Auto Motion Plus™ is a type of television technology designed to increase picture sharpness and overall image quality. It works by essentially adding frames and images to broadcasts and films in order to slow down the rate at which they are translated by home television sets. In some cases this can make movement on the screen seem clearer, sharper, and more precise. The technology is owned by the Samsung Corporation, and typically appears only on devices made by that brand. The feature comes installed on many Samsung televisions, and users can usually switch between “normal” broadcasts and Auto Motion Plus™ viewings with the push of a button.
How It Works
The technology focuses on the frames per second that are present in any given broadcast or recording. A lot of this comes down to the basic differences in how films and shows are recorded and how television sets are able to translate those images into something that makes sense to the viewer. The main currency in the discussion is “frames per second,” which is basically how many still images, or “frames,” the camera combines in order to get a truly moving picture.
Theatrical films are usually shot using 24 frames per second, and cinematographers typically spend a lot of time and energy editing the final products to make sure that every frame is recorded and positioned in exactly the right way. Most modern television sets are designed to display 30 frames per second, though. This means that, in order to show movies or films on a home television, the TV must usually repeat a portion of the image from the film in order to make it compatible. This can lead to image clarity issues. Resolving these issues is one of the biggest goals of Samsung’s motion technology.
Samsung models with Auto Motion Plus™ do not repeat frames in the same manner as traditional televisions. Instead, the software creates six of its own unique frames in order to get to 30. This is a complicated process, but in essence the software estimates or guesses where objects should be located on the screen at a specific point in time based on their locations in related frames. It then regenerates those objects to help the motion on the screen look smoother and more seamless. Sometimes adding objects is relatively simple, as is the case with a spinning tire or windmill, but things tend to get more complicated in scenes focused primarily on people and personal interactions.
The technology is usually one that a user can switch on and off so that it’s only working on specific shows or films. Most specialists recommend that the feature be switched on for high-definition television (HDTV) programs or Blu-Ray® features, but off for normal broadcasts and basic or older films. Auto Motion™ programming tends to offer the most noticeable changes for high-quality imaging, and in most cases it will offer little to no benefit for other types of display.
Users are often able to toggle between low, medium, and high settings for the technology using a remote control that comes with equipped televisions, though sometimes the units themselves also have switches that can be adjusted manually. The choice between the three settings is largely a matter of personal preference, though the company does offer some general guidelines for use. In general, they say, the faster the action on screen, the more viewers will benefit from the highest settings. Sports and video games in particular may look much sharper with Auto Motion Plus™ in full force due to the high speed associated with these types of images. The “low” and “medium” settings are usually more appropriate for character or person-based screen time.
Pros and Cons
One of the biggest reasons people like this technology is that it has the ability to present a more life-like picture. The edges of each object are very clearly defined, and images move smoothly without interruption. Picture quality is so clear with this feature that it is often compared to viewing unedited film or images from a home video camera — they are sometimes described as being raw and true to life.
These same characteristics can be unwanted, too, though, depending on the context. Not all films are enhanced by the “live action effect” that this technology so often brings, and some people argue that it actually takes away something of the art of cinematography and film editing, at least in feature films. The feature may also reduce the level of contrast between dark and light colors on the screen, which can change the way certain shapes or characters are perceived.