Marantz VP12S3 DLP FP Bravo D1 DVI DVD Player, AVIA Pro, Colorfacts 6000, A Review

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Gregg Loewen, Feb 16, 2004.

  1. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,374
    Likes Received:
    32
    Trophy Points:
    6,610
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    Greetings

    I have been wanting to upgrade my hometheater from its Toshiba 65H80 rear projection display for some time now, and finally found a projector that able to deliver the black levels that I was looking for.

    I calibrated my first Marantz VP12S2 last fall and was really amazed at the quality of the blacks on a 128" Stewart Firehawk. The newest Marantz offering is the VP12S3 with the new TI HD2plus chip. The VP12S3 also has an autocalibration feature included with it which I was interested in trying out.

    I finished the Marantz installation just in time for the Superbowl (go Pats go!). Due to room size limitations (mainly height) I went with a 96" diagonal screen. It is a Da-lite HC, with a 1.1 gain. I played with the brightness control some and some gray scale changes (done by eye) but have otherwise left it alone until the bulb had time to stabilize.

    For the initial calibration, I used gray scale windows from AVIA Pro. This was my first time using this software package. It is extremely easy to navigate and offers a huge number of test patterns. I did a base measurement run using my Bravo D1 DVI DVD player, which was sending a 720P signal to the projector.

    I was using the Milori Colorfacts CF 6000 Spectroradiometer for the gray scale readings. The CF6000's readings were as I suspected, with the color temp being around 6000 from black to white with a definite shift towards green.

    I then connected the Marantz analyzer via the rs-232 port on the VP12S3 and did the required black measurement. Then I applied the analyzer as one would apply a lense cap and then hit the enter button in the auto calibration menu. After about 5 minutes the ready lite had stopped flashing on the projector which indicated the autocalibration software had completed its task.

    I then rezeroed the CF6000 and did a post gray scale run with the projector using the same AVIA PRO test patterns. the CF6000 corelated well to my eyes observation of the gray scale now being magenta. This indicated that green had been removed from the gray scale, however the gray scale was still not accurate.

    I will attempt to post the PDF report generated by the Milori softward this evening. This will show how the VP12S3 performed out of the box (after 50 hours of break in), then after the autocalibration was performed. Neither were accurate and both left the projector with a gamma curve around 2.2. This was all done in the Standand mode with the projector in bright mode and the smaller lense aperature.

    I then recalibrated the projector using the 80 and 30 IRE windows from AVIA Pro. The resulting gray scale tracked extremely well (+/-) 200 degrees. I will also try to do some more manipulation of the gray scale this evening with attention to goal of obtaining a gamma curve of around 2.5 and will then post my first manual gray scale adjustment vs my second gray scale adjustment with gamma correction.

    All for now, please feel free to post any questions or comments here and I will do my best to answer them.

    I am highly recommending the Marantz VP12S3 projector.

    Gregg Loewen

    Edited:

    Here is a link to the pre and auto calibration report:

    ISF Report
     
  2. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,374
    Likes Received:
    32
    Trophy Points:
    6,610
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    hi guys

    Sorry but Ive had no extra time to further this review and I leave for Florida tomorrow and will be gone until March 2nd. I will then be posting about gamma correction and color decoder correctness by using the Milori Colorfacts software and AVIA PRO.

    Please feel free to post your experiences with any of the gear listed in the Title or to ask questions here.

    Regards

    Gregg
     
  3. Levesque

    Levesque Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2002
    Messages:
    586
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Gregg.

    I'm seriously looking at the S3 right now.

    What are your impressions on the OOTB PQ? It's almost impossible to find an ISF guy to come where I live.

    So does this autocalibration really works? Or does the ISF calibration is absolutely necessary to obtain the best picture with the S3?

    I will probably pull the trigger really soon, so I'm really looking forward to your review of the S3. Still hesitating between the S3 and the JVX HX-1U. Did you calibrate one of those also?

    Gregg. If I can find 6 or 7 friends here to ISF their sets, do you think you could make a trip to the big white up north?
     
  4. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 1999
    Messages:
    837
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Lévesque:

    I can answer some of this while Gregg is away; I was sitting next time him when he was calibrating it. I have no professional affiliation or qualifations for this stuff, I was just there to watch movies, fix his network and play video games with his son. But I do have some idea what I'm doing and what I'm looking it. [​IMG]

    We watched some DVDs and HD (Voom and D-VHS) before it was really calibrated, but Gregg had already eyeballed the greyscale a bit. With just that little bit tweaking it looked beatiful (it was a bit green OOB.)

    It is by far the best fixed pixel projector I've ever seen. Like Gregg said, the blacks were great, and he's not even finished with the light control in the room and is not using a firehawk screen.

    Frankly, I liked this projector more than anything I've seen. What it lacks compared to to a CRT projector it makes up for in light output and more importantly (to me) perfect geometry. If only I had the room and the money for one!

    As for the auto-calibration... whew.. Yeah, I wouldn't rely on that. It didn't do a very good job, at all. It looked better when he had just eyeballed it. It still looked really nice OOB, but considering the cost of an ISF v. the cost of the projector, you'd be crazy not to find a way to get it done.
     
  5. Levesque

    Levesque Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2002
    Messages:
    586
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
  6. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,374
    Likes Received:
    32
    Trophy Points:
    6,610
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    hi guys

    thanks bill

    Levesque, Id be happy to come up to PQ. where are you located and can you get 3-5 others interested? Im in Maine, which really isnt too far of a drive,

    regards

    gregg
     
  7. Levesque

    Levesque Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2002
    Messages:
    586
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

Share This Page