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Regarding Colored Lights Behind TVs

Discussion in 'Displays' started by GeorgeAB, Aug 25, 2018.

  1. GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Supporting Actor

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    Regarding Colored Lights Behind TVs

    Everyone is entitled to their own sense of priorities. Surrounding a TV with colored lights or wall perceptually subtracts that color from the picture in varying degrees. The motion imaging industry is guided by standards and recommended practices in order to preserve artistic intent. It's also designed from the ground up on human visual perception. Video's ultimate goal is consistent, unified program reproduction.

    You can see all kinds of deviation from best practices in the consumer space, sometimes even the vendor space. It's extremely rare in the program production/post-production/mastering space. Actually, most of the TV print ads I've been seeing in recent years show flat panel displays on neutral-colored walls and in neutral-colored rooms. More and more residential theaters competing for awards are also using grays and blacks consistently.

    I like to think this has become more common due to relentless efforts like mine and others to teach imaging science and display industry standards and best practices. I've been energetically advocating for this type of education for over 20 years. Joe Kane, SMPTE, the Imaging Science Foundation, THX, etc., have been at it longer than I.

    Sadly, Philips Electronics undermined these educational efforts regarding video viewing environments with their original "Ambilight" feature on flat TV commercials around the turn of the millennium. Many uninformed TV consumers got the idea having colored lights behind their TV was desirable and "cool." Popularity and validity are not mutually inclusive, neither are marketing and technically correct performance.

    This technical article explains why and how these principles are valid. Video market education is a perpetual necessity.

    http://cinemaquestinc.com/ive.htm

    Best regards and beautiful pictures,
    G. Alan Brown, President
    CinemaQuest, Inc.
    SMPTE, Professional Video Alliance, THX, ISF, Lion AV Consultants

    "Advancing the art and science of electronic imaging"
     
  2. John Dirk

    John Dirk Screenwriter
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    I believe this is summed up by the classic axiom, "you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink."
     
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  3. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    People put TVs eight feet up, above fireplaces. Samsung sells curved TVs. They for a while sold RGB displays, with marketing for its bonus yellow pixels.

    And now to try and get some marketing sizzle, some display makers are adding extra flashy lights.

    In a few years, someone will try to sell displays that physically move and lurch and dance in response to the content.

    It’s a marketing fad. It’ll go away soon enough.
     
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  4. GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Supporting Actor

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    Not soon enough! It's been about 18 years already and companies are still promoting the practice and providing solutions for implementing it as an accessory.
     
  5. CraigF

    CraigF Producer

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    Don't forget the shiny chrome frames/bezels!
     
  6. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    How so? I’ve seen dynamic ambient lighting advertised the past year. I don’t remember it being a product back in 2000 or even 2008. It seems a recent phenomenon, like curved screens and bonus yellow.
     
  7. GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Supporting Actor

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    Philips' "Ambilight" feature started the fad way back then. They pulled out of the US market with diplays after a few years, but continued with "Ambilight" models is the European market to this day. No other TV manufacturer has offered such a feature, but some after-market accessories have come along to mimic the feature. Try an internet search for "Ambilight." Wikipedia says it was invented in 2002. I was relying on my fading memory.
     
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  8. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    I really can't imagine using coloured ambient lighting around a TV set. I think it would be kind of distracting for one thing. I've been using the LED strip lighting kit that you sell on my sets. Whether they really improve contrast would be up to the individual to decide, but they do appear to reduce wear and tear on the old eyeballs. I used to watch in a completely dark room; however, after getting used to the backlighting, I don't think I would go back to a completely blacked out room, at least as far as a direct view set goes. The only thing that was an issue was the adhesive the manufacturer used. It was weak and started to release after a period of use. The "invisible" type Scotch tape helped solve that problem.
     
  9. Message #9 of 11 Sep 3, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
    GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Supporting Actor

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    There are always exceptions, but most humans are susceptible to eye strain and viewing fatigue when watching a bright object in darkness. It's similar to driving into oncoming traffic at night on the highway. That's a big reason for forested medians on interstates to block this from the opposite lanes. It lessens fatigue for night-time long-distance drivers, thereby enhancing road safety.

    Video backlighting (aka bias lighting) is standard practice in the video production community for viewing environments. The two-fold goal is viewer comfort and image fidelity. Pros work on evaluating picture content and quality in a dark room to avoid interfering reflections, haze, and glare on the screen. Consumers tend to understand intuitively that their TV picture looks better in the dark.

    Many TV consumers don't realize the benefit of bias lighting until they try it. I have read many reports of users never wanting to go back to watching TV in a totally dark room. The effect is sometimes subtle, but nevertheless real, and fully documented in decades of imaging science studies.
     
  10. Kyrsten Brad

    Kyrsten Brad Screenwriter

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    Well folks, here’s my idea of bias lighting:
    ( The two lights on the sides are actually torch flicker flame bulbs for that cheesy 50s era sci-Fi effect).
    A44C4355-30DC-44C6-841F-00805876746A. 9D02678B-4C3B-4A0F-9A16-430E5EDB281B.
     
  11. GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Supporting Actor

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    Proof of how a colored surround distorts the viewer's perception of the screen image is found in some fascinating online graphical demonstrations from a university in the UK. These "Colour Perception Illusions" come with a "mask opacity" slider that allows gradual desaturation of the colored surrounds to reveal how even slight amounts of color still affect how the central object appears.

    http://www.echalk.co.uk/amusements/OpticalIllusions/colourPerception/colourPerception.html
     

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