When searching for the right gaming TV for your new console, you’ve likely stumbled upon the term ALLM. The abbreviation stands for Auto Low Latency Mode and makes the gameplay more enjoyable. But is the feature really worth it? What is the advantage of ALLM? And can you use ALLM without HDMI 2.1? You can find answers to these questions here!
ALLM: Auto Low Latency Mode explained clearly
In addition to terms like VRR and HDMI 2.1, ALLM also appears more frequently when it comes to finding the right TV for your new console. The abbreviation stands for Auto low latency mode It describes a convenience function that should make playing the game more enjoyable.
Most TVs offer you a gaming mode in which input lag, i.e. the delay between input via a controller or mouse and keyboard and visual reaction, is kept as low as possible. For this, the complex functions of the TV are turned off, which should optimally display the video signal. When it comes to movies or TV, input lag isn’t really noticed as a disruptive factor because you don’t have to interact with the picture.
In a video game, it’s completely different. Even 100 to 200ms of delay can make fast-shooting games or action-packed jumpers virtually unplayable – Professional gamers: Insiders may find over 40ms input lag annoying. Normally, you have to manually turn Game Mode on and then off to reduce this lag.
ALLM does away with this manual tuning and organizes everything automatically. The TV detects when you connect an ALLM-enabled console and starts a game and automatically switches to faster game mode. Best of all, if you use your console as an entertainment hub—for streaming video services, for example—the TV will notice and won’t try to reduce latency.
Is ALLM only available with HDMI 2.1?
First of all: HDMI 2.1 is not an exact definition unfortunately, because an HDMI 2.1 connection does not have to be able to handle all possible functions of the standard. For example, it is enough that only eARC is supported to be able to advertise with HDMI 2.1. So a TV with HDMI 2.1 port doesn’t automatically bring all the features of modern games like [email protected] or VRR with.
On the other hand, not all of these functions necessarily depend on an HDMI 2.1 connection. VRR, for example, is also sometimes available with HDMI 2.0. Many ALLM TVs without sockets also support HDMI 2.1. LG A2 OLED TV is one such example.
So when you buy your new gaming TV, you should not (only) pay attention to equipment that has HDMI 2.1, but instead look specifically for one with ALLM.
What devices are ALLM compatible?
Your TV, console, and possibly your AV receiver or amplifier can all be involved in sending the signal from your console to your TV. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to ALLM’s compatibility with all devices – or take a simple detour. Here we explain everything to you on this topic.
These keys support the feature
You don’t have to own a console from the current PlayStation 5 vs. Xbox Series competition to use the handy Auto Low Latency mode. Thanks to ALLM, the Xbox One series of consoles allow you to seamlessly switch to gaming mode. If you have an Xbox One, be it S or X, in your living room, you can be sure that ALLM is on board. This is particularly attractive if you want to build a cheap setup that supports ALLM.
On the current generation of consoles, both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series support ALLM. Cheaper, purely digital versions of the two consoles could also come with the functionality. However, to be able to use this function, a compatible controller alone is not enough. The rest of your setup should also be correct.
TVs support this feature
In any case, the TV must also support ALLM, otherwise you still have to manually activate the game mode. As noted above, HDMI 2.1 is not equivalent to ALLM support. It will continue to appear across models like the TCL RC630 that don’t have an HDMI 2.1 port but still support ALLM. These models are your alternative if current TVs with all the relevant gaming features are still too expensive for you or if you don’t value 120Hz refresh rate, but your focus is still on gaming.
However, we still recommend a TV with all relevant gaming features. Here are features like VRR and games in [email protected] usual. If you want to get an overview of the right TVs, you should take a look at the gaming TVs we tested. Here we pay special attention to support.
You’ll notice that most of the well-established companies have been using ALLM as the new standard for several years. Sony TVs are out of the ordinary here and until recently there were still minor gaps in the equipment. However, this is no longer the case with current models such as the Sony A80L.
Possible drawbacks when using ALLM
You should be careful if your console is connected to your TV via an AV receiver or amplifier. In this case, the intermediate device must also support ALLM. While AV receivers are already very well placed in this field, in most cases you have to do without ALLM with amplifiers. Here it helps to connect the console directly to the TV and then pair it with the soundbar. eARC is the key word here. So you can still use the speakers – as well as the console audio – but still benefit from ALLM. You can find the best speakers in our leaderboard.
Bottom Line: A leading standard for gaming TVs
Once you get used to not having to switch between TV modes manually, there’s really no going back — especially since you can’t forget the switch either. ALLM provides the convenience that you definitely have to use with the current generation of consoles. Whether it should be a high-end TV designed for gaming or whether a cheaper device with ALLM is enough for you is entirely up to you.
“Unapologetic analyst. Infuriatingly humble coffee evangelist. Gamer. Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Student. Entrepreneur.”