VESA’s ClearMR is a new standard for display motion performance

The Video Electronics Standards Associated (VESA) wants to make buying your next monitor or TV easier, and it’s doing so by introducing a new standard. I know what you’re thinking: between DisplayPort, DisplayHDR and AdaptiveSync, aren’t there already more VESA standards than anyone can keep track of? Well, yes, but the organization’s newest certification program may help demystify one of the more opaque aspects of buying a new display: motion clarity performance.

You probably have a good sense of the problem if you recently spent time researching your next monitor or TV purchase. Using gaming monitors as an example, many manufacturers claim their products feature 1ms gray-to-gray (GtG) pixel response times, yet they don’t handle motion blur to the same standard. One of the reasons for that is that manufacturers cherry-pick GtG results that make their monitors look better on paper.

A chart showing the current ClearMR tiers.


Right now, one of the best ways to find a monitor or TV that won’t look blurry when gaming and watching video is to turn to outlets like Rtings and Hardware Unboxed. They’ve developed comprehensive testing methodologies to help you cut through all the marketing. You can also rest assured they probably have the Blur Busters UFO test set as their homepage.

In the future, the process may be less time-consuming thanks to VESA’s new Clear Motion Ratio Compliance Test Specification, or ClearMR for short. The standard introduces a tiered ranking system designed to communicate the ratio of clear to blurry pixels a screen will produce when displaying a fast-moving image. For instance, a monitor with a ClearMR 7000 badge would have a “Clear Motion Ratio” range of 65 to 75 times more clear pixels than blurry ones. According to VESA, there’s a “visually distinguishable change in clarity” between tiers, and the standard will encompass a variety of consumer displays, including those you can find on laptops and tablets.

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“It is our goal that ClearMR will replace existing metrics that are used in advertisements for blur-based metrics that are solely based on time, like MPRT [motion picture response time],” Dale Stolitzka, senior principal researcher at Samsung Display and lead contributor to ClearMR, told ArsTechnica. “I would be perfectly happy if I didn’t see that in advertisements anymore.”

Interestingly, when certifying displays that feature backlight strobing or black frame insertion, VESA will disable those features to “prevent unfair comparisons” with products that do not include them. The organization also plans to account for overdrive by limiting overshoot to under 20 percent. With today’s announcement, ClearMR also only applies to SDR displays, but the standard will eventually evolve to include HDR screens too.

The first batch of ClearMR-certified products comprises one HP monitor and 15 LG screens, including the 32GQ850 and 27GP850.