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VESA to Launch Adaptive Sync Compliance Program for Displays

When purchasing a gaming monitor, you will find models that support Nvidia’s G-Sync or AMD’s FreeSync adaptive sync technology, which aim to reduce or eliminate screen tearing and artifacts that occur when the GPU’s frame per second output and the monitor’s refresh rate are not aligned. Various standards can get a little confusing on top of all the other specs and acronym overloads that can happen when looking at gaming monitors.

The Video Electronics Standard Association (VESA) (via Tom’s Hardware) developed a new Adaptive-Sync Display Compliance Program (Adaptive-Sync Display Compliance Test Specification) for desktop and laptop monitors. Its purpose is to provide transparency to monitored buyers and facilitate the purchase decision.

VESA will present two levels of certification, they are: MediaSync Display and Adaptive-Sync Display. A MediaSync monitor is “designed for flicker-free media playback, supporting all international broadcast video formats”. While an AdaptiveSync Display “guarantees higher refresh rates and low latency, optimized for gaming, plus a lab-certified maximum refresh rate so you know your monitor’s full potential.”

The list of criteria for obtaining certification is understanding. VESA requires a monitor to meet or pass 50 different tests and benchmarks. This includes refresh rate, flicker, gray to gray response time, video frame drop, and video frame rate jitter.

For AdaptiveSync Display certification, the minimum refresh rate for Adaptive-Sync is 60 Hz, while the maximum rating is 144 Hz. These are just the minimums. Of course, monitors with higher refresh rates will still be certified.

Achieving MediaSync certification requires an Adaptive-Sync range of 48 Hz to at least 60 Hz. But it’s not all about the refresh rate. Media playback has its own challenges, particularly 3:2 pulldown and jitter, which are a result of varying bitrates and movie frames on a non-optimized screen. A MediaSync-certified monitor must be able to display 10 of the most popular frame rate standards and meet all minimum requirements.

(Image credit: VESA)

The list of VESA AdaptiveSync CTS partners is comprehensive and includes AMD, Nvidia and Intel. These three companies are the ones that provide the most important graphics solutions for games. So it’s possible that G-Sync and FreeSync certification will become a thing of the past. This will certainly benefit consumers. An open and widely supported standard means less confusion and more peace of mind.

For now, there are only two monitors that support the new specification: the LG UltraGear 27GP950 and the 27GP850. As the program is new, there will obviously be more monitors supporting the new specification in the future.

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