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8. Calibration > 69. Clean the Optics on RPTVs

Clean the Optics on RPTVs

With a paper towel and some know-how, you can clean your RPTV optics and drastically improve your picture.

A race car driver would never get on the track without fresh tires; an auto mechanic would never leave his tools wet, prone to rust and dirt; so why should you, home theater enthusiast, let your RPTV collect dust and end up with a distorted image? It won’t take much to get into your unit and clean it up; the difference in picture quality is simply staggering! But first, some background.

What Is Dust?

Dust is thousands of tiny little refraction lenses, each with the dispersing quality of a dum-dum bullet. A coherent, otherwise highly directional ray of light hits a dust particle, and much of the light gets scattered in 100 different directions. Multiply that by the thousands of tiny little dust particles found on the typical objective lens after a year of viewing, and you have unwanted fill-in: the phenomenon of otherwise coherent, highly directional light rays being towed off course in 100 different directions and going where they’re not supposed to go—notably, into dark areas. If all pictures were bright, with no dark areas, there would be no problem. But because perceived depth in a picture relies heavily on dark areas to separate the light areas accurately, accuracy in dark area reproduction is essential in capturing the 35mm film experience in RPTVs, and to give a sense of depth and realism to the scenes involved. Additionally, you want the projected image to retain a like-new viewing quality on a constant basis.


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