The Grim and Somber ENBS by WolfGrimDark
Skyrim » ENB Preset
Added: 05/02/2014 - 06:49PM
Updated: 24/04/2014 - 12:16PM

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Uploaded by wolfgrimdark


Last updated at 5:16, 24 Apr 2014 Uploaded at 11:49, 5 Feb 2014

Video by Hodilton

The Grim and Somber ENB and various Vintage presets are fantasy based ENB's with a focus on a dramatic and fantasy based 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.


1) Download the Grim and Somber ENB Preset file of your choice 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 into your Skyrim directory as well, using the enblocal.ini file that comes with SweetFX intead of the default that comes with the preset.

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.

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

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

Performance Options for the Grim and Somber ENB

I provide two presets, one focused on cinematic screen archery and the other focused on game playing performance.

- Cinematic Extreme Quality: This is for eye-candy, extreme settings, cinematic bars, film grain, intense effects, and a more vintage palette preset. The DOF is Soulwynds made for screen archery and has lots of custom settings to play with in-game. Reflections, SSAO supersampling, and LOD is enabled as well.

- Game Playing Performance: This is the default preset and is focused on playing the game. No distracting cinematic bars or film grain. Just core effects at basic quality so you can enjoy playing the game. It also uses the Somber Antique Palette as the default. For DOF it uses the static DOF which is more performance friendly and better for game playing. LOD is disabled, as are lens and exterior reflections. I suggest you try it with Temporal AA* enabled.

*Temporal AA is disabled by default on the performance version 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 and you do not use the cinematic bars. 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) or IBL (image based lighting).

General Options

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

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

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 check/uncheck the "Enable Letterbox Bars" to enable/disable. Adjust height using the "Adjust Height" option ( 0.85 is the default).

Grims Vintage Somber Lut Sepia uses rounded corners instead of bars. To disable those you have to 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 check/uncheck the "Enable Grain" to enable/disable. The other variables will let you change its intensity, saturation, and motion for both interiors and exteriors.

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 9 files (including the enblocal.ini file) plus one folder. Be sure to configure this enblocal.ini file with your own memory settings and use this one instead of the default one that comes with the Grim and Somber presets. This SweetFX configuration is for SMAA and DITHERING (which can help with color banding).

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.

The "Grim Blood-Stone" palette adds a distinct look to the Grim and Somber ENB preset by desaturating a little and adding a somewhat metallic tone. It is also darker in some ways then the default palette. The Somber Antique palette also looks very nice with the Grim and Somber ENB preset.

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 the Grim and Somber ENB or Grims Vintage Somber. Requires full Lanterns of Skyrim mod by MannyGT.

Optional Darkness Tweaks
This tweak will increase your contrast and black levels (darkness) just a bit more for those who like a sharper image with less haze and soft light. Just copy the effect.txt.ini file from this folder and paste it into your Skyrimenbseries folder, replacing the existing one. I have also included directions so you can tweak your own contrast, vibrance, and black/white levels to meet your own tastes.

This can be very useful when using JawZ ELE Suite, or the Shadows Mod by HHaleyy, as they can create more haze or become to dark or light.

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 and/or JawZ ELE Suite.

* Relighting Skyrim (RLS) is the only lighting mod I support. If using then you should also use Further Dark Dungeons (FDD) by MindFlux and load FDD before RLS. Using RLS with Shadows Mod looks good most of the time but there are conflicts and you will see some strange lighting in some places. ELE by JawZ works well with RLS though.

General Resources

Understanding Memory Settings in ENBLOCAL.INI (updated 2013-12-31 with new info).
Guide to ENBSeries - Teaching you how to tweak ENB by --JawZ--
WolfGrimDarks Mod List

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.

Incompatible Mods

I am not going to list any incompatible mods asn the preset can run with anything it just may not look like it should. In general any lighting mod (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 and ELFX. 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.

Common Problems and Solutions

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

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 am finally ready to release 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.

The original Somber series, that Tansarville made, is based on Unreal Cinema ENB code and UnrealWarfare deserve 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 core base of these presets
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 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
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
Maeldun0 - For various code settings for Wintage; support and advice on many things.
Prod80 - For his advice, tips, help and general support

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

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.