Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (2023)

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The Samsung CHG70 is the cutting edge of FreeSync 2 and the best monitor we've ever used, but HDR is still the latest on PC.

Vonbrad chaco

welt pcApril 24, 2018 3:30 AM m. PDT

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (1)

Image: Samsung

Sure, lush high-dynamic-range images look impressive during demos, but HDR really does it.Objectwhen you game That was the main question I wanted to answer when AMD sent me the Samsung CHG70. It is one of the first gaming-focused monitors to useVESA DisplayHDR 600 certifiedand AMD's cutting-edge FreeSync 2 technology. It's also one of the best PC screens I've ever used.

Currently, seven monitors populate my office, offering different functions and technical specifications. None feel half as immersive as the Samsung CHG70 ($700 innew This stylish monitor delivers vivid, accurate colors with a crisp 2560 x 1440p resolution complemented byFreeSync 2 technologyThis eliminates tearing and stuttering while optimizing video output when processing HDR content. Playing on it feels like bliss. The multitude of features on offer combined with the CHG70's massive 32-inch curved panel makes other screens start to feel a bit flat. It also impresses after migrating from a 4K G-Sync setup, though some pesky flaws keep it from being perfect.

The state of HDR content on PC is not that great. Let's dive into Samsung CHG70, FreeSync 2 and HDR gaming and video on PC.

Specifications, features and performance of the Samsung CHG70

The Samsung CHG70 puts you face to face, to the point where you have a learning curve. keep doing

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (2) Samsung

When I say it gets on your face, I mean it literally. The CHG70's stand protrudes rather than using a simple portrait orientation, and as a result, the screen sits three to four inches closer to the user's face than other monitors. When I first encountered the massive 32-inch display and aggressive 1800R curvature, I didn't just feel immersed, I feltdevoured—like a person sitting in the front row of an IMAX theater. For the first day or two, I reflexively leaned back in my chair to escape the envelopment of the gigantic screen, especially when editing documents and spreadsheets. it was so scorchingWeissYin general.

But the slightly uncomfortable feeling went away after a day or two. Playing helped me tune in to the unique qualities of the CHG70: immersing myself in the worlds offar away 5Ydestiny 2It was wonderfully convincing, conditioning me to lean against the screen instead of wince. After that, using the screen for everyday tasks seemed less daunting, and I learned to appreciate just how good a monitor is.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (3) Samsung

HDR is still in its infancy on PC. Most of the monitors released to date are aimed at graphics professionals, who prefer 4K resolutions, slow response times, and sky-high four-digit price tags. Not the CHG70. Samsung packed this screen with gaming-friendly specs and features. The VA (portrait orientation) panel foregoes 4K in favor of the 2560 x 1440 resolution that is currently considered the "sweet spot" for PC gaming, and flickers at a 144Hz response rate with a "response time of film" of 1 ms.

VA panels have better contrast ratios, color accuracy, display, and brightness compared to standard TN displays, but often suffer from motion blur due to poor response times. The CHG70 features motion blur reduction technology and performs like a champ. Games felt crisp and never showed ghosting or corona effects, MLG notwithstandingCS: IRProfessionals should stick to 240Hz TN displays for maximum responsiveness.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (4) Samsung

the photos lookawesomealso in the CHG70, even if they are not in HDR. Samsung calibrates your monitor for accuracy at the factory and ships it with a Color Calibration Report in the box. The LED screen is complemented by Quantum Dot technology, which allows it to produce more color tones, and the CHG70 achieves 125 percent of the sRGB spectrum. Colors explode on the screen and dark scenes deliver deep, rich blacks. A small joystick on the back of the screen allows you to adjust the monitor settings as you see fit.

Turning HDR on increases colors to 11. While the CHG70 hits around 350 nits of brightness with typical use, it can spread its wings to deliver up to 600 nits for HDR content, pushing the "high" to "high dynamic range."

The 4K IPS screen I use as my secondary monitor offers bright, clear images, but it feels mediocre after staring at the CHG70 all day. However, the higher resolution still has some advantages. Compared to the 4K G-Sync display you previously used as your daily car, text on the Samsung CHG70 can appear slightly pixelated and "jagged" in some characters with long, unbroken straight or curved edges. However, it's more pronounced in larger text and doesn't detract from the overall experience, especially when gaming. However, consider whether the accuracy of the text is paramount to your work.

AMD FreeSync 2 y HDR

Radeon graphics cards are too expensive

MSI Radeon RX Vega 56 Air Boost

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (5)

The Samsung CHG70 was one of the first monitors to support AMD's FreeSync 2 technology, so this excellent monitor can get even better if you have one.supported Radeon graphics card.

FreeSync 2builds on the foundation laid by FreeSync.Standard FreeSync synchronizedthe refresh rate of your graphics card with your monitor. This eliminates those nasty screen tearing and stutters that can occur in games. FreeSync doesn't require any additional hardware in the monitor, unlike Nvidia's rival G-Sync, so FreeSync technology can be found on a wider range of displays, and often at a lower price. But in reality, FreeSync quality isn't nearly as universal as it is on G-Sync displays; FreeSync displays only support stutter-free gaming at certain refresh rates, which vary from product to product, and many monitors lose FreeSync support below this threshold.

These disadvantages disappear with FreeSync 2.

Next page: FreeSync 2 and HDR continued, Status of HDR on PC.

AMD only certifies displays as FreeSync 2 if they include Low Framerate Compensation (LFC) technology, which keeps games smooth no matter how fast they run. FreeSync 2 also demands low latency and aMinimumenables a dynamic range of color and brightness twice as vivid as standard sRGB displays. Those are very good monitors, period. Just look at Samsung's CHG70 for proof.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (6) AMD

FreeSync 2 also improves the performance of HDR games that use the FreeSync 2 API, although we didn't feel much of a difference.far away 5. This is how we described it in our original article:

Rendering high dynamic range images is typically a multi-step, behind-the-scenes process. First, the game performs tone mapping after the engine renders a scene. When the image is sent to the monitor, it is re-tinted to fit the compatible area of ​​the screen.

AMD's FreeSync 2 API provides the game with the native characteristics of your monitor, allowing it to match the characteristics of your display during initial game sound mapping. This eliminates the need for a second pass, providing the best possible image and eliminating delay. Gain!

Of course, enabling HDR makes the Samsung CHG70's vibrant colors and exceptional contrast stand out even more, as mentioned in the previous section.

The technology also works as a band-aid for Windows 10's poor HDR behavior. It makes your games look their best by automatically launching into HDR-compatible "FreeSync mode" when you start an HDR game, increasing the brightness and enforcing the widest color space. When you quit the game, it reverts to the default color space on the Windows 10 desktop.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (7) Brad Chacos/IDG

Typically, to view HDR content, you have to dive into Windows 10 display settings and manually enable HDR. This brings out the rich colors and deep blacks of HDR content, but casts the rest of the desktop in muted gray tones. It's disgusting. In practice, watching HDR videos and playing HDR games on PC requires you to first enable and then disable the technology so that the rest of your Windows experience doesn't suck.

The Samsung CHG70 actually switches to HDR mode when you start an HDR compatible game and it'smarvelous. However, I'm not sure if this is really a FreeSync 2 feature or just a monitor feature required for certification. I swapped the Radeon Vega 64 I used to test the Samsung CHG70 with a GeForce GTX 1080 Ti for comparison purposes, and games still autolaunched in HDR mode after enabling HDR in-game. In any case, it is a standout feature.

However, you still need to manually enable HDR to watch videos. Which brings us to the state of HDR on PCs.

The state of PC HDR

HDR is a household name on TVs right now, but it's early days on PC. Finding HDR content can be a frustrating experience. Most video services do not support HDR video streaming. If youAgainIf you're looking for HDR-equipped gaming or video, the Samsung CHG70 shines, though not quite as bright as some of the HDR TVs out there, maxing out at 600 nits of brightness instead of the 1,000+ nits required for full HDR compatibility. HDR10. are. (That could be a good thing since that massive screen is only a few feet from your face.)

Let's start with the video content.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (8) netflix

Netflix is ​​the best option these days to watch HDR videos on your computer. Many of the internal series support high dynamic range, includingDaredevil, Stranger Things 2, Chef's Table, Marco Polo, and many more. Searching for "HDR" returns most (but not all) of the available HD content. However, visualization can be difficult. You'll need a more expensive four-stream Netflix subscription and a 25 Mbps internet connection, HDR-capable hardware (obviously), and Windows 10. To top it all off, HDR only works on the official Netflix app in the Windows Store or through the Microsoft Edge browser. due to DRM restrictions.

[Further Reading: Why Your Home Theater PC Still Can't Stream 4K Ultra HD Video]

YouTube also supports HDR videos, but they're harder to find. Each channel can load in HDR. However, searching for "HDR" on the service isn't helpful and is full of explanations and other tangential videos about the technology that aren't actuallyInHDR. The aptly namedcanal hdrit's a good source, though it mostly consists of demo-style videos like you'd find on TVs at a major retailer. Fortunately, you don't have to suffer when using Edge to view HDR content on YouTube. It works perfectly in Chrome and Firefox.

The video below looks likegorgeousand HDR.

Remember that you need to enable HDR in Windows 10 display settings (Start > Settings > System > Display > HDR and advanced color) before you can watch these videos. The difference between SDR and HDR is palpable.

HDR games are also slowly leaking out. You'd think now that both Xbox One X and PlayStation 4 Pro support the glorious visual tech, more AAA games would support HDR, but so would Xbox's own games likeForza horizonte 3Ysea ​​of ​​thievesannoyingly dropping HDR on PC. Around 30 PC games currently support HDR, as reported by SuperlativePC-Games-Wiki. A small sample:

  • far away 5
  • final fantasy xv
  • Forza Motorsport 7
  • battlefield 1
  • Assassin's Creed Origins
  • destiny 2
  • Sicario
  • Resident Evil 7

Hopefully more games with HDR support will come out in the future.

bottom line

The Samsung CHG70 ($700 innew took me a few days to get used to, but it's an absolutely stunning screen. It's accurate, vibrant, and unlike most HDR displays, ultra-fast and packed with technologies designed to make your gaming experience as smooth as possible. FreeSync 2 is the icing on the cake of an already delicious monitor. Samsung has packed a lot of value into this $700 screen, oddly enough. (Samsung also sells a 27-inch version of the CHG70 for$550.)

Mentioned in this article

Saphir Pulse RX 580 4GB

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (9)

You'll need a graphics card capable of displaying 1440p at high frame rates and HDR to get the most out of the CHG70. The monitor is a perfect match for AMD.Radeon RX Vega 56 o Vega 64, or theRadeon RX580if you don't mind playing closer to 60Hz than 144Hz. (Graphics card prices are ridiculous these days.)

But this monitor also makes it clear that HDR on PC is still in the age of growing pains. Finding compatible content can be tricky, and manually enabling and disabling HDR in Windows 10 is annoying and never explicitly stated in Windows instructions or popups. FreeSync 2 fixes this problem with games, but the CHG70's FreeSync 2 compatibility had some teething problems. Its FreeSync support initially wouldn't kick in until it hits 72fps, but subsequent firmware updates, virtually unknown to monitors, increased the FreeSync range to 48-144Hz, with lower refresh rates covered by LFC. Make sure you rockThe latest firmware of the CHG70for best results.

Samsung's glorious CHG70 FreeSync 2 display showcases the wonder (and weirdness) of PC HDR (10) Samsung

HDR nerds may also scoff at 600-nit brightness, as "true" HDR10 support requires 1,000 nits.Nvidia's rival G-Sync HDR monitorsit hit that, and during trade show demos I had to shield my eyes from the glare of the explosions, something I've never experienced with the Samsung CHG70. I'm not sure if that's good or bad to be honest. A blisteringly bright 1,000-nit blast shooting just a few feet from your face may not be pretty, though we'll know for sure when Nvidia's long-delayed G-Sync HDR displays show up.Starts in the next few weeks. The Samsung monitor shines bright enough, with a huge contrast ratio and fantastic color reproduction.

The Samsung CHG70 is a world class monitor; The best I've ever used and one that offers a lot of value despite its premium price. I highly recommend it, but once you start delving into HDR, expect some bloody adoption issues. Such is life for enthusiasts.

Be warned, though: once you've experienced the majesty of HDR gaming, it's hard to go back.

(Video) 2.5 Geeks Webcast 8/1/18: HDR Gaming, Smart Displays, AMD B450 , GeForce Gamescoms, Amiga Revived!

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Does FreeSync work with HDR? ›

AMD FreeSync™ Premium Pro1 technology raises the bar to the next level for gaming displays, enabling an exceptional user experience when playing HDR games, movies and other content: At least 120hz refresh rate at minimum FHD resolution.

What does FreeSync do? ›

With AMD FreeSync technology, the refresh rate of a display is synchronized with the framerate of FreeSync compatible graphics cards, reducing or eliminating visual artifacts that many users are especially sensitive to: input latency, screen tearing, and stuttering during gaming and video playback.

Does G-Sync affect HDR? ›

A monitor's G-Sync also works with HDR (opens in new tab) content, but things will look better if that monitor has G-Sync Ultimate, formerly called G-Sync HDR (for HDR recommendations, check out our article on how to pick the best HDR monitor (opens in new tab)).

How do I enable FreeSync 2 HDR? ›

Enabling FreeSync HDR on the Monitor

Go to AMD Radeon Settings -> Display -> AMD FreeSync and ensure it is enabled – there should be a white circle in the FreeSync box. Lastly, you need to enable FreeSync HDR in your monitor's settings.

Does FreeSync increase lag? ›

FreeSync monitors, on the other hand, are in the same position as standard non-adaptive monitors. It doesn't mean that FreeSync screens have inherently higher input lag, but you'll have to look at reviews for an input lag measurement before making your purchase. The use of generic hardware has an advantage though.

Do gamers use FreeSync? ›

For console gamers on Xbox, FreeSync-supported displays are a perfect match because Xbox consoles use AMD chips and the Xbox One X supports FreeSync technology. For gamers who also consider using a TV for gaming, check this article. Monitors make a better choice for gaming.

Does FreeSync cause ghosting? ›

Although FreeSync is a significant improvement over the V-Sync standard, it isn't a perfect technology. The most notable drawback of FreeSync is ghosting. This is when an object leaves behind a bit of its previous image position, causing a shadow-like image to appear.

Should I use HDR for gaming? ›

You can read even more about HDR in our dedicated explainer, but it essentially helps to expand the range of colour and contrast in an image or game, giving the image more depth and detail overall. This makes it ideal for games, as it makes the experience more immersive and potentially enjoyable for players.

Does turning off HDR increase FPS? ›

No, HDR does not lower your in-game FPS numbers on console, meaning you can still get those silky smooth frame rates that you are used to.

Should HDR be on or off gaming? ›

If the game renders well in HDR and your monitor is bright enough for the job, turn on HDR for gaming. Brightness is key to HDR performance, and that's more so the case in games. If the display is not bright enough, gaming could become a challenge.

How do I enable HDR on my gaming monitor? ›

Select the Start button, then enter settings. Select Settings > System > Display. If you have multiple displays connected to your PC, choose the HDR-capable display at the top. Turn on Use HDR.

Do I need to enable HDR in Windows to play games in HDR? ›

Not only do you need HDR turned on in Windows, but if you want to stream HDR content from a service like Netflix, you'll also need to purchase and install Microsoft's HEVC Video Extension(Opens in a new window) for $0.99 from the Store.

What is FreeSync 2 HDR? ›

FreeSync 2 handled screen tearing the same way but added support for HDR, meaning it could adapt refresh rates for HDR content in addition to regular (SDR) feeds. Note we use the past tense in this paragraph, that's because FreeSync 2 is now a legacy term and doesn't apply anymore.

Is FreeSync worse than G-Sync? ›

If you want low input lag and don't mind tearing, then the FreeSync standard is a good fit for you. On the other hand, if you're looking for smooth motions without tearing, and are okay with minor input lag, then G-Sync equipped monitors are a better choice.

Should FreeSync be on or off for gaming? ›

FreeSync can completely eliminate screen tearing and stuttering by providing you with a variable refresh rate if you have a compatible graphics card, so it's definitely worth it.

What is better for gaming G-Sync or FreeSync? ›

G-Sync has a better quality than FreeSync, also at low refresh rates. G-Sync doubles the number of Hertz when they reach below the minimum and avoids screen tearing this way. G-Sync prevents screen tearing and stuttering, while FreeSync only reduces it.

Is FreeSync good for competitive FPS? ›

No stuttering, no tearing, just gaming.

Whether you are a competitive or a casual gamer, AMD FreeSync™ technology1 enables a fluid, low latency gaming experience.

Does FreeSync hurt FPS? ›

no it doesn't. Adaptive sync feature only works when refresh rate is higher than frame rate and it drops refresh rate to match frame rate. In other words, it's the opposite approach and solution of Vsync.

Does FreeSync lose FPS? ›

If your monitor only supports 60FPS, but the game you are playing can generate 120 FPS, you are still only seeing 60 frames per second. FreeSync won't magically make your monitor display 120 frames per second, it if is capable of only displaying 60 frames per second.

What are the downsides of FreeSync? ›

There is no specific downside to using a FreeSync monitor with a Nvidia graphics card. It will work as a monitor normally would, but you might not be able to take advantage of the variable refresh rate of the monitor and Nvidia graphics card.

Should I leave vsync on with FreeSync? ›

FreeSync removes every single negative aspect of Vsync (input lag, stuttering) so there is no reason to disable it, unless the game in question performs poorly with Vsync enabled.

Is ghosting a monitor defect? ›

The reason can also be a faulty display cable or other devices interrupting the monitor when put near it. Next, some monitor settings may cause ghosting, like inverse ghosting or coronas. Also, monitor overclocking for higher refresh speeds may cause image ghosting too.

Does HDR effect refresh rate? ›

Many HDR monitors on the market use ISP panels with slower response times and lower refresh rates than TN panels traditionally used for gaming monitors, so look for an HDR monitor specifically designed for gaming. HDR monitors with 144Hz refresh rates and 4ms response times are available, but cost more.

Does FreeSync work with 4K? ›

Despite their lower price, FreeSync monitors provide a broad spectrum of other features to enhance your games, like 4K resolutions, high refresh rates, and HDR.

Does all GPU support HDR? ›

Let's start with the GPU. You can only use HDR if your video output device, which in this case is the graphics card or integrated graphics in your desktop or laptop, supports HDR. Luckily, all modern graphics solutions can handle HDR and have for years.

Does HDR need to be off for 120hz? ›

Note Native HDR games that are boosted to 120 FPS need to have HDR disabled if your resolution in video settings is set to less than 4K.

Should I turn on HDR all the time? ›

It is recommended that you only enable the HDR capability in the Display Settings when you are going to watch HDR content. When done viewing content, simply return the HDR toggle to the off position and the system will return to normal appearance.

Should I run HDR for gaming? ›

Brightness isn't the only benefit of HDR, of course, but games benefit from it more than other content, like movies. There's a good reason for this: games must be playable. Aside from a few genres, like horror or simulation, games don't spend much time in the dark.

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