Set up disks? Avia/Video Essential/bargain disk?

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Mark Un, Oct 5, 2004.

  1. Mark Un

    Mark Un Auditioning

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    Any recommendation on a set up disk. I read good reviews on Avia and Video Essential. Any word on the "bargain" disks that can be found on E-bay, The Ultimate Home Theater Experience/Home Theater Setup Disc--Silver Edition?
    I've never ran a set up disk in my theater and as I've just remodeled, I'd like to do so now. I'm not one to keep messing with and tweaking, so I imagine once I have it set,it'll be left along. I hate to spend $50+ for something I won't use often-or will perhaps become outdated as I upgrade in the future. Ease of use? Any recommendation on where to purchase? Same with a sound meter. As always, I appreciate this forum and your assistance.
    Thanks,
    Mark
     
  2. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    As long as the setup disk has level-adjustment tones (same volume that flips from speaker to speaker), even the budget "Sound & Vision" disk for under $20 will be fine. The expensive thing will be the Radio Shack SPL meter which I believe you can only find the digital version now. You might try eBay.

    Both Avia and Digital Video Essentials are well respected as they have tutorials on how to do things as well as test patterns and instructions on how to adjust your television for optimal brightness/contrast/sharpness. So they are well worth the money.

    But on the cheap: look in your DVD collection for a small logo that says "THX Optimizer". For a year or two, many premium titles included a small set of test-tones to level adjust your speakers with. This way you can spend the money on the SPL meter and wait on the setup disk.


    True. But the name-brand disks do something the cheaper disks/utilities dont: they instruct. While you may not do it often, the knowledge you gain will last a lifetime.

    But you can also learn much from our own Primer and FAQ article: Home Theater Calibration

    Good Luck.
     
  3. ChristopherDAC

    ChristopherDAC Producer

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    A point which was made in the original Home Theatre setup disc, A Video Standard, was that video, at least, should be checked on a regular basis to ensure it hasn't drifted out of calibration. This is the reason for buying the full-featured setup discs: leaving your system alone doesn't ensure it won't change its characteristics, so it's good to be able to check up on it regularly.
     

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