I bought an LG OLED TV last year, thinking it was the best option for a living room TV at the time. When Nvidia unveiled what it calls Big Format Gaming Displays (BFGDs) at CES earlier this week, my heart sank. These 65-inch displays are essentially giant gaming monitors, complete with support for 4K, HDR, and even 120Hz refresh rates. Nvidia is working with Acer, Asus, and HP to create these displays, and they’re all using the same AU optronics panel.
I got a chance to take an early look at Nvidia’s BFGDs at CES this week, and it’s clear the key addition is Nvidia’s G-Sync technology. Nvidia spent some time demonstrating the aspects of the HDR support in the displays, but it was particularly evident when the company booted up Destiny 2 on a gaming PC with an Nvidia 1080 Ti inside. Destiny 2 has HDR support, and it’s a good example of that support combined with G-Sync and high frame rates.
Everything felt oddly smooth in a way that I’ve never seen on such a big display. I play PC games on a 27-inch G-Sync monitor, and most of the time I have a console connected up to my 55-inch OLED TV. I do occasionally connect a PC up to my TV, but this is the first time I’ve ever used G-Sync on what’s essentially a TV. G-Sync essentially synchronizes a display refresh rate to the GPU in your PC, helping to prevent the typical screen tearing, display stutter, and input lag that you might experience otherwise.
Nvidia isn’t calling these devices TVs, but if you’re a PC gamer then you could easily replace your TV with one of these and see the benefits for games or content and still use HDMI inputs for a set-top box or other devices. These displays even include Nvidia’s Shield platform, so you can access streaming services like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, and YouTube.
These are near-perfect displays if you do a lot of gaming and want a gaming TV. I’ve been spoiled by OLED, so I’m still hoping for a future BFGD that can support OLED and G-Sync. The HDR support looked impressed on Nvidia’s BFGDs, but you never get the true blacks on LCD panels so movies, TV shows, and even games won’t look as good as they do on OLED. The real benefit is that games are certainly going to feel a lot better on one of Nvidia’s BFGDs thanks to G-Sync and the high refresh rate support.
We still don’t know exactly how much these displays are going to cost, but it’s reasonable to assume these won’t be particularly affordable. Nvidia is marketing these towards gamers who have a spare room for their hobby, instead of TV replacements. You’ll be able to wall-mount these displays, and I suspect a lot of people will want to use these as TV replacements if the price is reasonable in future generations of the displays.