Start a conversation about TVs and you will hear two extremely popular words besides smart TV: 4K and HDR. 4K TVs now are everywhere, bringing in more pixels so your TV picture and color quality are much more enhanced.
But also a lot of salesmen highlight and advertise for a technology feature called HDR. What exactly is it and how does it change your experience in watching? Is it worth it to invest in a TV with HDR? We hope to answer those questions in this article. Let’s first explain a simple concept:
Color Contrast Ratio
A lot of your viewing experience depends on the screen’s color contrast ratio. It is the difference between the brightest and darkest of all colors. This difference allows you to see more colors and capture small details. So the higher the ratio the higher the difference between the darkest and brightest shades of color.
What was before HDR?
Before HDR, TV screens had SDR (standard dynamic range). This means that the color contrast ratio and range of color were limited and a lot of detail and color were lost.
While 4K focuses on enhancing the number of pixels on your screen, HDR technology is all about improving pixel quality through a high color contrast ratio. Therefore, TVs with HDR (High dynamic range) display more and better colors.
How does HDR change your viewing experience?
Landscape scenes will look so realistic and life-like feel. Capturing the brightest and darkest colors in amazing color richness, detail, clarity, and accuracy.
No detail will be lost especially in challenging scenes with high brightness or intense sun exposure. That’s because black will be extremely dark and white will be super bright. Creating a thrill with extremely dark scenes like in horror movies so you can see everything lurking between the shadows!
Speaking of movies, don’t you get annoyed by the stark difference in picture and color quality for the same movie in the cinema and on TV? You get a sense that something is different and less enjoyable! That’s actually true because the colors on TV are muted and some of them are lost.
This happens for two reasons: originally movies are shot with very high quality (maybe HDR) and the directors sometimes add colors to the scenes to create a specific mood or feel. And that is what you see in the cinema. However; because TVs previously had SDR so color quality had to be downgraded hence losing interesting color effects and shades. But with HDR TV you will watch movies just the way they are meant to be seen!
What are the different types of HDR?
HDR comes in several types
- DOLBY vision
What’s the difference between these types?
All HDR types do the same thing which gives you amazing color experience. They only differ in how they do this.
Are HDR TVs worth it?
4K TVs now are the latest trends and technology in TVs and the majority of 4K TVs have HDR. So if you are looking for the latest then definitely HDR TVs are your pick. Although HDR feature matters mainly if the content itself is shot in HDR, however; more and more content is getting shot in HDR like a lot of the content on Netflix. This is the direction towards filming in the future. Worth it? Totally. Especially the prices have gone down as the technology has become available worldwide.