[Tig] No more OLEDs -- WTF are we monitoring, exactly?

Jeff Kreines - Mindspring jeffkreines at mindspring.com
Wed May 14 23:51:08 BST 2014

Sony just announced they are discontinuing OLED production, which I assume applies to professional monitors.

Well, what exactly are we monitoring, and what will the stuff we are working on (especially if grading) be seen on?

I love my Sony PVM-2541A.  Amazing blacks.  But unless I am watching something on an OLED monitor, those blacks can’t be duplicated.  After doing a lot of B&W grading on the Sony, I went and saw NEBRASKA at our local art house, which just installed a Christie 2K projector — installed and set up by Boston Light and Sound, known for their fussiness.  (The installation engineer didn’t like the way the audio rack was labelled so he spent an extra week redoing it from scratch.)

While I had issues with how NEBRASKA was graded, the projector could never get a black that approached the black of the new surround masking — which was really black.  The surround kind of rubs the projector’s face in the non-black black.

I asked some colorists about this and they said that you have to use a LUT box on the Sony so that the blacks match the cinema projector.  (Or, of course, grade on a well-calibrated projector.)

In the bad old days of CRTs, at least there were some things in common between your fancy BVM grade-1 monitor and home TV.  The TV wasn’t as good but at least the technology was kind-of the same.

Now, we have OLEDs, Plasma (RIP), LED-lit IPS LCDs, tube-lit LCDs both IPS and crappy, 8-bit, 10-bit, low-res, HD, UHD, not to mention projectors with xenon or weird spiky lamps…  and Dubly-Vision.

In audio, there were Auratones as the car radio spec, NS10s for cheap home stereos, Genelecs, Tannoys et al for mixing (what, no 604s?), and the mastering engineers I know liked Duntech Sovereigns.  If the mix translated, all was ok.

But will a grade ever translate between all of these devices?

Given that we may never see widespread use of OLEDs, the new cheap internally calibrated HP Dreamcolor looks interesting.

But what do I know?

Jeff Kreines
jeff at kinetta.com

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