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If you want to try this yourself, you will need to find sample scenes that will help you zero in on color and contrast issues. Ideally, you should have a very dark room. However, if you do the majority of viewing during daylight hours, it is best to calibrate your machine at that time. Also, it is a good idea to let your projector or television warm up for 15 or 20 minutes before you start calibrations.
Sample scene suggestions
When adjusting your video without specialized software, the name of the game is natural. Therefore, your sample scenes should reflect natural images that you can compare to your real-life experience, like green grass.
To help set Contrast and Brightness, a high contrast scene is preferred. By high contrast scene, I mean a scene that features pure black and clean white. Both the black and the white images should have fine details within them. Although it may seem like a good idea, black and white movies are not ideal for this process. My choice was a scene from the Italian film "Life is Beautiful," near the end of chapter 14, with Roberto Benigni dressed in a dashing tuxedo in a pristine white restaurant.
In short, the brightness level is actually your black level. To adjust this level, you will need to find that scene with high contrast. We mentioned above that a scene from "Life is Beautiful" was our choice. Make sure that the black in your image is actually black, and not dark blue.
You can start by turning your brightness all the way to the maximum. Notice the image looks washed out, like someone has laid a white transparency over it. Then watch as you bring the level back down. Watch the blacks until they appear about as black as your system will allow. Look within the black areas for fine details and shadows (like the texture on a tuxedo lapel). Make sure you don't turn the blacks down so far that the details get lost in the darkness.
Once you have the blackest black with the details still intact, turn your attention to the lighter areas. The lighter areas should be light, not gray, and should also have retained detail.Note:
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