For a long time LCD monitors only supported 50-60Hz refresh rates, worse than professional CRT monitors which reached 120Hz or even 240Hz. High refresh rates are required by some games and programs, but most importantly it’s for the user’s eyes. Theoretically a 24Hz refresh rate should be sufficient for the human eye to see a continuous moving picture, but in reality low refresh rates stress the eyes very much, so manufacturers decided that it was time to improve LCD technology to meet new requirements. Another interesting technology that’s related directly to the LCD’s refresh rate capabilities is the 3D (or stereoscopic) view, newly developed by nVidia (and others).
nVidia’s version of 3D view works with shutter glasses that divide frames between the two eyes, odd frames are seen only by one eye, even frames only by the other. This is why higher refresh rates are needed for LCDs, 100Hz can be divided in two, 50Hz is enough for one eye, but it looks like the industry standard will be 120Hz for 3D view, 60Hz for each eye.
The first thing people notice when they compare a 100Hz LCD monitor to a standard 60Hz one is that the image is clearer and motion is less blurry. This has a simple explanation, higher refresh rate means that the picture changes almost twice as fast as on older LCDs, so the blurry parts disappear more quickly. Besides this simple phenomenon developers are also working on algorithms to correct all shortcomings of compressed media. Some of the image quality improvement is also thanks to these new algorithms. The next step will be making movies with 100+ frames per second, to improve picture quality even more.
One of the best 100Hz LCD monitors is the 46” Samsung LED backlit LCD TV (LA46A950). It combines new technologies (LED backlighting and 100Hz) and large size to bring you very realistic motion picture in your home in FullHD (1920 x 1080) resolution.
It still has analog inputs alongside the three HDMI and one VGA ports, although digital TV service providers in the USA are beginning to disable analog outputs on their devices to prevent piracy.
Connected to a powerful PC this LED-backlit LCD TV offers a unique gaming (and multimedia) experience, making you forget other technologies like Eyefinity and surround view.
Small 100Hz LCD monitors don’t really make sense. Small screens look great even at 50-60Hz refresh rates, but let’s look at a 100Hz one anyway.
Believe it or not the smallest 100Hz LCD has a 32” diagonal. It incorporates 100Hz Motion Plus Samsung technology that corrects compressed video formats. It also has a WAN port for playing YouTube clips and watching Internet TV, and a USB 2.0 port for external storage devices. For small 100Hz LCD monitors we may have to wait a while, but they will have to come for sure, because many 3D stereoscopic technologies don’t work without a 100Hz LCD monitor.11
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