I've recently spent a lot of time (like three days) hooking up all of the new A/V equipment in the new house. Included in the equipment order with the TV and the stereo receiver, I added a video testing DVD.  The test DVD walks you through configuring your TV to display the best possible video. It shows several test scenes and describes how to adjust your TV's controls to get that awesome picture. But that's all.  Thinking about this, I wonder what products exist that could help you not just set your TV for the best picture, but optimize your audio and possibly help shop for a new receiver or speakers.

The new receiver we got has an auto-calibration feature that uses a microphone to calibrate the levels of each speaker. But not everyone has that, and even if they did, they might like to hear what "optimized" sounds like apart from simply being told that it's set appropriately.  I think this would make a wonderful open source community project. It could be distributed on the internet as a DVD ISO that you could download, burn, and test. It would help you calibrate the video, like the disc I have, and also calibrate the audio.  The system could play isolated sounds from discrete channels, and perhaps even tell you what the best audio setting is on your system for DVDs that have more than one setting.  A few high-action scenes could put the video and audio to the test, and let you get a better feel for what you've done when you're finished calibrating. The DVD could even contain some computer data to test HD setups using a laptop or desktop PC.  A disk like this would be very valuable to me, and if it was free open-source, I could download it and use it on the TVs of everyone I know. Is anyone aware of a project like this that already exists?


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