Samsung TV 2018 Settings Guide: What to Enable, Disable and Tweak

How to Turn Off the Soap-Opera Effect on 2018 Samsung TVs

If you loved how the TV looked in the store but now find the picture off-putting — perhaps looking like an episode of Days of Our Lives — then you've fallen victim to the dreaded "soap-opera effect." Caused by the motion interpolation techniques designed to smooth fast-moving content with low frame rates, the result is rarely desirable. In Samsung TVs, this is called Auto Motion Plus, and it's easy to turn off.

1. Open Expert Settings. Like the slider controls for adjusting color and brightness, the settings for turning off Auto Motion Plus are found in the Picture Settings menu, under Expert Settings.

2. Go to the Auto Motion Plus menu. To turn off the soap-opera effect, disable or adjust the Auto Motion Plus feature. This is set to Auto by default, so either switch it to Off (to disable it entirely) or adjust the blur and judder reduction to your liking using the sliders in the menu below.

3. Dial down the Blur and Blur Reduction. If you chose to customize the Auto Motion Plus settings, you'll start with Blur Reduction and Judder Reduction.

Blur Reduction is designed to cut down on the smearing that happens when fast-moving objects move across the screen at low frame rates, boosting the frame rate by estimating what image would come in between two frames of content, and adding the interstitial frames. This is the biggest offender in the soap-opera effect, so pull back on this slider first.

Judder Reduction is the other offender. It's designed to reduce the choppiness that can result from showing 24-Hz content (such as a cinema film) on displays with higher frame rates. That introduces a slight stutter, which Judder Reduction aims to correct. As with Blur Reduction, if you're still seeing the soap-opera effect, dial this down or turn it off.

4. Turn off LED Clear Motion. The last trick up TV makers' sleeves for "fixing" your picture is to manipulate the backlight flicker. With this feature turned on, you'll greatly reduce the overall brightness of the display by blinking it on and off — a technique meant to simulate higher frame rates. When in doubt, this one is safe to disable.

Brian Westover

Brian Westover is currently Lead Analyst, PCs and Hardware at PCMag. Until recently, however, he was Senior Editor at Tom's Guide, where he led the site's TV coverage for several years, reviewing scores of sets and writing about everything from 8K to HDR to HDMI 2.1. He also put his computing knowledge to good use by reviewing many PCs and Mac devices, and also led our router and home networking coverage. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he wrote for TopTenReviews and PCMag.