Guide:ENB

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Contents

A comprehensive guide for properly installing and editing ENBs for n00bs and gurus alike -- by the S.T.E.P. Team and contributing members

GUIDE FORUM THREAD
SUPPORT FORUM
POST-PROCESSOR SUGGESTIONS



Introduction

'ENB' is short for 'ENBSeries', which is a general post-processing 'engine' with variants applicable to many games, including Skyrim. This Guide will help newcomers become familiar with the basics of installing and using ENBSeries and will also provide answers to many questions applicable to all users from those wishing to quickly install and configure ENBoost or full-blown ENB as well as advanced users and ENB preset developers withing to reference more of the technical or tangential information. The main guide is written to address novice and advanced users alike with 'quickstart' in mind. Links to more information and ancillary guides are included herein.

What is ENB?

ENBSeries (ENB) is a post processor modification (mod) created and maintained by Boris Voronstov. What this means is that ENB adds digital enhancements to Skyrim (and other games) purely by modifying perceived video output after (or 'post') the decoding process of game assets into the initial graphical result. Initial post-processing is done by the Skyrim shader program(s), and ENB builds upon this initial image post processing using more advanced techniques that the game shader engine is incapable of implementing. This is accomplished via a custom API in the form of a dynamic link library (DLL) to the game shader engine. In addition to advanced shader post processing, ENB also implements a memory manager, 'ENBoost', that enhances the efficiency of video memory management, resulting in increased performance in addition to the increased quality bestowed by the post-processing engine.

ENBoost

What is ENBoost?

ENBoost is a memory management feature added to ENBSeries to address the crashes and freezes relating to the well-known system memory (RAM) limit of 32-bit applications like Skyrim. It is one major part of a multi-part solution STEP recommends for dealing with this limitation (see 2.C. Extenders section of the STEP Guide). ENBoost is included in the ENBSeries graphics modification and is now incorporated into all contemporary ENB presets. ENBoost can also be implemented as a stand-alone video-graphics memory manager for Skyrim without implementing any ENB post-processing effects.

In order to understand how ENBoost works, it is important to first know how Skyrim manages memory. The main Skyrim game executable, TESV.exe, is a 32-bit Large-Address-Aware (LAA) application. This means that although TESV.exe can only use a maximum of 2GB of system RAM on 32-bit Windows systems, it can access up to about 3.1GB of system RAM (4GB - about 900MB of system resources) on 64-bit systems. To drive your video card in displaying Skyrim's 3D rendered graphics, TESV.exe must store object geometry (the shapes of things in the game) and texture data cached in its memory space, which is then copied to your video card's VRAM to display. The memory limit is not a problem with an unmodded Skyrim because the cached data is dynamically loaded and unloaded to make room for new data as its needed, and it almost never completely fills up all of TESV.exe's available RAM. However, when mods are added to Skyrim, the memory needed for cached data is significantly increased, and the more mods that are used - especially higher resolution texture mods - the higher the chance that TESV.exe will run out of memory. When this happens, either the program crashes, or some objects don't get rendered. ENBoost overcomes this memory limitation by ...

  1. using available VRAM on your video card and
  2. using system RAM outside of TESV.exe for dynamically allocated cache data.

The second method is accomplished by running an executable named enbhost.exe which has up to another 4GB of memory available for ENBSeries to manage. The effectiveness and performance of ENBoost is determined by a number of factors, such as size of system RAM / VRAM, manufacturer of video card, version of Windows OS, CPU, and even motherboard memory channel speed. Fortunately, through the evolution of ENBSeries over time, a number of ENBoost user-settings have been added to account for the enormous variety of user's PC system configurations.

ENBoost Installation

ENBoost Quickstart Instructions

Info-Logo.png       Notice:ENBoost is not ENB per se. Rather, ENBoost stand-alone configuration implements only the memory-management features of ENB without the lighting enahncemets that most people associate with ENB. Thus, ENBoost is an essential extension that STEP recommends for ALL users, even those that are not running ENB 'proper'.

ENB 'Proper' (in all its glory)

As described in the Introduction, ENBSeries (aka 'ENB) encompasses all of the features of ENB, including ENBoost as well as all post-processing features of ENB.

ENBSeries v0.236 vs v0.266+
The latest versions of ENBSeries available to download are v0.236, v0.262, and 0.266. Most ENB Presets that are still in active development have been updated to utilize one of these versions, or have stated that they are compatible with them. The recommendations below are current for at least one of these versions. So, what's the difference?

There have been several improvements between the two releases. From v0.236 to v0.266 the following have been added:

  • Parallax for terrain
  • Muddiness control of water
  • Cloud shadows
  • Volumetric rays
  • Mist effect
  • Supersampling for ambient occlusion
  • Edge AA on loading screens
  • Optimization of ambient occlusion
  • Enhanced blending of certain effects
  • Lighting bug fixes
  • Other performance optimizations
  • Other bug fixes

ENB Installation

This is a basic quickstart for setting up ENB; however, most ENB presets include installers or detailed installation instructions. These instructions provide assistance where certain ENB presets may be lacking. Always defer to the preset instructions first, and use these instructions to fill in the blanks if necessary.

  1. Download the latest ENB binary (NOTE: The links at the bottom of the page list all the binaries. Choose the latest file (usually the one at the top of the list), then on the next page click the Down1.gif button located at the bottom of the page.)
  2. Select and download a preset from Nexus (or see some of our suggested suggested presets).
  3. If applicable, download the ENB Helper, and extract enbhelper.dll into ./skyrim/enbseries/, creating the directory if necessary. (NOTE: the helper file is required by ENB v0.250+ and is normally provided with the preset.)
  4. Extract d3d9.dll and enbhost.exe from the "WrapperVersion" folder inside the ENB archive (enbseries_skyrim_v0xxx.zip) into ./skyrim/. (NOTE: Do NOT extract into ./skyrim/Data!)
    • ALTERNATIVELY: If the "WrapperVersion" does not function as advertized, try the "InjectorVersion". Remove any existing remnants of the Wrapper version, and extract only enbhost.exe, ENBInjector.exe, enbinjector.ini, enblocal.ini, and enbseries.dll files from the "InjectorVersion" folder into ./skyrim/.
  5. Likewise, extract the content of the ENB Preset's archive into ./skyrim/. (NOTE: Do NOT extract into ./skyrim/Data!)
    At this point, ./skyrim/ should typically contain something like following at minimum (when using the "WrapperVersion"), but some presets have many more files or folders with custom assets required by the preset:
    • <enbseries>
      • *.ini (one or more)
      • enbhelper.dll
    • *.bmp (one or more)
    • d3d9.dll
    • enbhost.exe
    • *.fx (one or more)
    • enblocal.ini
    • enbseries.ini
  6. Configure enblocal.ini according to the ENBoost recommendations EXCEPT with the following essential differences:
    • [GLOBAL]
      UsePatchSpeedhackWithoutGraphics=false
      UseDefferedRendering=true (NOTE: Not required, but essential for full functionality of many ENB presets.)
  7. Configure skyrimprefs.ini according to the following:
    • [Display]
      iMaxAnisotropy=0
      iMultiSample=0
      bFloatPointRenderTarget=1

Recommended ENB Presets

Before installing any ENB presets, get Boris Vorontsov's ENBSeries. Since the introduction of ENBSeries for Skyrim, there have been hundreds of ENB presets created; however, most have not been updated to use the latest version ENBSeries; therefore, please refer to the chosen ENB preset's documentation to ensure the correct version of ENBSeries is downloaded.

There are ENB presets that come in just about every style and color. As such, this section can be extremely subjective. STEP suggests browsing around to find the perfect preset to suit the user's personal preferences. There isn't an official STEP recommended ENB preset (yet), however, below are a few excellent, widely-used presets and information about them. To make a suggestion or comment on out-of-date information for the listed ENB presets, do so on the ENB Guide Thread. For general installation instructions, see the Installation tab; however, it is highly recommended to follow the author's installation instructions found on the ENB Preset's Nexus page.

Vividian - Weather and Lighting Alt text

by Mangaclub and Benhat Download
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/36067-1-1406366928.jpg
  • http://static-1.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/36067-1-1407360049.jpg
  • http://static-1.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/36067-1-1407622832.jpg
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/36067-1-1406533089.jpg
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/36067-5-1404911962.jpg
Baseline:
Vividian currently supports ENBSeries v0.262+.
Description:
Vividian is a two part Preset; an ENB and a mod. The ENB adds a more vivid character to Skyrim without completely removing the dense atmosphere from the vanilla game. Depending on the version chosen it provides either more vibrant colors and effects or simply enhances the vanilla colors. Both versions also grant more realistic shadows and weather.
The mod part of Vividian is a weather mod called, Extended Weathers, which has three different extensions. The first is Windy Clouds which enhances the cloud speed of weathers so the clouds actually look as if they're moving and not standing still in the sky. The second is Extended Groundfogs which adds groundfogs to 62 hand selected weathers. The final extension is Diverse Weathers which adds more weathers to all regions of Skyrim and raises the chance of rainy/snowy/stormy/foggy weathers.
Vividian is one of the most compatible ENB Profiles available and is currently compatible with vanilla Skyrim and the DLCs, Climates of Tamriel, Pure Weather, RCRN, ELFX, ELE, Relighting Skyrim, NLA, Extended Snow System, Real Shelter, Falskaar and Maids II.
Versions
Vividian comes in two versions:
  • The "Vivid" version has more saturation and vivid colors compared to vanilla Skyrim.
  • The "Vanilla" version maintains vanilla Skyrim colors and saturation; simply enhancing them by making them deeper and richer.
Performance
Vividian has three performance versions available.
  • Performance: is a version which has had some effects lightened or completely turned off. This version is recommended for less powerful systems.
  • Normal: is the main version which most users will be using. This version has all the effects enabled, yet is balanced between performance and quality.
  • High Quality - is the extreme version. Use this with caution! It will be crippling on all but the most powerful systems.
Features
Some of the features of Vividian include:
  • 6 Depth of Field (DOF) options
  • Real-time cloud shadows
  • Volumetric Sunrays
  • Enhanced and customized sunrises and sunsets
  • Custom sunflares/glares
  • Realistic and dynamic night lighting

Skylight Alt text

by Aiyen Download
  • http://static-1.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/48730-4-1408554037.jpg
  • http://static-1.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/48730-1-1408554105.jpg
  • http://static-1.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/48730-1-1401248340.jpg
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/48730-2-1393781987.jpg
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/48730-1-1392737132.jpg
Baseline:
Skylight currently supports ENBSeries v0.264.
Description:
Skylight ENB is the result of the hard work from our own Moderate, Aiyen. Skylight provides a balance between cinematic, fantasy and realism styles without adding too much of any one style. As a result, you get a unique ENB Profile that isn't overly saturated or too heavy on the Bloom which can wash out the visuals with a hazy light. The skies are blue as they should be and the dusks are a sight to behold. Nights in Skylight aren't aimed to be realistic but rather provide an immersive yet subtle atmosphere to explore in. Interiors; however, are designed to be realistic to a point; they aren't pitch black but the player will still benefit from using a torch.
Skylight is currently compatible with vanilla Skyrim and the DLCs, Climates of Tamriel, Pure Weather, ELFX, ELE, Supreme Storms, and Extended Snow System.
Skylight Features
Some of the features of Skylight include:
  • A custom Depth of Field (DoF) which is light on performance and designed with gameplay in mind
  • A unique set of shaders
  • Completely rewritten and highly customized ENB files
  • Real-time cloud shadows
  • Volumetric Sunrays
  • Enhanced and customized sunrises and sunsets
  • Lantern and Torch light options

RealVision ENB Alt text

by SkyrimTuner Download
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/30936-4-1408747058.jpg
  • http://static-2.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/30936-3-1408554610.jpg
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  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/30936-4-1409579484.jpg
Baseline:
RealVision currently supports ENBSeries v0.262.
Description:
RealVision is an ENB Preset aimed nearly entirely towards realism. It will be realistic and atmospheric. The author has posted showcase videos on the Nexus page as well as on YouTube to give potential users a better sense of what the profile does. In short, the graphics are brighter and more vibrant, the shadows are darker and have more depth, and sky is bluer and the atmosphere of the game is more rich than vanilla. RealVision is stunningly beautiful and one of the most popular realism style ENBs available.
The RealVision Nexus page is a dream come true for detailed oriented users. The author has gone above and beyond in offering a mountain of details including system requirements, installation, list of mods in order to mod the game to look exactly like the videos, ENB setup, FAQs, uninstallation, a list of recommended mods and more!
Each version of RealVision requires Project Reality - Climates of Tamriel with the combination of a lighting mod in order to look correct. Currently the lighting mod choices are Enhanced Lights and FX or Realistic Lighting Overhaul.
Versions
RealVision comes in three versions:
  • The "Option A" version is for a Climates of Tamriel and Realistic Lighting Overhaul combination.
  • The "Option B" version is for a Climates of Tamriel and Enhanced Lights and FX combination.
  • The "Option C" version is for fantasy lovers. This version boast a more fantasy look and uses a Climates of Tamriel and Enhanced Lights and FX combination along with other special tweaks.
Performance
Each RealVision version has two performance versions available.
  • Full: is the main version which most users will be using. This version has all the effects enabled, yet is balanced between performance and quality.
  • Performance: is a version which has had some effects lightened or completely turned off. This version is recommended for less powerful systems.
RealVision Features
Some of the features of RealVision include:
  • A realistic atmosphere and style
  • Real-time cloud shadows
  • Volumetric Sunrays
  • Enhanced and customized sunrises and sunsets
  • Alternative color options
  • Several Depth of Field (DoF) options
  • A custom installer to install via mod managers

Phinix Natural ENB Alt text

by Phinix Download
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/24235-1-1399277067.jpg
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/24235-2-1397788642.jpg
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/24235-4-1397788644.jpg
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/24235-1-1397770415.jpg
  • http://static-3.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/24235-4-1392165142.jpg
Baseline:
Phinix Natural ENB currently supports ENBSeries v0.265.
Description:
Phinix Natural is an ENB Preset for Skyrim purist. The atmosphere and environment of the vanilla game is one that is Nordic which is cold and wintery. Phinix Natural emphasizes on being natural to the vanilla atmosphere and; thus, provides an enhanced cold and wintery feel. Colors will not be overly saturated; however, will have more depth. The sky is slightly washed out as you would see in colder regions and the sun gives off more glare. Phinix Natural can also be described as being a subtle ENB profile simply because it enhances the vanilla atmosphere. It is one of the few ENB profiles that can be installed and forgotten that an ENB is even running due to its subtlety. Nights and interiors are more or less the same levels as vanilla; however, dungeons are just slightly darker. If you're looking for the true Skyrim experience as Bethesda meant it to be, then this ENB is for you!
Phinix Natural is compatible with Enhanced Lights and FX and Realistic Lighting Overhaul, as well as Climates of Tamriel; however, not all of the CoT weathers are customized for Phinix.
Performance
Although Phinix Natural does not come with different performance options, the author does discuss how to lessen the performance impact on his Nexus page.
Phinix Natural Features
Some of the features of Phinix Natural include:
  • A true-to-Skyrim atmosphere and style
  • A special fixes file which fixes various issues that arise when using ENBs
  • An alternative DoF style (optional)
  • A custom night sky mod (optional)
  • Custom Lens Sunsprite Shaders
  • Fully compatible with Night Eye effects

Seasons of Skyrim ENB Alt text

by Bronze316 Download
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/23812-1-1383764916.jpg
  • http://static-4.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/23812-1-1383680378.jpg
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  • http://static-2.nexusmods.com/15/mods/110/images/23812-1-1405465031.jpg
Baseline:
Seasons of Skyrym currently supports ENBSeries v0.236.
Description:
Seasons of Skyrim aims to be a blend of fantasy and realism. It provides a unique atmosphere to Skryim. One that isn't so far towards realism that it would feel as if you're taking a walked across the Netherlands, but also one that isn't too far into the fantasy realm that it could never be real. Seasons of Skyrim has found this balance and does it well! The visuals are stunning and vibrant but never over-the-top like many other fantasy-like ENB Profiles. Many forget this setup so to mention it here; it is recommended by the author to turn the in-game brightness all the down! Don't forget!
Though Seasons of Skyrim isn't designed around any specific weather of lighting overhaul mods, the author claims most of them should be compatible; however, the look and feel of the ENB Preset will change depending on the overhaul. Feel free to experiment and test different options; although, Climates of Tamriel users are recommended by the author to use his other ENB Preset, Project ENB as it is designed for CoT.
Versions
Seasons of Skyrim comes in two versions:
  • The "True HDR" version is the main version of Seasons of Skyrim and is the one most used.
  • The "HD6 Tribute" version is pushed more into the fantasy realm with more bloom and other effects tweaks toward that end.
Performance
Each Season of Skyrim version has six performance options to choose from:
  • Full Graphics Mode: is the main version with all the effects enabled and turned up. This will be the most performance heavy option.
  • Option A: has SSAO-SSIL and DoF turned down to be slightly lighter on performance.
  • Option B: is the same as Option A but with DoF turned off.
  • Option C: is the same as Option A but with SSAO-SSIL turned off.
  • Option D: has both SSAO-SSIL and DoF turned off.
  • Option E: is the extreme performance edition with most of the effects turned down or off. This will be the lightest option on performance.
Season of Skyrim Features
Some of the features of Season of Skyrim include:
  • A perfect blend of realism and fantasy
  • Six optional effects to choose from
  • Optional Data folder which includes: Dark Dungeons for ENB, Revamped Exterior Fog, waterfoam fix and paper textures

Other ENB Presets

The above mentioned ENB Presets are a very small sample of the presets available on Nexus. They are both popular and up-to-date; however, users are encouraged to explore other options to find the ENB preset that fits their style. Users can search Nexus and browse through the 100+ ENB presets available.

ENB-Complimenting Mods

Below are a few mods which normally work well when combined with ENB presets; however, be sure to view the chosen ENB preset's documentation for mod compatibility before using one of these mods.

Darkness
  • Dark Dungeons for ENB - This tells ENB to render dungeons as though its night (otherwise it lights them as though its daylight)
Many ENBs include optional files for darker caves, dungeons, and nights. Check with the ENB Profile for these options before using a third party mod for this. Some lighting mods may not be compatible.
Fixes
Some ENB Profiles include this patch during installation or provide it in as an optional file in the download section.
Fog
  • Remove Interior Fog V2 - This removes the ambient interior fog that is found indoors in many locations. It has support of all DLCs.
  • Interior and Dungeon Fog Remover - Completely removes fog meshes from most dungeon and indoor locations. This mod is compatible with Removed Interior Fog V2 above, the two can be used together.
  • Revamped Exterior Fog - This reduces the density of exterior fog and increases the distance that it starts becoming opaque. If using RCRN, there is a compatibility version which should be used instead.
Some mods that are often combined with ENBs are not compatible with the mods mentioned here (i.e. Climates of Tamriel, Realistic Colors and Real Nights, etc). As good modding practice, please review the Readme of any mod being used.
Utilities
  • ENB FXAA SweetFX Manager and Remover - Removes ENB and FXAA installations and provides slots to load different ENB configurations for quick and painless switching.
  • ENB Manager and Changer - Utility which allows the switching between ENB configurations and presets. Useful when testing various ENBs.
  • IMAGINATOR - Visual Control Device for Skyrim - In-game tool that allows adjustment of color and lighting setting such as brightness, tint, contrast, saturation, etc. This has been helpful to many user for adjusting ENB colors and lighting without having to mess with the ENB preset itself.
  • Imaginator MCMenu - Here is a very helpful MCM addon for Imaginator as to not have to deal with the dialogue-type menu to adjust the settings.

ENB Extensions

The following components and tweaks are optional and NOT required for a successful ENB implementation.

SMAA (Highly Recommended)

For ENB users, any version of ENBSeries after v0.119, hardware AA is no longer supported. Therefor, ENB users only have the following options available to them; ENB EdgeAA, SMAA or SweetFX using an injector. For users on low-end systems, the ENB's EdgeAA is probably the best choice because it comes with almost no performance loss. SubPixel Morphological Anti-Aliasing (SMAA) is a fantastic post-processing anti-aliasing method. SMAA is processed after the ENBSeries process which provides nearly equal quality of MSAA, at a faction of the performance hit. Users can also use SMAA injector with EdgeAA enabled to possibly gain an even better image quality. SMAA is a great replacement for driver AA or the game engine's AA for users on mid to high-end machines. So for these users, SMAA will be the best option. It's also worth noting that SMAA injector can be used without ENB as a standalone replacement for the game's or driver's AA.

Even though some ENB presets may not include SMAA in their packaged files, it's still possible to use SMAA with any preset as long as there is not an additional d3d9.dll already in use in the [PROXY] section of the enbseries.ini file. To install SMAA, do the following:

  1. If SMAA is not supplied by the ENB preset, users can download it from here.
  2. Extract the file downloaded to a desired location
  3. In the d3d9 folder (do not use the files from the d9d10 folder!!!) rename d3d9.dll to d3d9_smaa.dll. Non-ENB users do not need to rename this file.
  4. Now copy the following files into the root Skyrim directory (not the Data directory):
    • d3d9_smaa.dll
    • injector.ini
    • SMAA.h
    • SMAA.fx

To enable SMAA with ENBSeries, set the following in the [PROXY] section of the enblocal.ini file:

EnableProxyLibrary=true
InitProxyFunctions=true
ProxyLibrary=d3d9_smaa.dll

To change the quality of SMAA, open the injector.ini file in a text editor (such as Notepad++) and change the preset parameter:

preset = SMAA_PRESET_HIGH
The available quality presets are listed above the parameter. The standard presets are: Low is 60% quality, Medium is 80%, High is 95%, and Ultra is 99% quality. This is similar to 2xAA, 4xAA, etc and each step higher comes with more of a performance loss. Additionally, a custom preset can be created in the SMAA.h file as seen in the image below for the Uber preset; however, this is a very advanced process, as such, it is not recommend for most users and will not be discussed here.
SMAA presets.png

For users wanting to learn more about SMAA, there is a very in-depth and technical PDF available here.

ELE (Enhanced Lighting [for] ENB)

Enhanced Lighting for ENB (ELE) is a set of mods, by the author JawZ, aimed toward balancing the lighting of Skyrim. It adjusts every type of lighting in the game to both make Skyrim look better with ENBSeries and to make it easier for preset authors to customize and balance their presets without having to sacrifice one area of lighting over another. There are currently six modules to ELE, each of which balances a separate area of lighting in the game. These are Exterior Lighting and Weathers, Interior Lighting, Light Bulbs, FX Effects, Spell and Torch Lighting, and Plugins. These modules are still a work in progress; however, of these modules, Interior Lighting is the most complete and the most used most by ENB preset authors to date. Each of these modules are discussed further below.

Download
... or download an ENB preset created by JawZ which uses a lightweight ELE setup: Enhanced Lighting for ENB (ELE) - LITE. This ENB preset was created as a modder's resource; however, can be used as a standalone preset. It is very lightweight on performance, provides vanilla-like colors, and also provides the basic enhancements of ENBseries such as improved shadows. Modders can use it to enhance/fix some vanilla issues. Authors can use it to create their own ENB presets.

Installing ELE
Simply installing the ELE modules (described below) will not usually result in an outcome that looks great with the chosen ENB preset. ENB presets must be designed to work with ELE or the results from installing it might not be desirable. Most often, if an ENB author does design their preset around ELE it will be the Interior module because it is the most complete of all the modules and provides authors better control over interior spaces than without it. Installing ELE is as simple as installing any other mod. Simply download the desired module(s), and install them using a mod manager like Mod Organizer. Load order is very important. The author has kindly provided several load-order examples designed around various setups that should provide a point of reference for most users. He has also provided a list of popular lighting mods that are and aren't compatible with the individual modules. This list is not only helpful for end users, but to preset authors as well. Authors can use the compatibility list when determining which lighting overhauls to support with their presets if they choose to also use any of the ELE modules.

Exterior Lighting & Weather

In this module, weathers have been given more natural colors and they will no longer be dependent on imagespaces. Weathers also have been given better night/day detection during the daytime, nighttime, sunrise, and sunset. Sunlight has been balanced throughout all weathers as well and shadows have been edited to better enhance the visual appearance of the SkyLighting effect. Sky banding has also been reduced significantly with this module. Some visual bugs such as dark horizons during certain weathers have been fixed. Finally, a new sun texture is included to go along with the weather changes. It enhances the Sun Rays feature, has no grain/noise, zero banding, and will not overexpose most of the sky as the vanilla sun texture does.

Interior Lighting

The Interior Lighting module covers changes in the imagespaces and LightingTemplates which have been balanced for more natural occurring colors. The imagespaces and LightingTemplates have also been named based on what type of interior cell they affect. This has been done for preset authors so they can simply edit a particular interior cell type without affecting anything else. Interior shadows have also been edited so they are properly lit and placed based on the exterior light that shines in from cracks in the walls or based on the amount of windows in the interior cell. Interior DirectLighting has been tweaked to be better used as an indirect lighting which the author believes serves as a good character lighting; therefore, the direction and color of DirectLighting have both been tweaked towards that end. The visual "bug" with dungeons looking bright as daylight as also been corrected. Finally, all of the interior classed cells have been fixed so they look more natural based on location. For example, the Temple of Kynareth is a "bright" classed interior while the Dragonsreach Basement is a "dark" classed interior; therefore, the lighting will now match the interior class.

Light Bulbs

The Light Bulbs module covers light bulbs for both interiors and exteriors. Light Bulbs are the light that emit from fireplaces, candles and chandeliers among other things. Light Bulb placement has been corrected and new new coloring assigned to them based on "real life" sources. The Light Bulbs has also been named based on what type of light source they are placed at so preset authors can edit a particular Light Bulb type without affecting any of the other Light Bulb types.

FX Effects

The FX Effects module handles all FX changes introduced by the ELE suite. It makes changes to the "windows dynamic changes" so ENBSeries, itself, can have full control of those changes. This module will also adjust the placement of FX effects, as well as, add or remove some FX effects based on the authors judgement.

Spell and Torch Lighting

Spell and Torch Lighting module changes the color, radius and intensities of all the spell Light Bulbs while doing the same for the Torch light as well. As with the other modules this one edits the lighting to have a more natural color and specifically alters the spell lighting to fit the different types of spells more accurately.

Plugins

ELE Plugin - RS Light Color
This plugin was created for Relighting Skyrim and is, thus, fully compatible with it; however, it is also compatible with any other lighting mods that doesn't alter the ParentLight Bulb found in the Object window in the Creation Kit. It makes changes to the ParentLight Bulbs by altering the colors so they emit a more natural color based on their placement in Skyrim. For example, all light bulbs placed at fire type light sources will give off a natural "fire light".
ELE Plugin - Falskaar
This plugin was created for Falskaar. It alters some interior cell menu values to allow the ELE - Interior Lighting module to take full control of the Falskaar interior cells. This plugin is necessary for Falskaar users who want ELE - Interior Lighting to have any affect in the Falskaar interiors. Due to changes the Falskaar mod makes, without this plugin Falskaar interiors will have the vanilla lighting.
ELE Plugin - FX Emittance
In vanilla Skyrim and the Relighting Skyrim mod, the sun-lit Light Bulbs in the interiors uses an effect called Exterior Emittance to make the Light Bulbs change their color based on the time of the day such as during sunset and sunrise. In vanilla, these colors are plain white and grey mainly. This plugin changes those colors more to more natural colors for a more realistic feel.

INI Configurations

The ENB configuration files (enblocal.ini and enbseries.ini) contain all of the user-configurable parameters required for customizing ENB.

enblocal.ini

Typically, enblocal.ini should not change at all among presets (although, a couple of key settings must be changed to enable/disable ENB lighting enhancements offered by ENB 'proper'), so this file is usually conserved among presets as well as ENB updates. For this reason, enblocal.ini configuration settings do not appear in this guide (other than as referenced within the quickstart guides above) but are referenced in an an ancillary guide:
ENBlocal INI Guide

enbseries.ini

Conversely, enbseries.ini can change dramatically among presets, and some presets offer far more configurability than others by way of extensions within the preset. The 'default' enbseries.ini comes packaged with ENBseries itself, but some presets lack certain 'new' settings or contain certain 'deprecated' settings. The configuration file contains all of the user-configurable parameters that dictate the behavior and result of the ENB post-processing engine. There are many configurable parameters, and documenting (or correctly implementing) them all is challenging to say the least. A comprehensive description of all parameters by section is available in the ENBseries INI Guide:
ENBseries INI Guide

Using ENB Weathers

There is a helper library (enbhelper.dll) that allows edits to parameters for each specific weather in Skyrim. The helper is essentially and API that queries real-time weather information from Skyrim and invokes variants of specified enbseries.ini parameters using ancillary configuration INIs that override conflicting parameters specified within enbseries.ini. This allows configuration of, say, bloom settings to differ among weather types or when a specific weather type is active. These weather variations can be very complex (one config per unique Skyrim weather) or very general (one configuration for only a small number of specific weather classes).

The healper library and all weather configurations are placed within ./skyrim/enbseries. Most ENB presets that are configured to work with multiple Skyrim weathers package the "weather helper" with installation instructions by default. For those that do not, see the [Guide:ENB#ENB_Quickstart|ENB Quickstart] section above for assistance.                         

[WEATHER]
EnableMultipleWeathers=(false, true)

Enables/disables use of the "weather helper" library and configurations to provide ENB customized weathers.                         

Info-Logo.png       Notice:Configuring an ENB that does not support ENB variation by weather variant is currently not covered by this guide. This would be a great addition if anyone would like to provide some basic information.

Troubleshooting

Performance Tips

While ENB greatly enhance the visual of Skyrim, these additional effects also take a toll on performance. How much of an FPS decrease users experience depends on their system hardware, INI settings, texture mod resolutions, and a host of other variables. This is why it's virtually impossible to estimate how much any ENB will affect a user's personal system. That being said, there are some things users can do to improve their performance.

First and foremost it's important for users to keep their systems in top gaming condition. Like anything else, "if you take care of it, then it will take care of you". Some simple ways to do this:

  • Defragment the hard drives which games are installed on. Do not defrag solid state drives (SSDs)! These should NEVER be defragmented and doing so could reduce their lifespan. However, defragging hard disk drives (HDDs) will not only help improve performance while gaming, but can also decrease load times in games and other applications as well. Although Windows comes with a simple defragging program, STEP recommends either Auslogics Disk Defrag or Puran Defrag Free Edition. If using Auslogics, use the "Defrag & Optimize" option since this will also move the most frequently accessed files closer to the front of the drive. Defragment hard drives at least once a month or any time the fragmentation is 10% or over.
  • Disable all unnecessary programs running in the background while gaming, to free up more resources. Anti-virus programs disk access usage can cause slowdowns in save and loading, and any files scanned. Instead of turning it off, setting it to ignore your game directories and any mod directories you use will prevent your antivirus from occupying the files in use. It also limits your viral exposure to a trusted folder (trusted if it came from legitimate sources.)
  • Keep Steam in offline mode. This is just one more thing depleting resources that really isn't needed.
  • GPU settings play a tremendous role in determining quality and performance. Striking the right balance in these settings is essential in achieving a beautiful game with smooth, playable frame rates. Use the guides provided in the STEP guide as a starting point. Adjust and test the settings until the right balance with smooth game-play is achieved. The thing to remember here is to be realistic with what the hardware is capable of.
  • Be realistic with the INI settings, as well. Over-tweaking can and will cause performance issues if the system is not capable of handling the additional strain.
  • High resolution texture and mesh mods also affect performance. Careful consideration should be used when adding higher resolution textures and meshes with ENB enabled. Experimentation and testing might be required to find the right balance of quality and performance that best fits the system hardware capabilities.
  • Some of the more FPS-intensive ENB effects can also be disabled in the ENB .ini files to improve performance at the cost of some quality. Instructions on how to disable these effects can be found in the INI sections of this Guide. Changing to the performance version of some ENBs (where available) will essentially do the same thing so users are encouraged to explore that route before disabling ENB effects.

If after following these performance tips users are still unable to achieve playable frame rates, the system hardware may not be capable of running ENBSeries or the chosen preset might be too intensive to for it. At this point users may want to consider either using other presets which may not be as demanding on hardware, upgrading their hardware, or not using ENBSeries altogether.

Shadow Striping

One of the great things about ENBSeries is that it usually fixes shadow striping. Some users, however, will still experience this issue if they've edited their Skyrim INIs. In the screenshots below it's hard to tell from their reduced size in the gallery, but notice the fuzziness along the edges of the shadows and the lines across some of the textures like the post and rock; this is shadow striping.

Figure 1. Shadow Striping Figure 2. Shadow Striping
(To view the full sized images, click on the image to open the gallery, then right click on image and click "View Image".)

If this is preset, adjust the iBlurDeferredShadowMask parameter in the SkyrimPrefs.ini file (MO users will have to adjust it in the INI Editor in MO). It will be set to its default from when the INI files where created by the game launcher, unless users have manually adjusted it. Turning this parameter down to a lower usually results in sharper shadow detail; however, turning it down too low can result in striping. Users can adjust this setting from 0-7. If striping occurs while ENBSeries is enabled, increase this parameter's value by one, save the change, and test the new setting in-game. Continue to repeat this process until the shadow striping is gone. Usually between 3 and 5 are the best values.

If the above is not helping or making the shadows too blurry, adjusting the fShadowDistance parameter may also help. This is the distance at which shadows are drawn from the object. Decreasing this will make these shadows less elongated and help to eliminate striping at lower iBlurDeferredShadowMask values; however, adjusting this value too long can also result in unnatural looking shadows.

AMD/ATI Users

Set the following in enbseries.ini.

In the [SHADOW] section:

UseBilateralShadowFilter=false
  • When updating drivers be sure to uninstall your current drivers before installing your new drivers. It is also not recommended to use Beta drivers. The current stable drivers can be found here.
  • If you must use anisotropic filtering (AF), then either ENB-enabled or CCC-enabled is fine, but this depends entirely on the capability of your CPU since Skyrim is more CPU-intensive than GPU. ENB-enabled is better, but up to 8x is recommended unless you have at least 2GB of VRAM (generally the 69xx, 78xx, and 79xx series).

Possible Crossfire Fix

Please apply the following process to ensure Crossfire compatibility:

  1. Right-click on your desktop and open the Catalyst Control Center.
  2. Enter the 3D Applications Profiles.
  3. Choose "Use AMD Pre-defined profile" in the list at the bottom
  4. Select the "Assassin's Creed Brotherhood profile" (acp?b.exe)
  5. Go back to the top, select "New application" and press the "Save" button.
  6. Choose the "TESV.exe" application (in the root Skyrim folder) when the browser window pops up.
  7. Answer "Yes" when CCC asks if you want to override the default TESV profile.

For users using 13.x drivers

  1. Open up the AMD Vision Engine Control Center (or the Catalyst Control Center).
  2. Make sure your are in Advanced View mode by clicking Preferences.
  3. Select "Gaming" and choose "3D Applications Profiles".
  4. Select "Add" and browse to and select "TESV.exe".
  5. "TESV.exe" should now show up on that page. Select it and scroll down to "CrossfireX Mode"
  6. Select "Use AMD Pre-defined profile" and locate the "Assassin's Creed Brotherhood profile" (acp?b.exe)
  7. Overwrite the default profile when prompted.

Disable ENB In-game

A common issue with DOF is that it is difficult to see your character while in the creation menu. There is a very simple solution for this. While playing, just press Shift+F12 to disable ENB. This can be quite useful when creating your character or modifying it later via the showracemenu console command. When finished, just press Shift+F12 again to enable ENB.

Long Loading Times

Some people may experience long loading times while using ENB. An easy way to greatly decrease your wait is by pressing Shift+F12 before or just after entering the loading screen to disable ENB. When the screen is loaded press Shift+F12 again to enable ENB.

Although this still works, it's and old trick for those with v0.119 or older. Starting with ENBSeries v0.265, Boris has fixed the framerate to 60FPS in order to help eliminate this issue.

ENB Support Forum

If the above troubleshooting did not help, please refer to our ENB Support Forum for assistance.