madVR Labs Delivers Crazy Good Home Cinema

Established as a firm favourite in the U.S, madVR Labs is gaining many admirers in the UK with its ability to improve the visual performance of even the very best home cinema systems.

Winner of the CEDIA Awards 2023, ‘Best New hardware Global Award’, the madVR Envy Extreme MK2 video processor is a genuine step change in the performance achievable in any type of home cinema. Richard Liftosky, CEO and co-founder and the rest of the madVR team have been educating installers on the benefits of advanced video processing to achieve amazing results, even with the most advanced projectors, screens and sources.

Ian Mulry, Technology Specialist at Invision explains, “madVR brings separate, specialised video processing to the home cinema industry in a way not possible before. We use separate advanced audio processing to deliver the sound we want from speakers, so why not do the same for the video part of the equation, that is where madVR comes in. Envy Extreme MK2 units are installed at Pulse Cinemas HQ Stansted and Innovation House, Bracknell, so dealers can see first-hand the improvements delivered. We also have a unit for installers to try out in their own demonstration spaces or installs to witness the power of this technology.”  

Kapes Patel, Pulse Cinemas Business Development and Technical Director, says, “We have been seriously impressed with our unit since it was installed at Pulse HQ, the performance lift and ability to precisely calibrate to the room, the equipment and the customer are very powerful. It has also just been announced that Anthem has achieved Gold Certification from the Certified for Envy Program adding to the brand’s compatibility portfolio.”

Picture perfect

The madVR Envy Extreme MK2 is unique in using machine learning algorithms within real-time video streams taking video quality to new levels of accuracy. Set up takes five minutes, connect the HDMI output from the AVR being used into the Envy, send the Envy’s HDMI output to the display and you can begin. Once installed, dealers can remotely connect to the Envy in real-time and make adjustments.  

This is no cold piece of technology, it has been created by those who fully appreciate the joy of film and want to help deliver a performance worthy of the content’s creators.  

Viewers can enjoy the most impactful, accurate 4K HDR dynamic tone mapping, instant aspect ratio detection, subtitle management for scope screens, and non-linear stretch unlike anything achievable before. The system also delivers the best 4K upscaling available, specialised sharpening/detail enhancement, 3D and 1D LUT as well as calibration with unprecedented precision.

Key Results

HDR Dynamic Tone Mapping

On-board dynamic HDR Dynamic Tone Mapping unlocks the true potential of this next gen video technology. The patent-pending DTM 2.0 analyses each frame in real-time to optimise every single pixel processing half billion pixels per second at 4K60. The brand’s proprietary Highlight Recovery, Contrast Recovery and Shadow Detail Recovery also add more detail.

Auto AR and Geometry Control

Envy detects any aspect ratio and instantly adjusts the image to fit the screen, banishing black bars for good. The Envy Extreme also features advanced geometry correction, great for dealing with any a-lens barrel distortion, fitting curved screens or delivering advanced architectural installations.

4K and 8K Upscaling and Sharpening

Machine learning algorithms provide unrivalled 4K, 5K and 8K upscaling as well as anamorphic stretch. The highest quality chroma upscaling (4:2:0->4:4:4) is also on-board and can automatically reverse certain damaging chroma upscaling employed by source players.

Highly Accurate Calibrations

Incredibly accurate calibrations are supported via massive 256-point 3D LUTs and 4,096-point 1D LUTs, without any loss of measurement data or precision. This translates to 16.7 million points of accuracy, putting it way out in front in the market. Envy also integrates with calibration products including ColourSpace and Calman.

Image Enhancements

Envy provides the highest quality algorithms to remove compression artifacts and mosquito noise, as well as de-banding to remove 8-bit banding artifacts. Other image enhancements include the removal or addition of grain, sharpening of edges or removal of ringing.

Subtitle Handling and Profiles

Subtitle handing resizes the image to fit subtitles only when needed, maximizing the picture size. A new profile system provides powerful yet easy to use settings management.

8K and HDMI 2.1 Support

The Envy Extreme also supports 8K HDMI 2.1 output, with full 48 Gbps HDCP 2.3 support, the first to offer the market this compatibility in a stand-alone video processor.  

Non-Linear Stretch (NLS+)

This ability means installers can remove black bars on a 2.35 screen when watching 16:9 content. The madVR NLS+ is the first non-linear stretch algorithm to combine horizontal expansion with vertical compression.