‘AdaptiveSync’ Labels Aim to Highlight Legit PC Gaming Monitors

‘AdaptiveSync’ Labels Aim to Highlight Legit PC Gaming Monitors

A new labeling system is coming to PC gaming monitors that aims to verify their variable refresh rates, making it easy for consumers to identify the best performing products.

The labeling system comes from VESA, an electronics association dedicated to creating standards around video displays. The group announced the system for the purpose of testing monitors that support the Adaptive-Sync protocol, which can adjust a monitor’s refresh rate to match the frame rate of a PC’s graphics card.

The protocol was created to help eliminate screen tearing and stuttering that can occur on a monitor when running PC games. AMD and Nvidia have developed their own variable refresh rate technologies through FreeSync and G-Sync, respectively. Therefore, you can find many monitors and laptops in the market designed to offer adaptive synchronization at different refresh rates.

However, sometimes variable refresh rate performance on a monitor may not consistently match a product’s marketing claims. For example, it’s easy for a product to say it has a 144Hz or 240Hz refresh rate, but the actual performance can be off and result in video flickering.

“While many PC and laptop displays currently support Adaptive-Sync protocols, until now there was no open standard to measure the level of performance or quality of support. Adaptive-Sync support for a given display,” VESA said in Monday’s announcement.

The association is trying to solve this problem by creating a new compliance specification that involves checking an Adaptive-Sync monitor with over 50 automated tests, which will cover refresh rate, flicker, gray-to-gray response time and video frame drops. PC gaming monitors that meet the performance criteria will then be certified with an “AdaptiveSync” display logo, which will only be awarded to products with a minimum refresh rate of 144Hz.

“The logo includes a value indicating the maximum achievable video frame rate for Adaptive-Sync operation when tested under factory default settings at native resolution,” VESA added. “Logo values ​​will include 144, 165, 240, 360, etc.”

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The association has also created a second label, called “MediaSync Display”, which is designed to certify that a PC or laptop monitor provides “jitter-free media playback”, meaning no data loss or distortion. This label is for monitors with lower refresh rates, which are dedicated to video production, as opposed to PC gaming.

Currently, only two 27-inch LG monitors have been certified with the AdaptiveSync labels. But VESA invites all suppliers to participate in the system by sending their products to the association for testing.

VESA’s effort joins certification testing for Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync compatible PC monitors, although the programs are not mutually exclusive. “VESA places no restrictions on the use of additional logos and certifications from other programs,” VESA said. “A device that bears both a VESA Adaptive-Sync Display certification logo and a GPU vendor’s logo will need to meet the criteria of both programs.”

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