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Optoma HD8000 and HD80 DLP Home Theater Projector Review - General Performance-2

Posted on October 15, 2009 by Art Feierman

The last item on the Image menu opens the Advanced menu, shown to the right, which gives you access to adjust the following: Noise Reduction, Gamma, Degamma (shown below), and Color Temperature. Also shown below is the Color Temp Menu. In addition to the three presets (Warm, Mid, and Cold), you can access the User menu, shown immediately below. From this menu, you can individually control the R,G, and B Contrast and Brightness settings. This is where most of the calibration work gets done - to come up with a well tuned grayscale balance for movie watching. The ideal is a color temperature of 6500K.

Some notes on a few of these options. Gamma allows 10 steps of control of the image, leaving the blacks black and the full intensity colors and white, as is, but adjusting the lower, mid, and upper ranges. For example, movies are looking for a higher gamma to provide a richer (and some would say darker overall) image.

Color Vividness seems similar to TI's Brilliant Color circuitry. It seems to affect a number of aspects of the image, but basically allows you to increase intensity, theoretically, without oversaturating.

Format allows you to select the aspect ratio for your content. From reading the manual, the most interesting feature might be the Edge masking. The manual does not clearly explain what this is for. Image shift, I am familiar with. It allows you to move the image up or down the screen. If you have a full screen image, using image shift will cause you to lose part of the image. If though, you are working with a letter boxed 16:9 movie, you could move the image up the screen so the top of the actual content, is even with the top of your screen. If you have the ability to control how far down your screen goes (motorized or manual), for example, you could only extend it as far as the 2.35:1 Cinemascope shape. Then by moving the image up, you would fill the visible screen and not have a letterbox. I always thought that was a usable feature for some

Moving to the System Menu, we find a couple of key capabilities, beyond selecting menu language or the background color. You can select source from here, but more interesting, you can program the 12 volt triggers for screen control, which would allow you to control a motorized masking screen. Equally important, is the Projector sub menu, which allows you to control the Iris (auto, off, or manual - with 16 settings), and the all important lamp mode. From there you can select low power or full power settings.

The last major menu is the Setup menu - which, as you can see, allows source selection, and control of source search, letting you mountain folk access high altitude mode, adjust auto power features, and a system reset.

In other words, the HD8000 (or HD80) offer fairly extensive controls of not just image quality, but almost all aspects of use.

Optoma HD80 Memory Settings

The HD80 projector has User settings in a few place, but does not offer formal saving of the settings. Image modes: Between the three User areas, plus ISF Day, and ISF Night (those two are for calibrators), there are plenty of savable areas. There is also user color temperature, and you can have different settings for each of the 5 modes.

Without, formal Save settings capability though, you should definitely store what your settings are. For example, you might be using User 1 mode for movies, but find a particular movie needs some adjustment because the production qualities left something to be desired. So, let's say you increase color saturation, and reduce contrast. That is now part of your setting, and will remain until you change it. No big deal, when you want to return to YOUR "default" setting for user 1, and you know what it is, but if you don't record it, I hope your memory is very good.

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