If you’re looking for the best TV, chances are you’ve fallen upon several acronyms in the process. This is likely to be below the HDMI 2.1 specification, which is VRR (Variable Refresh Rate), HFR (which is High Frame Rate, i.e. 120 Hz refresh rate at 4K resolution), plus another feature and reason for your visit. : ALM.
ALLM stands for Auto Low-Latency Mode and is part of a trio of HDMI 2.1 features (VRR, ALLM, HFR). But why is it useful? Well, if you’re a gamer looking for the best gaming TV, you’re going to want exactly such specifications and ALLM capable, which often (but not always) comes in the form of Game Mode.
What exactly does ALLM do?
TV technology has advanced a lot over the years. To make the images look ‘better’, manufacturers have introduced all kinds of processing techniques. From upscaling to de-noising, frame insertion and beyond, your TV’s processor is probably doing a lot more than you know or give it credit for.
But those techniques take time. Not a lot of time, mind, we’re talking milliseconds here, but enough time for some lag: i.e. what’s getting to the TV and what it’s actually showing you, the audience. It doesn’t play perfectly with high frame-rate games where graphics rendering effects are already happening at the source.
The point of ALLM is to turn off all this processing stuff and allow the source to be controlled – such as PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X – thus reducing the input lag, leading to a better visual experience. gets permission. Even the HDMI Consortium describes ALM as: (opens in new tab) “The ideal latency setting is automatically set to allow for smooth, lag-free and uninterrupted viewing and interactivity”.
Which TVs have the lowest input lag?
So it’s a more connected experience, as the game modes of the very best TVs, such as the LG C2 and Samsung QN95B, can hit sub-10ms input lag (we’d say sub-20ms is acceptable in such modes, but The singles stats in the U.S. are pretty extraordinary and hard to distinguish when playing, even if you’re an eSports pro).
The other great thing about ALLM is that, as the first letter of that acronym tells us, it’s automatic. So a compatible TV will detect and turn off Game Mode when it stops detecting a game signal, which means your game or movie viewing actions can take advantage of the various processing benefits it offers. You don’t need to worry.