Wednesday, March 14, 2012

3D TV Display Technology Shoot-Out

Being a trusted source of reliable information is gratifying to us at SpectraCal, and it’s a confidence we do our best to continue to merit.  We spend a great deal of time and invest significant resources here in checking claims and delving into the technical details of current issues in image fidelity. 

Our engineers Darrell and Chris spend much of their time in a research lab with prototype displays before manufacturers release them, investigating the issues they pose to the state of the art of colorimetry. 

The #1 most 'Frequently Asked Question' category for the past year has involved 3D, with questions such as: How do I calibrate a 3D system? What are the 3D-specific setup issues?  How do I test for them?

The Joe Kane 3D test patterns for the AV Foundry Video Forge HDMI digital pattern generator have been invaluable in helping manufacturers as well as system integrators understand and rectify the problems with 3D signals.  Recently we’ve also introduced our own 3D test patterns as well, which are now included with every VideoForge.  

In coming months, you’ll see more articles in this newsletter on issues in 3D setup and calibration. Our investigations have definitely turned up way more problems than solutions, so you’ll see limited, carefully qualified conclusions, hedged around with enumeration of lots of exception cases. But we think you’ll find them all the more valuable for that. Please don’t hesitate to write in with your 3D questions. Let us know what practical problems you’re seeing in the field.  

One asset in making sure we always provide the best and clearest technical briefings to our community is a wide circle of friends. After we run tests in our labs, we always check with everyone else we know in a variety of industries to compare notes on what they are seeing. 

One of the most valued contributors to the industry’s understanding of display technology issues is Dr. Raymond Soneira of DisplayMate Technologies. Among his other great values to the industry – such as an unmatchable resume and impeccable methodological rigor – is a fearless impartiality.  Ray always reports exactly what he finds, no matter whom it might offend.  

So we were both pleased and avidly interested when Dr. Soneira recently published an in-depth comparison of 3D display technologies. We think both you and your customers will benefit from reading this report.

Click here to read the full article. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

SpectraCal Software Supports DataColor Spyder4 With Enhancements!

Software developer SpectraCal, Inc. announced support throughout its video calibration software line for the new Datacolor Spyder4.  CalMAN and CalPC version 4.6, announced by SpectraCal today, will support Spyder4 hardware whether purchased from SpectraCal, Datacolor, or any Datacolor reseller. 

Those who buy from SpectraCal will receive a bonus:  SpectraCal’s version of the meter, dubbed the Spyder4 Enhanced, contain additional calibration matrixes to improve calibration of LED displays, projectors, and other display technologies important to home users.

“We enhance each meter individually in our NIST-traceable calibration lab,” explained SpectraCal Marketing Manager Alex Nguyen.

Nguyen explained that the added precision will only benefit users of SpectraCal software; other users will see no change.

Innovations in the Spyder4 include double-shielded filters.  According to Datacolor, these improvements greatly improve long-term stability and improve meter accuracy, on average, by 26% compared to the Spyder3.  
“We’re very impressed with the repeatability of the Spyder4,” said Darrell Bird, director of the calibration lab at SpectraCal.  “It’s a major improvement,” Bird said.

“Datacolor is excited to see SpectraCal supporting our renowned line of colorimeters with their great software,” said Brian Levey, Datacolor’s Global Vice President of Sales. 

CalMAN is the top selling software for calibrating home theaters and other video displays.  CalPC is SpectraCal’s comprehensive solution for calibrating computer monitors.

To help launch the new bundles, SpectraCal is offering significant discounts during the month of March.  For example, CalMAN with a Spyder4, normally $299, is on sale for $229 in March.

For more information, please go to