...) and affix it to your walls/ceiling via a staple gun...that's what I did.



Here's the screen wall and ceiling, as you can see I did a pretty ghetto job of it (...I'll patch things up later
...), but the fabric makes a huge difference...picture quality wise of course. Keep in mind if you go this route, it would be a good idea to treat the fabric with some kind of fire retardant solution...for safety.



Screen Wall.... (...This pic is a bit tilted, and at an angle...)



Ceiling, right above screen....



I'm afraid I may be steering this thread a bit too far from calibration, but if you need some more ideas, take a look at the "Dedicated Theater Design & Construction" forum, you may be able to find some cool ideas there.


Also if you haven't yet, take a gander at the link of the "Black is beautiful" thread that I provided.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by alluringreality /forum/post/16929442


What I would do for settings is:

- set brightness to the lowest setting where black is the darkest shade (DVE pluge will be close)

- set contrast high enough to display very little information above white (DVE ramp can be used, but there are better patterns elsewhere)

- set the iris to choose a balance between dark blacks and bright whites (bars, ramps, or a movie could be used to see effect of iris)

- for gamma I would either use the setting from the review or else see how the settings nearer bright room affect the image (either bars or a movie could be used to look at effect of gamma)

I really appreciate the input here, but I am missing something. How do you know which gamma setting to go with? I have a new set-up I'm trying to tweek and could use some advice.


I have a Panasonic plasma (P50G10) which has no gamma adjustment. I have set up the display for broadcast TV, and I'm happy with it for broadcast HD as well as Blu-ray. I don't see any reason to use a different setting on the display for other sources - I'd rather just set up my other sources to work like broadcast TV and not fool with the displays settings when I change sources.


I have a laptop, connected via HDMI, I like to use as a video source for video from Hulu and the like. The graphics card (ATi Radeon HD 3200) has adjustments for gamma, brightness, contrast, and so on. (I figure I'll get to color once I get the gray scale settled) The default settings for my graphics card crushed blacks pretty badly, and the color wasn't right either. I noticed that gamma seemed to influence both problems I perceived, so it seems like the place to start.


I have tried to determine from research what gamma correction should be applied, but have come up empty. So I went looking for instructions on how to set it from scratch, and nothing makes sense. Your instructions (which are clear and useful) leave gamma out for the most part, and instructions for adjusting gamma seem to leave brightness and contrast out. Everyone admits that the three adjustments are closely related, but no one seems to be able to establish a sequence of adjustments and proper patterns to use. Do I make sense? (I'm afraid my rambling is about to come across as complaining, but that's not my intent.)


I'm happy to follow a link anyone can provide, but it seems that there isn't much good procedural information out there - so I ask...


Fred
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by HopefulFred /forum/post/16957542


How do you know which gamma setting to go with?

Measurements are the easiest way to see what gamma is doing.

Quote:
I have a Panasonic plasma (P50G10) which has no gamma adjustment.

Since the display has no gamma adjustment, then brightness would have the most impact on gamma measurements. Set the brightness to the lowest setting where it satisfies a pattern for setting black-level and that will tend to give you the maximum gamma that your display can deliver.

Quote:
I don't see any reason to use a different setting on the display for other sources - I'd rather just set up my other sources to work like broadcast TV and not fool with the displays settings when I change sources.

Well that will work for some sources, but computers use a different range than video sources. On my TV I have to choose between Full or Limited, depending if the source is a computer or regular video. I'm not familiar with Panasonic controls, but if the device allows for computer levels there will be a way to select that.

Quote:
I have a laptop, connected via HDMI, I like to use as a video source for video from Hulu and the like. The graphics card (ATi Radeon HD 3200) has adjustments for gamma, brightness, contrast, and so on. (I figure I'll get to color once I get the gray scale settled)

I use a desktop ATI card, so I don't know if the drivers are any different on the mobile cards. Personally I probably wouldn't touch the brightness and contrast controls you mentioned if they operate the way mine did, because color appeared to get messed up when I tried adjusting the area I think you're talking about. Anyway on the desktop cards the Avivo video area is what generally controls video expansion, but typically the easiest thing to do is to set the display to accept a computer input if the display allows it. Here is another reply along the same lines http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1#post16890581
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
alluringreality,


I want to thank you for putting in the time and effort to explain all that so thoroughly and clearly, and for creating those pictures and posting them. You really went above and beyond and then some. Billions of miles above and beyond. I really appreciate it.


I have blacked out part of my room, and still some blacks just look more like shadows. It's really just like a dark, faded out shadow, where when anything on screen is dark (a black suit, the background in the night, whatever) NO detail can be seen. All I can see is the outline kind of, and just a black washed out shadow within it.


I'll explain. With a black suit, for instance, I should be able to see the different threads, creases in it, a pocket maybe on it, the different cuts of the suit, different pieces of the material, but all I can see is just one color, one washed out color, no detail, no different shades that distinguish any detail. It's like you can't even see anything.


I'm starting to wonder if my Infocus IN83 is just horrible with blacks and shadow detail? Because I've paused the picture when it's like this, and turned the contrast from 1 - 100, and it doesn't make the dark parts less faded out and more detailed. My room isn't completely blacked out, but...


Even in 100% dark scenes, where the whole screen is dark, so therefore there isn't much light coming from the projector and bouncing off the walls (I don't think, the room gets much darker when the whole screen is dark), even then, this same thing happens.


That being said, there are some movies or times when I can see dark stuff. In WALL-E, the bluray, when wall-e is flying through the galaxy, black is not "black," completely, but it's actually a palpable color like all the rest for once, and i can see detail, and it looks just the same as black should, except a little bit lighter (but not faded out or anything). It especially looks the best when there are bright stars within it. But still with the animation in general this wasn't really a problem like it usually is.


Also, watching baseball, teams with some black/dark brown on the uniforms look totally normal, and there haven't been any problems there.


So, I don't know... What do you think the problem is alluringreality? and everyone else?


Thank you


Also alluring, off topic, do you know how what kind of cable I would need to plug into an xbox 360 on one end, and then have an HDMI thing on the other end? I made a topic about this but no one seems to know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Note, could my Elite Grey screen possibly be making my blacks more faded? Because there is grey behind them? I bought the screen to make blacks deeper, but maybe it makes them more faded too/instead?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/16964519


I have blacked out part of my room, and still some blacks just look more like shadows. It's really just like a dark, faded out shadow, where when anything on screen is dark (a black suit, the background in the night, whatever) NO detail can be seen. All I can see is the outline kind of, and just a black washed out shadow within it.


I've paused the picture when it's like this, and turned the contrast from 1 - 100, and it doesn't make the dark parts less faded out and more detailed.

CONTRAST - Contrast primarily affects whites, so it's not expected to change near-blacks much.


BRIGHTNESS - If brightness is set too low it could be cutting out near-black detail. On AVS HD 709 the first pattern in the Basic Settings section is mainly intended to ensure that all the information down to black is getting on-screen. If you want to just play with the controls to see what happens, see if turning up brightness brings out any more detail, brightness should affect near-blacks more than contrast.


GAMMA - This basically controls how the TV comes out of black. A setting closer to bright room will probably come out of black quicker and make it easier to see detail near black (assuming brightness is not too low).


IRIS OR LAMP - If you have turned down the iris or lamp this too might make near blacks harder to see, but turning down these settings will not have as much effect on near-blacks detail as brightness or gamma can.


Quote:
do you know how what kind of cable I would need to plug into an xbox 360 on one end, and then have an HDMI thing on the other end?

I think the newer Xbox 360s come with HDMI ports, but I'll guess you have one of the original models without an HDMI port. The only thing I've ever seen online is:
http://www.buy.com/prod/xbox-360-hdm...207336950.html
http://reviews.cnet.com/power-protec...-33044324.html
 

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Shark7 -- I know this is very fundamental (and most people working with calibration assume everyone knows it), but remember:

1) The Brightness control is used to adjust the Black Level.


2) The Contrast control is used to adjust the White Level.


A lot of people that have never calibrated a display get these two mixed up (since the names are counter-intuitive). I have found that once that definition is explicitly stated, then some "newbie" calibrators realize that they had used these controls backwards. From your descriptions, I wonder if you haven't done that too. The IN83 should be a lot better than what you described.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by goku14139268520 /forum/post/16967641


Hi Shark7,


Just out of curiosity, what part of your room has been blacked out, and what lamp setting are you using?

Hey,


My curtains are mostly blacked out. not completely. but at night no light comes in from outside, and that's when I would be calibrating, do most my watching.


Lamp setting I'm using is sometimes... well, neither "high power" or "auto power" is clicked, and at the bottom it says "power save" and that is clicked (checked I mean).


Then sometimes I have it on "high power," (high power box is checked), but also still with "power save" checked too lol. I don't know how it can be both but both are clicked. I think maybe auto power is the default so it doesnt need to be clicked. when i check the auto power box it the pic doesn't change. When I click high power it does a little. But regardless of whether its on high power, or auto, clicking or unclicking "power save" doesn't seem to change anything.


-


To the comment after. thank you for defining that. i've read that before and know it for the most part (sometimes forget which is which), but thank you. It's just even with the brightness at 0, blacks are still not very dark, and im still having this shadow detail problem, so i think it does have to do with other things.


Oh, and my walls up towards the screen, to the left of the screen on the side walls, and above the screen on the ceiling, it is blcaked out some, but I'm still in the process of doing it, so for the most part it's not blacked out, i can still see some light on the ceiling even at night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I just did the "plooge" brightness calibration thing, with the three bars on each side of a grey scale. The outer bar is supposed to be below black. the middle bars are supposed to be i think 4% above black, and the inner bars supposed to be 2% above black. they said if u cant see the other plooge below black bar, that something in ur setup is "clipping." I can't see it no matter what gamma. if I turn the brightness up to 70, 80+, i can kind of see the outline of hte outside bar, what looks like just a white outline around a bar, but the bar itself wouldnt be visible if it werent for the outline.


i think this might be the problem, this "clipping" of below black.


anyway i went with the HDMI straight to the projector (instead of going through my AV receiver) and it's still the same. either my projector clips all by itself (is that even possible) or idk what... anyone know?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/17084259


anyway i went with the HDMI straight to the projector (instead of going through my AV receiver) and it's still the same. either my projector clips all by itself (is that even possible) or idk what... anyone know?

I don't think you mention what you're using for a source or video player. If the source is hooked directly to the display then any clipping of below black or above white would either be due to the source or the display. Computers for example typically use a different range than video players do, and by default they often will not pass the extra information from a video source. Another source that I'm aware will not pass above white and below black by default is the PS3, and if that is your source you have to turn on super white and possibly change some other controls. The majority of stand alone Blu-ray or DVD players will pass the entire video range with their default settings, which would commonly leave only the display as the possible device that could be clipping the below black information. A simple test to see if the display was the device clipping would be to hook the source to another display and raise brightness like you were trying.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark7 /forum/post/17084242


It's just even with the brightness at 0, blacks are still not very dark, and im still having this shadow detail problem, so i think it does have to do with other things.

Ignoring the lamp setting, that leaves 3 settings that will affect blacks:


Iris - The "blacks are still not very dark" comment will be affected by the iris setting. Reducing the iris setting will make the entire image darker, including black.


Gamma - Assuming brightness is set correctly, "shadow detail" will generally be most affected by gamma. As the gamma settings move away from the CRT option they would generally be expected to show more shadow detail. (If brightness is at 0 you will have no shadow detail due to clipping)


Brightness - DVE generally explains how to set this control, but without below black there isn't a quick check that brightness isn't clearly too high. On most displays the pattern included with AVS HD 709 can give a more precise setting, to make sure to set brightess low enough to make black the darkest shade but not too low to lose above-black information.
 
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