ISF Calibration Really Does Work!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by SteveK, Jun 17, 2002.

  1. SteveK

    SteveK Supporting Actor

    Jan 10, 2000
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    Several months ago, I scheduled an ISF calibration with Greg Loewen for June 13. Both before and after scheduling my appointment, I eagerly read every post dealing with calibration and how happy people were after they had it done. The only problem was that most or all of the posts were from people that had projection sets, so I was always wondering how much could be accomplished on my direct view set. Would it be worth the money?
    Well, now that it is completed, I can say that it was definitely worth the money. Before the calibration, I had purplish grays and reddish whites. Now I have WHITE whites and BLACK blacks. Before the calibration, my TV was no less than about 2400 degrees too hot (8893 at 100 IRE), and was as much as nearly 7200 degrees too hot (13,691 at 30 IRE). At 20 IRE, it was off the scale and couldn't even be read. I guess these readings explain why the scenes in dim light always looked much worse than brightly lit scenes.
    After the calibration, it is no more than an imperceptible 97 degrees (6597 at 30,40,50 and 60 IRE) off, and is as little as 13 degrees off (6487 at 70, 80 and 90 IRE). Needless to say, there is a huge difference between a maximum of 97 degrees off compared to over 7200 degrees off!
    Although all colors are now more accurate than they were before, the most noticeable difference is on skin and hair color. Previously, almost everybody looked badly sunburned and had reddish-brown hair. Now, skin tones are much more realistic, and people actually have normal colored hair. I was watching a newscast the other evening, and the anchor was wearing a pinstripe suit, and you could actually see the pinstripes!
    So I can add my voice to the chorus of those recommending professional calibration. If you have a relatively new set that you plan on keeping for a while, it will be money well spent. You may not be able to have as many adjustments on a direct view as on a projection set, but you will wind up with more accurate color. I figure for slightly more than it would have cost me to get picture-in-picture (a useless gimmick as far as I'm concerned), I have instead a picture that is as perfect as it can be on my Sony.
    What I find shocking is that the precalibration readings weren't even close to the 6500 degree "standard". To have readings that are more than 7000 degrees off (more than double the standard) is ridiculous. But now, they're essentially right on the mark.
    I was never satisfied with my TV, but I am now. Thanks Greg for a job well done.
    Steve K.
  2. David Broome

    David Broome Stunt Coordinator

    Jun 2, 2001
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    He must have gone to your house right after he left mine. I'm glad it worked out so well for you.

    Unfortunatley for me, mine is a different story. I have nothing but praise for Gregg, and if I had/get a different display device I wouldn't hesitate in bringing him back. But my projector (Panny 711XU) didn't have the appropriate level of controls to allow for the adjusting ISF's do.

    Though disappointed it couldn't be improved even more, I still love my projector and the picture it puts out...

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