Another downside: the panel doesn't have independent memory per input, so you are stuck with one setup as far as picture controls are concerned. Also, the DVI input lacks any control over picture parameters such as contrast and brightness, which makes it next to useless as a video input for anybody with a discerning eye.By today's standards, the Haier 42EP14S produced a below-average picture for home theater. We began by attempting to calibrate the panel using the user-menu grayscale control, which is somewhat limited, with only red, green, and blue drive controls available. As a result, we couldn't get the bottom end of the scale dialed in, and when we were done, everything just above black was extremely green (see the geek box). We ended up simply using the Standard color temperature preset since it lacked the greenish hue that the other settings exhibited.
On the positive side, color decoding was quite good, especially for a budget-priced panel such as this. We were able to turn up the color control and fully saturate the image without losing accuracy in areas such as skin tones.
After calibrating the panel, we watched some scenes from Alien in the standard color temperature, and the darkness of space did appear a bit too blue. Artifacts were also distracting in these dark scenes. Chapter 12 of Seabiscuit looked good with excellent color saturation and fine detail, which tells us the 42EP14S handles bright material much better than dark scenes.
HD material from our DirecTV HD satellite feed looked mostly good, though naturally not as detailed as it would on a higher-resolution panel. A rather dark concert video of Boz Scaggs looked surprisingly good; still, some artifacts were visible.
|Before color temp (20/80)||7,150/6,600 K||Average|
|After color temp (20/80)||7,450/6,500 K||Poor|
|Before grayscale variation||+/- 369 K||Good|
|After grayscale variation||+/- 222 K||Average|
|Color decoder error: red||+5%||Good|
|Color decoder error: green||0%||Good|
|DC restoration||All patterns stable||Good|
|2:3 pull-down, 24fps||Y||Good|
|Defeatable edge enhancement||N||Poor|