As Mr. Clooney’s character conducts a business pep talk in a hotel meeting room, with event attendees barely lit, a goodly amount of black crush (the traditional bugaboo of LCD-based displays) is noticeable.
Broadcast HDTV Evaluation: USGA Golf (NBC)
To check out the Quattron four-color pixel system, golf in HD seemed the natural choice, and it amazes me how the camera operators can follow a tiny golf ball as it sails through the air down a long fairway. The picture was always crisp and detailed, especially with close-ups of golf balls on the putting green, and a spectacular slow motion close-up of a wedge shot out of a bunker were you could almost count the individual grains of sand kicked up looked just great.
Compared to a reference plasma parked right next to it (a Pioneer Elite Kuro 1080p 50” model) that has been calibrated, the Sharp’s extended color gamut proved to provide greener grass, and the bright yellow vests visible on some of the caddies were also notably more colorful. The NBC on-screen leader board graphics also have a goodly dash of yellow, and they were noticeably more saturated on the Sharp.
Here the Sharp does a fine job, especially with close-ups of one golfers’ jet black shirt, and another golfer’s black Panama hat band. Also on the leader board score graphics, the blacks were deep and inky.
With almost no dark scenes as the game was played on a beautifully sunny day, the Sharp didn’t exhibit any black crush. On one HD commercial plugging a new crime drama with a brief nighttime scene, some detail was a little obscured, but not by much.
The video purist, who wants to watch a display that closely matches the visual look of a broadcast control room or movie mastering studio monitor, probably isn’t going to gravitate to the Sharp. Here at The Perfect Vision, a studio quality display is what gets us excited, and with the obvious color fiddling that Sharp has going on with the Quattron’s four-color pixel system and extended HD color gamut, it’s obvious that they’re going for casual shoppers to whom a more vivid color picture is desirable.
It appears from the testing that the Quattron, even when adjusted to its optimum, is doing some noodling with the color quality on an active, or dynamic basis, as I found myself constantly reaching for the remote to dial up or down the color saturation. I could never seem to find a setting where it seemed stable, which isn’t a problem with reference quality displays that more closely adhere to the established technical standards. By all means, go have a look at a Quattron, but do keep in mind that in video, more of something isn’t necessarily better.
Sharp LC-46LE820UN Quattron LED-illuminated LCD HDTV
Screen size: 46” diagonal
Pixel resolution: 1920 x 1080
1:1 Mode: Yes
Video inputs: 4 HDMI, 1 component, 1 combo composite video input with stereo audio, 1 RGB PC
Other connections: 1 stereo audio input, 1 PC audio input, 1 optical digital audio output, 1 ATSC/NTSC/ClearQAM RF input, 2 USB ports, 1 RJ-45 LAN port
Dimensions (W x H x D): 44.4” x 28.9” x 1.6” (w/o stand)
Weight: 54 lb.
Warranty: 1 year, parts & labor