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Contrast settings with my LCD, can it really go anywhere? (1 Viewer)

Charles S

Apr 13, 2000
Ok, I've tried several times to set my contrast on my new LCD with the THX optimizer and the old VE, and I just cannot figure out where to set it at.

On the THX optimizer the white squares are ALWAYS distinct and seperate never blending together. And obviously blooming is not a factor on an LCD, or so I've read. (however when I brighten the contrast it "appears" the squares get slightly larger, but this may just be an optical illusion because I'm doing this in a dark room) I've tried some of the other test patterns on the VE and THX optimizer as well, to get the contrast correct, but anything with white to grey to black bars, the white and grey never ever blend together no matter how high I set the contrast. Is this typical with LCDs? Can I just crank up the contrast to 100% without damaging the LCD screen or shortening the life of the thing? (I'd like to get as many years out of it as I can)

I know I probably need DVE, but until I can get that, I'd like to have it set "pretty" close to correct. I've tried turning it up just until the whitest square looks bright white but this is at like 80%, and I guess years with CRTS and older RPTVs have me freaked out about having set that high....is it ok to set an LCD that high, or will I shorten the lifespan significantly by doing that?


Bounded In a Nutshell
HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Jun 20, 2000
A Mile High
Real Name
I'm sure someone with more experience with LCDs will chime in, but this is my experience. For one, setting the contrast high won't (at least, I see no reason it would) shorten the life of the monitor like with a CRT. Of course, setting it wrong will degrade the image quality. One thing is to make sure any dynamic or automatic picture adjustments are turned off, if you can. Beyond that, what I have done is adjust the contrast until the white box stops getting brighter, or even go to that point and then one back. Make certain there is still good definition between the whitest and second whitest box.

You are right, as far as I know, that LCDs will not bloom, unless possibly you set the contrast grossly too high.

Leo Kerr

May 10, 1999
DVE has some special charts for LCDs and Plasmas that I have to admit, I didn't particularly understand, myself.

Instead, I prefer to use a gray-ramp, or perhaps a gray-step chart. You know, where it's black on the left and white on the right with 16-24 steps or a gradient between them? Contrast generally muddles around with the right half (white half.) If they start blending together, then it's too high.


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