At CES 2020, AMD has announced it is revamping its FreeSync adaptive frame rate monitor technology in an effort to simplify the categorization of products. The new scheme features three distinct tiers that relate to the way monitors incorporate Freesync and associated functionality.
The timing is ripe, given Freesync has ballooned to nearly 1000 certified displays in the six years since launch. As more products flood the market and gamers look for ever-increasing performance, AMD is eager to introduce easy identifications to facilitate choosing the right products.
Through the new system, AMD will be able to guarantee a baseline performance for each tier allowing users to make more informed purchasing decisions.
AMD appears to have borrowed a leaf out of NVIDIA’s book, and it’s three-tier G-Sync system.
The three tiers are FreeSync, FreeSync Premium, and FreeSync Premium Pro. FreeSync is identical to the existing category and guarantees a monitor will offer tear-free, low flicker, and low latency display. This represents the industry baseline and means a monitor has been tested for FreeSync compatibility.
FreeSync Premium, a new addition, adds low framerate compensation (LFC), which guarantees smooth gameplay if a PC struggles to match a monitor’s minimum native refresh rate, and at least 120 Hz at minimum FHD 1080P resolution to the list of criteria. With the widespread adoption of 120 Hz, it makes sense to have a dedicated tier. AMD reports that over 300, or nearly a third of all FreeSync certified displays, fall into the FreeSync Premium tier.
FreeSync Premium Pro is a rebranding of the previous FreeSync 2 HDR certification. It offers all of the existing functions of the other two tiers, as well as HDR capabilities and game support. The HDR side is attained through luminance and broad color gamut testing to ensure a high-fidelity experience.
AMD says each monitor will go thread a strenuous and comprehensive certification process to ensure the monitors are up to scratch. With this, AMD hopes the FreeSync name will become synonymous with artifact-free, low latency gaming displays.