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Low lag 40"-46" TV or monitor

Discussion in 'Sim Racing Hardware' started by Richard Lovewell, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia


    I know this has been discussed before, but with new TVs and monitors coming out all the time I thought it was worth starting a bang-up-to-date thread.

    As with many similarly naive folks before me, I was not aware of the issue of screen lag or input lag before spunking my wad on a big telly (a 42" LG 42LD490). I've always suspected it has quite bad lag, and today I have (finally) got round to proving it, with the old stopwatch-on-2-screens technique.

    The upshot is, compared with a CRT monitor my TV lags by an atrocious 70-80ms.

    Too late to take it back for a refund (I've owned it some months now), so tempted to sell it and buy something with a better response.

    My questions are:

    - What is the best lag I should expect compared with a CRT? 10-20ms?

    - Anybody recently bought, or know about, a screen, whether TV or monitor, between 40-46", below, say, £600, that has a really impressively low lag, that they would recommend?

    (As it happens, the bad screen lag kind of forces me to be very smooth with the wheel, which in many ways is no bad thing, but the whole thing is still unsatisfactory. For table tennis on the Wii it's far beyond a joke.)

    BTW - spoke with a guy in PC World/Currys about the issue and, surprise surprise, he didn't have a f**king clue what I was talking about!

    Any help appreciated!

  2. There are no current computer monitors that large that I am aware of unless you want to spend thousands on a custom screen.
  3. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Thanks Jim
    Doesnt have to be a monitor, a TV would be better really, just with acceptable lag. I'm willing to accept a little lag, it seems inevitable with digital TVs, but just less obvious. Friends with 32" Panasonic and Sony respectively have inperceptable lag, which is one reason i blame for not being aware of the issue!

    I don't really want to drop down from 42" now if i can help it. Anyway, if anybody's recently bought a large TV I'd be intereted in your experience of it with driving games.
  4. Hiroshi Awazu

    Hiroshi Awazu
    Off Topic Moderator

    This is what i have but only use it occasionally for gaming for it's too big for everyday gaming. It feels like i'm getting carsick if i use it for too long. Our living room is small and i'm pretty sure i'm sitting too close to tv when i do drive on it. So it is primarily used to watch our shows and movies.

    LG 50" 1080p 600Hz Plasma HDTV (50PV400)
    This was done on my 50 inch. Game was being run with a HP Pavillion DV7 quad core laptop.​
    I thought i would just show you rather than explain because i'm no expert on Refresh Rates. My girlfriend and I drive on a 32 inch LCD TV on a regular basis. I don't get that motion sickness feeling with the smaller tv.​
    If there is lag, i don't notice it,my 32 looks the same when driving on it.
  5. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Thanks for your input Hiroshi.

    Well, I did a bit of research yesterday, and am now the proud owner of a Panasonic plasma screen: TX-P42ST30B. Just playing it you can see the lag is gone (or largely reduced), but have tested it this morning. Below is a screenshot, showing the 42" plasma Panasonic on top, and the 42" LG LCD below,

    Panasonic Plasma v LG LCD.jpg

    As you can see, that's nearly 7/100ths of a second difference, which sounds negligible but feels HUGE.

    Leaping to a premature conclusion having tested only 2 screens (but comments on AV forums etc. seem to back this up), it seems to me that LCD screens up to 32" are just fine, but above that lag becomes a factor and plasma is the way to go.

    Hope that helps someone before they go and spend money on a large LCD screen. Oh, and if anybody wants to buy a (slightly laggy :)) 42" LG LCD TV, let me know. (London - you will need to collect. Bit crap for games but brilliant for everything else!).
  6. Hiroshi Awazu

    Hiroshi Awazu
    Off Topic Moderator

    Hi just following up on your new purchase. How's it going with it? are you enjoying driving on new tv?
  7. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Thanks Hiroshi,

    Have to say, to paraphrase McDonalds, I'm loving it. I no longer have that 'just behind the action' sensation which is making driving so much more pleasing. I can't say it's reduced my hotlap times since (as I mentioned before) with the lag I was forced to steer very smoothly, but in races, especially online, it seems to have made life easier.

    The one small issue I had is that, for some reason, the optical out of the TV (HDMI from Xbox to TV, optical out from TV to 5.1 surround system) only seems to be outputting stereo, not surround, or at least my surround system is only recognising it as stereo. (Only tested with Xbox - i don't have a DVD/Blu-Ray player or anything else to test surround with, and surround sound broadcasts are few and far between, over Freeview anyway). My LG TV had no such issue.

    I resolved this cheaply this morning by purchasing a £7.99 cable from Game that uses the old video/sound out port from the Xbox which has an optical out port. I can now plug the optical cable straight from my Xbox into my 5.1 surround (and not plugging anything from the new plug/cable into the TV), with the video coming from HDMI as before. I thought I was going to have to hack the cable, as per the many online guides, but happily that Game cable doesn't block the HDMI port anyway so just had to plug in and go.

    The TV also happens to be a 3D one. I certainly didn't buy it for that purpose, as I regard 3D as a bit of a gimmick, but tried F1 2011 and Forza 4 in 2D-3D mode with the specs and it is quite effective, but won't be racing like it full time.

    So now I have a great, fast screen, surround sound....and a slightly sad looking wallet!
  8. This is actually a VERY important point, and one I hadn't considered -- I'll be buying a largeish flatscreen TV which will double as a gaming monitor on my PC to replace the 2x19" LCDs I have at the moment, much analysis of various TVs in John Lewis / Currys / Comet will be performed! I wonder if any other gaming fora have published these kinds of details?

    ... Would be interesting to see what panel types are the quickest (I think IPS are, but don't look as good) and how they compare against plasma.
  9. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Christopher - yes, it turned out to be a hugely important issue for certain types of gaming (racing and first person shooters expecially).

    I too had no idea it was an issue (and wasn't on friends' 32" HDTVs), so didn't research before I bought. And it seems most people who sell TVs for a living have NO IDEA what you are talking about with game lag / input lag.

    Once you explain it to them they will, of course, reassure you that ALL the TVs they sell have no such issue! I think they confuse input lag with refresh rate which is, I believe, entirely unrelated. And, TBH, you can't even assume that two TVs of the same size/technology/manufacturer etc. will have the same lag. The proof of the pudding is certainly in the eating.

    The best thing you can do, of course, is test it with the game you are going to be playing, but a lot of shops aren't happy for you to whip out your PC or console to connect it up. My online "research" mounted to little more than what somebody reckoned on a forum - this list here: http://shoryuken.com/forum/index.php?threads/sub-1-frame-hdtv-monitor-input-lag-database.145141/.

    Anyway, good luck - and glad you are hopefully able to avoid the expensive mistake I made!
  10. Yeah, it's tricky. I imagine some people on AVForums will be more clued up; could be a combo of pixel rise/fall times combined with the render engine inside the tellybox doing the upscaling.

    One important question -- did you ensure that you had all image processing disabled on the old TV? For example, on my Dad's 37" LCD Samsung, you can make it show a pixel-accurate 1080p image if you feed it 1920x1080 through HDMI... But you MUST be plugged into HDMI3 on the rear panel, and set the device type to DVI or PC (it has a small DVI-PC indicator next to it).

    The other HDMI ports don't allow you to disable the image processing even if you change the input type to DVI. Very frustrating if you have more than one pixel-accurate device you want to output, the image processing is truly horrible (ghosting of text, smearing of pictures, etc). I imagine it also adds some ms of lag too.

    As the highstreet stores mostly run their tellies off a central media service provided by the manufacturer which runs rolling demos of super-contrasty, super-vivid footage... No, I imagine they wouldn't take too kindly to you plugging your laptop in and surfing 4chan. ;-) However, my Dad bought his telly from John Lewis, and he was very careful about seeing how the TVs performed with SD and Freeview-quality footage (because he perversely doesn't have Sky HD). I've also found John Lewis to be quite accommodating; I think I could probably get them to accept my little netbook's HDMI output into their splitter if I showed them the footage and explained what I was doing beforehand.

    That thousands of a second stopwatch you used is cool, what's the app?
  11. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

  12. Cheers, I went off and found the stopwatch Flash file, very useful - will duly test when I have Dad's flatscreen in my mucky paws.

    Sorry for casting the doubt, I'm sure you didn't waste the money ;) instead, consider it as a superior investment ... and a proer screen.
  13. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Relieved to say same delay on all ports on LG, labelled as DVI or PC.

    Prefer new screen anyway - some seriously dark blacks.

    Anyway, I can sleep easily now!
  14. Ever since I read about the response time on a post a while back that's all I look first when looking around the web at monitors and tv's. I can't remember right now but there where some tv's out claiming 1ms response time. For now and some time I'll be stuck with my old 62" rear projection tv, I still have one more lightbulb to go, and I have no idea what's the response time on that monster.
  15. I have a Panasonic 42" lcd tv as my pc monitor which I purchased in the beginning of 2011 and I don't feel like there's an input lag from playing games and racing sims. When I bought this tv I couldn't find info about response time in this model but have read in forums that the newer lcd tvs are much improved from the past. The tv has 5 year warranty and no other brand like panasonic offers this extended period. The only thing I decided not to buy is a plasma tv which has a short warranty period and suffers from burn in faster than the lcd ones. Burn in will be faster on a tv for pc because usually the image isn't in motion like web browsers and such...
  16. Richard Lovewell

    Richard Lovewell
    @ Simberia @Simberia

    Ramon - I think the 1ms response on digital TVs regards a different matter to screen lag; it seems to be about how quickly it displays the image from some other point, but excludes the time to digitally process the picture. I think my new TV claims a 1ms response, but it certainly isn't only 1ms slower than a CRT screen. I guess reckon your rear projector screen should be as fast as a CRT if its not based on digital technology, so should be as fast and big as anything around. Hope your bulbs last well!

    Sergey - yes, Panasonic do seem to be impressive in all respects, from image quality to input lag. I'd agree with you on burn in being a consideration for a PC screen as you're using it (perhaps I'' take my 42" LG into the office for my desk - see what reaction I'd get from colleagues, lol!), but for F1 + Forza on the Xbox, and a little bit of Wii it's not such an issue with my setup.

    Biggest bonus is it has slightly improved my laptimes in F1 2011, which I was really not expecting.
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Being able to see the track better helps when it comes to lap times. You are able to hit your brake points, turn in's and exit points better. This is part of the reason that many are starting to get setup with triple screens.
  18. Craig Stevenson

    Craig Stevenson
    Premium Member

    I've just bought a Panasonic TX-L37DT30B, it got some very good reviews for gaming and I'm very impressed with it. It does seem quite laggy in 3D Mode though with my GTX580, this is probably down to having to use 24Hz @ 1920x1080 although it will do 60Hz at 720.
  19. 24Hz??? Are you for real on that? that isn't even enough to give smooth playback of movies on TV
  20. Craig Stevenson

    Craig Stevenson
    Premium Member

    Yeah if I start a game that is set to 1920x1200x60 I get a warning telling me it can't run in 3D due to a limitation of HDMI V1.4 and I need to change to 1920x1080x24 or 1280x720x60 (IIRC) which will enable 3D. I haven't yet figured out if this is a limitation of the TV, HDMI cable (all my cables are new V1.4's), GTX580 or the nVidia 3DTV Play software. The TV will do 120Hz and is pretty awesome in every other way. I'm sure I read somewhere that it is down to 3DTV Play and nVidia are working on it..............but that may just be wishfull thinking :oops:

    I only have about 6 days left of the 3DTV Trial, so not long left to experiment, I'm not forking out to buy it as I may well end up buying an Asus 3D monitor and nVidia 3D Vision 2 kit, if you buy the nVidia kit you can Activate the 3DTV Play for free.