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I had my Hitachi 51F500 calibrated...

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  • I had my Hitachi 51F500 calibrated...

    Gregg Loewen of Lion Audio Video calibrated my set this week.

    I purchased the set from Circuit City 4 months ago and after running Video Essentials I was very happy with the picture. DVD's looked great and DirecTV was pretty good, some channels looked good and some looked bad. I planned on having the set calibrated, so I didnt do too much tweaking other than DCAM convergence.

    In comes Gregg. He arrived at around 7pm and he started to do his magic. First thing he does is convince me to remove the glare shield. I wanted to keep it because I have a 16 month old son, but thankfully I listened to Gregg and removed it. Removing the protective screen made such a huge difference Im surprised that any HDTV's come from the factory with them. I have never seen so many screws, Hitachi really over designed the screen brackets. It took almost an hour to remove the shield and reinstall the other screens.

    The next thing he did was line the interior of the set with a heavy black felt. He had me sit in the viewing area and look in the set before and after the lining and I was amazed at the difference. After lining the set it was like looking into a black hole. I was concerned that this step wouldnt make a big difference and wasn't worth the money, but after it was done this thought was gone.

    He then cleaned the guns and did a manual and electronic focus. I was surprised how out of focus the guns were.

    After putting the set back together Gregg started the calibration.

    Setting the grey scale was next. I always thought the set look slightly green, and I could never seem to get rid of the green tint. Its gone now. My greys were pretty green. It was very cool watching him make changes in the ISF menu and watching the green disapear.

    Next came contrast and brightness. This seemed pretty straight forward as I have used AVIA and VE before, Gregg just did it in the ISF menu.

    I now a TV that has an accurate color decoder. Red push is gone. Again it was really cool to see the changes on his laptop as he adjusted the colors to spec. After this was done Gregg took measurments across the screen and found out that he needed to perform lens stripping. He also noticed earlier in the calibration that Hitachi added some tape the the red lens in a rough attempt at lens stripping. Gregg removed this when he cleaned the 3 guns. After lens stripping the set now measures within 5% uniformity across the screen.

    Finally it was time to check the geometry and convergence. According to Gregg my geometry was pretty good and he just made a few adjustments by eye. COnvergence took around 30 minutes as it was off quite a bit now.

    Finally done....

    We looked up at the clock and realized it was after midnight, so we took a look at a couple of scenes from the superbit version of The Fifth Element...

    How does look?

    Simply amazed by the difference. DVD's seem to come to life on the screen. I now understand what a properly calibrated image looks like. Colors are so rich and saturated, but at the same time whites are white and blacks are really black. Makes me really want some HD programming.

    The detail is amazing, Im seeing things I never noticed before. Its amazing to see the texture of an actors clothes or the fine grain in a stone wall/building.

    I just wanted to thank Gregg and share my story with you guys.


  • #2
    I certainly appreciate your review of Gregg's work. He will be headed my way in the near future to setup my Toshiba. Scheduling has not worked out for us thus far but I'm sure we'll get it worked out soon. I'm looking forward to it.

    Gregg hung out in these parts a while back, before I came around anyway. I believe we still have pics of him in the TTP Photo Gallery.


    Cedar Creek Cinema

    DVD Collection

    BFD Comprehensive Setup Guide


    • #3

      Greg wont disapoint you. I'm sure that you will be suprised at the difference after a pro calibration.

      Sorry about taking so long to get back to this post, but I kinda forgot about it. Amazing what a infant can do to your sleep patterns and short term memory. ops:

      It's been 3 months since Gregg's visit and the TV looks better than ever. Now I just need to get some HD progaming.



      • #4

        I just bought the Hitachi 51F700 and it will be delivered on 1/10/04. I would like to know what initial setup and/or calibrations you would recommend. I don't have any calibration discs but plan to get one before the tv is delivered.



        • #5

          I just used a copy of AVIA to set up the TV when it arrived at home. It arrived in torch mode as most do. Set up took under a hour including a manual convergence.

          Follow AVIA or VE and it will walk you thru the calibration.




          • #6
            I've had my 51F500 for about 6 months now. I corrected the red-push (and lime green issue) myself and calibrated with Video Essentials. I've wanted to get calibration done from the beginning but money can be hard to come by especially when the picture looks pretty good after my tinkering anyways. (Believe me there are LOT's of things that end up taking precedence over an ISF calibration when you've got a mortgage and family :? ) Interesting to hear about the Duvetyne lining. I had actually been told buy a local ISF tech that in his opinion most new RPTV's have dark enough cabinets and that I wouldn't notice a major difference...

            My set also seems to be a teensy bit green in the grayscale, would love to get that fixed. My geometry seems pretty good just a little off but would love to minimize the overscan too.

            Can anyone reccomend a good ISF tech in the Vancouver area? When I (eventually) get it done I'd like to use someone as thorough as Gregg.


            Need a new display? Questions about new display technologies? Visit RPTVs, plasmas, and other monitors @ HTguide


            • #7
              Micheal Chen (Micheal TLV) is based out of Calgary, and it seems he likes (or is just willing to do) road trips...

              I don't know if he hits our most Western Province, but you can ask him.
              He is always quick to answer my e-mails, (he puts up with my e-mails...) and offers free and very unbiased advice to boot.
              (I wish I had an e-amil address)

              If he doesn't travel that way, I can almost guarantee that he can refer someone local who would offer a simailar level of service.

              (I believe Gregg Loewen honed his craft with Micheal as a tutor/mentor)


              • #8
                Thanks Bent, I'll send off an e-mail to Micheal and pick his brain

                I'd love to hear other people's opinions/experiences with lining their RPTV's too if you guys are willing. I should clarify what I remember the ISF tech saying. He felt that for the money I wouldn't notice a big enough difference to justify the cost as most new TV's already have pretty dark cabinets.

                So in your opinions, based on your experiences, do you feel the benefits are worth the cost?


                Need a new display? Questions about new display technologies? Visit RPTVs, plasmas, and other monitors @ HTguide


                • #9

                  When Gregg had the TV's screen off he had me sit on my couch and look into the set. I could easily see metal reflecting light. After lining the set with heavyweight black felt there was a huge difference. This was the deciding factor.

                  IMHO this is a great tweak. Its hard to say if the picture is better because of the Duevtyne, as I have no way to compare the the orignal picture to the calibrated picture. Needless too say the post calibration picture is far superior.

                  I also had a slight green tint that I could not get rid off. Gregg agreed the picture was very green and promptly took care the problem.

                  The best part of the calibration was watching Gregg work. He really seems to enjoy his "job". If you end up having Gregg work on your set, make sure you have a pot of coffee ready for him, he is a coffee drinker.



                  • #10
                    I've had the pleasure of meeting Gregg when he and I happened to be in the same city a few years ago...super nice guy:T

                    As for lining your TV when I got my Tosh RPTV Jeff Kowerchuk had already lined it but from what I could see when I did some quasi ISF tweaking to it the felt really helpped a lot. Duvuntyne is extensive but regular black felt is almost as good and far cheaper.


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