Why is input lag still not taken seriously by TV manufacturers?

SonOfSJ

Well-known Member
I'm kind of made my choice now anyway, which is the LG OLED C7, but I'm going to wait for the price to drop a bit before taking the plunge, since €2,700 is a bit much for me and I can live with what I have for a few more months. I think by around January there is a decent chance the C7 will have dropped under the €2,000 mark, so I'll probably jump around then. I think it will be worth the wait.
Sounds like a plan! :)
 

cobhc2008

Active Member
Can I ask what issues you've had with HDMI CEC and ARC?
 

iwb100

Distinguished Member
I disagree. How about a game like Thumper?

My current TV is pretty decent in most cases, yet there's no way I could've S-ranked the whole game on my TV vs. playing it in PSVR.

I think music rhythm games in general benefit greatly from a low input lag, and I play a lot of them.

Action games also benefit greatly too. A few years ago, I bought Bayonetta 2 while staying at my parents house over Christmas, so I started playing it on their cheap 37" LG TV. I didn't even think about input lag until I noticed a drastic improvement to my play performance after I got home and continued playing it on my own TV. People argue that it doesn't really make a difference, but all those Gold and Platinums awards I suddenly started getting ain't lying.

People who argue it doesn't make a difference are wrong. And you are correct that music rhythm games are another genre that are very lag dependent (though things like RB let you compensate for lag).

However my point was that MOST gamers won't notice two frames. When you start getting more than that it becomes a bigger issue for everyone.

People who do notice 2 frames of lag shouldn't be using a TV to game on.
 

Kotatsu Neko

Well-known Member
At least as far as Samsung and LG are concerned, Game Mode lag is no longer an issue. Where things become more complex is when you throw an AV receiver into the mix, and wireless controllers. The former will introduce a lot of sound lag whether you like it or not, and the latter will add a huge amount of input lag.

I'd just like HDMI automatic sound/lip sync to actually work, as it never does. I've just bought a B7 and a new amp and getting rid of sound sync issues has not been easy. I've ended up at around 60ms on the amp to compensate for Cinema and ISF Dark Room picture modes on the B7, and some TV side sound delay even in game mode of a few notches to get the sound matched up.
 

Sephiro

Active Member
I use a TV as the output for my PC/PS4 which means that OLED goes out the window for me due to potential image retention issues like being left on the desktop for an extended period or from fixed HUD elements in games. Like the OP though I'd like to move to a new FALD LCD TV, such as the Sony ZD9, but the input lag for playing fast paced FPS's is above what I'm willing to tolerate - especially on a set that costs ~£3,300 (i.e. worse than my current TV and far more expensive than it was when I bought it new).

Clearly I don't know how much effort Sony would have to invest to reduce the input lag on the ZD9 to an acceptable level, however as others have mentioned it seems strange that they appear to be ignoring input lag on their TVs given that the PlayStation brand is what is effectively making most of the profits for the company.
 

MartinBrentnall

Active Member
Can I ask what issues you've had with HDMI CEC and ARC?
I created a thread about these issues a few weeks ago here.


However my point was that MOST gamers won't notice two frames.
In my opinion, the issue shouldn't be about whether people notice it; the fact that people are affected by it should be a good enough reason to fix it. Please refer to my Bayonetta 2 example above in which input lag had a significant and detrimental impact on my performance despite me not being aware of it.



Where things become more complex is when you throw an AV receiver into the mix, and wireless controllers.
This was a concern I had last year when I bought my Home Theatre System, but I only route the Wii U through it while the other consoles are connected via optical. I haven't noticed any input lag issues on the Wii U (despite looking for them), although I've only really played Mario Kart and Zelda on the Wii U since getting the HTS.

The wireless controller issue sounds like something that would be common to all modern console gaming right? I honestly can't remember the last time I used a wired controller on a non-portable console, so I don't have any good point of reference on that (is it even possible to use wired controllers on current consoles?).

The only input lag I've noticed on my current setup is when playing PSVita music rhythm games on my TV via the PlayStation TV. I'm not sure if that's caused by the wireless controller or just something weird about the way the PSTV outputs to the TV (e.g. weird resolution that my TV takes extra time to scale), but it definitely feels a little bit off and slightly less responsive compared with playing the same games on my actual PSVita.
 

MartinBrentnall

Active Member
I use a TV as the output for my PC/PS4 which means that OLED goes out the window for me due to potential image retention issues like being left on the desktop for an extended period or from fixed HUD elements in games.
This is another concern I had about OLED, but from what I understand, the image retention on OLED is only temporary (unlike Plasma and CRT, where it can be permanent). I know there are a few reports of permanent image retention on OLED too, but it seems rare and many seem to be the result of buying used display models that were never given chance to run on standby (which I understand uses a process to reduce/clear any image retention).

Also, I've owned a Vita since launch and played it almost every day for years and never saw any issues with its OLED screen (though in fairness, the Vita screen is probably a lot less bright than current OLED TV's; it's certainly nowhere near as bright as the OLED screen on my Galaxy S6 anyway).
 

SLS72

Active Member
To be fair, from reviews of 2017 TV's that I've seen input lag is pretty good. Looking at the big 4 brands, LG and Panasonic OLEDs should both be great options, Samsungs also have low input lag but are ridiculously overpriced and if you game using a PS4 Pro or Xbox One S then Sony also have some great options, including the beautiful A1 OLED.
 

mclingo

Distinguished Member
glad to see LG full unboard with this but feeling horribly butt hurt the 2015 OLED models didnt get a low lag HDR/GAME mode.
 

MartinBrentnall

Active Member
To be fair, from reviews of 2017 TV's that I've seen input lag is pretty good.
The situation is certainly improving, but I think it's taking a lot longer that it should considering how long this issue has been around.

I think input lag should be included as part of the requirements for industry/marketing specifications like Ultra HD Premium. i.e. a TV maker can only describe their TV as "Ultra HD Premium" if it can accomplish (e.g.) 25 ms or less input lag. This would force the manufacturers to make sure their (high-end) TV's actually work properly with games in order to be compliant with specifications under which they market these TV's.
 
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Bravo1c

Standard Member
100% one of the two facts i was looking at for my new TV three weeks ago before buying the Samsung KS9000 which has an input lag of 21ms. This TV is amazing and i cannot tell the difference from the input from my new TV and my old PC monitor with a 6ms lag. In today's world input lag is vital in selling a TV and i would never buy a TV without first knowing what it is. Saying that your rely not getting alot of true 4K HDR content other than from games at the moment bar a few shows and a few sample videos and movies. Gaming in my opinion is the only driving factor in TV tech pushing forward in the commercial sector right now and for the foreseeable future.

I do want to say a BIG thanks to the AVforums team for giving such great reviews as always and helping me pick out what i can honestly say is the best TV i have ever had.
 

Bravo1c

Standard Member
People who argue it doesn't make a difference are wrong. And you are correct that music rhythm games are another genre that are very lag dependent (though things like RB let you compensate for lag).

However my point was that MOST gamers won't notice two frames. When you start getting more than that it becomes a bigger issue for everyone.

People who do notice 2 frames of lag shouldn't be using a TV to game on.

I agree with you for the most part but unfortunaltly we have no other choice if you want a 4K HDR panel at the moment. You have to shell out 1k for a 27in monitor to get the equivalent quality and specs as current TV's.

This i believe is a deliberate attempt to push people into buy a TV that is not capable of what they want but will suffice until they get to second generation 4K HDR TV's. Though i am very very happy with my Samsung KS9000 and wouldn't swap it for anything. Its a great TV and you would see a difference to a PC monitor without spending some serious money.

Please correct me if i am wrong but so far as know this is the case right now. Would love to hear your thoughts.
 

SLS72

Active Member
The situation is certainly improving, but I think it's taking a lot longer that it should considering how long this issue has been around.

I think input lag should be included as part of the requirements for industry/marketing specifications like Ultra HD Premium. i.e. a TV maker can only describe their TV as "Ultra HD Premium" if it can accomplish (e.g.) 25 ms or less input lag. This would force the manufacturers to make sure their (high-end) TV's actually work properly with games in order to be compliant with specifications under which they market these TV's.

The UHD Premium thing is more aimed at movie lovers than gamers I guess. Plus it's badly flawed anyway. Sony, who arguably make the best LCD TV money can buy and a stunning OLED don't participate at all. And a personal bugbear of mine is that there is no requirement for local dimming on LCD TVs. Most 4K blu rays would look awful on and LCD without local dimming.
 

Sephiro

Active Member
This is another concern I had about OLED, but from what I understand, the image retention on OLED is only temporary (unlike Plasma and CRT, where it can be permanent). I know there are a few reports of permanent image retention on OLED too, but it seems rare and many seem to be the result of buying used display models that were never given chance to run on standby (which I understand uses a process to reduce/clear any image retention).
I understand there are essentially two types of burn in on OLED; the first being a temporary issue due to charge/conductivity differences that build up in the TFT layer and this is the problem resolved by the standby process you mentioned. The second is caused by the fact that the individual OLED elements that make up the screen reduce in brightness over time through use (with the blue element having the shortest lifespan) and this can then lead to image uniformity issues which can appear similar to burn in - the only solution here is to turn the brightness of the screen down to the level of the weakest element. Given that the peak brightness for HDR on an OLED TV already starts considerably lower than a conventional LED model the idea of having to dial it back further after a couple of years when my taskbar burns into the bottom of the screen doesn't appeal to me.

I would imagine that HDR essentially exacerbates the second issue so I'll wait to see how these panels fair long term - right now OLED is too much of a gamble for me given the high cost and the relatively low number of sets out there which have done a decent amount of operating hours.
 

MartinBrentnall

Active Member
The UHD Premium thing is more aimed at movie lovers than gamers I guess. Plus it's badly flawed anyway. Sony, who arguably make the best LCD TV money can buy and a stunning OLED don't participate at all. And a personal bugbear of mine is that there is no requirement for local dimming on LCD TVs. Most 4K blu rays would look awful on and LCD without local dimming.
I haven't looked into the specification in much detail to see what it covers, but from what you're saying, It sounds like the specification isn't very well thought out in general, which may explain why it lacks an input lag requirement. Still, I think it would be good for a future specification to cover it.


(with the blue element having the shortest lifespan)
I raised this concern in another thread not so long ago, and was informed that at least LG's OLED TV's don't actually use blue element, but rather a white element with a blue filter, specifically to avoid the blue element lifetime issue.
 

Sephiro

Active Member
I raised this concern in another thread not so long ago, and was informed that at least LG's OLED TV's don't actually use blue element, but rather a white element with a blue filter, specifically to avoid the blue element lifetime issue.
Yeah the manufacturers claim that blue lifespan is no longer an issue relative to the other colours, however the underlying problem remains (i.e. if my Windows taskbar which is on screen for extended periods is predominantly one colour those OLEDs will age faster than all the ones not being used so over the years it's likely that it will develop uniformity issues - the big question being how long does it take to become noticeable).
 

Evokazz

Member
Thanks for the links. My original TV choice was a Samsung KS8000, which has a very low input lag and is extremely highly rated for gaming over on a very big gaming forum. However, after buying the TV, I ended up returning it after just a few days due to the HDMI-CEC and ARC functions being broken on the TV.

HDMI-CEC and ARC urgh, I hate setups that rely on this, they either work or don't work, you can have a high end setup and ARC is useless, but average joe with his Tesco bundle could have it working a dream, such a flawed tech.
 

MartinBrentnall

Active Member
HDMI-CEC and ARC urgh, I hate setups that rely on this, they either work or don't work, you can have a high end setup and ARC is useless, but average joe with his Tesco bundle could have it working a dream, such a flawed tech.
The TV industry really needs to get their sh*t together on this. HDMI-CEC has worked flawlessly for years on my 2009 Philips 42" TV with six different devices, which is why I naturally expected no less from a 2016 Samsung 55" TV.

Failure of the HDMI-CEC functionality is not acceptable to me, and I will return any such set as being faulty. After my experience with the Samsung, I will be testing the HDMI-CEC and ARC function on the LG OLED C7 before bringing the TV home.
 

BAMozzy

Member
As someone who is a very keen gamer, especially fast paced twitch shooters with very quick time to kill (I play in 'Hardcore' where 1 shot is often all that is required to get the kill so instantaneous TTK) having the lowest possible Input Lag is important. Being more than a frame behind can be the difference in success or failure. I know things like reaction times, controller lag, input lag etc can all play a part but if you can't react as soon as others because you are 5or6 frames behind them, they have the advantage. If you play defensively, you can still do well but for aggressive players, those 1v1's where you should see each other at the same time, are almost always going to result in you losing.

After lots of research, I can see that ALL the high-end TV's - Maybe not those Niche high-end manufacturers like Loewe for example who are targeting the AV enthusiast first and foremost, all the main manufacturers have delivered with their UHD Premium range. Its not surprising as we are getting consoles like the Pro and Xbox X as well as PC users who may use a High end TV as a gaming monitor too.

At launch, the LG B6 was quite poor in comparison to its other OLEDs and 'poor' as a 'hardcore' gaming screen but LG, after numerous updates really brought that down to be much more competitive. Currently, I can't think of any High end UHD Premium TV over the past 2 years that have an Input Lag of more than 35ms - apart from some Sony's which are above 40ms with 1080p gaming - possibly down to the processing Sony use to upscale to 4k to fit the screen. If your console can upscale though, you should still get below a 35ms input lag.

To me that says that ALL the Big 4 have taken Input Lag seriously. Consoles these days, not only offer gaming, which as we know is bigger than other media - certainly as far as sales go. Also double up as multi-media devices - bringing 4k HDR Media and Gaming. TV's that also offer up this multi-media functionality to the best of their ability, the ability to deliver Gaming with low Lag and a great 4k PQ are going to be in bigger demand. Almost like having a 'check list'.

4k - tick
HDR10 - tick
Low Input Lag - tick.... etc
 

Bravo1c

Standard Member
As someone who is a very keen gamer, especially fast paced twitch shooters with very quick time to kill (I play in 'Hardcore' where 1 shot is often all that is required to get the kill so instantaneous TTK) having the lowest possible Input Lag is important. Being more than a frame behind can be the difference in success or failure. I know things like reaction times, controller lag, input lag etc can all play a part but if you can't react as soon as others because you are 5or6 frames behind them, they have the advantage. If you play defensively, you can still do well but for aggressive players, those 1v1's where you should see each other at the same time, are almost always going to result in you losing.

After lots of research, I can see that ALL the high-end TV's - Maybe not those Niche high-end manufacturers like Loewe for example who are targeting the AV enthusiast first and foremost, all the main manufacturers have delivered with their UHD Premium range. Its not surprising as we are getting consoles like the Pro and Xbox X as well as PC users who may use a High end TV as a gaming monitor too.

At launch, the LG B6 was quite poor in comparison to its other OLEDs and 'poor' as a 'hardcore' gaming screen but LG, after numerous updates really brought that down to be much more competitive. Currently, I can't think of any High end UHD Premium TV over the past 2 years that have an Input Lag of more than 35ms - apart from some Sony's which are above 40ms with 1080p gaming - possibly down to the processing Sony use to upscale to 4k to fit the screen. If your console can upscale though, you should still get below a 35ms input lag.

To me that says that ALL the Big 4 have taken Input Lag seriously. Consoles these days, not only offer gaming, which as we know is bigger than other media - certainly as far as sales go. Also double up as multi-media devices - bringing 4k HDR Media and Gaming. TV's that also offer up this multi-media functionality to the best of their ability, the ability to deliver Gaming with low Lag and a great 4k PQ are going to be in bigger demand. Almost like having a 'check list'.

4k - tick
HDR10 - tick
Low Input Lag - tick.... etc


Awesome to see they are taking notice, and honestly anyone who isn't buying a high end TV probably doesn't even know what input lag is. For me the £850 is worth the price those few frames but most won't pay for it. Great bit of info fella.
 

g1ng3r

Member
I currently use a Sony KDL 32W706 which has response time of 15ms (apparently one of the quickest tvs?) and I can easily tell the difference between this and a Dell monitor (2ms response) when using it on a PC. Even my 60yo father who has never played a game in his life can tell the difference when just navigating his desktop as the cursor definitely feels slightly disconnected compared to a monitor, although completely usable.

Personally anything less than 30ms is perfectly usable for console gaming but for PC use, not just gaming, the closer to no delay the better.
 

BAMozzy

Member
I currently use a Sony KDL 32W706 which has response time of 15ms (apparently one of the quickest tvs?) and I can easily tell the difference between this and a Dell monitor (2ms response) when using it on a PC. Even my 60yo father who has never played a game in his life can tell the difference when just navigating his desktop as the cursor definitely feels slightly disconnected compared to a monitor, although completely usable.

Personally anything less than 30ms is perfectly usable for console gaming but for PC use, not just gaming, the closer to no delay the better.

Response time and 'input lag' are two very different things. An OLED TV has a 'response' time of less than 1ms (0.2ms with 0.0ms overshoot) - that beats most (if not all) monitors for PC's. Input Lag - on the 2017 models is around 21ms. Gaming Monitors rarely give their 'input lag' details as its all about the 'response time'

Input lag is a measurement of the delay between the time you enter a command on your keyboard, mouse, or controller, and the time it registers on your screen. A low input lag is crucial in "twitch" (time-sensitive) video games where fractions of a second matter.

Response Time is an indicator of how fast a pixel can go from black to white and back again on a particular monitor/screen. Response time isn't as important as input lag, although response times in excess of 5ms can sometimes produce images that feel blurry (that 'motion' blur that LCD TV's have) or have ghosting.

Many monitor's have less than 1 frame (16.666ms) of input lag and the best tend to be in the 0.5ms-10ms. It also depends on whether you have an IPS or TN monitor as IPS monitors tend to have around 5-10ms Response Times. TN monitors tend to be the best for input lag and response times but IPS panels tend to have the better and more accurate colours with wider viewing angles as well as often larger screens too.

If you care more about the image then about the responsiveness of your monitor, go with an IPS monitor; if you'd rather have better responsiveness, go with a TN monitor.

However with TV's, If you want a 4k HDR TV with the best response time AND decent input lag, go with an OLED. If you don't mind a tiny bit of 'motion' blur (as LCD's tend to have a 10-15ms response time) and on more of a budget, go with the LCD.

The difference between 15ms and 21ms is 6ms - that's 6 thousandths of a second! To put some perspective on it, it takes around 2tenths (200ms) to blink. The average 'human' response time to visual stimulus is 0.25s (250ms - 15 frames at 60fps). It can take just 0.15s to react to physical stimulus which is still 150ms (or around 9 frames at 60fps).

Lewis Hamilton has a 'reaction time' of around 200ms ( Is Your Reaction Time Faster Than Lewis Hamilton's? ) so quibbling over a few thousandths of second is ridiculous. No way can you feel the difference of 6ms Input Lag. I can appreciate that an image may not look as 'clean' because of a longer response time and can certainly tell the difference between 20ms and 60+ms but 6ms??
 

g1ng3r

Member
Sorry for using the incorrect term.

After searching it appears that the Dell LCD IPS panel I use ranges from 6-9ms input lag, compared to the Sony LCD TVs 15ms in game mode. Switching from this game mode makes a huge difference, making FPS games almost unplayable for me, although in reality this is probably only around 30ms of input lag?

On this basis, if the above figures are correct, I cannot agree with you BAMozzy that it's impossible to tell the difference of 10, 20 or 30ms input lag.
 
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