Is the Avia HT DVD and Radio Shack SPL meter for me?

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Stephen Gladwin, Jun 4, 2005.

  1. Stephen Gladwin

    Stephen Gladwin Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I just got a 27" Toshiba 27AF45 Flat Screen TV, 2 JBL E80 loudspeakers, and a JBL E35 center channel speaker and was wondering if the Avia Home Theater calibration DVD and the Radio Shack SPL meter would significantly increase my new speakers' and TV's performance? I mean, I only have an NTSC, interlaced TV, so would the Avia video calibration tests really make a difference for my TV? Also, would the SPL meter and Avia DVD help me get maximum performance out of my speakers? Thanks!
     
  2. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer
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    I doubt it...You may see or hear a little bit of a change, but just using the the FREE THX Optimizer found on many DVD's will accomplish this too..especially on a set-up like yours.

    So considering the cost of the combined purchase, I'd buy some DVD's or go out on the town and enjoy a good meal with friends or your SO.
     
  3. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    It will only do it by ear which is poor especially for a newbie and only has limited stuff. To only rely on the THX optimizer mode is short changing your system as well as yourself. It is no reason why MOST(except Alf I guess) considers the Rat Shack Meter/Avia/DVE purchase to be one of their best for their Home theater experience.
     
  4. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer
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    I went through the whole RS SPL procedure (a friend of mine has one) and the settings I did "by ear" and by using the THX system nearly matched the SPL after all was said and done.

    So for me, the changes done by the SPL vs. "my ears" didn't short change anything with me or my system.

    We even rented the AVia (or one of the similar ones) from Netflix WAY back when they first started and "calibrated" my 35" Toshiba CRT, and again, the settings I ALREADY had nearly matched the disc..plus some of the settings they said I needed to change didn't look that good in my room setting, so I left things the way I did it with my eyes.

    But hey if you want to spend $50-60+ on the stuff, by all means go for it..it's just money...I for one don't think I short changed myself in the least bit. But there are some who are insistant that doing it the "old fashioned way" is for the birds.

    p.s. Shane, quit stalking me!! [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Anytime you buy a new dvd player, move your subwoofer around, help your friends/family etc, you will need one or the other(disc or meter). The purchase and use of the disc is not just a once and done procedure. The optimode disc doesn't have enough there to do these type things. They are especially important when you move up past your initial 27"/35" type set and get into more advanced stuff which you will end up doing once you purchase a big screen whether it be a projector or Big Screen TV.

    As an enthusiast, the calibration disc(avia or VE or DVE) and Meter are 2 of the most important purchases you will make.
     
  6. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    For the sound: yes, a SPL meter is a must-buy. You may be shocked at the difference.

    For the video: perhaps. Just moving a television around can change the settings and a new set takes about a month before it tends to reach a steady-state and the brightness/colors stay consistant week to week.

    And most televisions are turned way too bright from the factory to help the unit "stand out" if it is used for a display model.

    Who know how far off your set is? The only way to tell is to try one of the disks.

    Some advice:

    - Make sure the TV has a month or more of steady use.

    - Make sure the TV has been turned on for at least 30 minutes before you try and calibrate.

    - Do the calibration at night (when you would normally do your serious movie watching). Ambient light in the room can make a big difference so you want to calibrate with the same amount of exterior light.

    - If your TV is nice enough to have numbers for brightness/contrast/sharpness/etc., Write them down before you do any adjustments. This should allow you to get back to the same starting point.

    Hope this helps.
     

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