Projectors

Runco LightStyle LS-100d DLP LED Projector

ARTICLE INDEX

The Runco LightStyle LS-100d Projector on the bench

Out of the box, the Runco LS-100d comes set in the native color gamut and set to 6500K and 2.2 gamma.  Here you can see how this looks initially.

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Looking at the color gamut you can see how massive a colorspace the LEDs can manage to produce.  Of course if we use this whole gamut everything is going to look a little crazy, so we can dial that back to the Rec 709 setting to get much closer to accurate.  I should note that all the advanced calibration settings and the CMS controls are in a locked, ISF menu.  Anyone that buys the Runco will be buying it from a dealer, and the dealer should be able to perform this setup for you.  The grayscale is overall very good, at a dE of 3 or less, and gamma is very good other than a bump at 90%.  After selecting Rec 709 instead of Native and making no other adjustments, we get these results.

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Here we see a much better gamut than with Native, though there is still a significant level of error in the colors.  The grayscale and gamma have not changed at all, but the colors are now close enough that many people would just leave it.

To improve upon this I'll use the Gain and Offset controls for the White Balance, and then use the Color and Tint controls to adjust the gamut a little bit.  This can be done in just over 5 minutes by most experienced calibrators, so dialing this in to this level is pretty easy.

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The color gamut hasn't really changed much at all, but the grayscale and gamma are now virtually perfect.  No one is going to notice these flaws when watching it, and with the color errors already being pretty good, this will be a very nice image.  To improve this even more, there is a PCE mode that allows for full Hue, Saturation and Level control for all six primary and secondary colors.  The only downside is you get a single point of control for white balance, where I'd like to see a full 10-point control in a projector of this level.

Using CalMan you can adjust the white balance at 10 points, but only with CalMan, and only with the Auto-Cal feature, so you have no control over it yourself.  I managed to get this to work, but it took multiple tries and didn't really improve upon what I could do by hand.  Here you can see how it looks after you use the PCE mode to dial in the color and grayscale even more.

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Once again our grayscale is nearly perfect, just like we had seen with the Rec 709 mode.  However as you look at the color gamut, you can see it is now virtually perfect.  There is almost no luminance error in any of the colors, and every dE is at 1 or below.  None of the individual color errors even manage to go above 3, so you are not going to see any color issues in the Runco.  It manages to put out reference level performance on the test bench here and should satisfy even the most ardent videophile.

Usually I would measure contrast directly off the lens, but due to the mirror setup on the Runco I cannot get my meter in the path to do so and I had to read it off the screen.  Be aware that this might be less than accurate due to that, and the ratio might be a little lower or higher depending on your screen.  With a 96" image and a full black screen, but the dynamic iris off, I managed to measure 0.002 ftL off the screen.  Since it uses LEDs for light and not a bulb, and an LED can be switched on or off almost instantly, this can easily be ambient light in the room from my laptop display.  The light output on a white screen was 7 ftL, for an On/Off contrast ratio of 2,800:1.  The LS-100d could do more output than this, but whites were clipped if I raised the contrast anymore.

With test patterns the Runco breezed through everything except for 2:2 cadence testing.  This typically occurs in PAL content, and so many people won't ever run into this in real life.  Otherwise I set my Oppo player to Source Direct and let the Runco handle everything as it did a fantastic job with the content.