Skyrim Mod: Enhanced Shaders

Skyrim Mod: Enhanced Shaders

Enhanced Shaders Skyrim mod by Tapioks.

Description: This mod adds a number of sophisticated customizable visual effects to your game using ENBseries technology. This collection of files and settings has been carefully crafted and configured, including several custom palette texture files and customized effect.txt files, all in the interest of making it easy to get great looking results. For those who know, I am the same dude who put together FNV Enhanced Shaders for Fallout New Vegas.


Download Enhanced Shaders from SkyrimNexus


1) Copy all the files from the '_SKYRIM ENHANCED SHADERS (Default)' or the '_SKYRIM ENHANCED SHADERS (No Palette)' folder into your Skyrim ROOT folder, where the TESV.EXE file is located. TO BE CLEAR, the files do NOT all go into your Data folder', but the Data folder from this mod should merge with your existing one (for the custom sunglare).

2) If the mod was installed correctly, when you boot up your game, you should see some small text near the top left of the screen as the menu screen loads up ("ENBseries...")

3) Optionally, also install any desired Optional Effect, ENBSeries.ini, and Palette Texture by copying over the corresponding file into your Skyrim ROOT folder, where the TESV.EXE file is located.

!!!ATI USERS:!!! If you are having performance issues, try updating to the latest drivers for your GPU, and specify the Device and Vendor ID for your GPU in the ENBpatch.ini file! Some users have reported substantial gains with this method. Also, if the game image appears BLURRY, force anisotropic filtering through the ATI control center and turn up Mipmap Detail Level to a higher quality. These solutions have been provided by community members, as I have an nVidia GPU myself.

FULL FXAA INJECTOR COMPATIBILITY: I just tested and can confirm FULL COMPATIBILITY between this mod and FXAA PP Injector :) You can load a third d3d9 by proxy in the enbseries.ini file like so:


Just rename your d3d9.dll from the FXAA mod to d3d9injFX.dll and install like normal. It WORKS! You can toggle Shaders with Shift-F12 and FXAA with the Pause key!
Basically you have a chain of .dll's running in Proxy, and as per Boris, the proxy process is 'free' in terms of performance impact...w00t! Welcome to a new world of possibilities :P

GAME SETTINGS NOTE: When you run the Skyrim Launcher after installing the mod, it will re-detect your display settings and may adjust some variables in your .ini files. Your video card will be detected as 'ENB' in the Skyrim Launcher while you have the mod installed.

UNINSTALLATION: simply delete/remove the files that came with this mod from your game's root directory (plus the '' file in the data>textures>sky> folder). 100% CLEAN un-installation, does not have any 'lingering' effects.


Shift-F12 toggles the entire mod on and off

The * key above your key pad toggles the FPS counter on and off

Effect and Palette presets can be set by installing the appropriate files

Individual effect settings can be configured by editing the enbseries.ini and effect.txt files

See the included README for full details.

All ENBSeries.ini file settings and palette textures can now be changed and updated in real-time! 
(Just alt-tab out of game, make changes, alt-tab back in. Works ONLY in full-screen mode)

Enhanced Shaders Mod Features:

HDR - High Dynamic Range Lighting
The HDR version of the mod brings natural feeling bright days & moonlit dark nights to Skyrim, along with making local-area lighting much more important. 

Enhanced Adaptive Bloom
Subtle enhancements to the bloom effect already included in the Skyrim engine

High-quality HLSL Sharpening 
by Boris Vorontsov, creator of ENBseries :)

Palette Mapping
ENB Series PaletteTexture technology with several presets for dynamic real-time palette shifting

Custom Sunglare Replacer 
Texture by MGE, creator of the IMAGINATOR and ELECTRO-CITY mods for Fallout New Vegas 

Optional Effect Add-Ons
Multiple Sharpening options, Faux Cell-Shading and amazing 'DOS Game' effects - see the included screenshots!

Visual Artifact and Stability Fixes 
From the latest ENBseries v0.92 being developed specially for Skyrim by ENBseries creator Boris 

Simple FPS-Counter 
FPS counter with one-key toggle (the * key above your keypad)

Useful Presets
Preset palettes and effects designed to make it easy to get great looking results

Fully Configurable
All effects are configurable and can be use independent of one another, for those who like to tinker

In-Game Control
The mod has in game keys to toggle on and off the FPS counter, and the entire mod

Frame rate-friendly!... for most users ;) 
See my statistics near the bottom of this document. 

- Bloom is a shader effect used to simulate light oversaturation, creating a 'glowing' effect eminating from bright light sources
- Skyrim already includes some subtle bloom in its engine, this mod enhances this effect with unique settings for lighter (daytime) and darker (night and interior) scenes
- It helps make light feel more 'volumetric', that it 'embodies a physical space' in a sense
- Combined with the Palette Texture feature, it helps to make lighting sources more 'important' in the game. So, areas near and exposed to light sources will be brighter, and unlit areas will generally be darker.
- Fires and other bright light soures will emit a larger and more intense glow. Check out the fire in the Companions building, or the 'aurora borealis', or your magic... anything bright :)
- The skies during the day are clear and bright; and at night, windows and torches at night feel more like they 'matter' in defining the overall lighting of a scene

- The default installation includes a high-quality full-screen HLSL sharpening shader algorithm, with optional Ultra High Quality and stronger versions in the 'Alternate Effects' folder.
- This sharpening effect feels 'cleaner' and less 'grainy' than some others out there on the market... in my opinion :P
- The sharpening effect is configured to be rather subtle by default... this is how I like it. Too much and the sharpening just fights against your antialiasing...
- Full-screen sharpening helps make all textures feel a bit 'crisper', particulary those viewed at a distance. Works creat along with anisotropic filtering to produce a very 'clean' game image

- If 'sharpening' is not your cup of tea, you may choose from alternate Faux Cell Shader (Edge Detection) or 'DOS Game' effects to play with, or none at all if you prefer. Check out this demo video of the DOS Game effect in action!

- This is a unique feature of ENBseries that allows the games color spectrum to dynamically shift in real time based on two factors: the colors of a square-shaped bitmap (.BMP) file and the in-game lighting conditions at any given time...
- ...What it means is that the color palette of the game can be set, for example, to shift to a 'cooler' palette during darker scenes and a 'warmer' palette during brighter scenes. This is the basic idea, but the included palette texture files include more nuanced and varied shifting instrutions.
- See the included 'How_Palette_Textures_Work.jpg' diagram in the 'Alternate Palettes' folder for a visual explanation of how this all works
- The mod comes with several custom palette textures I have created myself; see the included comparison screenshots or the Images tab for previews..
- The Palette Texture effect is customizable and can be disabled entirely. 

- A custom sunglare relplacer texture by MGE, creator of the IMAGINATOR and ELECTRO-CITY mods for Fallout New Vegas (see included screenshot)
- This is optional... just don't install the 'Data' folder if you do not want it ;)

- Boris Vorontsov is currently developing a new ENBseries adaptaion for Skyrim over at It will eventually include some very cool effects like SSAO and dynamic depth of field, but for now just a number of graphical and stability fixes. For details and latest news and updates, check out his website!

These statistics were all obtained using the included FPS couter, which is enabled by hitting the '*' key above the '9' on your keyboard's number pad. The numbers reflect impact using the different 'effect.txt' files included with the mod.

Default: 1.5 - 2.5 FPS
No Sharpening: 1.0 - 1.5 FPS
UHQ Sharpening: 3.5 - 4.5 FPS
Cell Shader: 1.5 - 2.0 FPS
DOS Game (8-Bit): 1.5 - 2.0 FPS

NOTE: These are MY PERSONAL results. Your actual FPS impact may vary due to countless unique variables in your setup. My numbers are based on a playing average of about 30 FPS outdoors, 60FPS indoors.

- ATI USERS: If you are having performance issues, try updating to the latest drivers for your GPU, and specify the Device and Vendor ID for your GPU in the ENBpatch.ini file! Some users have reported substantial gains with this method. Also, set FixGraphics=false. nVidia users should NOT do these things, as they will cause the effects to fail after about 10 seconds of play.nVidia users should NOT specify their GPU this way, or the mod's effects will stop working after about 10 seconds of play. However, nVidia users don't generally have many performance issues with this mod in any case.

- You MAY get a crash on startup if used along with some overclocking and driver management applications, such as Afterburner, Crossfire, EVGA Precision, D3DOverrider. You can however use the wonderful nVidia Inspector freeware tool with no issues.

- The 'Cell Shader' and 'DOS Game' effect options can make text difficult (or impossible) to read. Toggle the mod off with Shift-F12 temporarily to make things legible.

- This mod seems to perform better with nVidia cards than ATI, though this is not true across the board.

- This mod does not seem to work with laptops using nVidia 'Optimus' technology

- ATI Users: if the game image appears BLURRY, force anisotropic filtering through the ATI control center and turn up Mipmap Detail Level to a higher quality.

- nVidia Users: If you are enabling nVidia AO (Ambient Occlusion) for Skyrim, be sure to use the OBLIVION AO Compatibility setting in your Skyrim profile, NOT the FALLOUT setting, with the Fallout setting the AO may not work. The Oblivion setting is '11'.

-If you install the mod and have poor performance, please try again with the default (i.e. unmodified) Skyrim.ini and SkyrimPrefs.ini files to see if has to do with modified/over-maxed settings.. If you remove your modified files and start the game, it will regenerate the original ones. Also, ATI users, please try with Crossfire disabled, using one GPU only (if possible).

- This mod is generally 'technically' compatible with any and all other visual mods, as this does not interfere with the game's internal visual systems. Your aesthetic results, however, may vary ;)
- This mod is not currently compatible with the FXAA Post Process Injector mod, though it includes its own high-quality sharpening and adaptive bloom effects. Compatibility with other d3d9.dll-based mods may come in a future release.
- This mod cannot be made into a Nexus Mod Manager version because most of the files are not installed into your game's Data folder. NMM currently only supports mods that are installed into your Data folder.

- Boris Vorontsov for creating and continuing to develop ENBseries, and allowing us to all tinker with it :)
- Bethesda, for making games that love to play more than any other
- MGE for creating the sunglare texture and being a decent fellow
- The Nexus family of sites for sustaining the modding community and hosting the files and forums etc
- ME for the palette texture files and custom settings, and all this frickin' documentation! :P

- ENBseries is a product developed by Boris Vorontsov, please see the following link for licensing details:
- I received EXPLECIT PERMISSION from Boris before posting this mod and am in correspondence with him. You may reach him directly at [email protected]
- If you want to create some alternate configurations of this particular ENBseries adaptation (SKYRIM ENHANCED SHADERS), please do give me credit and provide a link to download this mod, thanks!


Version HDR1.1

Attenuated bloom to reduce haziness under all conditions, by popular demand ;)
Slight rebalancing of night time settings to increase visibility while preserving overall darkness.
Added 'Optional Effects' folder with all available effect.txt files that can be used with the mod
Updated documentation with detailed intallation isntructions, troubleshooting, full configuration instructions.
Documentation now also includes instructions to set up use with the FXAA PP Injector or FPS Limiter mods, if desired.

Version HDR v1

First official release of the HDR (High Dynamic Range lighting) version of this mod, supports all effect.txt files, but NOT palettes. Being developed in parallel with the standard version of the mod, currently at V1.6b. Use one or the other ;)

Version 1.6b

Updated variables of all Default version enbseries.ini presets. Tamed bloom and dynamic saturation.
Updated Default, Dragonborn, Michael Bay and Valhalla palettes for better daytime contrast
Now REALLY got the excessive olive-green out of the Dragonborn palette :)

Version 1.6

Created 100% linear gradient palette texture from scratch with full 256 levels of intensity to use to define the contrast curve for all palettes . This means there will be no 'banding' or 'crunching' of colors , true 1 to 1 mapping of intensity levels
Reworked ALL palette textures with new linear contrast curve (see above) and made adjustments to mitigate excessive tones in some palettes (i.e. too much green in Dragonborn palette)
Completely overhauled how the mod applies its bloom effect. This had to be done to work with the new linear contrast curves of the palettes. The new setup provides stronger volumetric feeling to lighting, and enhances the feeling of light reflection
Default installation no longer has any effect.txt (previously included 'sharpening' in default install)
Palette and Effect folders renamed to 'Optional Palettes' and 'Optional Effects'
Introduce optional Dynamic Color Saturation, as well as several preset saturation, bloom intensity and contrast intensity options through the preset enbseries.ini files :P
Removed 'Sharper' preset installation folder, as the only difference was the sharpening effect.txt
Added 'No Palette' preset installation, which enables all [COLORCORRECTION] parameters
Added documentation for new [COLORCORRECTION] parameters for 'No Palette' version
Added MANY 'Optional INI Presets' folder with many presets for default and no-palette installations
Added new Valhalla palette texture to Optional Palettes
Default palette now has subtle cooling in darker scenes, warming in brighter scenes. For no hue-shifting at all, use the No-Palette version of the mod.
Added 'CycleConfigReading=True' to allow enbseries.ini variable to update in game in REAL-TIME! This allows you to change .ini settings, or swap in new .ini presets, in real-time. Also works with palette textures! See guide for details.
Updated documentation with all new features and instructions. LOTS done here...
Removed most screenshots to reduce filesize. All available on mod page at

may have missed something here... LOTS of work done ;)

Version 1.5

Adjusted all palette textures to have NO OVERDARKENING issues!
Recalibrated all palette textures to appear correctly with the new 'no-pink-tint' d3d9DEX.dll
Added some complexity to the Rustic palette color spectrum
Updated documentation and mod logo
New 'Michael Bay' palette for that hollywood blockbuster style color correction (think Transformers)
OVERBRIGHTENEING issues also resolved! Everything very balanced now...

Version 1.4b

Reset GPU device ID values to 00000000 and removed instructions to specify these. (Unique settings would cause the effects to fail)

Version 1.4

New 'slave' d3d9.dll from DeusEx 1 ENBseries. No more 'pink' tint!! But... bloom can no longer be toggled with Shift-F9 in-game :/
Full ENBseries 0.92 text now displayed on startup
Added new 'Sharper' preset installation of the mod. Uses all default settings with a stronger sharpening effect.
Added 'Sharper' versions of Default and UHQ Sharpening effect.txt files
Added new 'Rustic' palette texture with comparison screenshot
Added instructions for specifying your own GPU in the enbpatch.ini. May help with performance...
Updated documentation with new features, correction of info.
Updated enbseries.ini variables to 1-4 version.

Version 1.3

Update ENBseries engine to 'TES Skyrim 0.092 Patch 5' - released Nov 21, 2011. May provide improved performance...
New ENBseries engine includes new 'enbpatch.ini' file that separates out some of the 'enbseries.ini' settings
Removed 'FXAA Post Process Injector' version because it did not really work well (required workarounds...). Will restore this feature if I can get it to work correctly down the road.
Misc. updates to documentation.

Version 1.2

New default palette texture with better balance for light and dark scenes.
Update documentation with correct instructions for disabling Palette Texture feature
Update Installation, Known Issues and Compatibility sections of documentation, plus misc. minor corrections throughout.
Added 4-way comparison image of vanilla game and the three available palette texture files to Screenshots folder.
Increased contrast of night-time bloom effect to be more crisp, less hazy.

Version 1.1

Reduced default overall bloom intensity.
Added more images to Screenshots folder.
Updated documentation and corrected some typos.

Version 1.0

Initial release