Samsung TV Game Mode: Why You Need to Enable It

Samsung TV Game Mode: Why You Need to Enable It

I’ve enjoyed playing some popular PS5 games on my Samsung Neo QLED Smart TV for over a year and have optimized the TV for the best performance for gaming.

Moreover, I’ve tried testing the Samsung TV game mode on multiple games including Chivalry 2, Fifa, and God of War: Ragnarok.

As an avid gamer, I’m mostly active on community forums where I came across folks discussing reduced resolution when the game mode is enabled on Smart TVs.

However, I’ve not noticed any resolution drop at all while playing games with the Samsung TV Game Mode enabled.

Here’s how the Game Mode optimizes the TV performance while gaming and how to adjust TV settings for the best Ultra HD gaming on Samsung Smart TVs.

Samsung TV Game Mode disables the post-processing effects for images to highly reduce input lag for a smoother gaming experience. The game mode automatically activates when you connect a gaming console such as Xbox or PlayStation to the TV via an HDMI port.

How Does The Samsung TV Game Mode Works?
Samsung Smart TVs use advanced image processing technologies to deliver clearer, highly detailed, and more natural-looking images.

Some major image processing technologies include motion optimizer, contrast enhancer, detail enhancer, and color optimizer.

These technologies work collectively to produce the best picture quality on Samsung Smart TVs.

The motion optimizer and contrast enhancer eliminate noise even in moving pictures and increase the contrast ratio of the TV.

Additionally, the detail enhancer and color optimizer sharpen pictures to enhance their details and provide natural and vibrant colors to deliver a more-realistic viewing experience.

Advanced features such as Dynamic Mode, Film Mode, and Natural Mode enable the TV to adapt to varied environments while maintaining the overall picture quality.

These features highly enhance the viewing experience when you’re watching content through a streaming device like Roku or Amazon Fire TV Stick on the TV.

While these post-processing effects improve the overall picture quality, they also add a delay. This delay isn’t noticeable while watching media content like movies or shows on the TV.

However, the delay caused due to image processing can create input lag and make your games feel unresponsive.

An input lag is defined as the delay it takes between pressing a button and noticing the result on your TV or monitor screen while gaming.

Most first-person shooters or fighting games require perfect timing to shoot the target or dodge an enemy attack.

Even a few milliseconds delay can highly affect your performance, especially in competitive multiplayer games such as Call of Duty or Fifa that require split-second response times.

The post-processing effects need to be disabled to optimize a Samsung Smart TV for gaming. The Game Mode does exactly that.

When enabled, the game mode turns off all post-processing effects to reduce input lag and make the TV more responsive.

This is how the game mode helps get the best out of gaming via consoles on your Samsung Smart TV.

Enable Game Mode On Various Samsung Smart TVs
The game mode automatically activates when you connect a game console such as PlayStation, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch to your Samsung TV.

However, if you want to check if the game mode is turned on or try disabling it, the option is available in the TV settings.

Based on your model year, the location of the Game Mode in the TV Settings may vary.
For 2023 Model TVs
Press the Home button on your TV remote control
Select Settings and navigate to All Settings
Go to Connection and select Game Mode Settings
You can turn on the Game Mode or change the Game Mode Settings based on your preferences
For 2022 Model TVs
Press the Home button on your TV remote and select Menu
Navigate to Settings and go to All Settings
Go to Connection > Game Mode Settings
Select Game Mode to turn the feature On or Off
You can also adjust the Game Mode Settings in this menu
For 2020-2021 Model TVs
Press the Home button on your remote and select Settings
Navigate down to General and select External Device Manager
Now, choose Game Mode Settings
You can select the Game Mode option to turn it on or off
Additionally, you can change settings for Surround Sound and Dynamic Black Equalizer
You can also try changing the Game Motion Plus Settings based on your choice for optimized gameplay.
For 2017-2019 Model TVs
Press the Home button on the TV remote and select Settings
Go to General and select External Device Manager
Go to Game Mode Settings and turn the feature On/Off
For 2016 TVs
Go to Settings > Picture > Special Viewing Mode > Game Mode
For 2015 TVs
Go to Menu > System > General > Game Mode
For 2014 TVs
Go to System > General > Game Mode

The Game Mode is available only when you’ve connected a gaming console to the TV through the appropriate HDMI port. If you’re using an incorrect port, the Game Mode Settings may not be available.
If you want to use a different external device on the same HDMI port, disconnect the game console and ensure that you turn off the Game Mode from the TV settings.
When the Game Mode is enabled, the Picture Mode and Sound Mode will automatically switch to Game Mode

Best Settings For Ultra HD Gaming On Your Samsung Smart TV
The game mode activates automatically on most Samsung Smart TVs after you connect a game console to the correct HDMI port and switch to the desired input.

However, there are several settings and tips to ensure that you get the best out of 4K gaming on the latest consoles including the PS5 and Xbox Series X.

Ensure that the Game Mode Is Enabled
Based on your Samsung TV model year, go to the TV settings and ensure that the Game Mode is enabled.

You can also try tweaking the Game Mode Settings and optimizing them based on your preferences.

Enable Input Signal Plus
Activating Input Signal Plus ensures that you get the best picture settings while gaming.

The Input Signal Plus setting enhances the picture quality for colors next to each other on the TV screen.

Here’s how to enable Input Signal Plus on Samsung Smart TVs:
Press the Home button on your TV remote and go to Settings
Select General and navigate to External Device Manager
Scroll down and select Input Signal Plus
Activate it for your desired HDMI port


The location for the Input Signal Plus setting may vary based on your TV model or manufacturing year. Refer to the TV manual for precise instructions.
For select Samsung TV models, this setting is also called HDMI UHD Color
Make sure that you select the correct HDMI input (where the game console is connected) while activating Input Signal Plus.
Enable the HDR+ Mode If Available
The High Dynamic Range Mode displays a lot more color shades than any normal display highly enhancing the viewing and gaming experience on your TV.

The HDR+ Mode works best with HDR-supported game consoles such as PS4, PS5, Xbox Series S, Xbox Series X, etc.

Follow these instructions to enable HDR+ on your TV:
Press the Home button on your TV remote
Open Settings and navigate to Picture
Now, select Expert Settings
Find the HDR+ Mode and enable it

For select Samsung TVs:
Press the Home button and navigate to Settings
Select Picture and go to Special Viewing Mode
Find the HDR+ Mode in the menu and activate

Note that the HDR+ Mode is automatically activated while watching HDR content.

However, no effects of this setting will be reflected in the Standard Dynamic Range (SDR) content.

Moreover, the HDR+ Mode is available on select Samsung TVs. Check the TV Settings or user manual to confirm if your model supports HDR content.
Adjust Picture Settings Based On Your Preferences
The picture settings highly vary based on what looks the best for you.

To adjust the picture settings:
Press the Home button on your TV remote and go to Settings
Select Picture and navigate through different picture settings
You can change the Picture Mode and Picture Size Settings
Additionally, in the Expert Settings, you can also find settings for the Brightness, Contrast, Sharpness, and Backlight

Note that Picture Mode will not be available if the HDR+ Mode is already activated.
Use the HDMI 2.1 Input To Connect Your Game Console
To get the best out of gaming on your Samsung Smart TV, ensure that you connect your game console to the HDMI 2.1 input on the TV.

Most Samsung Smart TVs launched after 2019 support HDMI 2.1. Search for a port labeled “HDMI 2.1” or “4K@120Hz” at the back of your TV.

The HDMI 2.1 support enables 4K gaming at higher frame rates that go up to 120 frames per second.

Additionally, it unlocks advanced features such as Variable Refresh Rate, Auto Low Latency Mode, Fixed Rate Link, etc. that can truly transform your gameplay.

Note: You’ll require a game console that supports HDMI 2.1 with a certified HDMI 2.1 cable to use these advanced features while gaming on your Samsung TV.

Get Your Samsung Smart TV Game-Ready
The optimized settings for gaming on a Samsung Smart TV can change depending on your choice of games and personal preferences.

You can try our recommended settings and test your TV performance and picture quality while playing your favorite game.

Keep the picture mode as movie and adjust the brightness and contrast in the range of 50-60. Set the Backlight at 10 and full array local dimming as standard.

Try keeping the color tone warm and leave all in-game video settings including HDR settings as default.

Frequently Asked Questions
Does Samsung TV game mode affect the picture quality?
Samsung TV game mode is designed to improve gaming performance by reducing input lag, making gameplay more responsive and smoother. It disables some image processing features that can introduce input lag, such as motion smoothing and other image enhancements. However, enabling game mode can lead to a slight decrease in picture quality, as some of the image processing features are disabled. However, the reduction in input lag generally outweighs any slight decrease in picture quality.
Does Game Mode work with streaming apps on Samsung TVs?
The game mode activates only when you connect a game console such as PlayStation or Xbox to the correct HDMI port. If the gaming console is not connected, you may not be able to enable the game mode. While you can go to the TV settings and check if the game mode is enabled while the game console is connected, it may lead to a slightly lower picture quality that may not be ideal for streaming movies or shows as the image processing features are disabled.
Can I switch inputs while Game Mode is enabled on my Samsung TV?
As the Game Mode is enabled automatically when a game console is connected to the TV, you may switch inputs as required. However, to confirm if the game mode is enabled or not, go to TV Settings and find the game mode settings menu.

How to customize Game Mode Settings on my Samsung TV?
To customize game mode settings on your Samsung Smart TV, press the Home button on the TV remote. Go to All Settings and navigate to Connection. Find the Game Mode Settings and customize them for a personalized and enhanced gaming experience. These settings include options such as blur reduction, judder reduction, LED clear motion, etc. The Game Mode Settings location may vary based on the launch year of your TV.

About the author

Maria Chan, or MC, as we call her, is the genius girl-boss who gave up on her cushy silicon-valley job to grind it out with us. Her undying pursuit of wanting Zeebox to the best makes it very clear that she has no interest in running a generic tech-site.

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