G-SYNC 101: Control Panel


G-SYNC Module

The G-SYNC module is a small chip that replaces the display’s standard internal scaler, and contains enough onboard memory to hold and process a single frame at a time.

The module exploits the vertical blanking interval (the span between the previous and next frame scan) to manipulates the display’s internal timings; performing G2G (gray to gray) overdrive calculations to prevent ghosting, and synchronizing the display’s refresh rate to the GPU’s render rate to eliminate tearing, along with the delayed frame delivery and adjoining stutter caused by traditional syncing methods.

G-SYNC Demo

The below Blur Busters Test UFO motion test pattern uses motion interpolation techniques to simulate the seamless framerate transitions G-SYNC provides within the refresh rate, when directly compared to standalone V-SYNC.

G-SYNC Activation

“Enable for full screen mode” (exclusive fullscreen functionality only) will automatically engage when a supported display is connected to the GPU. If G-SYNC behavior is suspect or non-functioning, untick the “Enable G-SYNC, G-SYNC Compatible” box, apply, re-tick, and apply.

Blur Buster's G-SYNC 101: Control Panel

G-SYNC Windowed Mode

“Enable for windowed and full screen mode” allows G-SYNC support for windowed and borderless windowed mode. This option was introduced in a 2015 driver update, and by manipulating the DWM (Desktop Windows Manager) framebuffer, enables G-SYNC’s VRR (variable refresh rate) to synchronize to the focused window’s render rate; unfocused windows remain at the desktop’s fixed refresh rate until focused on.

G-SYNC only functions on one window at a time, and thus any unfocused window that contains moving content will appear to stutter or slow down, a reason why a variety of non-gaming applications (popular web browsers among them) include predefined Nvidia profiles that disable G-SYNC support.

Note: this setting may require a game or system restart after application; the “G-SYNC Indicator” (Nvidia Control Panel > Display > G-SYNC Indicator) can be enabled to verify it is working as intended.

G-SYNC Preferred Refresh Rate

“Highest available” automatically engages when G-SYNC is enabled, and overrides the in-game refresh rate selector (if present), defaulting to the highest supported refresh rate of the display. This is useful for games that don’t include a selector, and ensures the display’s native refresh rate is utilized.

“Application-controlled” adheres to the desktop’s current refresh rate, or defers control to games that contain a refresh rate selector.

Note: this setting only applies to games being run in exclusive fullscreen mode. For games being run in borderless or windowed mode, the desktop dictates the refresh rate.

G-SYNC & V-SYNC

G-SYNC (GPU Synchronization) works on the same principle as double buffer V-SYNC; buffer A begins to render frame A, and upon completion, scans it to the display. Meanwhile, as buffer A finishes scanning its first frame, buffer B begins to render frame B, and upon completion, scans it to the display, repeat.

The primary difference between G-SYNC and V-SYNC is the method in which rendered frames are synchronized. With V-SYNC, the GPU’s render rate is synchronized to the fixed refresh rate of the display. With G-SYNC, the display’s VRR (variable refresh rate) is synchronized to the GPU’s render rate.

Upon its release, G-SYNC’s ability to fall back on fixed refresh rate V-SYNC behavior when exceeding the maximum refresh rate of the display was built-in and non-optional. A 2015 driver update later exposed the option.

This update led to recurring confusion, creating a misconception that G-SYNC and V-SYNC are entirely separate options. However, with G-SYNC enabled, the “Vertical sync” option in the control panel no longer acts as V-SYNC, and actually dictates whether, one, the G-SYNC module compensates for frametime variances output by the system (which prevents tearing at all times. G-SYNC + V-SYNC “Off” disables this behavior; see G-SYNC 101: Range), and two, whether G-SYNC falls back on fixed refresh rate V-SYNC behavior; if V-SYNC is “On,” G-SYNC will revert to V-SYNC behavior above its range, if V-SYNC is “Off,” G-SYNC will disable above its range, and tearing will begin display wide.

Within its range, G-SYNC is the only syncing method active, no matter the V-SYNC “On” or “Off” setting.

Currently, when G-SYNC is enabled, the control panel’s “Vertical sync” entry is automatically engaged to “Use the 3D application setting,” which defers V-SYNC fallback behavior and frametime compensation control to the in-game V-SYNC option. This can be manually overridden by changing the “Vertical sync” entry in the control panel to “Off,” “On,” or “Fast.”



239 Comments For “G-SYNC 101”

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Tamburo
Member
Tamburo

What if i have a 240hz monitor but i want to cap my framerate to 150with Gsync on, can i do it? what the problems would be?

rpate124
Member
rpate124

My PC consistently gets 220+ fps with g-sync enabled, do I need to do this method to optimize the performance? Or is this method in general the best to get most out of your PC game performance wise.

PoiZone
Member
PoiZone

First, thanks a lot for this guide. I find it very useful even if in the beginning it is quite difficult to understand this matter but now it is more clear.

I have three questions : I didn’t understand why should i leave V-Sync ON if I have G-Sync ON with FPS capped 3 frames below the screen refresh rate? Should G-Sync kick in ?

Second question : I noticed in some FPS shooters (far cry for instance) input lag (Especially mouse lag) when I enable antialising in-game. The PC however is able to maintain constant FPS rate (57). When i disable antialising it works perfectly. Do you know what’s going on: is it something related to G-sync ?
In resident evil 2 remake I didnt notice any input lag even with highest antialising settings. So my question is : does antialising have something to do with input lag ? It is noticeable in some games : what would be your recommendation in this regard ?

And last question : if an in-game FPS limiter is available, should it be turned on even if RTSS is active, or it should be disabled ?

Thank you for this guide !

generous
Member
generous

Hey if I wanted to play fortnite competitively and have the least amount of input lag should I have g sync enabled or disabled?

I have a 144hz monitor. Is the slight input lag that comes with g sync worth it as far as smoothness or do you think it would be better to have low input lag with v sync off as well as g sync and maybe get screen tearing?

GITS_2501
Member
GITS_2501

Absolutely amazing guide, so glad I found this. Although, when i play SWtOR (Star Wars the Old Republic) with G-Sync + V-Sync “ON” I get noticeable stuttering. Where as when I play with G-Sync + V-Sync “Off” there is much less stuttering. I understand that if i get frame dips I might see some screen tearing but so far its been fine in that regard.

Is this unusual? Or what you’d expect?

Thanks

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