The Grim and Somber ENBS by WolfGrimDark
Skyrim » ENB Preset
Added: 05/02/2014 - 06:49PM
Updated: 29/03/2015 - 09:16PM

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Uploaded by wolfgrimdark


Last updated at 21:16, 29 Mar 2015 Uploaded at 18:49, 5 Feb 2014

Grim and Somber Azura by Saran OhKay

Grim and Somber Malacath by Saran OhKay

The Grim and Somber ENB collection of presets are fantasy and vintage based ENB's with a focus on a dramatic lighting with an intense atmosphere and mood. Do not look for a lot of realism in these ENB's as that is not the goal or aim behind them. A short summary of each one follows the instructions.


1) Download the Grim and Somber ENB Preset you wish to use from the files section.

2) Copy the contents of the presets main folder to your Skyrim directory (this will consist of the enbseries folder, enblocal.ini, and enbseries.ini files).

Note: If using the optional SweetFX files then copy the contents of that folder (minus the directions.txt) into your Skyrim directory. Read the directions.txt file to complete the install.

3) Edit the the enblocal.ini file, under the -MEMORY- section, to reflect your computers set up. See my memory settings web page for details on what each setting does.

4) Download the appropriate ENB Binary version from ENBDEV: The only files you want from this download are the d3d9.dll and enbhost.exe files. Do NOT install the entire folder! Use the ones from the wrapper folder first (if those don't work for you try the injector version - injector requires enbinjector.ini, enbhost, enbseries.dll, and ENBInjector.exe). Copy these files to your Skyrim folder.

5) You may need to set the enbhost.exe file to run as the administrator (right click, properties, compatibility tab, near bottom check "run program as administrator") and make sure it is not being blocked by an anti-virus program.

6) Set to "application controlled" the Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering settings on your video card (or if that is not an option disable them). Then disable them for Skyrim (either by running the launcher and disabling them there or by editing your skyrimpref.ini file and setting iMultiSample=0 and iMaxAnisotropy=0 ). Failure to disable AA and AF settings will result in many ENB effects not being rendered.

7) Edit your skyrimprefs.ini file (usually found in your my documents/games/skyrim folder). You may need to add the various "Shadow" values manually under the -DISPLAY- section. If you use Mod Organizer be sure to edit those INI files as well.

bDoDepthOfField=0 // or set to 1 to help with transparent water issues
iBlurDeferredShadowMask=5 (for best shadow quality, no lower then 4)

For Binary 266, per Boris, you should leave the following settings at there default in the skyrimpref.ini:

iBlurDeferredShadowMask=3 // anywhere between 3 and 5 is good, I recommend 3 or 4.

8) Finally download any of the optional files and/or any of the recommended mods you wish to use and install those.


Azura, previously known as Grim and Somber Enchanted Next Generation, is a very bright fantasy based ENB using all modern shaders and effects.  Nights are bright and tinted for a strong fantasy feel.  Days are crisp and colorful without being over-saturated.  Azura is the most current preset offered.  The name was chosen as this is the "future" of the presets using next generation code.  It is also bright, like a star.

Hircine, previously known as Grim and Somber Main Directors Cut, has remained the same and only updated to 262.  Everyone seems to like this solid and dark preset that makes me think of the dark hunter with its deeper contrast and higher black levels.  Hence I went with Hircine for the name.

Jyggalag, this preset is the original Somber Antique (Beta 199) updated to the current ENB binary and tweaked by myself. Jyggalag is the Daedric Prince of Order and the opposite of Sheogoarth, Prince of Madness and Creativity. I choose this prince because it is somewhat the opposite of the extreme visuals of Sheogorath yet the two share much of the same code. Somber Antique is also about bringing order out of chaos by its attempt to use extreme bloom values and bring them under control (although not always successfully). It is the original classic preset that started the Somber series so I thought one of the original Princes would be a great choice. Now, much like Jyggalag himself, Somber Antique has returned to roam the Void.

Special thanks to Maeldun for allowing me to upload my personal version of Somber Antique on my preset page - it means a lot to me as I adore this classic preset by Tansarville, one of the true artistic masters of ENB presets. It is always an honor to work with her code. Disclaimer: Because I kept the original look I had to keep the old code file that does not work with weathers (enbhelper) consequently Solestheim weathers are going to be super bright due to the bloom values. At midnight it the sky is bright as day. It is what it is.

Malacath is a very customized Grim and Somber preset and while the shaders and palette belong to Tansarville (tali) all the tweaking has been completely done by myself and hence I consider it to be a bit of an outcast from the reset of the presets.  It has new bloom settings along with all new shader code.  It has custom weathers and is somewhat more saturated, with a touch more contrast, then the other presets (except Hircine). 

Sanguine, previously known as Grim and Somber Enchanted 3.5.5, was my personal indulgence in presets.  I did what I wanted with it and this preset, more than any other, is the closest one to being "mine" because I changed it so much from the original Somber Lut.  So I went with Sanguine for the hedonistic aspect.  It is also a fun fantasy preset with some bright nights and colors so makes me think of the Prince of Parties.

Sheogorath, previously known as Somber Wintage 35mm Resurrected, has been UNCHANGED and only updated to use ENB 262.  This preset is the original Wintage 1.5 version made over a year ago by Tansarville.  I picked Sheogorath as this is a mad preset - wild colors, intense lights mixed with desaturated tones, film flares and a crazy DOF.  It is at times colorful and bright yet at others dim and dark.

Vaermina, previously known as Somber Lut Sepia, remains UNCHANGED from ENB version 221 except to be made compatible with v262.  This preset is the original Somber Lut Sepia released by Tansarville over a year ago.  I picked the Prince of Nightmares as this is a nightmare of a preset to balance.  It has a heavy yellow-green tint, explosively bright bloom that can look awesome in some places but creates a nova light in others. It has a rather surreal feel to it at times, much like dreams.

Shard of Oblivion is a special preset for use with the mod Shard of Oblivion WIP by Mika999 and it uses ENB binary 221.  It should only be used with that ENB binary file and it is made to work with Shard of Oblivion mod to get the most out of the oblivion landscape and atmosphere.

Performance Options for Grim and Somber ENBS

Different presets have different options.   Some will have a quality and performance version and others will have a single preset balanced between the two.  For those that have two they are broken down as follows:

- Cinematic Extreme Quality: This is for eye-candy, full effects, cinematic bars, film grain, and extreme quality settings. The DOF is GP and Kingeric made for screen archery and has lots of custom settings to play with in-game.

- Game Playing Performance: While these presets are meant for quality visuals I provide a performance version for folks with older machines or those wishing to balance their FPS with some nice visuals. Some cinematic effects are disabled and quality has been lowered to increase FPS. It uses a static DOF which is easier on the eyes when playing and has a lower FPS cost. However I have kept what I consider to be a minimum level of quality and effects to keep a basic aesthetic look to the presets.

*Temporal AA is disabled by default on all versions but if used it provides superior AA. The main downside is TAA can create motion artifacts but they tend to be minimal if your average FPS is above 30. It is even less noticeable in first person.

To improve performance you can try editing some of the quality settings using the in-game ENB GUI editor. Start with lowering the quality of sky lighting and reflections to their lowest quality. After that try lowering any quality setting by 1 degree and test your FPS. I recommend lowering quality over disabling any effects but if you must DOF, Reflections, Underwater and Water would be first choices. Do NOT disable SSAO (Ambient Occlusion), Skylighting, or IBL (image based lighting) as it will destroy much of the dramatic lighting.

General Options

To enable the ENB GUI in-game hold down the SHIFT + CONTROL buttons at the same time (this is different than many configurations that use shift and enter).

DOF Options
Many presets come with optional DOF's you can use.  Look in the DOF options folder(s) to see what they do and how to use them.  Static gives the best FPS, Soulwynds has the most flexibility and controls, and GP and Kingeric is the most cinematic.

Data FIle
The data file is optional and can be downloaded and installed using NMM. The data folder contains a sun and sunglare texture, ENB particle and sub-surface scattering fixes by mindflux, and an updated horizon mesh by JawZ.

Letterbox Vignette (Cinematic Bars)
A letterbox vignette adds black bars to the top and bottom of the screen.

To enable/disable letterbox, and adjust its height, open up the in-game ENB GUI (hit ~ for console, then SHIFT+ENTER to bring up the GUI). In the "Shader parameters" window click on the "EFFECT.TXT" window to expand it. Near the bottom you will see the "letterbox" and "letterbox bar - height" values. Enable/disable by checking the box. The default height for the bars is 7% (0.07)

Some presets may have a rounded vignette. They can usually be disabled in the EFFECT.TXT GUI in-game under the vignette section. If using vignettes from SweetFX, edit the SweetFX settings text file and change the 1 to a 0 under the vignette option.

Film Grain Effect
Film grain adds a grainy feel to the screen by adding small moving specks (noise) to the screen. To enable/disable, and change its look, open up the in-game ENB GUI (hit ~ for console, then SHIFT+ENTER to bring up the GUI). In the "Shader parameters" window expand the ENBEFFECTS section, or the EFFECT section, and check/uncheck the "Enable Grain" to enable/disable (located near the bottom under Film Grain). The other variables will let you change its intensity, saturation, and motion for both interiors and exteriors.  Different presets may have them in different sections.

SweetFX (only for those presets that do NOT come with it by default)
Download the SweetFX SMAA folder and then copy its contents into your Skyrim folder. There will be 8 files (excluding the directions.txt file) plus one folder. Be sure to configure your enblocal.ini file following the directions. This SweetFX configuration is for SMAA only.

WARNING: With Grim and Somber Azura do not use any other palette except the one that comes with the preset. Some of the other presets, however, come with optional palettes you may use.

To install an optional palette copy the enbpalette.bmp file (from the options folder of your choice) into the enbseries folder you installed in the Skyrim directory. It will replace the one already there.

If you want to disable the ENB rain effect, and use your own texture, then open up the enbseries.ini file and find the [RAIN] section. Under the [RAIN] section change Enable=true to Enable=false. If rain is enabled in ENB it will override any custom rain textures you might have installed. Note: If you use ENB rain do not use it with "Real Rain by Player Two" as that mod distorts the raindrops and makes it look like it is only raining in front of the camera. It works fine with the textures though.

If you want to enable/disable the ENB procedural sun effect then open up the enbseries.ini file and find the [EFFECTS] section (near the top). Then set the EnableProceduralSun=true to EnableProceduralSun=false. If EnableProceduralSun is enabled it will override any custom sun textures you might have installed.

MindFlux Flora Loose Files
Optional summer grass and clover textures, plus high detail fern meshes, from MindFlux. They can be installed using NMM.

Lanterns of Skyrim - Lantern Preset
Lanterns of Skyrim Preset for use with either Grim and Somber Main or Grims Vintage Somber. Requires full Lanterns of Skyrim mod by MannyGT.

To uninstall a Grim and Somber ENB preset simply delete all the same files and folders that you added to your Skyrim folder when you installed Somber (see install directions above for a list of the files). Also be sure to uninstall the specific data files that you installed (either via NMM or manually). You may also want to refresh your skyrim.ini and skyrimpref.ini files to reset them to vanilla settings (or settings you saved prior to installing this ENB) to prevent future conflicts with other mods or ENBs.

There are no required mods for these presets. I do not like making an ENB dependent on any external files so I have done the best I can to remove any dependencies. Some of the options I included in the downloads section, and some of the recommended mods, can help improve the overall quality but they are not required.

The following mods are optional but recommended as they can greatly enhance your experience. If you are looking for a lighting MOD that works well with these presets then I recommend Relighting Skyrim by Novak Dalton.

* Relighting Skyrim (RLS) is the only lighting mod I support. Works best with Original Dark Dungeons (ODD) by MindFlux and load ODD after RLS.
** Mindlfux has two versions Further Dark Dungeons (FDD) and Original Dark Dungeons (ODD). They both do the same thing except Original will simply force ENB to use night-time settings for all dungeons while FURTHER does that and darkens certain areas above and beyond changing the flag. I prefer ODD simply because it is the least intrusive of the two.

Incompatible Mods

In general I prefer to not restrict what mods people use with these presets (in my experience people will use them anyhow). In general avoid any mod that changes interior fog - as all the presets (except Hircine) rely heavily on interior fog for a lot of the atmosphere. I use to say not to use revamped exterior fog but I find using it doesn't destroy the look of the preset like removing interior fog does.

In addition most lighting mods (RLO, ELFX, COT, RCRN, etc.) can come into conflict and create overly dark/bright areas, shadow problems, or other issues. On the other hand many folks say it works fine with COT (don't use interior options) and ELFX (don't use enhancer). A lot depends on what you are willing to put up with, what your tastes are, and what options you use. So my advice is to try them for yourself and see how they look. I will note, however, that "Real Rain by Player Two" will cause issues with ENB rain - it can make the rain look chunky and centered around the player. If you use that mod do so with the textures and ENB rain disabled.

From a support standpoint, however, I only tune this preset around vanilla lighting and Relighting Skyrim by NovakDalton. You can use anything else you want just be aware I can't support it and don't have any idea what it will look like.

General Resources

Understanding Memory Settings in ENBLOCAL.INI (updated 2015-01-24 with new info).
Want to tweak some of the settings? Check out the STEP ENBSeries INI Guide.
Guide to ENBSeries - Teaching you how to tweak ENB by --JawZ--
WolfGrimDarks Grim and Somber DoF Tweaking Guide
WolfGrimDarks Mod List
Wonder what Reflections, SSS, IBL, or Indirect Lighting do? See them visually in action with Tapioks Tech Videos.

Before asking for help review the list below for basic troubleshooting issues and tips.

  • Make sure you do not have any left over mods, in your data folder, from previous ENBS
  • Properly uninstall any previous ENB and install the new one fresh. Don't just overwrite files!!!
  • You may need to set enbhost.exe to run with admin access and verify it is not blocked by your virus program.
  • Double check all files are installed and in their proper place.
  • Verify your skyrimpref.ini file is set correctly. Those settings can easily be reset to vanilla settings by the skyrim launcher, updates, or local file integrity checks. Always double check those if you are having problems. Some mod managers create their copies of these files - so check those as well.
  • Double check your memory settings in ENBLOCAL.INI. Improper settings can increase the odds of CTD's, infinite loading screens, sudden FPS drop rates, and freezes.
  • Be aware that these are demanding ENB presets. Toss in a lot of heavy scripting mods, high resolution textures, and you are bound to have some FPS loss. Depending on your PC you could have more stuttering and sudden FPS drops when looking at objects that have HR textures. Consider lower resolution textures or a performance preset.

Common Problems and Solutions

Use SHIFT + CONTROL to open the ENB GUI (not shift + enter).

Noisy Textures or Lines on screen:
Try setting FilterQuality=1 in [SKYLIGHTING] section of enbseries.ini

Missing Textures or walls:
Make sure you disabled Anti-aliasing settings on your video card and in Skyrim.

Sunshines through things
Make sure you have bFloatPointRenderTarget=1 in your skyrimpref.ini file.

No blur under water
Change bDoDepthOfField=1 in skyrimprefs.ini

Flashing lights, TFC command changes look, or other light changes
For binaries 250 or higher the Ninghiem Race mod causes light issues. To fix make sure you have uploaded the optional ENB script fix for that mod (on the mods site).

Weird artifacts when moving or rotating the camera
This is caused my Temporal AA which is enabled with the game playing performance preset. Disable it by opening up the in-game ENB gui (SHIFT+ENTER) and under the ANTIALISING section look for temporal AA and disable it by unchecking it.

Main Credits for this ENB

The Grim and Somber ENB presets are all based off the Somber Lut Sepia ENB created by the amazingly talented Tansarville, without who these presets would have never been possible. No words can describe how thankful I am for her support and these wonderful presets!

She handed over management of Somber Lut Sepia when she moved on and I have been tweaking and working on them ever since. I have released my own prests based on her original code but I want to make it clear the core of all my presets is all the work of Tansarville. Somber Lut Sepia 221 and Somber Wintage 35mm 251 are the ones closest to her originally released presets. In the summer of 2014 Tansarville revamped and cleaned up all my shaders and updated my Enchanted preset to use the new shaders. It is thanks to Tans that my presets look as good as they do!

The original Somber series, that Tansarville made, is based on Unreal Cinema ENB code and UnrealWarfare deserves a special thanks for all his work and help!

Also a very sincere thanks to --JawZ-- who is the most helpful ENB expert I have ever met. Without his patience, expertise, help guides, and skill I never would have made it this far on my ENB training.

If I have missed anyone above, or below, please let me know and I will add you ASAP!

Tansarville - Creator of the Somber Lut Sepia ENB (and Somber Antique) and core base of these presets.  Tansarville is also the creator for the current GSE 4.X palette, modified Somber Lut palette, the Vintage Palettes, and the Somber Crescent Lut shaders (enbeffect.fx file).  Only she can give permission for other people to use her shader files.

Maeldun0 - For allowing me to upload my personal version of Somber Antique (GS Jyggalag) on this page, for some of her Somber 3 settings used in Jyggalag, for various code settings for Wintage, and for her support and advice on many things.
Trilville - For the first original Somber palette that Tansarville then modified for her presets.  However none of the current palettes are Trilville and all permissions to use current palettes have to go through Tansarville.
WolfGrimDark - Creator and manager of the Grim and Somber ENBS
Boris Vorontsov - ENB Series developer
HeliosDoubleSix - HD6 Shader code
Matso - enblens.fx file
IndigoNeko - Film Grain code
Trilville - Palette file used on Somber series tweaked from his palette
JawZ - DNI, GUI coding, enbeffect.fx, enbsunsprite.fx, atmopshere/horizon texture, letterbox code for effect.txt version, and well eveything.
MTichenor - Grain, vanilla adaption and bloom, HSV CC, Sepia
Aiyen - letter box code
Tonaran - Author of the initial optimized DNI factor
gp65cj04 and SkyrimTuner - Static DOF
gp65cj04 and GUI & tweaks by ericking1992 and some twekas by Insomnia - GP and Kingerik DOF
Soulwynd - Tweakable DoF and Bokeh Shader
Kyokushinoyama - for his vintage/cinematic DOF and Bloom code
Mindflux - Particle Patch, Flora Mod, and Further Dark Dungeons
Andrej Dudenhefner - Creator of SMAA injector
Christian Jensen - Creator of SweetFX
ZeroKing - Ported shaders to ENB and using his effect.txt file
Prod80 - For his advice, code, tips, help and general support
Sloth - For turning me on to Rustic Windows and his friendship and support
Insomnia - For turning me on to the letterbox code that works with TAA and his support
Kingeric1992 - For LumaSharpen Gui enable/disable code
Kingeric1992 - optional DOF file (along with gp65cj04 and Insomnia)
OtisInf - For adding DES controls to Kingeric1992's DOF file
Hodilton - For the amazing video clip of GSE!

Credits for the ULTIMATE SHADER ADDON for ENB 1.1
Based on Post-Process Effects Addon for ENB by ZeroKing
Initial D-N-I separation code and GUI implementation by --JawZ--
Kinematic Filter code (formerly known as Old Black-White TV Filter) originally by Boris Vorontsov
Kinematic Filter code tweaked by Trillville, Midhras, Kyokushinoyama, Insomnia
LumaSharpen code by, ported from SweetFX by ZeroKing, tweaked by prod80
Blur, Sharpening, Color Shift, Vignette code by Boris Vorontsov
Contrast and Vibrance code by, ported from SweetFX by ZeroKing
Noise code by MTichenor/IndigoNeko
Dithering, Border, Splitscreen code by, ported from SweetFX by Marty McFly
Letterbox code by Matso
Combined, edited, tweaked and arranged by Miratheus

Special Thanks

MannyGT - For Lanterns of Skyrim and permission to use a custom preset for Grim and Somber ENBS.
Amoebae - for the dirt and lens filters

Saran OhKay - for videos.

ForrestHome - For all her help in testing and finding bugs. Without her critical eye this enb preset would be far less polished than it is now.

Also special thanks to Bronze316 who got me hooked on ENBs in the first place with his Seasons of Skyrim, True Vision, and Project ENB. He was very patient with my questions, always supportive, and I never would have made it this far if he hadn't been around to nudge me along.

This ENB is for personal/private use only. No one is allowed to upload, share, or otherwise publish any of the Grim and Somber ENB presets without direct permission from WolfGrimDark. Thank you for respecting the wishes of not only myself but all the people who helped make these presets available.

Special Note on Permissions:  It is important to note that the list of credits reflect any resources used, either in part or in their whole, for my presets.  However many of those files have been heavily modified by Tansarville or myself for use with Grim and Somber.  Therefore if people are seeking permission for any modified files they need not only the permission of the original author but the permission of me and/or Tansarville as well.