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How to Get 120Hz Refresh on Xbox Series X with a BenQ Monitor

BenQ
2020/11/13

Check out a quick troubleshoot for how to get 120Hz on Xbox Series X when connected to 1080p and 1440p PC gaming monitors. You’re just two steps away from 120fps! 

Get 120Hz on your Xbox Series X and PC gaming monitor in 1080p and 1440p with this quick guide

We recently looked at the newly-released Xbox Series X from Microsoft, and we think it’s an excellent fit for several BenQ monitors and PC monitors in general. Whether you have a 144Hz 1080p, 144Hz QHD, or 4K 60Hz monitor, with the ease of HDMI and a plethora of supported resolutions, the Xbox Series X offers great performance and support for your monitor specs. There are a few things to keep in mind, though, so let’s do a bit of troubleshooting, especially for those who want to get 120Hz support. 

Xbox Detects My Monitor as 4K and Greys Out 120Hz

Most monitor makers share firmware and processing elements across display models. Due to vagaries of computer engineering we won’t get into here, in some cases consoles such as the Xbox Series X pick up on firmware similarities and revert to the highest settings available. This doesn’t tend to happen with more PC-focused standards like DisplayPort. If you encounter such a situation, 1080p and 1440p monitors may show up as 2160p/4K monitors in the Xbox Series X settings app. But as you’re connecting via HDMI 2.0, the bandwidth isn’t enough for 4K 120Hz so the refresh rate is greyed out.

Solution’s super simple. Manually set the Xbox Series X to 1080p or 1440p for output resolution, then switch the refresh rate to 120Hz, which will no longer be greyed over. Just look at these two images, it’s easy: 

Step 1.

Step 2.

In Sound Mind

Somewhat of a surprise hit, this indie horror release came out of nowhere and managed to quickly gain a sizable following. Developed by Israel-based We Create Stuff, In Sound Mind is a first person horror exploration game with puzzle and shooting elements. The visuals aren’t groundbreaking, but rather creative and very surreal. Also very colorful, so you definitely need a display that supports that.

 

This isn’t a high refresh rate kind of game. On Xbox Series and PS5 it’s the usual 4K 60Hz, and that works fine on PC as well. So, on both the projector and monitor fronts the emphasis is on color vibrance and 4K. We think In Sound Mind is a sleeper hit from leftfield with a good story and nice balance of survival horror, gunplay, and puzzle solving. It’s not terribly scary, and may even be OK for a family gathering if your kids are teens (not for very young kids), since at its core lies a strong story more than anything else. 

Do I need Anything Special for 120Hz?

No, because HDMI 2.0 has more than enough bandwidth for 1080p/1440p at 120Hz. On the monitor side everything will be ready to go. Just use the HDMI cable that came with your Xbox Series X, as that’s an ultra high speed HDMI wire rated for 8K 60Hz. It can definitely do 120Hz in full HD and QHD. However, while these settings worked for us, several users have reported an additional step was needed in their case. In addition to manually selection 1440p and 120Hz, de-selecting Allow 4K in Video Modes was also necessary. Something to keep in mind in the event a setting remains greyed out for you. 

Will Every Game Run in 120Hz After I Do This?

No. Support for 120Hz refresh varies by title. It’s far less enforced than resolution on the Xbox Series X, and on consoles in general. Even resolution tends to be very variable on consoles as you know, with upscaling, dynamic adjustments, and checkerboarding a lot more common than on PC.

As for refresh rate, the list of games that offer a 120 frames per second mode is currently small but will grow. Keep in mind most titles will lower resolution and effect quality to maintain the higher refresh rate, so it’s up to you to decide if you like the tradeoff. We’ve experimented with games like The Falconeer and Dirt 5, and they now do support 120Hz on the new Xbox console. We can also fully confirm 120Hz multiplayer for Call of Duty Black Op Cold War on Xbox Series X, which not only works but is glorious.

Also, let us know if you have any concerns via support or BenQ online chat (click on the icon at your bottom right corner).

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