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The Black Guardian

Location: Paragon City, RI
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
In Reply To

Location: Saint Louis, MO
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 2,483
Subj: Re: What is refresh rate and response time on HDTVs?
Posted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 at 05:31:36 pm EST (Viewed 700 times)
Reply Subj: What is refresh rate and response time on HDTVs?
Posted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 at 02:25:31 pm EST (Viewed 790 times)

    this time last year, while at my girlfriend/fiancee's family, i was watching National Treasure 2 on Blu-ray on their (then) new 46" Samsung. there seemed to be this strange effect while watching it--something about the animation itself that i can't quite explain--sorta like there was no blur (maybe?), or that the animation was too quick for my eyes (again, i can't really explain it).

    anyway, just over Black Friday we bought a 40" Samsung ourselves. while the picture is as crisp as the picture we saw on the 46" Samsung, we didn't have the strange effect with the animation. i researched our HDTV and noticed that it was "60hz" (i believe their 46" was 120hz). would this have anything to do with the strange, inexplainable effect i noticed on their HDTV and not ours? is this effect the result of a difference in either refresh rate or response time?

You guessed correctly.

Refresh rate is the number of times per second that the picture refreshes itself. The higher the number, the faster the refresh (240 is better than 120 is better than 60). You also might see mention of "frame interpolation" or "frame repetition." These are methods used to increase the speed of the refresh. A "repetition" method repeats the previous frame at a faster rate. An "interpolation" actually creates an intermediary frame between two normal frames to give the appearance of smoother motion. This is all done to combat picture blurring during scenes with a lot of fast motion.

Response time is kind of the opposite, in that smaller is better (2 is better than 4 is better than 8). It shows the number of milliseconds (ms) between pixel refreshes. I think the average is 4ms. Some of the high-end sets are 2ms. However, be wary, because different manufacturers strangely use different seconds, and there's a lot of BS being bandied about in regards to response time.

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