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Epson Home Cinema 5030UB Calibration & Settings

Posted on November 6, 2013 by Art Feierman

Calibration & Settings

Below are the calibration settings Mike ended up with in doing a grayscale calibration, and general settings.  Although the Epson has a very good THX mode, if other HC5030 UB's are consistent with this one, they can be slightly improved.  See Mike's notes at the bottom regarding the finer points.

Dynamic mode is the brightest but with very strong greens. Reducing the green makes for a major viewing improvement, but the HC5030 UB still manages more than 1700 lumens, and that's at mid-point on the zoom, so an easy 2000 lumens with the zoom at wide angle!

For your convenience we repeat the Epson Home Cinema 5030 UB's brightness and color temp measurements from the Performance page.

Let's take a look at the numbers:

Color Temperature

Color Temp over IRE Range (Pre calibration): THX
30 IRE 7164
50 IRE 7170
80 IRE 7172
100 IRE 7012

Before we provide our settings, let's see what we started out with: Pre calibration, these are the color temperatures over the grayscale range.

Lumen Output and Color Temp at 100 IRE:
Dynamic 1890 @ 6702
Living Room 1473 @ 8088
Natural 804 @ 7132, 572 in Eco lamp mode (default)
Cinema 804 @ 7041, 572 in Eco lamp mode (default)
THX 804 @ 7012, 572 in Eco lamp mode (default)

Here's a look at the other modes, just reporting on White - (100 IRE).  Note that Natural, Cinema and THX are, best we can tell, virtually identical.  For those with EU or other international versions, the Cinema mode is what you should use instead of the THX mode we list, since, as best I understand it, the TW8200.  (I trust that your units have a Cinema mode!)

There was an error on this page regarding the grayscale settings for Gain and Bias for RGB.  That has been corrected, and it now matches the same data on the Advanced page for our subscribers.  Subscribers though have access to our CMS calibration data, that is, the calibration of each primary and secondary color.  It may be what I've often called "the last 5 or 10% of a calibration, but it can make a real difference!

Basic Settings

Settings for Measurements
Cinema Dynamic Living Room Natural THX
Contrast = (0) -2 -1 -1 -1 +1
Brightness = (0) 1 0 1 1 0
Color Temp = (0) 6500 6500 7500 6500 6500
Auto Iris Off High Speed Off Off Off

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. In the case of the HC5030 UB projector, most of these default settings were fairly close to ideal, with only contrast altered more than slightly in most modes.

Color Saturation all settings 0
Lamp Mode=Normal (unless noted otherwise)
Auto Iris Off.
All other settings at default (untouched)

Greyscale Calibration based on THX Mode, placed in User Memory 1

Color Temp over IRE Range (Post calibration)
20 IRE 6719
30 IRE 6515
40 IRE 6474
50 IRE 6539
60 IRE 6503
70 IRE 6509
80 IRE 6564
90 IRE 6528
100 IRE 6517

Average gamma =   2.18

RGB Settings

HC5030 UB Post Calibration settings:
THX (or Cinema if no THX) Quick Cal of Dynamic (Memory 2)
R = 3 0
G = -1 0
B = 9 0
R = -11 0
G = 0 -10
B = -12 0

To the left are Mike's adjustments for the THX and Dynamic modes. Again the goal of "best" is a great looking 6500K grayscale, and the goal of "brightest" is to improve a bright mode in terms of color accuracy, but without compromising brightness significantly.

Gamma:                             2.2     2.0 (default)
Lumens:                678@6517    1706@7036

That covers the calibration data, except for CMS.  More on that on our Advanced Calibration page for our subscribers.

Mike's calibration comments: Overall, the 5030 UB is very similar in performance to the 5010.  Lumen output is slightly higher in Dynamic mode with the 5030 UB, but the biggest increase (169 lumens) is in the better picture quality modes (Cinema, THX, Natural).  Grayscale is okay right out of the box and is virtually the same in THX, Cinema and Natural modes, with the correct red levels in the higher IREs, but it’s deficient in green and has too much blue.  It calibrated extremely well (see graph), with Delta E under 2 for the entire range.  This is an improvement over the 5010 we tested, which had a huge jump at 100 IRE as the red tapped out.  The gamma settings are more accurate than they were with the 5010, with the average gamma coming in at only 0.02 less than the preset value (2.18 vs. 2.2).  Similarly, setting gamma at 2.3 yielded an average gamma of 2.27.  There are extensive gamma settings available, but, like the 3020e, the simple gamma setting is so good, most people won’t need to use them.

The Quick Cal of Dynamic reduces the green that’s apparent in whites, but it causes a rapid drop in lumen output and also starts to look too red with light grays.  Living Room mode has a better picture and its output of over 1400 lumens is probably sufficient for most uses.

The color gamut is quite good by default in THX mode, with Red too high in absolute luminance and Green being off the Rec. 709 target mark.  Blue was fairly good, but oversaturated.  The secondaries were generally good, with only Magenta being noticeably off the mark in hue.  Green and red couldn’t be completely moved into alignment with the CMS, but they were close enough and everything in normal viewing appeared accurate.  Skin tones were better than the 3020, but the skin tone setting is subtle enough that if you think there’s a touch too much red, you can tone it down with that control.

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