HDR- Let's Talk!

Dec 22, 2016
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#1
Hey Gaffers.

As some of you know I recently got myself a One X and a Pro to go along with my brand new 4k TV.

So as you can imagine the world of High Dynamic Range is brand new to me.

I have some initial impressions, as well as some questions.

First, the good.

It looks amazing. I just bought God of War today. Good GOD it's beautiful. When Kratos is chopping that tree at the beginning it's breathtaking.
Also the framerate seems (for the most part anyway) really smooth. I've toggled HDR off and on and this is part of that.

But I have some interesting observations which dovetail with my questions.

First of all, the framerate is inconsistent. Very. It's like enabling HDR improves the framerate but there are constant skips in it. Another thing I've noticed is that sometimes the framerates of scrolling will be smooth, 60 fps say, but there are objects or characters that will not. It is a jarring visual experience and it's weird. I don't know if I like it. This is particularly observable in Final Fantasy XV.

Does anyone know what I mean?

Finally, when I enable HDR, the "tone" of the colors is always warmer. This isn't a huge deal but I personally always prefer a cooler tint.

My question therefore is this:
What is the comprehensive list of things one enjoys with HDR, and is there a way to enable select benefits?
 
Dec 24, 2010
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#2
I think HDR is one of the most overrated things to come out of the modern tech sector. It's fine, it looks nice, it's not the mindblowing transformative thing that people think it is. I am using a PS4 Pro, an X1X, and my PC on an LG C7 OLED, set up with RTings. It's fine.

That said, I think that it looks very nice in titles requiring naturalism. Ghost Recon Wildlands, for example. That enhanced colour palette is very nice.
 
Apr 6, 2015
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#3
Correct me if I’m wrong but HDR should have no bearing on framerate.

I’ve gone from loving HDR to not really giving a fuck about it. In fact I turn it off more often then I turn it on.
When done right it does look pretty good but much like 4K vs. 1080p I think it’s pretty overrated.

I wish 1440p televisions had become a thing.
 
Jun 5, 2011
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#4
Frankly I can't even tell when it's on or off, I probably need a side by side. RDR2 looks better with it off.

Is there a good game that you can toggle on/off in the menu, maybe GoW?

I wish 1440p televisions had become a thing.
Me too. 4k is a waste of pixels - it takes too much hardware to render and too little payoff in image quality, especially for people who sit on a couch across the room.
 
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Feb 23, 2009
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#5
Correct me if I’m wrong but HDR should have no bearing on framerate.

I’ve gone from loving HDR to not really giving a fuck about it. In fact I turn it off more often then I turn it on.
When done right it does look pretty good but much like 4K vs. 1080p I think it’s pretty overrated.

I wish 1440p televisions had become a thing.

I don't know for console but if you Google for it you can find a few benchmarks comparing hdr on vs off and there seems to be a bit of frame rate impact...

I like it a lot when it's well done (GOW4) but when not it can be detrimental for image quality (Spider-Man).
 
Sep 3, 2017
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#6
HDR has nothing to do with framerate. That's like saying black and white is faster than color. If framerate is affected, that means theirs a bug in their code.
 
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Likes: mrMUR_96
Apr 6, 2015
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#8
I don't know for console but if you Google for it you can find a few benchmarks comparing hdr on vs off and there seems to be a bit of frame rate impact...

I like it a lot when it's well done (GOW4) but when not it can be detrimental for image quality (Spider-Man).
Yeah God of War was one of the few times I saw a worthwhile difference. Spider-Man, Monster Hunter, Red Dead all look worse with HDR on.

Though with my taste in games I don’t really play many that have it enabled anyway so I guess it’s not a huge loss.

Probably not with consoles, but certain PC configurations (nvidia) seem to have a performance hit with it enabled on some games.
That makes sense. I forgot HDR was even a thing on PC as I never see people talk about it.
 
Feb 23, 2009
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#9
Yeah God of War was one of the few times I saw a worthwhile difference. Spider-Man, Monster Hunter, Red Dead all look worse with HDR on.

Though with my taste in games I don’t really play many that have it enabled anyway so I guess it’s not a huge loss.


That makes sense. I forgot HDR was even a thing on PC as I never see people talk about it.

Yeah HDR support in PC is not huge.

I hope this changes in the near future.
 
May 2, 2006
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#11
I think good quality HDR in games has a lot to do if it is properly implemented from the developer normally and of course the tv will have something to with it as well. For example, the LG OLED from my experience generally has really good HDR in most cases, at least to me while I’ve seen some LEDs or entry level TVs where HDR looked no better or even noticeably worst. HDR on a budget or entry level LED isn’t the same as HDR from an OLED or Samsung Q9 despite what the box says. Unfortunately, I found out the hard way that not all HDR is the same resulting in some underwhelming resultsdrom some 4K TVs. I don’t think HDR has anything to do with franerate.
 
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Jan 24, 2015
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#12
sorry op
i own a ps4 and a xbox one x

nothing beats god of war .

just no . i use a oled .. gt sports comes close but no cigar
 
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Mar 4, 2017
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#13
Some TV's "say" they have HDR, but really only just accept the HDR signal. I have a TV like that (Samsung MU6300)....it will say it's in HDR with games that have the feature, but it really doesn't look all that different since the TV doesn't have a wide color gamut. I call it pHakeDR.
 
Likes: Samsomite
Jan 21, 2015
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#14
I think I am the only person that doesn’t like HDR (except in photos). Games and video, I just don’t like what it does to the picture. I’m not one of those people to have their TV set to “Dynamic” or “ Vivid” either - I can see the lighting improvements with HDR on, but I just don’t like the way colors look with it enabled. I keep trying it every so often to see if I can come around, but I guess i’m just weird.

This is on a Samsung KS8000 btw, so not sure if maybe it is just the way it handles it.
 
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May 19, 2014
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#15
I think HDR is one of the most overrated things to come out of the modern tech sector. It's fine, it looks nice, it's not the mindblowing transformative thing that people think it is. I am using a PS4 Pro, an X1X, and my PC on an LG C7 OLED, set up with RTings. It's fine.

That said, I think that it looks very nice in titles requiring naturalism. Ghost Recon Wildlands, for example. That enhanced colour palette is very nice.
HDR is about peak brightness, OLEDs don't get very bright. HDR is one of the few advantages LCD displays has over OLED displays GENERALLY speaking. You buy OLEDs for its deep black levels not brightness.
 
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AK-Mac

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#16
HDR is about peak brightness, OLEDs don't get very bright. HDR is one of the few advantages LCD displays has over OLED displays GENERALLY speaking. You buy OLEDs for its deep black levels not brightness.
OLEDS get blindingly bright for any normal eyeball. Mix that with the perfect blacks and HDR is superior than any LCD. A few Google searches and you can confirm this. The idea that LCD has an HDR advantage over OLED is just fake news from the QLED camp.
 
Jan 21, 2009
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#18
It's probably your Oled. They cannot get as bright as Led Tv's such as the Z9d which outputs at 1800 nits. I think Oled's best is around 500 to 700. It really depends on how good a display you have and how good the game is implementing it. God of War and Horizon Zero Dawn show this the best I think.

Edit - HDR is not just about peak brightness, it's also the ability to show a wider color gamut.
 
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#19
If you have a LG C7 OLED, use PC mode with the latest, only just released recently firmware. They finally fixed all the issues with PC mode not matching game mode in HDR, as well as the colour issues. But as a bonus, PC mode doesn't dim the screen brightness either.

Its amazing.

For those that don't know, a few years back LG introduced a... feature... that dimmed all their HDR game mode settings, so that the peak brightness was, well, shit. It actually looked like you were playing at night. Even in a pitch black room it wasn't good enough. There was a work around: Use PC mode rather than game mode. This gave you the brightness back, as well as the game mode input lag reductions. HOWEVER, it did have some messed up colour profile stuff, and didn't look quite right. It also introduced a little banding in some select situations. But I stuck with it because I can't game on a dark set. Anyway fast forward to a few months back and they release a new firmware (NOTE: I had to download it off their site, as the TV still didn't see it was available). The firmware didn't fix the game mode darkness issue, giving some BS excuse, but it DID fix PC mode so that it was essentially the exact same thing as game mode in HDR but without the dark brightness. Seriously, HDR looks incredible on this set now, colours pop, RDR2 with its pants ass HDR even looks very very nice.

My settings on firmware 05.80.04 (These are mine, you do what you want, this is just what I like. Also remember that this set has two different inputs for HDR and normal viewing and will switch between the two as needed, so load up a HDR game first before changing settings):

Go to your input for your console, then go to your TV input settings. Be sure to change the "ICON" for the input so that its PC and not game mode. This will then turn that input into a PC input.

Go to your TV settings and set the following:

HDR Picture mode standard
-OLED Light 100
-Contrast 100
-Brightness 50
-Sharpness 20 (this effectively turns off sharpness as 10 used to be the off value, now its 20)
-colour 50
-tint 0
-colour temp 0

Advanced controls
-These will all set themselves and wont be changed.

Picture options
-black level low (though this may need to be changed depending on your console)
-motion eye care off (For the love of god leave all this off)

These are my OWN settings and some people wont like them at all. But by god, do the colours pop pop POP. Its so nice in HDR.
 
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May 7, 2018
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#21
There may be some games with bad HDR implementation (for example, RDR2 is a fake implementation), I think Uncharted was nothing to write home about, but FF XV is said to have one of the best HDR implementation.

Also, HDR needs to be calibrated, you will need to sync PC/Console output settings with TV input. I highly doubt that just enabling HDR will work.

And also, if HDR is a wider color gamut, with more bits per color, I think it should have a minimum impact on memory bandwitch. So in some extreme cases framerate could be affected... I guess.
 
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Jan 26, 2018
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#22
HDR as a technology still has a long long way to go. It's basically a free for all for any developer be it games, movies etc. And they all implement it how they think HDR should work. And it makes HDR very inconsistent and actually ends up turning most people away from the technology. There is also still too much tinkering involved to get HDR to look right, with most cases causing the SDR image to actually look superior over the HDR image. A standard will need to be enforced on all creators and it needs to be done ASAP.
 
Jan 24, 2015
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#24
I think HDR is one of the most overrated things to come out of the modern tech sector. It's fine, it looks nice, it's not the mindblowing transformative thing that people think it is. I am using a PS4 Pro, an X1X, and my PC on an LG C7 OLED, set up with RTings. It's fine.

That said, I think that it looks very nice in titles requiring naturalism. Ghost Recon Wildlands, for example. That enhanced colour palette is very nice.
Wait you own a ps4 pro + lg oled + gow.

And it didnt blow your mind?


Wow you just blew my mind 🤣
 

JohnnyFootball

The Last of Us may be third person, but it is hardly third person.
Jan 20, 2014
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#26
HDR as a technology still has a long long way to go. It's basically a free for all for any developer be it games, movies etc. And they all implement it how they think HDR should work. And it makes HDR very inconsistent and actually ends up turning most people away from the technology. There is also still too much tinkering involved to get HDR to look right, with most cases causing the SDR image to actually look superior over the HDR image. A standard will need to be enforced on all creators and it needs to be done ASAP.
This is all news to me. I didn't find HDR too difficult at all.

However, I do agree that there are some instances where HDR might make an image look worse. In Horizon Zero Dawn, I had to tweak the image for a while to get it to look good. Prior to that it had black crush.

RDR2 looks horrible in the night scenes with terrible black crush.

However, my solution for everyone new to HDR is to head to Rtings.com and look at their TV setting for your TV and use theirs as a baseline. If your TV isn't reviewed on Rtings, it's probably a POS.
 
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JohnnyFootball

The Last of Us may be third person, but it is hardly third person.
Jan 20, 2014
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#28
Correct me if I’m wrong but HDR should have no bearing on framerate.

I’ve gone from loving HDR to not really giving a fuck about it. In fact I turn it off more often then I turn it on.
When done right it does look pretty good but much like 4K vs. 1080p I think it’s pretty overrated.

I wish 1440p televisions had become a thing.
You do realize that most (if not all) 4K TVs can accept a 1440p signal. So that makes 1440p TV a moot point.

Back in 2008 the belief/plan was that 1440p would be the next step in TVs. However, the industry pivoted to 3D and when that never took off they knew they needed to make a splash and that is where 4K and then HDR was born.
 
Sep 21, 2006
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#29
I love HDR but it really needs some standardization. Every TV has a different power level of HDR and getting the settings just right for it can be maddening. Then every game has their own idea of HDR settings sliders (or some none at all), these can be confusing or misleading. Games with day and night cycles you can get the settings looking just right for day but night will be too bright or vice versa. Then you have RDR2, with fake HDR for whatever reason and no in-game option to turn it off.

My advice to you is to look up suggested HDR and non-HDR settings for your tv (there are forums out there dedicated to that). Then in games with day/night or bright/dark areas settle on a middle ground with the help of the in-game HDR settings or you will constantly be fiddling with it.
 
Jan 26, 2018
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#30
This is all news to me. I didn't find HDR too difficult at all.

However, I do agree that there are some instances where HDR might make an image look worse. In Horizon Zero Dawn, I had to tweak the image for a while to get it to look good. Prior to that it had black crush.

RDR2 looks horrible in the night scenes with terrible black crush.

However, my solution for everyone new to HDR is to head to Rtings.com and look at their TV setting for your TV and use theirs as a baseline. If your TV isn't reviewed on Rtings, it's probably a POS.
Ubisoft still also needs to figure out what HDR is. I know a lot of people that spent more time in the HDR calibration screen in game in Far Cry 5, AC Origins and Odyssey than actually playing the game.

And I calibrate TVs in my spare time. HDR right now is all over the place. You might say "this is news to me". But as someone who calibrates I can tell you that HDR right now isn't in a good place.
 
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Likes: CRUNT
Jan 9, 2015
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#31
I got all excited to try out HDR when I got my 4k tv. Popped in Horizon... the only difference I noticed was that the picture got way darker. I hated it.

However, I do agree that there are some instances where HDR might make an image look worse. In Horizon Zero Dawn, I had to tweak the image for a while to get it to look good. Prior to that it had black crush.
Oh, maybe it was just the specific game I tried then.
 
Feb 1, 2017
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#33
65" OLED 4k owner here.
HDR rocks, don't care even remotely as much about resolution.

My OLED can get to about 800 or 1000 nits and I, from about 5 meter distance on bright scenes find it way too unpleasant to watch, what the fruck do people do with 1800nits? (given that I normally watch TV in the evening, when it is dark)

For me, it's not about peak brightness, it's about the contrast. Rich shadow details together with highlights are amazing.
 
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#35
There’s a bit of confusion on the whole nits thing, that isn’t as well known as it should be. Nits is about peak brightness of your panel, and it means a higher value is brighter. Trouble is, nits was always used for backlit and edge lit displays. But an OLED isn’t backlit... are you seeing where this is going?

This means that an OLED doesn’t need anywhere near the same “value” as the other tech to reach the same brightness levels. Each pixel is its own lightsource, and each pixel can get very bright.

However, there is some awful shitty software in some oleds that can’t be disabled without getting into the device menu. This kicks in when the screen gets too bright and darkens the screen. The only reason this is here is NOT to make the panel last longer, but to reach energy level requirements to hit their energy rating... wish i could turn that off...

But yeah, my LG OLED C7 gets just as bright but not quite as my KS8000, which is supposed to be what double the nits or something?
 

Fbh

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Dec 6, 2013
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#37
HDR is awesome. I'd much rather play a 1080p game with good HDR implementation than a native 4K one without it (of course, Ideally you want it to have both).

You might want to check your settings though. I've never experiences any notorious performance drops with HDR. Are you using game/PC mode?
 
Oct 24, 2018
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#38
Gears of War 4 on a Philips OLED and Xbox One X looks straight up candy with HDR enabled. Absolute bliss. Same with Uncharted 4 even on a basic non-Pro PS4, it doesn't even need 4K or 2K for that matter to look more rich than the SDR version.

Can't wait for Dolby Vision or HDR12 gaming technology some time in the future. Those should really be able to sell HDR to the consumers, HDR10 already looks pretty awesome.
 
May 2, 2006
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#39
HDR is about peak brightness, OLEDs don't get very bright. HDR is one of the few advantages LCD displays has over OLED displays GENERALLY speaking. You buy OLEDs for its deep black levels not brightness.
Actually HDR can get very bright on an OLED. At least on mine. Not to the levels of a few very high end LEDs, but still very bright where you have to squint at times.
 
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Feb 22, 2009
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#40
I have an LG C7 and HDR on my PS4 Pro has been very positive so far on Destiny 2, Horizon Zero Dawn, Uncharted 4... I'm not in a rush to snag Red Dead since they've said they're fixing the HDR in that game.

Also, I don't know who would claim that OLED can't get bright enough for HDR. I had to turn the brightness down so I wouldn't be blinded while I played! Maybe if you're always using the TV in bright sunlight, but if you're in anything resembling normal indoor conditions, a good OLED set is more than fine.
 
May 31, 2018
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#41
I have an LG C7 and HDR on my PS4 Pro has been very positive so far on Destiny 2, Horizon Zero Dawn, Uncharted 4... I'm not in a rush to snag Red Dead since they've said they're fixing the HDR in that game.

Also, I don't know who would claim that OLED can't get bright enough for HDR. I had to turn the brightness down so I wouldn't be blinded while I played! Maybe if you're always using the TV in bright sunlight, but if you're in anything resembling normal indoor conditions, a good OLED set is more than fine.
The standard HDR settings on my LG C7 are incredibly dim and dull. Going to try what was suggested above later.
 
May 31, 2018
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#44
I didn't even try hard here -- I just set my TV to Game Mode and ensured that HDR was turned on.
Me too, and the drop in brightness is huge compared to when it's off - I've tried fiddling with settings before but nothing ever looked as good as just turning it off. What o'dium described above sounds like what I've been experiencing and it sounds like PC mode + firmware update has sorted it.
 
#45
Apr 6, 2015
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#47
You do realize that most (if not all) 4K TVs can accept a 1440p signal. So that makes 1440p TV a moot point.

Back in 2008 the belief/plan was that 1440p would be the next step in TVs. However, the industry pivoted to 3D and when that never took off they knew they needed to make a splash and that is where 4K and then HDR was born.
You know what I meant. I just would rather have 1440p not being upscaled to 4K. Native will always look better.

Also I forgot 3D ever existed, that was a train wreck. I think I played Killzone 3 once in 3D and never touched it again. I do still use the PlayStation 3D display with the dual 3D as one of my monitors.
 
Likes: Virex
Jan 10, 2017
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#48
I still find it amazing when I read people finding hdr dimmer or washed out.

I've only had it look bad in one game and that was red dead 2.

Every other game it looks way way better and I've never changed any settings beyond the colour temperature.

I actually struggle to play games that don't have hdr now as they just look dull and boring without it
 
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Mar 16, 2009
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#49
I've been impressed with HDR in movies and tv even though hdr10 is using static profiles which can't account for different types of scenes in the same content. Games on the other hand have been less impressive in my opinion. They look better and less dull but it doesn't seem like development workflow is taking full advantage of it, especially on the 10 bit color front. Still, Uncharted Lost Legacy looks a lot better in HDR mode, just not as impressive as other HDR content.
 
Jul 24, 2018
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#50
I think HDR is one of the most overrated things to come out of the modern tech sector. It's fine, it looks nice, it's not the mindblowing transformative thing that people think it is. I am using a PS4 Pro, an X1X, and my PC on an LG C7 OLED, set up with RTings. It's fine.

That said, I think that it looks very nice in titles requiring naturalism. Ghost Recon Wildlands, for example. That enhanced colour palette is very nice.
You can make a strong argument for "it doesn't look better. it just looks different" even.

Aesthetically, I can totally understand not liking the look. Resolution and refresh rate are objective goods. HDR really isn't.