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Gateway DLP56TV review: Gateway DLP56TV

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Overall, this DLP set performs similarly to its Samsung rivals, although its color isn't as accurate. And the Gateway can't deliver the inky blacks of CRT-based rear projectors; an image's darkest areas look very deep gray instead. On the other hand, this TV's brighter picture is more at home in brighter environments.

At the Warm color temperature, the television's out-of-the-box grayscale measured 8,058K at the low end and 6,059K at the high end--pretty inconsistent. Calibration improved the respective readings tremendously to 6,458K and 6,825K, much closer to the 6,500K ideal. We were also able to alleviate the greenish-blue bias in darker areas, although we couldn't remove it completely. To compensate for some errors in the red and green channels, we had to turn down the color control, so hues weren't as rich as we'd have liked.

As with other DLP TVs we've seen, darker scenes proved more of a challenge than lighter ones. In the opening pan from Alien, for example, some moving dots and noise appeared in the rings of the planet and the void. Space wasn't as black as with CRT televisions, although the Gateway equaled the Samsung DLPs on this count. Rainbows trailed behind the slowly assembling title at the top of the screen and showed up elsewhere. Some people won't perceive them at all, while others will be more sensitive to them.

We don't recommend pairing a progressive-scan DVD player with this set. We saw faint horizontal lines while watching 480p via the component-video input, and the image was shifted toward the bottom. Those problems disappeared when we switched off our DVD deck's progressive mode and engaged the Gateway's internal Genesis/Faroudja DCDi video processor.

When we watched component video, we couldn't eliminate edge enhancement without softening the picture, regardless of the sharpness setting. We also saw solarization effects. But some of those disappeared when we connected our DVI-equipped V Bravo D1 and set it to 720p output. The image improved significantly, coming through more cleanly and with no extra accentuation on outlines.

Naturally, the Gateway's picture got even better with a true high-def source. The 1080i D-VHS version of Behind Enemy Lines showed incredible detail. Take, for instance, the scene in which Owen Wilson uses the aircraft carrier's catapult as a placekicker. We could see every dimple on the football. Color accuracy didn't increase much, however, and the black-level and rainbow issues remained.

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