2021-06-19

Xbox’s Dolby Vision gaming may be limited to 60Hz on many HDMI 2.1 TVs

Microsoft has – again – started testing Dolby Vision gaming on Xbox Series X/S. A new status screen reveals that your HDMI 2.1-enabled TV may not be compatible with the console’s 4K 120Hz Dolby Vision output.    

Dolby Vision Xbox gaming

After having enabled Dolby Vision for gaming in March and then pulling the feature, Microsoft has once again enabled it for Xbox ‘insiders’; owners who have signed up to test alpha/beta software. These users are seeing a new status screen to confirm if the connected TV supports Dolby Vision at 4K 60Hz and 4K 120Hz, respectively, as reported by Forbes. Xbox Series X can already output 4K 120Hz with HDR10, the base HDR format, and this is supported by HDMI 2.1-enabled TVs. As noted in FlatpanelsHD’s Xbox Series X review last year, Dolby Vision output falls back on 60Hz output even on today's most advanced TVs. In fact, no TVs have been confirmed to support Dolby Vision at 120Hz. Furthermore, first-generation Dolby Vision TVs from LG and Vizio do not support Dolby Vision even at 60Hz – they are limited to 30Hz. These TVs will not support Xbox's Dolby Vision gaming at all.

Xbox's Dolby Vision gaming may be limited to 60Hz on many HDMI 2.1 TVs

Can it be sorted out?

Unless TV makers can sort out the situation through a firmware update, Xbox owners with an HDMI 2.1-enabled TV will have to pick between 4K120 HDR10 or 4K60 Dolby Vision for gaming. HDR10 should still provide an excellent visual experience, but it is a limitation that most TV makers have remained quiet about. LG has provided FlatpanelsHD with the following statement regarding its 2021 OLED models (LG A1 excluded). - "The Dolby Vision feature is currently in testing and LG is working closely with its partners to support functionality (including 4K @120Hz) on its 2021 OLEDs soon, and more details about models will be shared soon," said LG Korea. LG did not rule out that other and earlier TV models with HDMI 2.1 could receive an update but the company declined to provide further details at this point, saying that compatibility testing is ongoing. Sony is currently giving owners of its HDMI 2.1-enabled TVs a choice between 4K120 or Dolby Vision (60Hz). Sony has yet to respond to FlatpanelsHD’s questions about its plans for 120Hz Dolby Vision support. FlatpanelsHD has also contacted other TV manufacturers and will provide updates if we hear back. Microsoft has not said when will roll out Dolby Vision gaming support to Xbox Series X. No games have been confirmed either. - Source: Microsoft, Forbes