Video Essentials, Avia, etc...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dave Getson, Apr 13, 2002.

  1. Dave Getson

    Dave Getson Stunt Coordinator

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    I've been considering purhasing a calibration type disk for my HT. But what difference should I expect to see? I only have a 36" Toshiba TV. It's not high definition....it's just a plain 'ol TV. Will I notice a big difference from before and after I use one of these disks?
    Aside from video, what else do these disks do? [​IMG]
    Thanks for the help.
    Dave.
     
  2. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    The most important element IMHO is audio calibration. There is absolutely no more important element than getting spaker balance correct. Avia and VE both offer test that can be used with a SPL meter to get speaker balance for all 6 channels. Again, this is the most important element to calibration to me.
    As far as video goes, you certainly don't have to have a HDTV set to see a difference (heck, I would argue that VE/Avia offer the most improvement for standard NTSC sets rather than HiDef).
    The question of it being "that much" of a difference is an issue of perception. I'd hate to say yes, and find out that after calibrating you weren't all that picky about video in the first place. I know I noticed a giant difference- and gained a whole new understanding of how television displays operate and what are their shortcomings. From just knowledge attained from AVia/VE I can quickly assess basic issues with friends' sets as well.
    I would say the investment in these discs are well worth the cost. Not only do they offer test patterns- but they walk you through many technical elements of how equipment functions that will offer you a better understanding both for set-up and calibration-- and even for future purchases.
    On a side note, I do find it curious that lately there have been many thread along the lines of "prove to me that I need this". I just want to make it clear that this shouldn't be all that big of an issue- the price tag is more than resonable and if you search the forum you'll find literally thousands of people who swear by these calibration discs.
    It is a great tool, and even if you find yourself only thinking half of it is useful, you're only out a couple of bucks.
    -Vince
     
  3. Dave Getson

    Dave Getson Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Vince, I live to read your responses. [​IMG]
     
  4. Bill Kane

    Bill Kane Screenwriter

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    Dave, aren't you the new-speaker designer/worker -- and you've gone all this time without calibration?
    ok. not trying to ridicule you; maybe you brought home some slick meters from the company lab....
    With the assumption one has the US$39 Radio Shack Sound Pressure Level analogue meter, everyone should have at least one test disc in permanent collection; I break mine out monthly or so just for some curious check or sub level change to see how I like it.
    All the basic getcha-there audio/visual set-ups are included in Ovation"s Sound & Vision Home Theater Tune-Up disc, cvurrently $US$16 at amazon.com
    After accurately setting the levels of the 5.1 audio system to Dolby Digital theater "reference" level, we turn to the tv monitor, whether flatscreen 27inch or 55-inch RPTV.
    The video setup teaches us to reduce contrast/brightness, sharpness control, and adjust color et al to a point that will seem dark compared to before. Advise is to take a week to get used to it. One also is advised to video-tune the tv during the time of day you usually watch, in other words, with NOT a whole lotta ambient light down there in the basement.
    Before, I found I used to adjust the color remotely - up/down, up/down- typically looking for flesh tones on different channels. After the test video, I find I can just leave the settings 99.9% of the time.
    The S&V disc is fun to use; get one, the price is right Here. It is aimed at the HT newcomer in its narrative tone. It offers 6.1 test tones and additionally a Dts test range. There's always the original AVIA test disc for $39US with a much expanded series of video tests.
    Here's a Canadian link I copied from elsewhere.
    AVIA in BC
    regards,
    bill
     
  5. Dave Getson

    Dave Getson Stunt Coordinator

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