Adjust your HDTV picture controls

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Adjust your HDTV picture controls

Post by Admin on Tue Mar 25, 2008 12:15 pm

Calibrating your HDTV for the best possible picture can be simple, if you know what to look for.

Brightness or black level:
This adjusts how dark the black sections of the picture appear. To set
it, connect your DVD player using the highest quality input available.
Insert a wide-screen DVD (black bars on the top and bottom, also called
letterbox bars). Turn up the control all the way, then decrease it
until the letterbox bars begin to appear black, as opposed to dark
gray. If you notice a loss of shadow detail--for example, when people's
eyes disappear into the depths under their brows--then you've set
brightness too low.

Contrast, picture, or white level:
This controls the intensity of the whites and determines the overall
light output of the display. To calibrate, display a still image from a
DVD of a white object with some visible details, such a white button-up
shirt. Adjust the control up all the way, and then reduce it until you
can make out all the details in the white, such as the shirt buttons or
wrinkles. In general, TVs look best when contrast is set between 30 and
50 percent.

Color or saturation: This
controls the color intensity. To fine-tune the color, find an image of
someone with light, delicate skin tones, preferably a closeup of a
face, on a DVD. Turn up the color control until it looks as if the
person has sunburn, and then reduce it until the skin looks natural,
without too much red. When there's too much color, the set looks garish
and unrealistic. On the other hand, too little color diminishes the
impact of the picture, making it look drab. Setting color to zero
results in a black-and-white image.

Many sets today come with
picture "enhancements" such as autocolor and noise reduction. Because
DVD offers high-quality images, these auto adjustments often do more
harm than good. Be sure to turn them off, if possible.
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