How To Calibrate Your TV Picture – For Free! by jimmycanuck
November 13, 2006, 8:57 am
Filed under: gadgets, movies, tv
  • colobar

Having purchased my first HDTV a few weeks ago, I decided over the weekend that it was finally time for me to sit down and get the picture looking and colorful and clean as I possibly could.  But how would I do it?

I could always just eyeball it, but let’s face it – guessing with the settings will only get you so far.  My next option would have been to pick up the ultimate in home calibration tools, Digital Video Essentials – but then I would’ve needed to take out a second mortgage on my house.  My only other option, or so I thought, would have been to call in a professional.  Again, second mortgage time.  But after much investigation into all of the possibilities, I discovered a little secret – most of us have a basic calibration utility in our house and we don’t even know it.

Do you own any movies in THX?  Sure you do.  If you own a Pixar movie – you’ve got it.  If you own a Star War’s movie – you’ve got it.  If you own any one of a hundred or more of the most popular DVD’s to come out in recent years, you’ve got it.  You’ve got the THX Optimizer. 

The THX Optimizer is a very simple tool that will help you calibrate your TV’s audio and video ways that simply eyeballing it just can’t.  It’s a short series of tests that you calibrate you picture and sound with ease.  There’s an optional pair of blue glasses that you can order from the THX website for $1.00 if you want to go the extra mile – but it’s certainly not essential.  If you own a THX movie and you haven’t calibrated your TV properly, you owe it to yourself to do this.

The Optimizer itself can be hard to find in the menus, so you may have to do a little hunting.  I used my copy of Star Wars: A New Hope, and the Optimizer was hidden between the two columns of choices in the Options Menu – blended right in with the background picture.  Still, it may be a pain to track down, but it’s well worth the hunt.


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