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A FreeSync screen to make 30fps games bearable?

PostPosted: 10 Feb 2019, 19:05
by upbow
Hey guys,

so glad you’ve opened up an XBOX subgroup. The amount of information available online is not quite satisfying, and the monitor manufacturers aren’t as capable answering Xbox questions as they are supporting PC users. So yay for this!

A few weeks ago I decided to upgrade my Xbox setup to welcome my new one X, and it’s been quite a ride, with countless returns and trial & error.

The crux lies in the fact that Xbox Games nowadays are mostly locked to either 30fps or 60fps.

I began my journey with a Samsung C27HG70, which turned out to have substantial motion blur and double images in 30fps games, which is still „most of them.“ Awesome monitor at 60fps though.

I’ve then early-adopted the AOC Agon 273QCX, and it’s basically the same story - 60fps Xbox One X and PC gaming looks grand, but 30fps Xbox one X games judder like there’s no tomorrow.

The last attempt at blur-free 30fps Xbox gaming was the venerable BenQ DyAc, and while the motion blur was less pronounced after some tweaking, it was still there. Seeing multiple Washington Monuments while panning across the Division 2 Beta just didn’t feel right.

What seems to work in getting 30fps games to look smoother, even if it introduces a handful of ms of lag, are motion interpolation technologies, like LG’s TruMotion. The thing is - I can only find that in TVs, not in Freesync monitors, and I’m kinda stuck on 27”.

So my question to you guys is:
What Freesync screen out there can make 30fps Xbox one X games look a bit smoother, in a package of about 27”? I’m way past insisting on screen technologies, refresh rates or resolution. I just want RDR2, Division 2, Assassins Creed and and GTA to look smoother.

Re: A FreeSync screen to make 30fps games bearable?

PostPosted: 11 Feb 2019, 06:54
by supertoast
From my limited knowledge, what you want would require an evolution of the way Freesync/VRR currently works on Xbox, any others with better knowledge feel free to correct me.

Freesync range on Xbox is not technically defined, most games as you know are capped at 30fps or 60fps, in addition adaptive-vsync is quite common on Xbox games and this is apparently not compatible with Xbox Freesync according to Digital Foundry (since their initial testing, maybe that's changed or not). Also according to DF The Division 2 is an adaptive vsync title on Xbox at least the beta test they looked at.

There is a VRR section under capabilities in the Xbox store but there are hardly any titles there and it does not state what range they operate in my guess is all are 60fps and from my experience Freesync on Xbox is really only for 60fps titles, a lot of 4K Freesync monitors are 40-60Hz range only.

Freesync monitors databases show 30Hz is the lowest they go regardless of resolution, the Samsung C27HG70 is 48-144Hz and likely the AOC Agon 273QCX too.

So ideally MS would define a Freesync range say 40-60Hz, then any title which is branded as Freesync/VRR compatible would have a Freesync performance mode built into the game that would auto activate when it sees Freesync is enabled. That would at least allow 30fps titles to climb into the 40's were maybe it could do it's thing.

However this would require the support of game developers implementing this mode, barely any even bother to tag their 60fps game as VRR compatible to begin with.

So it would take a big shift in the way MS handles Freesync on Xbox to get the ideal outcome.

Samsung and Philips from what I've heard have the best motion interpolation for console gaming, both make PC monitors but as far as I know do not have these features on any of them.

Is there some other hardware solution, no idea I'm afraid, hopefully one of the experts on this forum can help.

Re: A FreeSync screen to make 30fps games bearable?

PostPosted: 13 Feb 2019, 15:14
by Chief Blur Buster
upbow wrote:The crux lies in the fact that Xbox Games nowadays are mostly locked to either 30fps or 60fps.

I began my journey with a Samsung C27HG70, which turned out to have substantial motion blur and double images in 30fps games, which is still „most of them.“ Awesome monitor at 60fps though.

That's the big problem, trying to use motion blur reduction often results in duplicate images:


Whether it's 30fps@60Hz (2 images) or 60fps@120Hz (2 images) or 30fps@120Hz (4 images)

Ideally, you want framerate = refreshrate = stroberate for zero motion blur and zero duplicate images via impulse-based technologies and/or motion blur reduction modes. CRT 60fps@60Hz, Plasma 60fps@60Hz, BenQ single-strobe 60fps@60Hz, ULMB/LightBoost 120fps@120Hz, etc.

But 30fps. Ouch. That's a toughie.

The only way I've discovered to really eliminate 30fps motion blur or double-images is using low-latency "Game Mode Interpolation" features such as the one found in the Samsung NU8000 or similar. I will cross-post a thread I posted:

Chief Blur Buster wrote:
Awareness-Kindness wrote:I'm looking for an IPS monitor that can convert a 60Hz HDMI-signal to 100Hz or higher and then apply some motion blur reduction technique to it.

What you're looking for is interpolation, but interpolation adds latency.
There are some special game-mode interpolation algorithms I've been hearing about that adds just one frame of latency.

However, problems:

1. Only television sets (not monitors) have the interpolation feature.
2. You generally get superior motion blur reduction if you use pure strobe-based motion blur reduction on full framerate material (e.g. 60fps at 60Hz). This means sticking to 60fps switch games (not 30fps) and using a form of black frame insertion
3. Switch games often run at 30fps.
4. Very view displays do low-latency console-friendly interpolation, and all of them are televisions.

Among these, if you want to save money, getting a used/refurb of the early-2018 Samsung NU8000 series HDTV that has a low-lag interpolation mode that only adds approximately one frame of latency. It's the Samsung NU8000 series HDTV. (The smallest two are the 49 inch and the 55 inch, the sizes go all the way up to 82 inch). The 55" can sell used/refurbished for about 550 dollars, which is not too bad compared to today's GSYNC/FreeSync desktop gaming monitors containing blur reduction features.

The default game mode is around 18 milliseconds lag, with an interpolation to 60fps of 23 milliseconds lag, and interpolation to 120fps of 29 milliseconds lag. So extremely low latency for interpolation!

Although massive for a monitor, the 49 inch model is roughly similiar in cost to some high end gaming monitors, and you could make it work as a monitor by mounting the wall at the very back of a deep desk (or desk slightly pushed back from wall) to give you the necessary ~4 feet viewing distance ("48 inch viewing distance from a 48 inch display"), so that it doesn't feel too big compared to 2 feet viewing from a 24" ("24 inch viewing distance from a 24 inch display"). Obviously, this depends on your goals.

You will not find game-mode interpolation in any desktop gaming monitor (currently).

So your choice is limited to appropriate televisions similar to these. You will have to rely on some of the low-lag interpolated game modes if this is what you're looking for (instead of traditional strobe-based blur reduction). Be noted that there are potential artifacts of traditional interpolation modes (soap opera effect) but some people do like this.

If you really, really, really want to kill motion blur of 30fps without getting duplicate images.... Currently your only choice is really interpolation. Or a display that can single-strobe at 30Hz (painful flicker).

No displays can do that with an XBox console, so you're stuck with using a display that uses low-latency interpolation designed for videogames -- if "low motion blur 30fps" is your number #1 numero uno concern.

There are some many valuable scientific explanations of the law of physics explained at Blur Busters Law And The Amazing Journey To Future 1000Hz Displays.

In other words, 30fps is SOL without a frame rate amplification technology -- whether it be old-fashioned interpolation -- or futuristic Oculus Asynchronous Space Warp. My own Oculus Rift VR headset is amazing in how it converts 45fps to 90fps perceptually laglessly, for blur-free AND duplicate-image-free AND stutter-free perfect motion fluidity.