The screen becomes darker whenever the fps drops to 60

argaman48argaman48 Level 1
edited August 18 in ZenFone 9

The colors on the screen very visibly become darker about a second after going in or out of anything when using the automatic refresh rate option, it could be when I'm going between apps, opening a new page or even when pulling down the notification panel, it happens all the time.

Video example: https://imgur.com/a/zVJPYyL

Now I think I found the source of the issue.

Enabling the "low brightness DC dimming" option in the display setting, which is only allowed when the phone is on 60fps, solves the issue completely by simply always being darker, but then again, you must force it to be on 60 fps.

So I tried going back to the automatic refresh rate, but now I monitored the fps, and the issue became very clear.

Whenever the fps drops to 60 the DC dimming is probably enabled automatically, even when disabled manually on the settings, causing the screen to become darker whenever it switches between 60 and other refresh rates, since this feature is not supported on higher ones.

Video example: https://imgur.com/a/JK9tAtR

Look at the color of the keyboard and notification panel when the fps switches from 90 to 60 and vice versa, note that it is more visible than it looks on the video

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Comments

  • CrimisCrimis Level 2

    +1 I experience the same issue

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    +1 I have exactly the same problem!

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    I took another look at the problem. If you keep the refresh rate constant, there is no automatic change in brightness. But you can see that the brightness at 60 and 120 Hz are the same, but at 90Hz there is a deviation. Therefore, it should not be related to DC dimming.

  • For me the brightness issue doesn't occur on all constant refresh rates.

    Moreover, when I enable the DC dimming on constant 60 fps I get the exact low brightness I get when it drops to 60

    So I am pretty confident it has something to do with that, at least in my case.

    But thanks for letting me know!

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    Try to use the quick settings toggle to change the refresh rate, you will see a difference (button color/brightness) when it's at 90Hz compared to 60/120Hz

  • It has nothing or at the very least extremely little to do with DC dimming. The problem is that due to the fact that in order to drive the pixels on the phone you push more voltage it messes with the color profile of your original calibration at 60hz. To combat this the manufacturer have to write a new calibration profiles to fix this. So at every single refreshrate you get a new profile applied to the screen. Since its a throwaway samsung screen, it only has calibration profiles from factory at 60hz and 120hz, the 90hz is something ASUS has added in as a feature but as you can see, they arent exacly great at calibrations, the Rog3 users are crying right now reading this message.

    Believe me when I say I know exacly what I'm talking about:


  • +1 with the same problem.

  • You are absolutely correct, and I'm sorry I miss understood your previous comment.

    Yes, the brightness on 60 and 120 are the same, and it probably has nothing to do with DC dimming.

    I for some reason can no longer edit my post, so I'll just say that despite what the other guy said about the ROG phone 3, the 90 seems to me the most bright, so I guess I'll stick with that until it gets hopefully fixed soon

  • Hi!

    I have now created a ticket to R&D so they can take a look at it :)

  • Thanks a lot! Great to see you devs actually care!

    Already giving me more reasons to recommend this phone to others :)

  • edited September 7

    Hello everyone!

    I just got a reply from R&D, this is what I got.

    • Because the screen flashes rate supported by each APP and interface is different, this is a normal reaction that the naked eye may see when switching, If the screen is set on locked 60hz this can fix the issue.

    • When the refresh rate is set to AUTO, if the refresh rate changes from 90hz to 60hz, which does not support DC dimming,
    • It must be set to a fixed refresh rate of 60hz since that's the only setting that supports DC dimming.

    This seems to be part of hardware limitations and nothing that can be adjusted by firmware.

  • You can absolutely fix this by firmware. I am literal proof that it's software based and fixable.


    its true that DC Dimming changes the screens color reproduction, but this can be fixed by recalibrating the screen with a proper profiles.

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    Hi @Mattias_ASUS,

    I'm sorry to say this, but it sounds like ignorance on the part of the devs. As I have already described, you can see the color changes not only when switching between 90Hz and 60Hz, but also when switching between 120Hz and 90Hz. Since the latter doesn't support DC dimming, that's definitely not (the only) cause.

    I'm totally with @Danishblunt here, it's probably due to incorrect/bad calibration at 90Hz.

  • The problem here is that the devs might even not be able to touch the calibration due to licensing issues. When you brand something as "calibrated by pixelworks" u cant just recalibrate yourself with an update without having 100% consent and approval from pixelworks, otherwise you break contract with pixelworks and have to pay big stacks.

    Also keep in mind, mattias is a nice guy who tries his best, hes active and does whatever he can. He is NOT a developer but asks the team responsible to communicate between the devs and the community mods. Its not his fault that he gets that answer. Its unreasonable to believe the devs respond here.

    From experience of being a rog3 user and seeing same complaints on zf8 id say its safe to say either they wont do anything cuz they arent allowed to or wont because they dont care, regardless of the reason, dont expect a fix. At this point a fix to the zf9 would trigger the rog 3 and zf8 users.

  • clavoclavo Level 1
    edited September 7

    I realize that Mattias is not a dev. My answer was absolutely not directed against him, just to sort that out.

    But doesn't change the fact that the devs either didn't understand the problem or don't care. I would accept the statement that they are not allowed to, even if I wouldn't be happy with it. But to say it's a "normal reaction", even though it could be fixed, is unacceptable.

    Edit: a simple alternative would be an auto mode which switches between 120Hz and 60Hz instead of 90Hz and 60Hz

  • That did exist on the Rog5 and the outrage is quite massive. People were complaining that the 90hz mode was gone.

    As for the statement, I simply mentioned it since many believe that the mods are somehow the devs. As for normal reaction, I'm not entirely sure what you mean with that. As stated tho, whatever the case may be the likelyhood of recalibrated 90hz mode is extremely slim.

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    Just cited the devs' response:

    "Because the screen flashes rate supported by each APP and interface is different, this is a normal reaction that the naked eye may see when switching"

    I can also well do without the 90Hz mode. However, I would like to have a properly functioning auto mode. As mentioned before, switching between 120Hz and 60Hz would fix the problem.

  • clavoclavo Level 1

    Just cited the devs' response:

    "Because the screen flashes rate supported by each APP and interface is different, this is a normal reaction that the naked eye may see when switching"

    I can also well do without the 90Hz mode. However, I would like to have a properly functioning auto mode. As mentioned before, switching between 120Hz and 60Hz would fix the problem.

  • Ahh sorry, also it isnt the devs response but the people in between the devs and the commuity team. Maybe there is a dev that will pick it up like I did on the Rog3.

  • Maybe it's an idea to offer "auto 90hz" and "auto 120hz" options like suggested here? https://zentalk.asus.com/en/discussion/63018/dynamic-refresh-rate

    Because the biggest problem seems to be mayor color and brightness differences at 90hz.

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