if you get any issues with the tv and it's either repaired or replaced then effectively you have wasted your money.
As you know, I've had my fair share of problem TVs, so I can understand that logic.
That's why I wanted to be sure this TV is a keeper before biting the bullet. True, the TV could develop a terminal fault tomorrow, and I'd have wasted my money, but the price was very reasonable and the risk very calculated.
The DIY route makes some sense if you're worried about this. If the TV is repaired of replaced, you simply get the meter out and start again. Of course this means spending more money than on a professional calibration; it also means getting your meter profiled against a spectro periodically to ensure its accuracy.
Hardware: Panasonic TX-P50VT65B (calibrated); Cambridge Audio Azur 651BD; Yamaha RX-A810; Teac PD-H600; PS3; B&W 601 & 600LCR (series 3); Q Acoustics QAV (rear)
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Where can you find someone to calibrate your TV?
Most will travel, so it's wise to do some research first on individual calibrators and prices.
Sounds like a really cushy job? "TV calibrator"
Not like working down the mines
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I've had my television calibrated and will have any other screens or projectors that I buy in the future calibrated as well. It takes a long time and demands a lot of patience but the improvements are very obvious. I have a document with all the settings in case they get wiped.
Most people don't have problems with their televisions breaking down so I don't think it is that much of a gamble to have it done. With a new plasma screen the calibrator recommended waiting until 100-200 hours of use so that the screen had bedded in prior to the calibration.
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Also, what are the perceived advantages of paying a professional vs. buying your own meter and software? Which offers the best value? To a degree this is system dependent. If you're Son_of_SJ, for instance, and own several high-end TVs, buying a meter arguably represents value for money as you can calibrate every TV you own. (Including that second-bedroom Kuro ).
I am indeed Son_of_SJ, and I've been away from the forum for two weeks on a trip to, amongst other things, see SJ's final resting place, of which my brothers and I had to have the headstone re-engraved, since it had weathered rather badly since the last time that we saw it, 19 years ago. Does getting one's father's headstone re-engraved count as a video calibration??
I gather that the cost of getting a TV professionally calibrated is about £250, but part of that includes the calibrator's travel costs, so if I had three or four TVs done at the same visit perhaps I would get a discount?? If things go well for me this year and I finally get a 65" Panasonic plasma (last year I wanted the 65ST50, but plans - okay, money - fell through) then I will certainly get it, and the Pioneer LX5090 (which will then be promoted to my bedroom) and/or the Samsung, and/or the LG 60PZ950T currently in the kitchen calibrated. I will need to look into getting a meter and supporting software and doing it myself, versus getting a professional calibrator in. I honestly don't yet know which would be the better option. I'm leaning towards doing it myself in future, once I have seen a professional calibrator in action.
Yes, I've previously seen mentioned the figure of 200 hours use before getting your TV calibrated. Which is why I am puzzled that TPS just south of Manchester, who sell only Panasonic TVs I believe, offer a calibration for only £99 with every new TV they sell, when by definition that TV will not have done 200 hours????
Click here to read about my system
Speak to Nigel Moore at Peter Tyson. They're based in Cumbria, & may come up. They usually offer discounts for multiple screens.
I think TPS will come after a few weeks to calibrate your TV, once it's done 200 hours.
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So is price the biggest barrier for many forum members? That seems a common concern, because people are anxious it'd be wasted money if their TV goes kaput, or simply believe calibration is generally too expensive.
Yep. My Philips 32pd9731d got a line mark down the screen, and my Pioneer 5090 got a big black mark down the right of the screen! My Panasonic actually has a little bit of that going on too, but you can only see it when the screen is off! I did take a photo of it the other day, I will have to upload it sometime, because the Pioneer one was twice as big and even blacker! I am now wondering what exactly it is? It was definitely screen burn on the Pioneer because I had two people inspect it! My Panasonic has a tiny bit of image retention but nothing too bad.
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Hi Strapped, really good post. I hadn't even considered getting someone in to calibrate my telly. Part of this was down to the fact that given the price to calibrate and the value of my telly, ie it's not a high end set, that I equated calibration more for top end tellys. Having read the recent threads on vt/zt65 it was the 1st time I started to become aware. Normally I just use the thx optimiser app to set the picture, on the whole I'm happy, but I posted a while back regarding blue tint in really dark scene's. I'm not entirely convinced my set is set to it's full potential, so it become's an annoying itch where I'm constantly on the quest to tweak and paranoid on the blue tint (haven't really managed to get rid on really dark scene's).What's worse is that from the link you posted there are 2 calibrators very close to me. The other challenge will be the missus, "...but why do you need to spend that amount of cash when the telly looks fine to me???"Keen to hear feedback from other members that have had it done, preferably on sets closer to my spec, but I doubt there will be many??
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TVs definitely develop faults. (Or have faults out if the box). I know this from bitter experience, though I don't need to fill you in on the story.
In my view, calibration isn't so prohibitively expensive that it'd be too risky with any TV. As long as you've given the TV enough time to bed in and are satisfied that any issues are marginal and tolerable, you might as well get the best from it.
Better not tell me any more about a vertical line on your GT50, Gel! I bought my GT50 after you advised that your set was perfectly uniform! Luckily I got my money back and moved on, so no harm done, aside from several months of stress.
I posted a while back regarding blue tint in really dark scene's. I'm not entirely convinced my set is set to it's full potential, so it become's an annoying itch where I'm constantly on the quest to tweak and paranoid on the blue tint (haven't really managed to get rid on really dark scene's).
I don't know what calibration options your Sony has. Sony typically doesn't include ISF modes that allow fine manipulation of greyscale, gamma, and colour. I'm therefore not sure what a calibrator could achieve without accessing the service menu. Even then, extensive calibration controls may not be available.
It might be worth having a chat with a calibrator to see what they think is possible.
I don't think you'll exactly find an argument against calibration, as it's clearly a positive. However, IME I have kind of been with BB on this one. I've only ever owned one proper flat screen TV (more recently a cheapish and cheerful LCD in the bedroom also). I bought the best one available, my only mistake being going in one year too early. Both my gf and I were blown away by how amazing it was. Such a feeling lasted many years, and I still think that with a decent blu ray. I hadn't come across calibration when I first bought it. When I first heard about calibration, I would have at the back of my mind (i) the prospect of of my gf saying 'why on earth are you paying £x00 for some guy to play with the setting when it already looks bloody marvellous and you could play with the settings yourself anyway', and (ii) the fact that I would probably agree with those sentiments.
But I say all of this from a position of ignorance. To my knowledge, I've never seen a professionally calibrated TV, certainly never side by side with the same TV but non-calibrated. Only then, I suppose, would I be able to make a rational assessment of performance increase v price v risk of waste if the TV develops a fault.
Obviously I will not be getting my Kuro calibrated so long into its life. Other financial commitments mean a new TV is a distant speck on the horizon, so it looks as though this will be only a theoretical conundrum for me
HiFi / A/V / Bedroom
Another reason: I'm moving to a new place next year, will most probably have a new TV. No point in calibrating at this point.
I'm happy with the settings you posted a few months ago Strapped, so I'm not that bothered about getting my GT50 professionally calibrated.
I've recently been working with an old school friend, who is now an av installer. One of the first things I asked him was "Do you do tv calibration", and his reply was, that no-one wants it done anymore, because the out of box settings are so good on more recent tvs.
Maybe he was avoiding the question, or more likely, he was telling the truth, people really don't bother with calibration anymore.
I understand spending £200 on calibration if you have spent £3000-£4000 on a tv, and if I had bought the ZT, or maybe even the VT, I would too, but to me, spending 20% of the cost price on something that will only have small performance benefits, seems like money badly spent.
I understand why you have done it Strapped, but for me, with my little old GT, it's not necessary.
Saying that, if you have some more up to date settings for the GT50, I'm more than happy to try them out.
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Ben and BB, I possibly wouldn't calibrate a TV for the first time several years into its life, either.
Nevertheless, I stick by my original point that it's the best value upgrade I've made. I was a little anxious as to whether it would be worthwhile, but any doubts I had proved entirely unfounded.
Sorry to sound like an evangelist, but I suspect many forum members have never seen a calibrated high-end TV and therefore don't realise what an appreciable difference calibration makes.
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