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Individual panel adjustment

Posted on February 10, 2010 by Art Feierman
Stop right here! Yes, the JVC DLA RS35 projector does offer digial pixel alignment, like the other JVC's. One, huge difference though, and right there lies the justification for spending the extra $2000 for the RS35 over the RS25. The DLA-RS35 projector that arrived for review has, best I can tell, with my eyes, pretty much perfect alignment of all colors, vertical and horizontal. With a 128" diagonal projected image, and standing less than a foot from the screen, I can't see any shift. When I compare it to the RS15 here, there's no comparison. On the RS15, I can see some shifting both horizontal and vertical, including red being off just over a pixel (so it can be corrected with the pixel shift). My own RS20 happens to have slightly better pixel alignment than the average JVC that's come through here, but also is clearly, inferior to this RS35.

More to the point. I can see the difference in sharpness, between my RS20 and the RS35 while watching the Olympics. I haven't yet put the RS35 side by side with the new InFocus SP8602, but likely will have before I post this. The InFocus is a single chip DLP, and as such tends to be inherently sharper appearing, since there are no three sets of colors to converge imperfectly. Single chip DLP's generally just look sharper than the rest. Not so this time, this RS35 I'm pretty certain will be every bit as sharp as the InFocus. If the JVC's not as sharp as the InFocus, you won't be reading this paragraph!

CFI - Clear Motion Drive

Creative Frame Interpolation! JVC calls theirs Clear Motion Drive, and there are two settings. We stuck to low. Good for sports. With movies, like with others, you get a little of that "live digital video" or "soap opera" look, that most enthusiasts and all purists will avoid on movies, but, hey, some folks like it. When my daughter has friends over, they mostly watch stuff like Iron Man, or Star Trek, or Across the Universe, or High School Musical 3 with CFI on low. (strange child!). To put it in further perspective, anytime I have a projector on with CFI running (always on low), Lisa can walk into the room, and in about 1 second she'll say "you've got CFI on".

Which just goes to show you that it does have a visible impact. And some may like it even though it may distort the "director's intent".

Color Management System (CMS)

JVC provides a primary and secondary color management system on the JVC DLA-RS35 and the HD990. The CMS needs to be calibrated (that would be calibrating the individual primary and secondary colors), for the JVC DLA-RS35 to produce its best results. Apparently the THX mode has its own CMS settings, and the results of THX mode are superior to the other key modes (notably Cinema 2, the closest), because of the better CMS settings.

Once Mike calibrated the individual colors, the RS35 started looking even better. I'm still doing some very minor tweaking as I feel the skin tones have a tiny bit of "goldish" look that I'd like to remove, but I'm talking really, really picky - the kind of thing you only notice on some content. Once again the end result was slightly better overall color, and slightly better skin tones than the THX mode. Not a huge difference, but enough to be worth the effort.

Unlike the original CMS on last year's JVC RS20 (that I had to deal with), JVC's CMS now works rather normally. Mike reported no real surprises, and the results prove that out. With last year's CMS, every adjustment you made seemed to affect some other adjustment, and it was a mess. We needed outside help from the forums to get the CMS right. (Later, JVC came out with a firmware improvement, but since I had already achieved "good color" I decided not to start all over).

Bottom line: A good CMS system, now easy to use. It works, and a proper CMS setup is needed to maximize the JVC RS25 and HD950 projectors performance.

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