Basic RPTV setup questions

Discussion in 'Displays' started by JustinSpr, Apr 23, 2004.

  1. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Hello All,

    I recently purchased a 46" Hitachi RPTV and love it. On recommendation from this site and others I also purchased Avia and did some minor basic video calibration that definately improved the color.

    I have several questions that I hope all of you can help me with, and some that I can't ask right now as I'm at work and don't know specific words to describe settings. I thank you in advance for all the help.

    1. What mode should the TV be set on? I have it currently on Sports, but do not know the difference. To give you an idea of my normal tv habits, I watch 90% normal basic analog cable TV, and the rest is DVD movies.

    2. When I first got the system I watched it that night for 3 hours straight at factory settings. [​IMG] I didn't know about the whole contrast/brightness thing. Could this have damaged the screen? or did it just slightly reduce the lifespan of the set?

    3. I noticed last night that I have a light band about 1 1/2" wide on the far left side of the screen. ONLY THE FAR LEFT SIDE, and I know its not from the screen size because I watch in 16X9 that fills the full screen. The only time I watch in 16X9 normal is when I watch DVD and that would make lighter bands on the top and bottom (I don't see this).

    4. The Hitachi has a "magic focus" button that I pressed 2 or 3 times the first night I had it after I noticed that the words it displays looks FUZZY when it does it in all blue. The red looks pretty good, the green looks spectacularly sharp, but the blue looks fuzzy. Does this mean that the blue gun is misaligned/calibrated?? Can I use Avia to fix this, or am I forced to have to get an ISF calibration (which I CANNOT afford).

    5. I hate those freakin channel labels, I KNOW WHAT F"ing channel i'm watching. How's about for those of us with short attention span problems they just flash it every 2 minutes or so?? At least MTV has a continuously changing colored one.

    6. When I use Avia to set sharpness I cannot discern anything in the test patterns. Maybe if I saw 0 and 100 but holding down the button I really cannot guage anything. Right now I have it at around 10% I think and the picture looks somewhat blurry, but the DVD said to give it a week before I change the setting.

    Thanks all,

    Justin
     
  2. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    Many people calibrate the DVD input with Avia or VE (do brightness and contrast, not just color) and use those settings as the starting point for other inputs. More than likely cable and/or satellite will look too dark. Just adjust accordingly. I would stay away from any factory presets like Sports.

    As far as phosphor burn - it happens! I just discovered mine had it AFTER an ISF calibration; prior to calibration the burned in image was buried in the lower end of the grayscale. This is not to say you should not get a calibration should funds allow, just to be careful about static images, proper levels, etc. I was diligent and careful but somehow it still happened. I'm looking at front projection now.

    That 1.5 inch band concerns me. Is this present regardless of input?

    Stay away from the Magic Focus. I haven't heard of too many that actually work properly. If you can do manual convergence stick to that. Mine (Touch Focus on the Toshiba) is disabled.

    If you can't discern any noise being added with sharpness I would set it at 50% for starters.
     
  3. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Thanks Cameron,

    I had read your post yesterday regarding your burn in. The thing about the light band on the left side is that during the 3 hours the first night I watched TV I never left the room for more than a minute or two and it was never a static image. Actually since it was the first night, I was playing around with different screen sizes and zooms and such at every commercial and even during the program. I will have to check when I get home regarding whether it is present during my DVD (imput 1) viewing.

    As for the sports setting. I have it on sports but did all the contrast/brightness, color corrections from the DVD. What I wanted to know was whether I should change this base setting to something else (movie, and I think Normal was an option), or just leave it be because I have configured it even though it is in sports mode.

    Should I uncheck "enhanced black" or something like that in the advanced options?? After doing Avia, I went and looked at all the settings under advanced and there are several that are checked but some I don't understand and was hesitant to uncheck (or check).

    Oh and the reason I did magic focus after the first time (15 minutes after turning on the set for the first time) was because the blue boxes and words looked fuzzy and I thought it might be able to correct itself. It didnt. [​IMG]

    justin
     
  4. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    One last thing,

    With my Panasonic surround system (not a great one), I think the model was DT-300 or something, I have the left and right speakers about a foot and a half away on either side of the tv. The center speaker I have sitting on the top of the TV just behind the screen (there is a little cutout area where it sits). Its such a small and underpowered center speaker that I doubt this will affect the picture. Is it alright to keep it here? Thanks.

    justin
     
  5. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    As long as the center speaker is shielded I don't think there would be a problem. With it being a rear projection there would be fewer issues with unshielded because the CRTs are actually sitting at the base of the set, not right at the front/top as it would for direct view sets. If you've ever placed an unshielded speaker beside a direct view the interference is rather noticeable because you're redirecting the electrons with the speaker magnet.

    I assumed Sports Mode was an untweakable preset like on my Toshiba. As long as your settings from Avia are maintained on that mode, I don't see any harm.

    The enhanced black I'm not sure about. I'm guessing this means the black level gets put to 0 IRE instead of 7.5. I would try it and see how the calibration screens for brightness and contrast look, whether you can properly calibrate at that setting.

    Calling it "Magic" is actually pretty funny given the result.
     
  6. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Thanks. Can anyone help me with the out of focus blue screen during the magic focus?? If you have a similar Hitachi model, i would greatly appreciate it.

    justin
     
  7. Kevin*Harley

    Kevin*Harley Stunt Coordinator

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    I just got a 65SWX20B. I don't think it makes a difference what video mode you calibrate. They can all be individually tweaked and reset if necessary.

    I calibrated Video-Movie for normal viewing and slightly tweaked Video-Sports for Xbox.

    You should have a manual focus option with your TV. I did the "magic focus" when I set it up last week and plan on using the manual focus this weekend when I have more time.
     
  8. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Justin,

    Don't worry about the blue focus--it's supposed to be that way. Blue is deliberately defocussed a bit on all crt rptvs, has something to do with the blue phosphors being a little weaker than red and green, and defocussing a little improves light output. I have the service manual to my old Hitachi analog Ultravision and it includes instructions on how to properly defocus the blue gun.

    I've had 2 Hitachis with Magic Focus and now have a Sony with a similar auto-convergence feature. None of the 3 sets has been adversely affected by using this feature, none has had any significant convergence drift. Toshibas are known for not doing this feature right, I haven't seen any Toshiba owner who likes it, but most owners of other makes are happy with it. Just don't use the magic focus unless the set's been on for about an hour to allow everything to come up to full temperature. Magic Focus is a bad name for this feature--it's convergence, not focus, and won't have any effect on the blurry blues.

    If convergence is bad you'll see red, green, or blue outlines around the edges of high-contrast images, or the white lines of the convergence grids on AVIA. If yours is off after doing Magic Focus you should do a manual convergence and save it to memory if possible.

    3 hours of torch mode without any still images didn't hurt your set at all.
     
  9. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    thanks both of you for the responses. The torch mode answer put my fears to rest, and i'm glad to hear that the blue fuzzyness is normal. I'll just have to use Avia again in 2 weeks or so (at my month) to do a final tweak and then just check every once in a while to see if all is well.

    I had read on another post here about disconnecting 2 of the component imputs when doing grayscale. Should I do this if i'm using Avia (I heard that the other calibration program it doesn't matter), and if so which 2 cables do I disconnect, and what EXACT tests do I do this for?

    just grayscale, or also contrast/brightness etc.

    thanks again.

    justin
     
  10. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Anyone? I see that there is a manual grid for red/green/blue, but no instructions on how to properly move these. What exactly am i looking for, and what test in Avia does this calibrate.

    Some other quick questions

    -Should I watch normal analog cable TV in 480, 480i, or 1080i mode. It seems like the difference is minimal sharpnesswise, but I wonder if the color is affected?

    -Along the same lines what should I use for my DVD movies through component connection? I know the DVD signal is only 480, but should I use the 1080i or 480i?

    -Will using progressive scan on the DVD movies make for a sharper image?? I switch back and forth during movies but cannot see much of a difference.

    My main reason for this is that if I cannot really see much of a difference in clarity/sharpness I want to have the best picture quality in regards to color.

    Thanks.

    justin
     
  11. Kevin*Harley

    Kevin*Harley Stunt Coordinator

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    “Let me qualify by stating my knowledge is based on less than 2 weeks of experience with my Hitachi”

    - I have Adelphia cable and IMO it stinks! Like you, I have found very little difference between (480/480i/1080i) and tend to leave it on the default setting of 480i.

    - If your DVD player gives you an option of 480i or 480p you might play with both settings. I believe your TV up-converts the signal from your DVD player so you may get a better picture if you bypass the players and let the TV convert the signal.
     
  12. Julian Data

    Julian Data Second Unit

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    Justin,

    Magic Focus just resets back to the factory's convergence when you leave this setting on "Auto". First couple of months the sets do drift a bit thus losing focus/detail and might be able to correct it by enabling MF or..

    By going to the manual mode for MF.

    As the instructed in the manual, uses keys 2, 4, 5, and 6 to move the cursor around. Press the select button down (the lil joystick) on the R/C to change the color. Move the joystick up, down, left or right to get the colors (Red or Blue) to match up to the intersection on the white grid. Keep in mind, when if you switch from Manual to Auto for MF and run the MF, you'll loose the corrections you did.

    Although the factory MF settings aren't that great, some people have been doing a DCAM convergence (this is service level) in which you'll touch up the convergence so everytime you use MF, it will revert to the new settings you have created.

    BTW, Magic focus works which is dependent on how tight the convergence was from the beginning.

    If I were you I'd go to:

    AVSforum, Home theater Spot and the Home Centric

    Nothing against HTF, it's just these forums are well diverse for particulars for a given set/brand. I love HTF for other areas though.

    Nevertheless, they are fellow Hitachi owners as well as ISF certified techs on those boards. You have lots of reading to do.

    I hope this helps.

    Julian
    57S500
     
  13. Kevin*Harley

    Kevin*Harley Stunt Coordinator

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    Julian......thanks for the links ! Great sites.
     
  14. Julian Data

    Julian Data Second Unit

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    No problem Kevin.
     
  15. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Well I visited AVSforum and there is indeed a wealth of information, but there doesn't seem to be much structure in the really good threads. Most are cut/paste jobs from 20 different threads that all have excellent information but no direction. I am having difficulty figuring out exactly what order to do the tweaks in.

    Most are just individual threads/pieces of threads saying how to fix contrast/convergence/red push,etc but few say do this step before this step, because the former will effect the latter in such a way that you are wasting your time.

    Nonetheless they are an excellent help, they just require a little more piecing together than I would have liked. Thanks again.

    justin
     
  16. Julian Data

    Julian Data Second Unit

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    This is what I did.

    Manual/electrostatic focus:

    My set needed a manual focus more then the electrostatic focus.

    DCAM convergence/geometry

    It seems that some of the factory convergence settings for the MF are a bit off from what I am reading at the board. A service level convergence will correct this. I bought a template to line up the green correctly and then match the red and blue to that color. The last step, I initialize the Magic focus to use my settings. Big friggin' difference especially with DVD and HDTV material!


    *** Remove the anti-glare screen optional. I didn't do this because of pets and ppl that like to touch the bloody screen.

    Set brightness/contrast

    Set sharpness

    Set color decoder using the service menu (Color, Tint, RY, R/G, GY, G/B. Check the other forums for the proper syntaxes
    e.g -3 ANTA/B Svid, Composite, D- Component 480i/p, E - 720P/1080i component/DVi

    *Eyeball the greyscale - optional Although from the factory majority of all products regardless of brand, are way off on greyscale. Use either VE or DVE when doing this or when using AVIA unplug the Pr and Pb connections IIRC.

    ** If done above, redo color decoder

    After you're done, then you'll have to set the gamma for the set.

    Go to the last two links that I replied with and then go to the appropriate forum.

    I didn't list overscan adjustment since from reading at the various boards some people are having problems if lower the overscan way too much.
     
  17. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Thanks Julian,

    I think I'm going to hold off for a couple of weeks before doing a full tweak to make sure that the set has stopped adjusting due to phosphor wear, and breaking in. I'm slightly worried about the manual focus, as I don't want to remove the screen, but realize that focusing with two people is never as good as one person at the controls and viewing the screen. I figure I'll definately do the electronic focus though.

    I don't think my TV has an anti-glare screen but I could be mistaken.

    I'm also probably not going to try to eyeball grayscale, because that really worries me if I was to overcorrect.

    Thanks for all the help.

    justin

    ps I redid most of the calibrations with avia last night and my overall picture quality and detail look very good until the credits rolled. Due to my factory red push of 15-20% I reduced the color setting through the menu (not service menu, just the normal one). Everything looked good in avia with the tests and such.

    Then during the credits of a movie I was watching I noticed that all the black was not truly black, and instead had a green tint to it. At first I adjusted the contrast and that worked, then I realized I was adjusting the white level to make the black blacker. This sounded logically wrong, so I put the contrast back to where it was and adjusted the brightness (I think slightly down around 4% or so). This made the background black, and the credits remained white, but I have a feeling there is definately a grayscale problem with my TV.

    Anyone in the Havertown, PA area that wants to come over for an evening and help me with the tweaking?? Pizza and beer on me (but you can only have the beer after you tweak the set [​IMG] )
     
  18. Julian Data

    Julian Data Second Unit

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    Hey Justin,

    When doing service level tweaks, just write down the original number to change something back.

    I'd wait until you have over 100-200 hours on the set before doing anything really drastic.

    Anyhow, the manual focus can be done via several ways:

    1. Involves pulling the screen half way up and adjusting
    2. This one involves removing the power button console and sticking your hand in the whole and adjusting the lens. You don't have to move the screen off.
    3. Last one, two man operation as one enter at the rear of the set to do the adjusting while the other stands in front to look.

    As for your green in your low IRE, sounds like the greyscale needs some tweaking in the ISF menu by playing lowering the Green CUT or increase the RED CUT.

    ~J

    PS: I am Meadville, PA. Where's Havertown?
     
  19. JustinSpr

    JustinSpr Auditioning

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    Ha! small world. Havertown is about 15minutes West of philly. I'm right off the 476 exit about 2 miles.

    Looked you up on mapquest, but I got 2 hits for Meadville in PA. One is in Lancaster? is that you? If so i'm originally from Downingtown, just east of you.

    oh and as for the manual focus, i like the entrance through the powerbutton idea. Other than the increased chance of electrocuting myself because I can't see inside as well, it seems much safer to the TV. I would much rather risk a really good shock than damaging the Hitachi [​IMG] I'm going to wait at least another couple of weeks before tweaking this however as you had suggested. Thanks.

    justin
     
  20. Julian Data

    Julian Data Second Unit

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    I am 40mi South of Erie -way over to the west with the lovely lake effect to boot! [​IMG]


    When you do the power button method, you'll see the wingnuts and just loosen them them and turn the top of the lens.

    Since your set is still new (mine is going on the 2nd month), there will be some drifting for a bit until it settles down.
     

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