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A Discussion on ISF Calibration

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Old 08-29-2005, 08:54 AM   #1
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Default A Discussion on ISF Calibration

First of all I would like to thank our fellow member d6500k who is an ISF technician in the development of this essay. I contacted him to fill in some blanks I had to generate this essay. It turned out he filled in a lot of blanks and in fact ended up responsible for a great deal of this information and confirmation of the material. We e-mailed back and forth over a couple of weeks, so his time is much appreciated. His input has been most valuable and hopefully he will monitor this thread for follow-up. Thanks d6500k. Visit his Website: www.6500kcalibrations.com
  • Front panel control adjustments
    • Brightness and contrast: Two of the most important controls that ultimately determine the displays capability. These adjustments will interact with each other to some degree in almost all types of displays. Brightness will affect the black levels and the contrast or picture control will affect the peak white level. On CRTs, issues such as blooming and line distortion can occur with these adjustments and the tech will alternately adjust both until the best average is found for each. Digital displays require precise adjustment as well. White/black clipping occurs on almost all light engine devices causing bright areas to merge, defeating definition. Black levels are getting better with each iteration, actually making this control more important to set correctly.
    • Color and tint - These adjustments are made after placing the blue color bars test pattern on the display and using the blue filter. Matching the blue bars top and bottom while using the color/hue (tint) controls will render a correct setting if the color decoders are also correct. These controls also interact to a degree so care must be taken. Red and green filters allow the accuracy of the decoder to be accessed with another decoder error test pattern. Final adjustments are usually a best average if color decoder manipulation is not possible. Many TV’s are designed with the red being overemphasized and sometimes it is necessary to reduce overall color saturation to get decent red levels slightly de-saturating greens and blues.
    • Sharpness - This is really an edge enhancement control and should be defeated for film viewing from a quality source. Assuming your set is fairly recent, this adjustment may not have much affect. Test patterns confirm proper settings, which may need to be accessed in a service menu.

  • Service menu adjustments.
    • Grayscale - SMPTE-C phosphors for broadcast use is the ideal, but many manufacturers will use whatever phosphors they can get readily. This will cause color variance from brand to brand and even from model to model. Grayscale is an adjustment that is not generally available from the front panel control adjustments. It is one of the most important adjustments the ISF tech will make. The NTSC decided way back that the correct shade of white from very dark to very bright in video systems is 6500 K (kelvins) which is about like midday sunlight. Since all of the studio monitors which are used as reference when the video source was created are calibrated to 6500 K, if your TV does not match 6500 K, every color will be different than what the creator intended. For example, 2800 K is labeled as being warmer or redder white. If your TV were less than 6500 K, every color would be biased toward a reddish tint. If higher than 6500 K, a cooler bias will occur tending to be blue. Many displays "out of the box" will have color temperatures upwards of 10,000 K. Manufacturers set them up this way to "stand out" on crowded showroom floors.
    • Overscan: Analog and Digital displays handle overscan differently. Overscan is/was necessary with analog displays to "clean up" transmission anomalies such as the blanking intervals on the top and bottom of a picture. NTSC actually transmits 525 lines of information of which you see 480. The 45 lines not seen carry the information that among other things, controls the stability of the transmitted picture. The width of overscan is to alleviate underscan which shows ragged edges when the limits of the raster are reached. Typically 4 to 5% overscan can be achieved by the ISF controlling parameters in the service menus of analog displays. Digital displays use the same controls but in a slightly different way. Again ISF controls the "size" through the service menu settings that allows the display to show all data possible leaving the edges "hidden" so you don’t see bars on the tops and sides of your screen. With the exception of some front projectors and some other fixed pixel displays (plasma, LCD, etc.) that are used with external scalers, all signals are routed through the internal scaler, so matching the input signal to the nearest native set resolution may not be necessary. An ISF tech will evaluate which format your STB matches up best.
    • Data Paths - If the video signal is being sent through a pre amp processor or a receiver, the ISF tech will check via resolution charts whether all of the possible signal is being passed. In many cases, but not always, bypassing receivers or preamplifiers/processors in favor of a direct link via DVI or HDMI connections between the display and source, to potentially provide a better picture.
***********








That pretty much is the standard ISF calibration service. There are services that can go beyond the basic calibration if the set should need it and with analog displays are considered standard as well. Some such adjustments would be the displays geometry and convergence. CRT sets require adjustments of this type. Pincushion, trapezoid, tilt, rotation and others are common adjustments that are normally factory set to acceptable parameters. Precise alignment of the RGB CRT’s may well produce the most "bang for your buck" with regards to overall picture clarity. Fixed pixel displays generally have few electronic adjustments available to a tech other than size controls. Some manual manipulation of the light engines themselves may help geometrical distortions.



Screen Protector removal - Some RPTVs have a semi-clear finger guard that introduces glare into the set. Some are not removable which can be a problem if the display is not in a light controlled environment. These "shields" are to defray the potential damage to the lenticular screen in front of the Fresnel lens. Normally made of thin plastic, these lenses can be marred or damaged easily thus the need for some protection. When the display in within reach of "SUP’s" –small unpredictable people- the protective shield is a good idea. When possible, it is better to remove or restack the shield. By doing so the display will not produce reflections to the same degree as when the shield is in place. The resulting appearance after removal will be enhanced by the limited reflections and to a much lesser degree, the display will be brighter when the shield is removed entirely.

Removal and/or restacking can be initiated by researching the web for your type of display. Then simply follow the directions from service manuals. The task varies from a 15 min. job, to over a few hours. Take extreme care with the lens’s as they are very fragile. Two people make this task much simpler.

The Imaging Science Foundation, Inc (ISF) has a certification for HDTV sets called the Certified Calibration Controls or CCC. This has not been widely accepted by all manufacturers yet. It is intended to allow the setting of certain parameters which eliminates the need of accessing the service menus, which ISF believes should be reserved for factory adjustment only. The CCC adjustments are provided for two sets of non-volatile presets one for ISF Day and the other for ISF Night modes. ISF recommends, but does not require, a timed switch between modes.

The settings that ISF requires as the basic parameters in each CCC adjustment are:
  • Sizing and centering
  • Sub-adjustments for Front Panel controls
  • Color balance
  • Convergence, if applicable
  • Geometry
  • Primary color and decoder optimization, if available
  • Anti-Burn features, if available
If the HDTV set is not certified by ISF with the CCC certification, then the only option the ISF technician has is to go into the service menus and set the necessary parameters.

Last edited by rbinck; 08-30-2005 at 07:31 AM.
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Old 07-27-2006, 01:22 PM   #2
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This link has been posted in other threads - but it supplements nicely the information in this sticky for the more curious -IMO -- If you left click on the column headings a technical descriptions of the adjustments comes up in a java window -they go beyond the brief info usually posted in the HighDefforum on the parameters involved.
http://www.isfforum.com/chart/ISFChart.htmfor instance - this is part of the explanation of grayscale adjustments
Quote:
...To calibrate a display to any color of white requires, at minimum, the ability to adjust two of the three primary colors (red, green and blue) that combine to create grayscale. Depending on the display, there may be three color controls for the dark end of the grayscale range (typically referred to as “cutoffs” or “bias”) and three for the white end (“drives” or “gains”), but controls for at least two colors is required for color temperature adjustment. It is necessary to have these same controls for both the black end of the grayscale range (“black level” or “brightness”) and the white end of the range (“contrast,” or “picture”). These “cutoff” and “drive” controls are adjusted until the best possible color temperature tracking is achieved across the entire range, from video black to peak white. The labels used for grayscale adjustment controls vary widely among manufacturers.
Color Temperature Tracking
Color temperature tracking relates to the ability of a display to maintain the same color temperature as the intensity of light changes.
Pitfalls
D6500
A common misunderstanding is that D6500 and 6500 Kelvin are the same thing, but this is not true. 6500K is a line on the CIE chart that runs from “reddish purple” up through the Black Body Curve and through the “yellowish green” range; on the other hand, D6500 is a specific point on that 6500K line, relating to precise “x” (.3127) and “y” (.329) coordinates on the CIE chart....
Attached Images
File Type: gif ISF-chart.gif (22.7 KB, 561 views)

Last edited by maicaw; 07-27-2006 at 01:30 PM.
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Old 02-13-2007, 07:37 PM   #3
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Frankly, we ISF techs were too ambitious with our "ISF Ready" chart. Manufacturers started popping up, some buying others panels/electronics, some from scratch. We were inundated. There may be 100 working ISF techs on the planet. By working, I mean those of us that actually make a living delivering accuracy to those that care.

Because we do care.... manufacturers are now "seeing the light" and have coalesced to a major degree. They have implemented controls in both the user and service sections that allow for accuracy If, and it is a big IF, measurements are taken and verified. Huge step...Huge to quote a very pretty woman.

Very nearly all displays today have the controls we need. Some in the open, some not. Still, if it were not for the few that actually want their images to be those of the original artists, you'd all have sears/roebuck 27inchers blinding you on a bright day inside.

If you want your "wall big" display to deliver absolutely the image intended, you will still have to have it measured and adjusted to do so. It is just getting easier for us (ISF), as the providers of CE and content realize that you want perfection!

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Old 10-09-2007, 11:26 AM   #4
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Lightbulb Runco VX5000ci with Up-grade DHD Controller:

d6500k,

Well I am finally getting my Runco VX5000ci with my New DHD Controller Up-grade ISF Calibrated in the morning (Wednesday) 10/10/2007.

Just got the Runco reinstalled after 2-months that it has been gone. Some of this time was Runco repairing the unit and then I signed up for the DHD Controller Up-grade. So High Tech-Innovations in Nashville, TN. ordered HDMI to DVI Cables and Runco shipped the DHD Controller to them.

So I signed up for the real thing with my Authorized Runco Dealer (High Tech-Innovations). A "Certified" ISF Tech with the Sencore Equipment. After this intial calibration he will return to do the final calibration once I have burned in the New-Lamp for Approx. 150-200 Hrs. At that time he will also install the New Samsung Dual-Format HD Player that will be out by year end.

Looking forward to see how much difference there will be in the picture. I have very high hopes.

I sent you an E-Mail sometime ago and just thought I would do an update on how this has turned out.

I also Up-graded my Dish Network Satellite Receiver from the DVR622 to the New DVR722 Satellite Receiver.

The picture right now on HD Channels looks really Great so I am looking forward to see how the picture will look after the Calibration is completed in the Morning.

Terry
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Old 12-07-2007, 10:48 AM   #5
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Default A case of "Not quite far enough.."

I always read the 'lab reports' in various published display reviews. A very interesting one was of a Samsung DLP (non-LED lamp). It calibrated beautifully, the grey scale was a straight line for all practical purposes.
Colors, were amazing, contrast was decent if not the 'bomb', etc.
Only one 'glaring' problem, it was just too damn bright. They searched all the user settings and their was none for any lamp level or iris adjustment.
They could not recommend the display for a dark environment as splendid as it was in all other aspects.

http://hometheatermag.com/rearprojec...ce/index6.html

Then they found an iris adjustment in the service manual. The author of the review added the info to a blog he has on displays.
So far I have not been able to find it, and inquired out of interest. Many of the blogs are quite informative, BTW.
Well post if I do.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:40 PM   #6
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You need to run the TV for up to 100 hours before you bother calibrating the screen, correct? It needs to break itself in or you'll just be calibrating again a week later. Is that right?
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:13 PM   #7
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here's a question for you, using DVE-HD I'm able to get the blue color perfect and when I do so its either the red or the green that's also perfect. However, the other of the two (red or green) remains wrong. The DVE disc says this is due to the decoder being set wrong. is there any way to change that?
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Old 01-03-2008, 08:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeputyMoniker View Post
You need to run the TV for up to 100 hours before you bother calibrating the screen, correct? It needs to break itself in or you'll just be calibrating again a week later. Is that right?
It is doubtful with modern displays (non-CRT) that is entirely true, but electronics in general has some settling time. It is not a bad idea.
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justpaul205 View Post
here's a question for you, using DVE-HD I'm able to get the blue color perfect and when I do so its either the red or the green that's also perfect. However, the other of the two (red or green) remains wrong. The DVE disc says this is due to the decoder being set wrong. is there any way to change that?
Not without a professional delving into the service menu, although it can be compensated to some extent with setting of color saturation and hue.
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Old 01-16-2008, 04:17 AM   #10
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at the end what to choose avia or dve !!
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:00 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeputyMoniker View Post
You need to run the TV for up to 100 hours before you bother calibrating the screen, correct? It needs to break itself in or you'll just be calibrating again a week later. Is that right?
That may be correct for phosphor based displays like CRT and plasma, but is not for LCD, DLP, Lcos, etc.
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justpaul205 View Post
here's a question for you, using DVE-HD I'm able to get the blue color perfect and when I do so its either the red or the green that's also perfect. However, the other of the two (red or green) remains wrong. The DVE disc says this is due to the decoder being set wrong. is there any way to change that?
The set's white balance probably is not set close to 6500k and to fix that you need to get into the service menu to reset the drive settings. You really need a colorimeter to adjust that. You might try the different color temps to see if one of those will get you closer. On my LCD the color 1 was at 6800k, color 3 was at 11,000 or so and color 2 was somewhere in between out of the box.
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Old 08-04-2008, 02:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbinck View Post
That may be correct for phosphor based displays like CRT and plasma, but is not for LCD, DLP, Lcos, etc.

You sure about that? TV's, like most other devices, perform differently after use. ISF actually recommended an in-shop burn-in for TV's that we sell. Said we should run them for at least 100, prefered 200 hours before calibrating. Passin it along...
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Old 06-25-2009, 07:05 PM   #14
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Excellent forum
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Old 06-26-2009, 08:13 AM   #15
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Quote:
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Excellent forum
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