LG OLED TVs have a problem with VRR (Variable Refresh Rate)

LG OLED + VRR causes problems for models from 2019/2020

LG OLED televisions from the 2019/2020 model year probably have a display problem when the HDMI 2.1 feature VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) is activated in games. A quick elimination of the error is not in sight.

The OLED televisions from LG are very popular with the gamer community. This was recently shown in the tearing heels for the new 48 inch model OLED48CX. On paper, the models from 2019 and 2020 also have all the requirements for an optimal gaming display: HDMI 2.1, ALLM (Auto Low Lantency Mode), eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel), VRR, Nvidia G-Sync and support for 4K / 120fps and 8K / 60fps displays. But one of these features now seems to be causing problems for the South Korean company. The implementation of the variable image repetition rate probably results in an increase in the image brightness or an increase in the gamma curve.

VRR “chops up” the black level

In short, image areas in games that should actually be black or very dark appear rather gray with activated VRR. Of course, this is in complete contrast to what users expect from an OLED TV. Forbes editor John Archer writes that the problem is e.g. can be seen more than clearly in the HDR calibration setup of “Gears 5”. If VRR is activated via the menu, the details in the shaded areas are far more difficult to see. If the OLED television is also set to a different picture mode than “Game”, e.g. to “Standard”, this brightness shift can be made very clear.

Flickering in VRR mode on 2019 OLED TVs

Some users also log in Flickering or an “unstable image display” in very dark areas of the image when the VRR feature is activated on the OLED models from 2019. However, this problem has been around for several months, as several videos on the topic can be found on YouTube with upload dates January 2020 and earlier. It is possible that no one has been sufficiently upset about this grievance or that no major publication has reported about it.

LG is working on a solution

Anyway. LG has already commented on the problems in an official statement. As one of the first manufacturers to integrate VRR into their TV portfolio (Samsung had already implemented it in its 2018 QLEDs), LG really only wanted to offer its customers the best possible gaming experience. With new technologies, even if they are used in proven hardware, errors and problems can creep in from time to time. LG Electronics is already working flat out on a bug fix. A bug fix via firmware update could take some time.


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