How to choose a HDR TV?

ByManolo Heedy 2020-02-24 1764

HDR, must have seen these three letters when choosing a TV, both offline sales staff and online product details page. More and more TV manufacturers are taking "4K+HDR" as the standard for their TV products. Here we first explain that there is not an inevitable relationship between 4K and HDR. 4K refers to 4K resolution, while HDR refers to a picture technology, that is to say, even if it is a TV that supports 4K resolution, it does not necessarily support HDR.

Then HDR is a technology that must be mentioned in most televisions at present, and it has also developed technical standards such as HDR 10\ HDR PLUS\ Dolby horizon. Why on earth is HDR so popular that OLED TVs worth tens of thousands of yuan and Internet TVs worth 1,000 yuan must be standard?

The first thing to know is what HDR is. The full name of HDR is High Dynamic Range,.High dynamic contrast. So that the picture can show a greater difference between light and shade in the picture.

After turning on HDR, you can clearly see the details of the bright and dark parts of the picture. Before HDR, there was SDR quasi-dynamic range (Standard Dynamic Range),. This is because the development of image technology was limited by environment and storage shooting, so many picture details need to be compressed and discarded, so the luminance part is set to 100nits, but the luminance range of human eyes can actually reach 20000nits. Therefore, in the era of SDR, the picture does not show the light and shadow effect of the real world.

HDR has been proposed and supported by the industry with the development and improvement of technology. TV products related to HDR technology have emerged in the market since 2016, and now more and more consumers will pay attention to whether they support HDR,HDR when buying TV and playing video content.

HDR is not a single specification, and if you want to define HDR, you have to mention HDR 10. This is the specification released by the American Consumer Electronics Association CEA in 2015, and when they defined "what is a HDR display device", they set the maximum brightness of the device at 1000nits, although there is still a gap with the highest brightness seen by human eyes, but it can be said to be a leap forward with the 100nits of standard TV SDR. In addition to brightness, CEA defines "color sampling" support to 4:2:0, "color depth" support to 10bit, "gamut" support to BT.2020, and so on.

It is not easy to make a definition. If there is no unified standard or some physical parameters are used to define it, it will only lead to a situation where the public is reasonable and reasonable. If so, it will be a disaster for consumers. How can every consumer tell whether a TV is HDR, or not? what is HDR,? Therefore, in defining whether the screen of the display device really meets the corresponding HDR standards, different organizations have defined their own standards. In addition to the HDR10 standards established by the American Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) mentioned above, there are Dolby horizon (Dolby Vision) and HLG, which are also the current three major HDR standards.

You may not hear much about HLG, which is a HDR standard jointly developed by BBC in the UK and NHK TV in Japan.Hybrid Log-Gamma (mixed logarithmic gamma).. The biggest feature of this standard is that the model of HLG broadcast can be compatible with both HDR and non-HDR television. it can be said that this standard is mainly for content producers. When outputting a set of signal sources, there is no need to produce different signals for SDR and HDR respectively, and two sets of systems are deployed, which greatly saves production time and cost. HLG has the support of (ARIB), the Japan Broadcasting Industry and Business Association, so there is no licensing fee, which greatly promotes the popularity of HLG.

The two specifications of HDR10 and Dolby Horizon (Dolby Vision) are similar, which can be simply understood that HDR10 is the "standard version" of Dolby Horizon.

Dolby Vision is an image quality technology launched by Dolby Lab in the United States, which has been upgraded in several aspects. First of all, in terms of color depth, HDR10 is 10-bit color, and Dolby's horizon is 12-bit color, which is dozens of times the color order of the former. In terms of brightness, the Dolby horizon supports 4000nits up to four times that of HDR 10. In order to solve the problem of different degrees of light and shade of the picture, Dolby's horizon adopts "dynamic data" to provide the corresponding data for each picture (frame by frame), thus avoiding the phenomenon that the use of "static data" in HDR 10 will lead to inconsistent light and shade contrast of some paragraphs. However, the Dolby horizon needs to purchase a license, so it is not as popular as the other two.

Obviously, many vendors are aware of the shortcomings of HDR 10's adoption of "static data". HDR 10 +, developed by Samsung Electronics in conjunction with 20th Century Fox and Panasonic, supports dynamic metadata processing, providing signals for every scenario or even frame by frame for penetration and compatibility considerations. HDR+ is also compatible with televisions and other devices that integrate HDR 10 decoders.

Do some extension below, the three major technologies have their own advantages and disadvantages, it can not be said that completely that technology has overwhelming advantages. The output of HLG technology does not take the element data, its coding value is the relative value, according to the percentage. The maximum illuminance value = the technical index of the display device, the relativity also makes the HLG have a better adaptation, and can show different degrees of HDR effect according to the display device. Both the HDR10 and Dolby horizon are Perceptual Quantizer ((also known as SMTPE ST2084) absolute values show that there are many versions of the output. For example, if the 500nits TV plays the source of the 1000nits signal, the high brightness part cannot be fully reproduced. But at present, in terms of games and Blu-ray film production, HDR 10 and du are more popular than the horizon.

Now open a TV introduction page, you can basically see the words HDR, so these televisions labeled as HDR really support HDR? In fact, not exactly, many HDR TV products with a price of 2000 yuan or less are only added to the decoding chip that can support HDR decoding, but in essence, the screen panel of the display does not support HDR,. This is like your phone supports playing lossless sound quality, but you are using external player to play lossless audio, which is completely unable to get lossless audio details.

In many so-called TV product parameters that support HDR, there is only a simple description of "support HDR/ processors to support HDR", followed by a great deal of discussion on the benefits of HDR, but there is no mention of the specific parameters of which HDR, panel is supported.

You need to pay attention when choosing this kind of TV product, you can consult customer service to find out what HDR standard the TV supports, or ask what the TV panel brightness peak is and what standard it has reached. If the other party does not give a clear answer or only introduces HDR decoding, then it is very likely that they do not really support the HDR technical standard, and they will not be able to enjoy the visual experience brought by HDR when they buy it back. At present, there are many televisions on the market that provide the so-called "HDR mode" is only a screen filter, and does not substantially improve the performance of the picture.


Maybe before you read the article, you never thought that the three simple letters HDR are still so complicated. If you want to buy a HDR TV, remember to check the detailed parameter list to see whether the chip or the display panel supports which HDR standard is supported by HDR,. And in the purchase, do not be greedy for small bargains, blindly pursue the ultimate cost performance, to know that in addition to decoding, the most important thing to get the HDR effect is to have the support of the panel, there are requirements for brightness, color gamut and light control. Only the TV products that meet the HDR standard from decoding to panel parameters can be called a qualified HDR TV.

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