Samsung HOWTO

First published February 6th, 2013

Eliminate LCD Motion Blur on Samsung 120 Hz Monitors

Supported Monitors: Most samsung 700D, 750D and 950D series.
Tested: S23A700D, S23A750DS23A950D, S27A700D, S27A750D, S27A950D
For LightBoost instructions on ASUS and BENQ 120 Hz, click here instead.

Samsung SA700D, SA750D, and SA950D has a little-known strobe backlight similar to LightBoost that eliminate LCD motion blur. Samsung does not advertise this as an official LightBoost feature. A synchronized stroboscopic backlight works by keeping pixel persistence in total darkness (unseen by eye) between refreshes, and strobing the backlight only on fully-refreshed LCD frames (high speed video). As a result, the refresh-synchronized strobe backlight eliminate LCD motion blur. This brings CRT motion clarity to LCD displays.

Enable Strobe Mode on SA700D, SA750D and SA950D

  1. Set your PC into 120 Hz mode.
    (Control Panel -> Display -> Adjust Resolution -> Advanced -> Monitor)
  2. Before the next step, change “Response Time” to “Normal” via the monitor OSD.
  3. Now, turn on “3D” via the monitor OSD, frame-sequential mode.
  4. Keep using the monitor even for 2D gaming.  (No 3D glasses needed)
  5. For better color, change “Magic Angle” to “Group View”
  6. Run motion test at www.testufo.com/photo in Chrome or another 120Hz web browser.

Note: On some computer configurations, your monitor might turn off when entering and exiting video games.  If this happens, simply turn on your monitor again.

Important: The zero motion blur effect occurs at fps matching Hz, so you ideally need 120 fps at 120 Hz for the best CRT clear motion effect.

The good news is that the Samsung strobe backlight works with both AMD Radeon and nVidia Geforce cards! (Credit: CyberGamer.com.au review).

PixPerAn tests and TestUFO tests show 75% less LCD motion blur than regular Samsung 120 Hz even for 2D usage, which is a huge reduction. PixPerAn readability test of at least 25. This is an additional reduction on top of the 50% motion blur elimination caused by going from 60 Hz to 120 Hz. As a result, you get almost a whopping 90% less LCD motion blur than regular 60Hz! This is because the Samsung 3D mode enables a strobe backlight, which also eliminates motion blur during 2D usage.

The bad news is that the input lag is worse than official LightBoost monitors, so this is not as useful for competition online gaming as official LightBoost monitors. However, the lack of motion blur is quite handy for solo gaming, and the Samsung is known to have better colors than most TN-panel monitors!

The Science Behind Strobe Backlights

The Samsung strobe backlight is almost identical to LightBoost. This high speed video (480fps + 1000fps) demonstrates a LightBoost strobe backlight successfully bypassing pixel persistence as the motion blur barrier:

TFTCentral posted a good article about Motion Blur Reduction Backlights, explaining how strobe backlights can eliminate motion blur. Other information can be found here on this website, including Scanning Backlight FAQ, as well as Science & References.

For information about LightBoost monitors or other motion-blur-eliminating monitors, see the Official 120Hz Monitor List, or the LightBoost HOWTO.

27 Responses to Samsung HOWTO

  1. scanmaster says:

    I have heard from additional testers. The Samsung S23A700D apparently has the strobe backlight for 3D that works in 2D too!
    Edit: It appears that all 700D, 750D, and 950D series all appear to have the strobe backlight feature, based on further testing reports. Please post your PixPerAn test success reports!

  2. scanmaster says:

    Posted with permission, a testimonial from a competition gamer, sent to me by email:

    Hi Mark,

    I got really excited when I saw your update about two of the Samsung 3d monitors being capable of better motion performance without the need for a Geforce card. I just successfully tested my S23a700D and it worked so this one can be added to the list as well. I was able to get up to a tempo of 25 or so on the pixperan readability test and still make out the individual letters.

    The only problem is that the screen dims, and I get an added 20-30ms of input lag that makes mouse movements feel a bit “soupy”. I play Quakeworld online (usually at 600 fps to reduce tearing-no vsync) and actually found even with the added input lag, I was able to track other players much easier and pull of twitch shot kills that I normally wouldn’t because of the blur I normally get when spinning 180 degrees quickly. It would be incredible if someone could somehow hack the firmware of these monitors to remove the input lag, with some brightness/color tweaking I’d leave this mode on all the time.

    Thanks for you continued research, look forward to this becoming a feature of lcd’s in the future. It really removes that last barrier to crt-like performance.

    Matt

    NOTE: There are other models (e.g. BENQ XL2411T) that eliminate this huge added input lag, so you can get the best of all worlds!

  3. PCM2 says:

    I can confirm that this also works on the S27A750D. I believe another user reported otherwise (perhaps on an S23A750D) but there is no reason why it wouldn’t work on the SA750 series. I have confirmed subjectively and using an evaluation of the MER performance.

  4. waterse says:

    Exciting!!!
    I will test zero motion blur with my S23A700D and hd6850 display card this night.
    But I want to know the reason that change “Response Time” to “Normal” via the monitor OSD in step 2. May I change to “Fastest” option for lower reponse time.
    Furthermore, please give me some advice to reduce the input lag in 2D FPS games. Thanks.

    • scanmaster says:

      Unfortunately, there are some nasty motion artifacts that show up if you use a “Response Time” of Fastest. The pixel response need to be optimized with the timing of the strobe backlight, which hides most of the pixel response curve in total darkness, between backlight strobes.

      If you want the fastest response, least motion artifacts, and minimum input lag with a strobe backlight, I highly recommend one of the new 1ms monitors (BENQ XL2411T or ASUS VG248QE).

  5. LinkinMcOwnage says:

    I can confirm that this works on my S23A750D at 120Hz with DP connection.

  6. Picture quality improvement by Morkai from HardForum S27A950D thread

    1. As people have said before, response time normal, else you can clearly see negative artifacts. (faster and fastest give a slightly brighter picture though – maybe the backlight strobe is longer in faster/fastest?).
    2. Turn on frame sequential 3d
    3. brightness 100, contrast 86
    4. Enable “magic angle” – “group view”.

    • LinkinMcOwnage says:

      Thanks for that! I didn’t know about group view, but it works on my S23A750D. These monitors are like hidden gems.

      The viewing angle and contrast are superb now.

  7. JMH says:

    Hey I cannot believe the difference this make i love it but i have 1 problem

    I have the S27a950 i have done what is in the instructions but when i join a game i have to enable the frame sequential VIA the OSD everytime i go into a game

    When i leave the game its still on

    So how can i have this on all the time?

    Thanks

    • – Try forcing everything to stay at a 120Hz refresh rate (e.g. ToastyX CRU)
      – Try disabling the 3D stereoscopic checkbox in Control Panel.

      • LinkinMcOwnage says:

        Confirm via the game’s settings that it’s also running at 120hz.

        I’ve had issues where ARMA2 would bug out, change its refresh rate to 100hz, and then save it into my config. Annoying.

        Find the offending game and check all settings/ini/config files

    • brid555 says:

      Did you ever find a solution for this. I just got 3 samsung S23A700D and every time i turn off and on my pc or monitors, or just put the pc to sleep. The monitors all turn off frame sequential mode. Theres no way everytime i turn my pc im going to go into 3 monitors OSD and turn it on, so i need to find a solution or im selling them.

  8. H377F13LD says:

    Hi Guys,

    I have a Samsung S27A950D. Do I understand it correctly that I only have to set the settings above in the OSD of the monitor to have the strobe backlight turned on and I don’t have to set anything in the nVidia Control Panel?

    Is this correct? Or even if I have a Samsung monitor I still have to do the trick with ToastyX’ utility and the NCP?

    Thanks in advance for the help!

    • LinkinMcOwnage says:

      With the Samsungs, all you have to do is use the OSD function to enable “Frame Sequential” (in the 3D Settings – press the 3D Button) and “Group View” (From Picture > Magic > Angle > Group View)

      My current brightness/contrast settings are:

      100 Brightness
      86 Contrast

    • ToastyX Strobelight is not needed for Samsungs.
      Samsung 3D mode is so easy to enable via monitor menus.

      ToastyX Strobelight was invented for nVidia LightBoost, only because nVidia bundled LightBoost motion blur elimination tightly with 3D Vision. It used to be difficult to turn on LightBoost for people who didn’t have 3D Vision. ToastyX Strobelight unbundles the motion blur elimination feature of LightBoost, away from 3D stereoscopic, allowing you to easily turn it on/off, without requiring a 3D Vision Kit (or even 3D Vision drivers, for that matter). For more information, see the LightBoost FAQ.

      P.S. I helped ToastyX make Strobelight compatible with BENQ — so you also have me to thank too, if you’re using Strobelight on a BENQ monitor.

  9. PanzerIV says:

    Is the added input lag from the Samsung with Lightboost that bad?! I mostly play fast FPS games and if it’s clearly noticeable it would be a major disadvantage as the main point of going with a 120Hz monitor is to have as less input lag possible, unless you guys tell me that the refresh rate have nothing to do with the input lag, neither does the “GtG value”, that it’s just a spec that the manufacturer never tell and that you cannot improve no matter what you do on the monitor.

  10. ilest says:

    Is there any chance to use Strobe mode without using 3d mode?

    NCX:s review of the monitor says: “2D-3D Conversion introduces a lot of input lag which affects aiming, movement and general reactivity during games. When using a controller it is still playable, but I found the delay to be unbearable when gaming with a keyboard and mouse.”

    • They are actually separate components:
      - 2D-3D conversion from the GPU perspective can entail some input latency overheads. Alternate-frame rendering can also entail some input latency issues as well.
      - Strobing from the Computer monitor perspective can also introduce input latency that occurs independently of 3D conversion. This is not covered by NCX.

      The bottom line is that “3D Mode” from the Samsung monitor perspective, isn’t doing 2D-3D conversion when viewing in 2D mode. However, the response time adjustment adds input lag on Samsung, and is the major cause of added input lag during “3D Mode”. This is shown by turning off 3D mode, changing Response Time settings, and going back into 3D mode — you get a bit less input lag but more motion artifacts when viewing http://www.testufo.com … So a lot of Samsung’s input lag during the monitor-side “3D Mode” setting, is actually caused by the optimal-appearing Response setting. This is somewhat unfortunate, as both ASUS/BENQ doesn’t add any further input latency except for the minimum half frame average input lag that strobing entails (due to waiting for the refresh to finish before the strobe).

  11. someth1ng says:

    I have the Samsung S23A750D but when I follow the steps and turn it on, the screen goes all weird and has lots of vertical lines. Any ideas?

  12. brid555 says:

    I recently got 3 samsung sa700d monitors. I followed the samsung light boost how to instructions from the blurbusters. I can turn the frame sequential mode on and it works great, totally reduces the motion blur. My problem is if I turn off the monitors or my computer, then the monitors turn off that mode. I tried researching it more but everything I read is people using that CRU program to import inf. so that they can get 3d vision working. I dont know if that will help me because the option to turn it on and off is in the monitor osd. I ran the toastyx program hoping I could just force strobbed refresh rates all the time but it didnt make a difference. Do you have any ideas on how to get it to stay in frame sequential mode?

    • ToastyX Strobelight was designed for NVIDIA’s LightBoost.

      There may be a software solution for you, but before we do,
      I’d like you to do a test:

      1. Download Entech Taiwan SoftMCCS
      2. Run SoftMCCS
      3. In SoftMCCS “Command-line editor”, typing this and hit Enter:
      03 D4 00 40
      If that does not work, try typing this and hit Enter:
      03 D4 00 20

      Technical note: This executes VESA Monitor Control Command Set (VCP command D4 representing 3D mode) to turn on frame-sequential 3D mode, bit #5 and #6.

      If this works, then it is possible to have an easy utility that transmits these commands to all the monitors every time the computer wakes up, or via an easy icon click. But before this, can you at least test these commands?

  13. brid555 says:

    both times it said checksum error.
    I for sure have an issue with one of the monitors. 2 of them lets me connect via DVI and the computer knows they are samsung s23a700 monitors but the one monitor I have just goes black when i connect via dvi. When I connect that monitor with dvi to a active dual link display port adapter then display port to my video card. Then it will display 640×480 but it doesnt know what kind of monitor it is. With the CRU1.1 utility I exported the stuff from the samsung monitor and then imported it to the Generic pnp monitor and then changed product id. I now had my computer recognizing all the monitors as samsungs and it let me set them all to 120hz.

  14. brid555 says:

    Then I tried to set up nvidia surround, but the screens just go blank, when i click apply. I read online to download .inf drivers for a dell alienware 2310 and install. I tried that and now it allows me to get into nvidia surround mode.
    I dont know if any of that will interfere with what your having me test.

  15. brid555 says:

    In SoftMCCS its reading 2 of the monitors as samsung s23a700 and the other as Dell NV surround. The dell nv surround says DDD/CI not supported and everything below that is greyed out. On either on the samsungs it allows me to put in those commands
    03 D4 00 40 gets me
    12:11:41.03438…..[S] 51 84 03 D4 00 40 2C [P]
    12:11:41.13839…..[S] 6E 84 03 D4 00 40 2C*[P]
    12:11:41.1413A…..Checksum error
    and 03 D4 00 20 gets me
    12:13:36.6893B…..[S] 51 84 03 D4 00 20 4C [P]
    12:13:36.7933C…..[S] 6E 84 03 D4 00 20 4C*[P]
    12:13:36.7963D…..Checksum error

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