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Welcome to CNET’s TV test lab!
CNET reviewers compare big screens side-by-side in a light-controlled space using a variety of test equipment, source devices, software and a comfy couch.
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Behind the curtain
Our TV lab is closed off from the rest of the product-testing space by a theatrical curtain, which allows full control of lighting within the lab.
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We use Portrait Displays Calman Ultimate to control the spectroradiometer and a signal generator to aid in the evaluation process. Most of the figures in the CNET’s TV reviews, including color, brightness, black level, gamma and more, are derived from Calman reports.
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Oh look, there’s Katzmaier
CNET’s head of TV reviews, David Katzmaier, has extensive experience reviewing and calibrating displays.
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Drawing the curtains allows complete darkness in the lab, which is ideal for comparing the TVs’ raw picture quality, without the influence of ambient light.
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We also test bright-room viewing conditions and look at factors such as screen brightness and reflectivity.
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We control everything with these TV remotes and remotes from a variety of source devices. And you thought your coffee table was cluttered.
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Blu-ray players and HDMI matrix
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Signal generator and 4K streamers
Our other primary sources include (from left to right) an Apple TV 4K, a Murideo 6G 4K HDR test pattern generator and a Roku Ultra. We use the streamers for TV and movie comparisons and the Murideo to supply patterns for the spectroradiometer to measure.
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Behind the couch are a pair of nooks for meetings and storage.
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No lab is complete without easy access to all the extras, from cables to Blu-rays to hardware to streamers to microfiber wipes.
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Back to work
Thanks for taking the tour, now we’re going to get back to reviewing TVs.
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Ta ta for now
For more details on everything you’ve seen check out our full article on How we Test TVs.