Test Bench: Toshiba 62HM196 62-inch 1080p DLP HDTV

Unless indicated otherwise, all tests were performed via the HDMI input from an HD DVD player set to 1080i output.

Color temperature (Warm color temperature, Movie mode before/after calibration) Low window (20 IRE): 10,282/6,556 K High window (80 IRE): 11,109/6,489 K

Brightness (100-IRE window before/after calibration): 69.6/36.1 ftL

Before calibration, the Toshiba 62HM196 62-inch 1080p DLP HDTV exhibited one of the least accurate grayscales I've seen in a high-end set for a long time. In the most-ideal Movie mode/Warm color temperature setting, it was consistently very blue, varying by an average of more than 4,400 degrees kelvin from the 6,500 K standard. In its favor, the grayscale was relatively linear from dark to light areas. After calibration it was nearly perfect, varying by an average of only 31 K. The default lamp setting is "High bright," which resulted in plenty of light output (nearly 70 foot-lamberts) even in Movie mode. I changed that setting to "Low power" during calibration because it improved black levels slightly and still gave a fine 36.1 ftL.

Using a checkerboard pattern, I measured a contrast ratio of 313 and an average black level of 0.10 ftL after calibration, which is among the best I've seen from a rear-projection HDTV. Black and near-black levels remained constant regardless of the color of other onscreen content as long as I kept dynamic contrast set to Off.

The Toshiba resolved every line of a 1080i test pattern, one of the few DLP TVs I've seen that can do so. Edge enhancement was nonexistent with Sharpness reduced to zero. Unlike the 56HM195 I reviewed last year, this model displayed the Ramp pattern from the Sencore VP403 very well with no banding; the same went for the Banding check from Avia Pro (where minor, although acceptable, banding was visible only in blue). White-field and gray-field uniformity were very good, with a hot spot that was about normal for rear-projection TVs and very little discoloration visible on the edges and corners. As expected, the image was dimmer when viewed from off-angle, but no more than with other current microdisplay sets. Geometry was excellent for a rear-projection set, and no fringing around white lines was visible from a normal seating distance (8 feet or more). Overscan was average at 3% along the sides and 4% on the top and bottom, and the image was commendably centered. Primary color accuracy for red and blue were very good, although green was significantly yellow-looking. Color decoding wasn't as accurate, however, with some red push visible and significant desaturation of green.

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