Just as Daft Punk sings «Televisions, Rules the Nation». Regardless if we want to accept it or not, it is almost undeniable that there’s an entertainment box and screen in practically every house around the path, for not saying every corner, and did you know that most of the new displays do not come pre-calibrated to show the correct colors?

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The techie bucket list: invest five minutes on calibrating your TV, and your eyes will appreciate it!

LSD TV: The Common Mess Up of LCD TV

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So yes, that’s it, when you get a new display, it defaults from the factory. Manufacturers by default introduce values that they believe are as valid as possible for most of their customers. This is so as long as we all have identical light conditions in the room and the same perception of color, brightness, contrast… Which is not so.

So just as the fact that we cannot see the same colors in a rainbow because it depends on the viewer perception, in order to take most of the juice from our monitors and turn the colorful experience into a vibrant landscape of pictures tour, the calibration of a screen is something that we should all take into account —But ironically few do.

Before we get started, an explanatory note for my readers who still on 2k17 confuse the LCD TV with the LSD.

The presents advances in TV have given us new color and resolution technologies that are called LCD as an acronym of Liquid Crystal Display, which although they are thinner panels that generate less heat with lower energy consumption, brighteners and with better contrast, have nothing to do with LSD or Lysergic Acid Diethylamide more than the show that goes on in your mind when you take that acid —Kids, please stay away from drugs!

TV Picture Setting Tips

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The idea of calibrating is to adapt the image quality to what your eyes see. It is of no use to establish the values or configurations that we see of other users as these could be valid for him but not for us.

But how to calibrate if I do not have much idea? You are not alone: you can use a color calibrating tool or a monitor calibration software.

The Screen Color Calibrating Tools

 

One option is to buy an individual DVD to calibrate. These discs guide you step by step with detailed graphics on your TV. Below, my top three list that you can find on Amazon for even less than $20, in order of complexity: beginner, intermediate and expert.

  1. Disney WOW: World of Wonder
  2. Digital Video Essentials: HD Basics
  3. Spears & Munsil High-Definition Benchmark

The  Monitor Calibration Softwares

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On the other hand, all you need is the phone you already own and (perhaps) a cable that you probably don’t. Because there’s always ‘the app way,’ my suggestion goes like this:

Search in your app store for THX Tune-Up. It’s a free app, but you’ll need a way for your device to interface with your screen. The easiest way, at least for those who own an Apple TV, is to use AirPlay. For everyone else, you’ll need to pick up an adapter that converts from Lightning (iOS) or microUSB (Android) to HDMI.

On Your Own

 

Anyway, simple, fast and very valid adjustments for all are those that you can see in this four minutes video. A panel illumination level according to the room, adjust the contrast without losing detail in the whitest areas, lower the brightness without “killing” blacks and reduce the sharpness filter applied by many manufacturers, all based on the mode Film, will be enough. Have an excellent calibration!

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