Sony Hoping to Minimize Frame Rate Dips with New Patent

Sony It seems that a special frame rate compensation feature is now in the works, according to the company’s latest patent listing. With high frame rate gaming becoming increasingly common, technologies like FreeSync have been developed to deal with screen tearing in a variety of ways, although the existence of multiple standards can complicate things for the average user.

It was only recently that Sony added support for variable refresh rate, or VRR, to the PlayStation 5 on all supported displays. This feature dynamically matches the television or monitor’s refresh rate to the console’s frame rate output, which can significantly reduce screen tearing and improve gameplay smoothness across the board. Is. Now, however, Sony is looking to further improve its frame rate technology stack.

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According to a new patent filing from Sony, the PlayStation 5’s VRR support could be due for an upgrade sometime down the line. One of the company’s latest patent applications describes a special frame rate compensation system that leverages scanout to smooth out any potential frame dips in taxing gameplay sections. This process involves scanning the frames rendered by the GPU and compensating for fluctuations from the desired target frame rate. And since the described process uses frame buffers to accomplish this task, it’s not all that different from Nvidia’s proprietary G-Sync monitor technology, for example.

In some instances, as the patent describes, the entire frame scanout and compensation process can be offloaded to some kind of dedicated coprocessor, which could tie in with Sony’s recent multi-GPU hardware patent. . Of course, the two lists describe different use cases and situations, but it’s unlikely that Sony’s engineers aren’t thinking ahead and wondering if these technical solutions can work together.

Tech-minded gamers will know that, as is the case with Sony’s recent browser-based cloud gaming patent, input latency may be an issue that Sony may need to address. That is, the scanout compensation system described is essentially nested between multiple framebuffer instances, meaning it can add more latency to a game that already struggles to run properly. are doing

That being said, rumors suggest that Sony could ship 30 million PS5s in 2023, and the company is unlikely to upgrade its flagship console with a poor frame compensation feature. If and when anything comes of this particular patent, chances are good that any potential delay concerns will already be ironed out. However, the obvious problem is that this may not happen for another year or two.

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