Q. I just watched the latest episode of Game of Thrones on HBO and the battle scenes were incredibly dark. I could barely see a thing! Is there anything I can do to fix this if it happens again. It really messed up my show! — Denise, Baltimore.
Denise, you are the only one still complaining about last Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones. Viewers said the battle scenes were photographed in dark, making it difficult to make out individual characters and actions.
The controversy has become so widespread that the cinematographer (Fabian Wagner) for Game of Thrones is laying the blame on viewers’ alleged inability to properly calibrate their sets. In his view, if you had adjusted your TV’s settings, the battle scenes would not have been a problem.
I would agree that many TV owners are unfamiliar with how to improve their TV’s picture by changing the settings. But I also think that Wagner is trying to avoid responsibility for purposely filming the GOT battle scenes in a very dark setting to make them look more artistic. This is not an uncommon practice in the cinematography world.
Regardless, there are some things you can do if you come across a show, or specific scene, that appears too dark on your TV. (These suggestions come with the help of Sony.)
1. If Picture mode is set to Cinema or Custom, the screen may become dark. If the screen is still dark after the picture quality mode is changed, change the setting Backlight, Picture, Brightness and adjust the brightness to your taste.
2. If Power Saving is set to Low or High, the screen becomes dark. Example of setting method: Select Settings – System Settings – Eco and set Power Saving to Normal, and then check whether the problem is resolved.
3. Some TVs have a Light Sensor; the picture will become brighter or lower depending on room lighting conditions. Turning off the Automatic Brightness Control may increase picture brightness.
4. View programming from a different source, such as a DVD player or VCR, to see if the issue is being caused by the device providing the signal to the TV.
5. If it is a projection TV, consider replacing the lamp. Sony notes that for projection TVs, a dim or dark picture may be an indication that the lamp needs to be replaced. Refer to the owner’s manual for more information about replacing the lamp.
One last tip: Unplug the AC power cord for 30 seconds to reset the television.
Denise, hope that helps. Happy viewing!
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— Phillip Swann