A professional TV calibration service can significantly improve your home theater experience but not every TV needs it. Here’s what you need to know.
You’ve just got a new TV, unpacked it, and turned it on. The image looks great, but there are some small things that annoy you. Maybe it’s a color you don’t like or something else, and you wonder whether hiring a professional to calibrate your display is a worthwhile investment.
The answer to this question depends on the kind of TV you have. For example, don’t expect a calibrator to transform your old LCD TV. This will also be true for most cheap models. However, high-end 4K TVs are more sophisticated; often, only a professional can adjust a picture mode that will certainly be pleasing to your eye.
If you are surfing the internet for DIY calibration of your 97-inch OLED, the odds are high that you are confusing “setup” with “calibration.” So let’s look at what calibration is and why you need it.
What is a TV Calibration Service, and Why Do You Need It?
Every movie scene you are watching on the screen is a detailed and planned fulfillment of filmmakers. They carefully think through colors, contrasts, brightness, and range of tones to give scenes natural visual effects. So the calibration is meant to set the image attributes to reflect a creator’s intention. And if you want the picture to be the way a filmmaker wants it to be, a TV calibration service is the only solution. This is how it differs from the general setup.
Calibration vs. Setup
Unlike calibration, a general setup is what everyone can do with remote or manual control. In particular, you can start by choosing a TV mode. The most popular are:
- Standard or neutral – maintains a medium intensity level.
- Cinema or Movie – makes the look as close to what the filmmaker intended.
- Dynamic or Bright – for bright viewing environments.
- Sports mode – makes sports programs more realistic.
- Gaming – increases the response time of the TV.
- Eco – reduces energy consumption.
If setting up your TV through the built-in modes is not enough, check how scenes affect picture optimization by manually setting each parameter.
- Contrast and Brightness
- Color adjustment
- Hue or temperature
- Backlight and light sensors
You can easily do the above-mentioned optimization yourself, even better if you have a Blu-ray disc or 4k UHD HDR disk. On the flip side, calibration involves tuning advanced settings on your TV or projector, which may vary depending on the TV model and make. Some advanced settings are:
- Motion lighting
- Black and flesh tones
- Smart LED
- Super resolution
- Noise reduction
- Smooth gradation
- Auto light limiter
- Edge enhancer
- And more
So how do you figure out when to use the advanced modes? Many people will be satisfied with adjusting general settings. But what is the point of having a QLED smart TV if you are not getting the best possible picture? This is where the Linked Security TV calibration service comes in. Our audio and video technicians can tune the higher-level settings to improve picture quality.
Even temperature color is something a calibrator should do because they have special tools that measure the color temperature of the display.
The first step in the calibration process is evaluating the lighting condition of the home theater room your TV is in. The next step is utilizing specialized devices like an Ultra HD signal generator and colorimeter to assess the current performance of your screen. Finally, a calibrator will activate advanced settings to provide you with the best movie and TV show experience the way the directors envisioned.
Which TVs Can Be Calibrated?
As mentioned earlier, the best TVs for calibration are high-end ones. For example, the candidates among 4K TVs are Samsung Frame, Sony 4K X80J, or LG 4K OLED units. Professional calibrators typically work with LED, OLED, QLED, and 4K UHD TVs, including projectors.
On the other hand, it isn’t worth calibrating LCD models because they will never look as good as QLED or OLED. Older models are limited in general and advanced settings, so calibration will not transform your $500 TV as it can a $3,000 TV. Besides, the service will cost you from $300 to $600, so it is certainly not worth calibrating a cheap TV. Instead, it’s better to invest in a new one.
How Often Should I Calibrate My TV?
The calibration service can be done annually or every six months, depending on your display type. You need to do this because electronic capabilities alter over time, and routine maintenance will reveal if your TV screen is still providing the best viewing experience.
Besides, any time you upgrade your audio and video system, it also results in changes in the video signal chain. For example, if you add a new AV receiver or gaming console, it’s highly recommended to calibrate your TV as soon as possible.
Calibration and setting up your TV aren’t the same. Moreover, a TV calibration service involves fine-tuning the advanced display settings based on the viewing environment. Professional TV technicians will improve the picture quality of your high-end TV.
If you are on a budget, you can always contact Linked Security NYC to get expert advice on doing it yourself at home.