Dolby Vision, HDR and SDR TV – a huge difference (guide)

The difference between Dolby Vision, HDR and SDR TV picture high quality is big. Unfortunately, most solely purchase lower-cost TVs with SDR (Standard Dynamic Range) and some help HDR (High Dynamic Range).

CyberShack critiques TVs. We are fairly good – videophile normal – and slightly spoilt as we see one of the best. Imagine the horror of visiting the rellies and seeing their delight and pleasure generic ‘Bogan’ TV that insults your eyes. Once you expertise good TV, you can not return. It is about brightness, element in shadow and highlights, broad DCI-P3 color gamut – the completed picture.

If you wish to know extra about TV tech, learn Confused about TV tech? That’s simply what they need!

What is Dolby Vision (DV)?

Dolby Vision produces one of the best TV picture. You want each DV content material (most films previously 5 years) and a TV that may decode DV’s body x body (dynamic) metadata.  There is a lot extra to it, like:

Brightness: round 1000-nits peak brightness in a small 2 to 10% portion of the display and 400-600-nits normal viewing.

Contrast: At least FALD (full array native dimming 500+nits, 5000:1 distinction) LED/LCD or mini-LED (500nits to 1000nits peak, 200,000:1). Only OLED presents round 1000+nits peak and infinite ∞:1 distinction – which means the blackest blacks and whitest whites – the upper the distinction, the higher. The newest LG G3 OLED Evo has 1500nits peak brightness, and DV content material seems spectacular.

Colour Gamut: At least 99% of the DCI-P3 color house with a 10-bit/1.07 billion colors.

Sound: DV additionally comes with a Dolby Atmos (DA) soundtrack*

Dolby Vision films will play on any TV as it’s backwards (downmix) appropriate with HDR10, HDR and SDR – it simply received’t look practically nearly as good.

Currently, the OLEDs from LG and Sony and mini-LEDs from LG, Sony, Panasonic, Philips, TCL, and Hisense help DV and DA. Samsung doesn’t help DV downscales it to the vastly inferior HDR10.

Regardless of the generic TV makers’ declare, edge-lit and direct-lit LED/LCD TVs can not precisely reproduce DV content material.


Needs 1000nits or extra peak (present class chief supply 1500nits).

The finest color, distinction, and picture bar none (near 100% DCI-P3 color gamut and ∞:1).

TV picture is calibrated on a body x body foundation to point out one of the best picture – what the filmmaker supposed.

DV has been the Industry normal for films for the previous 5 years and has the widest catalogue bar none (1000’s versus a whole lot).

Comes with a DA soundtrack for 3D peak and encompass sound in case you have a appropriate soundbar or dwelling theatre amp.


Many TVs declare to help DV (decode) however can not attain 1000nits+ peak brightness, as a substitute downscaling to HDR or SDR.

Read – LG G3 OLED EVO 2023 Model G3PSA – one of the best OLED but

What is Dolby Vision with Dolby Atmos (DA*)?

It is actually 128 ‘sound objects’ that may be positioned and moved anyplace – overhead, aspect, behind, front- including 3D peak and encompass sound. Read Five suggestions for higher TV sound – Dolby Atmos for learners.

A DA-capable TV, HDMI 2.0/2.1 soundbar or dwelling theatre amp decodes DA metadata and downmixes to the out there audio system (often 2.0 stereo as much as 11.1.4). Depending on the variety of audio system, the impact will increase the 2D Left/Right sound stage to incorporate 3D peak and encompass sound. Research reveals that to take pleasure in TV content material, sound high quality equals picture high quality – see, hear, and really feel.

At a minimal, DA wants 5.1.2 channels/audio system

Left/Right/Centre entrance (3.X.X).

Left/Right (entrance or rear) side-firing encompass (2.X.X).

A sub-woofer (X.1.X) since you wish to each hear and really feel the bass.

Front up-firing left and proper (X.X.2).

Of late, we consider that 7.1.4 is the minimal for DA including:

Front Left/Right side-firing encompass (2.X.X)

Rear Left/Right side-firing (2.X.X)

Front Left/Right up-firing 3D peak (X.X.2)

Rear Left/Right up-firing 3D peak (X.X.2).

Samsung HDR10+

Samsung doesn’t help DV. It promotes its personal royalty free HDR10+, which has comparable necessities to Dolby Vision with body x body metadata. We is not going to argue the relative benefits of DV versus HDR10+ besides to say that Netflix has properly over 1500 DV titles and doesn’t help HDR10+. Amazon Prime has about 700 HDR10+ films.

No Samsung TV performs native DV content material. It downmixes it to HDR10 (utilizing inferior film x film metadata) and seems horrible in comparison with a DV TV. Interestingly some HDR10+ films (that look good on Samsung however are often downmixed to the inferior HDR10 on different manufacturers) help DA sound, however usually, it’s PCM encompass 5.1.


It is tough to place any upside on this, given DV’s commanding business normal lead and picture/sound high quality.


Limited HDR10+ catalogue

Samsung saves cash by not paying DV licence charges.

Samsung’s incapability to play native DV, as a substitute presenting it within the inferior HDR10, just isn’t at all times evident to patrons.

HDr10+ content material is often downscaled to HDR10 on most different TVs.

Read Samsung S95C QD OLED TV – massive is gorgeous


Technically it ought to have 1000nits peak brightness and no less than 5000:1 distinction. But TVs with as little as 400nits declare DV help. They imply that the TV can decode HDR10 metadata however reproduces it to the panel’s finest capacity. It’s the difference between surroundings shot in vibrant daylight versus shot on a cloudy day – the dynamic vary is simply not there.


The TV reveals some particulars in shadow and vibrant zones that aren’t evident in SDR.

True HDR10 succesful TVs are brighter – usually 400-600nits and higher than SDR TVs in increased ambient mild environments.

Most streaming companies have 4K HDR10 films (or DV and HDR10+ is downmixed).


HDR10 makes use of film x film (static) metadata to inform the TV what sort of content material it’s. This is like saying that the surroundings doesn’t change driving from Sydney to Perth!

Many TVs declare HDR10 (or extra) however downmix to the panel’s functionality.

There is a desk comparability between HDR10, HDR10+ and Dolby Vision right here


The TV ought to have a peak brightness of no less than 400nits, however most easily declare HDR help (which means it downmixes to SDR).


Some HDR definition is best than none.

The majority of free-to-air 1080p streaming service content material is HDR which downscales to SDR if the TV can not decode and play it.


It is the bottom of the HDR requirements.

HDR TVs are usually 4K, edge-lit and low-cost.


Any TV that shows no less than 100nits (usually 200-300) reveals SDR content material. This is a throwback to CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) TVs. It can show as much as 8-bit/16.7million colors, however the majority solely present six stops of major color. The human eye can see 14 stops! There is not any intent for these TVs to point out actual colors, however most are able to a cheap diploma of the SRGB gamut.


Every TV can present SDR content material – primarily for older 480/720 content material.

SDR TVs are usually low-cost.


Low brightness and distinction.

Low definition.

No particulars in darkish and highlighted areas.

No metadata to point out filmmakers’ intent.

SDR particulars right here.

What does this imply?

If you might be explicit about picture high quality, look previous the cheapie LED/LCD edge and direct-lit TVs claiming DV help. Yes, they are able to decode DV metadata, however you will note an HDR picture at finest.

As we check TVs, we have now some pattern pictures to point out you what you might be lacking with Dolby Vision content material.


Samsung S95C 2023 QD-OLED HDR10 downmix.

:LG C2 2022 WRGB OLED.

QNED99 LG 2022 Mini-LED.

QNED91 LG 2022 Mini-LED.

Hisense U8HAU 2022 Mini-LED.

TCL C835 2022 Mini-LED.

TCL C735 Direct Lit (FALD) 2022.

Philips PML905 2022 Mini-LED.

HDR 10



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