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This Minute at Runco

Color Resources

Monday, June 06, 2011

As the success of our ColourPalette™ and FinishPalette™ offerings for LightStyle, Copenhagen and Vistage has confirmed, color is a critical aspect of creating a mood and aesthetic in a home. Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate has pulled together some color resources that might be of use in your planning efforts. See their Power of Color Master Class for some basics on color selection that will help you pull together a fantastic room design or speak to your designer about the mood you want to create in your theater, media room, or other entertainment area of your home.

Shimmery, Metallic Signature Colors

Friday, April 15, 2011

LightStyle Signature Colors“Seen all over the runway and at key home furnishings trade shows this past season, metallics speak to our desire to have luxury and glamour in our lives,” says Leatrice Eiseman, who is the Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, a leading authority on color trends.

Eiseman discussed the emergence of metallic color trends in Pantone's TONES Newsletter in late 2010: “The wide variety of gold metallic shades we have seen in the past is still out there; however, as we move forward to 2011 we are seeing consumers turning away from excessive glitz and "bling" and instead moving toward metallic finishes and treatments that appear warmer. Artful patterning, mottled finishes and distressed or etching techniques are some of the new surface treatments being applied to the standard gold, silver and bronze metallic shades, as well as to color. The ongoing interest in combining different metallic shades is a trend we also see continuing for 2011.”

The metallics that make up the Signature Color collection for Runco’s FinishPalette for projectors and flat panel displays are great examples of these trends. Metal shades like silver, copper, and gold, as well as jewel tones, come to life in a subtle sparkle that adds depth and richness. Just as Leatrice suggests, we can combine metallics to create a unique duo-tone look on the LightStyle projectors, for instance.

The Three Reasons to Love 3-Chip

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

By Jennifer B. Davis

LS-10You may have read or heard the term “3-chip” when referring to a projection system and wondered what it meant. Some misappropriate the term to apply to a lower-performance LCD projection system that uses 3 LCDs (sometimes using vague terms like “Certified 3 Chip” or the like), but in most cases the term refers to the use of 3 distinct Digital Light Processing® (DLP) chips from Texas Instruments® (TI) to deliver exceptional projector performance. Each chip is essentially a microscopic landscape of mirrors that shift to direct light to the projection lens within the light engine of the projector. This DLP 3-chip architecture is the technology used in 99% of commercial movie theaters and is a favorite of home theater enthusiasts as well. It is the architecture of the new LightStyle™ LS-10i and LS-10d announced to critical acclaim at the CEDIA Expo in 2010. So, why should you care about 3-chip? Here are the top three reasons:

3. No Color Wheel

3-chip projectors are built with a dedicated chip for each of the three primary colors of light: red, green, and blue. Note: these differ from the primary colors of red, yellow, and blue that you learned in fingerpainting in elementary school, but that color theory is a whole other topic. For now, just trust me that red, green, and blue combine to create white light. If there wasn’t a chip for each color (as is the case in a single chip or 1-chip projector), the system requires a rotating color wheel that moves in rapid speed in front of the chip to deliver the right color to the lens. Some people can see the effect of a moving color wheel in the form of a rainbow effect, especially if those systems are poorly implemented. In any case, it introduces additional projector noise and another point of possible of failure as color wheels are a moving part with high-duty cycles.

2. Enhanced Contrast

Contrast is a measurement of the difference between the brightest white and the darkest black. Because each color is modulated individually in a 3-chip system, we are able to achieve contrast that makes the video appear more 3-dimensional and lifelike (even without glasses).

1. Brightness

SC-50Three-chip systems are famous for their brightness, measured in lumens of light coming from the projection lens or foot lamberts as measured off the projection screen when implemented. To achieve the recommended brightness for cinema content on a large screen, 3-chip systems are recommended. This is why you will find 3-chip DLP architecture in products like the Runco VX-22i, VX-22d, VX-33i, and VX-33d of our VideoXtreme® series and in the new top-of-the-life SC-50d and SC-60d of the Signature Cinema™ series projectors, as well as our Digital Cinema Concierge™ service.

We have now made 3-chip performance, in full 1080p HD resolution, more affordable than ever with our LightStyle™ LS-10i and LS-10d products. For really large screen theaters and for those wanting top-of-the-line performance we still highly recommend the VideoXtreme® or Signature Cinema™ products, but for those looking for value performance or a sleek design that fits in a media room and can be personalized with FinishPalette™ matched to your décor, the LightStyle is a good choice.

All this said, the distinction of 3-chip has been misused in the marketplace and isn’t necessarily synonymous with high-performance video. For instance, Runco offers products that are not 3-chip, but also do not have color wheels and boast infinite contrast. These are the QuantumColor™ products, like the Q-750i, Q-750d, and Q-1500d. That is possible because the InfiniLight™ LED illumination system in these products includes distinct light sources for red, green, and blue, in some ways replicating the effect of a 3-chip product. Specs on a data sheet can be misleading if not understood in the context of your room design. A product that may be conservatively specified (as all Runco products are) can outperform products in terms of the image that is on the screen, which is the ultimate performance specification. And in this, Runco outshines them all!

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