ISF Calibration from Greyscale Solutions
ISF calibration is the practice of fine-tuning and tweaking advanced settings on a TV or a projector to bring out the true potential of the screen.
Many people think they are getting the full visual experience when they buy a TV off the shelf. They think that "set up" consists of plugging it in and turning it on. The reality is that modern visual products are highly engineered, sophisticated pieces of technology that need to be correctly set up to enable them to deliver their maximum intended picture quality.
Why Do I Need to Calibrate?
You will have already noticed the main reason for the need to calibrate in your day-to-day life without even realising it.
You will have undoubtedly at some point walked into the television department of an electrical store, which has the same channel playing on all their demo TVs. You will probably have noticed that the pictures look very different on each TV. How is it possible that the same show can look so different?
It’s because the televisions need to be calibrated.
Manufacturers set up their TV’s to look best in the lighting conditions of a retail store. This is where most people will make the decision to buy a television, and if it looks its best in the store - they sell more TVs.
The large number of super bright, super white overhead halogen lights requires the manufacturers to set up their TV to look its best in these non-normal conditions. However, without individually calibrating each television, to each specific location in each specific store - it's not easy for these technology giants to get right every time.
Some look better in some stores, others look better in other stores.
Now, relatively speaking electrical stores usually have similar lighting, but despite the similarity - the difference is still easily visible. Next time you are at a shopping centre, why not go into different TV departments and see this difference yourself.
Now consider this.
If the slight difference between two electrical stores is enough to make a noticeable difference in picture quality – imagine the difference between the lighting in an electrical store and the lighting in your home.
Unless you have overhead halogen strip lighting in your home, your TV is going to look vastly different to how it was intended to look. Almost all televisions ship with retail lighting optimisation, even the ones that are not on display.
This is why you need calibration.
The TV that is sitting in your home right now is still set to the default setting designed for retail lighting conditions. The colours will not be displaying correctly, the gamma will be skewed, the white balance will be off, and the dynamic range will be wrong.
You may think that your uncalibrated TV already looks great. And you might be right.
But with calibration, it could look a whole lot better…
Our Professional TV Calibration Service
We are industry-leading ISF calibrators with over a decade of experience. We provide a professional TV calibration service for all makes, models and display types including:
We operate throughout all the central and southern regions of the UK and can come to your home on a day that suits you. The process starts with us assessing the lighting conditions of the room your TV is in.
We will then utilise test equipment including a signal generator, colour analyser and dedicated software to ascertain the current performance of your display prior to adjustment.
We will then tweak and tune many of the advanced settings on your TV or projector to allow you to experience films and television shows the way the directors intended. Our experience means that we are usually in and out of the house in a few hours - which allows you to start being mesmerised by your new and improved visual experience immediately.
Is It Worth It?
To be quite honest, that depends on the TV you have.
We can only work with the technology available to us. If you have a low quality or budget TV that only cost around £500, then it is probably not worth the investment. We could make your TV look better, but the quality of the device would limit the potential for improvement – and your money would honestly be better spent saving for a higher quality TV.
However, if you have a higher end TV (displays that cost more than £1500), then ISF calibration is most certainly worth it. We would say it is almost essential (as you might expect!).
You have invested in a premium product that has huge potential, but without calibration – that potential is untapped. It’s like buying a Ferrari for someone who has not passed their driving test yet - the potential for excellence is there, but at the moment it’s a waste.
Professional calibration is a small investment (compared to the amount you have paid for your TV) that will instantly, and noticeably improve your viewing experience dramatically.
We can make your colours more natural.
We can bring out detail that is currently lost.
And most importantly…
We can make you remember why you spent so much on your TV after all.
"Do you offer weekend appointments?"
Yes, many of our customers have weekday commitments so bookings can be scheduled for any day of the week including Saturdays and Sundays at no extra charge.
"How long does your TV calibration service take?"
Typically between two and four hours depending on display complexity and whether 3D or HDR memories are required.
"Does the room need to be completely dark?"
The environment needs to be very dim. This can be achieved by sticking refuse bags over any windows to reduce ambient light, should the curtains or blinds in use prove insufficient.
"How quickly can I have my new TV calibrated?"
A break-in period of at least one week is recommended prior to an appointment. This allows for some initial performance drift and to cater for a higher chance of failure during the first few hours of use.
"How much of a difference will professional TV calibration make?"
This depends on a wide range of factors.
Occasionally the difference will not be immediately noticeable. This can be due to a variety of different factors, such as coincidental calibration. However, over time, the effects are always noticeable. This is especially true when you are watching your favourite shows that you know and love. You will start to notice more detail and the skin tones of your favourite characters will be much closer to how the director intended them to be.
However, 9 times out of 10 people will notice an immediate and obvious difference in the way their television or projector looks. We love seeing our customers’ reactions to their new and improved screen, it’s the best part of the job.
Useful Links and Further Reading
Our Google reviews
Is it worth it?
Imaging Science Foundation, Inc.
TV or Projector - £249
Our pricing is all inclusive, regardless of the number of sources involved. There are no add-on travel charges or increased fees for 3D or HDR10 memories. A comprehensive volumetric cube profile for 3D-LUT-compatible devices including the eeColor box, Murideo Prisma, Lumagen Radiance and madVR HTPC video renderer does not incur extra cost.
Additional TV sets calibrated during the same visit are eligible for a discounted rate.
Payment can be made by cash, bank transfer, credit card (including American Express) or debit card on the day of the appointment.
UK Areas Covered
ISF calibration appointments are available throughout the following areas:
Bath (Somerset), Birmingham (West Midlands), Bournemouth (Dorset), Brighton (East Sussex), Bristol, Cardiff, Colchester (Essex), Coventry, Derby (Derbyshire), Gloucester (Gloucestershire), Guildford (Surrey), Hereford (Herefordshire), Ipswich (Suffolk), Leicester (Leicestershire), London (Greater London), Luton (Bedfordshire), Maidstone (Kent), Milton Keynes (Buckinghamshire), Northampton (Northamptonshire), Nottingham (Nottinghamshire), Oxford (Oxfordshire), Peterborough (Cambridgeshire), Plymouth (Devon), Portsmouth (Hampshire), Reading (Berkshire), Salisbury (Wiltshire), Southampton, Stafford (Staffordshire), St Albans (Hertfordshire), St Austell (Cornwall), Swansea, Telford (Shropshire), Warwick (Warwickshire) and Worcester (Worcestershire).