We used the following calibration settings to review the TCL 40" S325 (40S325), and we expect them to be valid for the 32" (32S325), the 43" (43S325), and the 49" (49S325) versions. These settings should apply to most types of content, except for gaming or use as a PC monitor, which require a few additional changes, listed below.
One of the first things we did was disable all of the auto power savings options, as we don't want the TV to adjust the image during testing.
For SDR content, there are five preset picture modes. We recommend choosing the 'Movie' picture mode, as it is the most accurate one out of the box, and allows for the most customization. From the Advanced Picture Settings menu, we recommend leaving the contrast at '90,' brightness at '50,' and sharpness at '0.' We also set Color at '50,' and Tint (G/R) at '0.' Finally, we chose the 'Warm' Color Temperature, as it was closest to our calibration targets.
To make the image brighter in SDR, you should first select the TV brightness range in the TV picture settings menu to one of the 5 preset options and then adjust the Backlight on the Advanced Picture Settings depending on your specific viewing conditions. Changing this setting does not have any impact on the overall picture quality. The Brightness setting is a picture adjustment setting, and we do not recommend adjusting it.
As we aim for an image that is as close as possible to the content creator's intent, we disable most image processing options, such as Dynamic Contrast. You should adjust these to your personal preference, though.
The TCL S325 is able to remove judder from 24p sources like a DVD or a Blu-ray player. You do not have to enable any special settings for this. Unfortunately, the TV cannot remove judder from 60p or 60i signals, like from a cable box.
This TV can enter game mode from any picture mode. When you start gaming, it should set Game Mode to 'On' to get the lowest possible input lag. Continue using the recommended settings for SDR or HDR. For HDR gaming, it is important to make sure that HDMI 2.0 is enabled for the input you are using.
The S325 will automatically detect when it is connected to a PC, and will automatically enter PC mode. In fact, when you connect to a PC you can only be in PC mode. To ensure proper chroma 4:4:4 support from other sources, make sure you change to the 'Computer' icon.