Philips 34PW9815 34-Inch HD Monitor Page 2
So, how does DNM improve a picture? The benefits are most noticeable with movies. Films differ from video-based television programming in that they are shot on either 16mm or 35mm film. Optical movie cameras record at a frame rate of 24 images per second. However, to be broadcast on TV, a movie must be converted to the broadcast frame frequency of 60 Hz (60 fields per second) or around 30 images per second. Although this increase in speed is unnoticeable to the human eye, physically changing what are effectively 24 individual photographs into a continuous video transmission can create visible motion artifacts. The DNM algorithm compensates for these artifacts and ensures that film and video appear smooth and clear. Thanks for staying with me on that one.
As I said, my first impression of the 34PW9815's image quality was very good. After I made adjustments, that impression didn't change much. In fact, this is the first time I've turned on a monitor and heard other people in the room actually say, "Wow." HDTV and standard TV signals looked great. Philips has done their homework on this model. After I set up the monitor using a test DVD, I found the DC restoration to be good and the decoder to be standard, leaning toward red. As the measurements box indicates, the color and luminance tracked very well. You can save different picture settings (contrast, etc.) into any one of six picture modes or preferences to create the look you like. I watched several cable shows, some satellite feeds, and some off-air HDTV, as well as the high-definition signal feed from the Sencore HDTV996 VSB player, and I was impressed by how consistent each picture-mode setting that I created looked across the various inputs.
The set's 3-D Y/C comb filter is excellent at separating a composite signal's color component (C), which is normally interwoven with the detail (or black-and-white) component (Y). This separation occurs for all composite sources, such as antenna, cable, and VHS signals, and is one of a color monitor's central engineering challenges. Philips uses a digital comb filter, 9-bit processing, and luminance and color enhancements to give these sources sharply defined color borders.
The 34PW9815's audio system is also very good, although not quite as complicated. Philips has designed a sound system that should suit any environment. You can choose between stereo, 3-D stereo, and Pro Logic, and you have the option of using just the internal 60-watt speakers or a combination of speakers. You can connect external speakers for a complete surround experience or use the internal speakers for the L/C/R channels and two external speakers for the surrounds. You can also use external speakers for the left, right, and surround channels with the internal speaker as the center channel. This is a unique feature and a great way to deal with those space-limitation issues I was talking about. If you're short on space, not having to find a place for the center-channel speaker is a bonus. In total, this set has six onboard speakers and two audio outputs. Unfortunately, the volume control doesn't show up on the onscreen display, so you'll have to guess where you are with the level.
I'd have to say that, overall, this set has all the features you could want. The video and audio exceed the norm, and the high-definition picture is very good. The manual is easy to read and very comprehensive, as it should be for the set's $3,500 list price. Philips has incorporated several innovative technologies into this unit, and the 34PW9815's size and distinct design give consumers more options to complement any home décor.
• Flat, widescreen CRT
• 60-hertz progressive-scanning
• 3-D sound
• Uses Digital Natural Motion technology
HT Labs Measures: Philips 34PW9815 34-Inch HD Monitor
The top chart shows the gray scale of the Philips HD monitor relative to its color temperature at various levels of intensity, or brightness (20 IRE is dark gray; 95 IRE is bright white). As you can see, the gray scale as set by the factory, in the most accurate menu setting, measures a little blue with dark images and is about the same with brighter images. After making adjustments using the Photo Research PR-650, the gray scale measures within 30 degrees of D6500 Kelvin, the accurate setting, across the entire range. The bottom chart shows the gray scale (or color temperature) relative to the color points of the display's red, green, and blue phosphors of the CRT. The green and blue color points exceed those specified by SMPTE, but the red is just short, which means the display will reproduce approximately 98 percent of the colors available in the system. The gray scale measures blue before calibration and is actually right-on afterward. The light output was approximately 32 foot-lamberts for testing. The display has good DC restoration in NTSC and better with progressive-scan input. The HD monitor has a good decoder pushing toward the red hue.—RW