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Hertz (Hz) Explained

by Retired: Senior Social Media Specialist on ‎03-18-2013 04:34 PM - edited on ‎11-02-2019 05:47 PM by (2,430 Views)

If you're shopping for a new HDTV, you've probably seen 60Hz, 120Hz, 240Hz or higher listed in description fields. But what do those numbers mean in terms of picture quality and performance?


For TVs, the number of Hz (hertz) measures the screen refresh rate, which is how many times per second a TV screen image is completely reconstructed. A TV with a 60Hz refresh rate means that the picture will be completely rebuilt 60 times in one second. Why is this important? Generally, the more the screen is refreshed, the smoother the images will appear to the human eye.


LED HDTVs offer 60Hz, 120Hz and just recently, 240Hz models. 


At the lower 60Hz level, something called motion blur can occur with rapid on-screen movement. The result is a somewhat blurry image when, for example, football players are running down the field. As you start to move into 120Hz and 240Hz territory, motion blur is significantly reduced.


With the advances in technology you might see in the product descriptions on HDTV's from different manufacturers a hertz rate without a HZ behind it. What's all that about? 


Samsung calls it Motion Rate, Sony calls it Motionflow, LG calls it TruMotion, Vizio calls it Clear Action, and Sharp calls it AquoMotion.


All of those manufacturers use the same panels that create 60Hz, 120Hz, or 240Hz refresh rates, but their processors and SMART features create stimulated rates that can be double or triple what the panel actually can create. That's why you see those high refresh rates that all you Plasma lovers adored. 


Most of the manufacturers create those rates in the same way, instead of rebuilding the screen for that many times per one second. A frozen frame that is a duplicate of what the last refresh would've been is inserted between the refreshes. This causes less motion blur to occur when you are watching a faster paced content.


Shop by Hertz: 60Hz | 120Hz | 240Hz