Samsung SP-A600 Projector Review

SP-A600 Calibration notes: We calibrate each home theater that is reviewed. It is a pretty standard calibration – there’s always more that can be done by some of the “hi-end” calibrators. Our calibrations, including the SP-A600, are normally limited to a grayscale calibration, along with brightness, contrast, color saturation, etc.

Samsung SP-A600 Color Temperature

We used Movie 1 mode as the basis for calibration. Results were then saved in User 1, which was used for all photo sessions unless otherwise noted. We refer to User 1 as Movie

1).Pre-calibration, the color temperature measurements came out like this:

Movie 1
30 IRE 6415K
50 IRE 6339K
80 IRE 6216K
100 IRE 6155K

As you can see, all readings are below the ideal 6500K, and therefore warm – shifted to red. The Samsung isn’t off a great deal, but enough to affect skin tones and many scenes with just a tad too much red.

Samsung SP-A600 Basic Settings

In addition to calibrating Red Green and Blue for a correct grayscale balance (6500K), there are a number of other settings that come into play. Typically Contrast and Brightness (white balance and black balance), need to be done first. Color saturation and gamma also need adjustment.

Settings for measurements (default values are in parenthesis):
Vivid Dynamic Standard Movie 1 Movie 2 User 1
Contrast = (50) 45 50 54 54 54 53
Brightness= (50) 56 48 49 50 50 53
Color= (50 for all) 46*
Tint= (50 for all)
Color Temp 9300 9300 8000 6500 5500 6500
Gamma (Graphic) (Graphic) (Video) (Film) (Film) (Film)
Lamp Mode Bright

All other settings untouched

* After significant viewing, Art recommends a color saturation setting of 44 if you use Film gamma and 44 if Video gamma is selected.

Samsung SP-A600 Post Calibration Grayscale: Movie 1 (User 1) mode

Post calibration, we ended up with excellent grayscale balance which was evident, when watching the SP-A600.

20 IRE (very dark gray) 6340K
30 IRE 6422K
40 IRE 6365K
50 IRE 6514K
60 IRE 6536K
70 IRE 6528K
80 IRE 6526K
90 IRE 6594K
100 IRE (white) 6467K

There is still a small dip in color temperature below 50K (to 20K), which would tend to account for the slightly extra red in skin tones, especially those where the skin tones are not brightly lit. Overall, this is an excellent grayscale result.

Gamma: The film gamma setting is the one that should be ideal, but it is not. It measures an unusually high 2.56 (optimum is 2.2). As such, using the film gamma setting will tend to make mid brightness objects a too dark. Sunny scenes just lack that feeling of a bright sunny day. Switching to the Video gamma drops the gamma to 2.04, which means it’s a bit too bright in the mid-range instead. I’ve watched with both, and with a number of movies I just couldn’t handle the Film. Overall, I preferred the Video setting, although neither is ideal.

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