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Old December 21st, 2005, 07:03 PM   #1
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Can I Turn My LCD Flat Screen TV into Homemade Broadcast Monitor?

Just wondering because those broadcast monitors cost alot and i have a lcd phillips flat screen 37" tv that i would like to use. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. I hope this doesn't sound like a dumb question lol
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Old December 22nd, 2005, 05:34 AM   #2
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The broadcast monitors cost a lot, because they are of very high quality and give you an overview of the exact picture you're getting out from the camera. I think it would not be a problem using your TV for such purpose, but I'm not sure if it will serve the actual point of broadcast monitor. The LCD screens often show the video in wrong brightness and the colours may not be that good either.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old December 22nd, 2005, 09:34 AM   #3
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I'm using a 22" Samsung widescreen LCD monitor and it works pretty well, but as Georg points out, it does have some limitations. Clearly you are not going to turn your screen into a "broadcast monitor" for many reasons. But if it has the proper inputs to hook up to your camera/deck/computer you can give it a try and see what you think.

One limitation is that every consumer LCD that I've seen overscans. In other words, it doesn't show the full video frame all the way to the edges. The viewfinders on just about all prosumer camcorders are similar in this regard, but the image you see in the viewer on your computer monitor within your editing software should show the entire frame.

You will also need to attempt to adjust the color, contrast and brightness on your LCD to get as close as possible to the NTSC spec. Color bars are used for this and most editing software can generate them. See the following article for how to roughly calibrate: http://www.videouniversity.com/tvbars2.htm
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Old December 22nd, 2005, 09:45 AM   #4
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Edward,

As noted, it's not ideal. However, there are plenty of us using LCD TV's and other TV's as monitors. It's not the best, but it's better (when calibrated) than trying to judge who footage will look on your computer monitor.

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Old December 22nd, 2005, 10:25 AM   #5
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Consumer monitors typically have a lot of cheats in them.

In LCDs, you're going to find monitors with non-standard gamma to compensate for the LCD's raised black level.
see http://www.extremetech.com/article2/...1736945,00.asp

I'm not too familiar with other aspects of LCDs so I can't tell you the difference between consumer grade LCDs and those designed for broadcast.
Of those designed for broadcast, ecinemasys's is the most expensive and probably the best (at around 20 grand).

With most LCDs, you're going to have problems like:
-not seeing interlace flicker, that afflicts CRT viewers
-raised black level (the LCD can't get darker than a certain point)
-non-standard color gamut; look for SMPTE C (most of north america), EBU (europe), or 709 (eventually supposed to be the worldwide standard) primary chromaticities. In CRTs you'd just look for SMPTE C phosphors.
-non-native resolution is not great

That being said, any TV is an improvement over a computer monitor.
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Old December 22nd, 2005, 05:48 PM   #6
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Thanks guys for all of your input regarding my questions. As always members at dvinfo are the best. As a newbie with no experience, and on a low budget it will be a long time until I would be able to get or justify a broadcast monitor. I will be getting the sony Z1U, MAc G5 and Final Cut Studio in Feb
06' hopefully this will be enough to starting learning videography (wedding) and filmmaking in general.
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Old December 22nd, 2005, 06:06 PM   #7
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Ah, now if you're working with the Z1 and HDV, that's a little different scenario. You can't hook up a monitor to the Z1 and view your footage as you edit via firewire with HDV. Either you need an expensive capture card that will give you realtime HD component video or you will use FCP's "digital desktop cinema" option. This works pretty well, although not the same as a broadcast monitor. However if you're using this feature you'll want a monitor with a DVI connector that can be hooked up as a regular second screen on your Mac.

This is what I'm doing with HDV on FCP5 and a dual G5 2.5ghz. My Samsung 22" LCD is 1280x720 native, so I don't quite see the full Z1 resolution of 1920x1080 but you can still see a remarkable difference between HDV and widescreen DV footage. I have it connected to my second monitor port on the G5 since this screen has a DVI interface. It also accepts 1080i component video, so I can connect my Z1 component cable to that port and view footage directly from the camera in this mode when desired.

If your LCD screen doesn't have a DVI port (or VGA which can be easily adapted to DVI) then it won't be a good match for editing HDV in FCP. But if it does then you're all set. In fact, in many ways this is a better option for getting a good screen image. Since it's treated as a computer monitor you can use the color calibration procedure in the Displays preference panel to adjust the screen much more accurately than you could using the menus on the LCD screen itself. And in digital cinema desktop mode you see the full frame and the software takes care of properly scaling the image. Only downside is that it sometimes appears to drop frames and display at less than full quality. But mostly I've been very happy they include this functionality inside FCP itself.
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Old January 24th, 2006, 03:26 PM   #8
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dlp vs. lcd hdtv for monitoring?

Glen mentioned some cheats in LCD TV's.

What about consumer cheats for DLP's.

Is there any reason to opt for a LCD over a DLP for monitoring for video production.


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Old January 26th, 2006, 02:18 PM   #9
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One other difference. Consumer displays try to make ALL signals look the best. For example, Sammy's DNIE tries to "improve" the picture. There are many other hidden techniques as well.

Displays made for quality monitoring purposes try to display the reality without degrading or enhancing. Thus, flaws (of a wide variety) are not masked.
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