Scott says that high dynamic range on a projector TV is years behind HDR on flat panel TVs, so some projector users have chosen to wait to upgrade to 4K until the technology catches up. And that makes total sense. Scott also was disappointed with the visual look of Solo: A Star Wars Story. He was expecting great high dynamic range, but instead, it was rather washed out, and it turns out it was an artistic choice by Ron Howard, the director. Leo said it sounded great in Atmos though. Scott agrees, but it was rather harsh.
High Dynamic Range
Scott is in Dallas for the CEDIA home theater show and it's all about 4K projection and high dynamic range. OLEDs are also huge and in 4K the blacks are inky black with no light leak. They're really gorgeous. Calibrating HDR TVs is a whole new ball game and you really need to have it professionally done by a certified calibrator.
Chris joins us to talk about more photographic super powers including being able to capture light in high dynamic range. That can be done differently. You want to take several shots of the same scene at different exposures. It's called bracketing, and you'll take three photos: One darker, one regular, and one brighter. Then you use software to merge the three images together to create one master HDR photo. Photomatix is a good software package for it, but it can be easy to overdo it. You'll want to just add a bit of light and shadow.
Scott says when choosing a TV for a computer monitor, it would be best to get 4K or even an OLED TV. In fact, a curved OLED would make for an ideal computer monitor because it's designed for optimal viewing in the center. It really comes down to reading the text. The sharper it is, the easier it would be on the eyes.
Home Theater Questions:
Scott keeps getting the question of which high dynamic range (HDR) capable TV to buy. Scott says there's an important distinction between "HDR compatible" and "HDR capable." HDR compatible just means it takes the HDR signal and downgrades it to standard dynamic range. HDR capable, on the other hand, can actually display an HDR picture. Over at AVS Forum, Scott has made a list of HDR capable TVs from 2015 and 2016.
Scott says that 2016 will be the year of Ultra HD Blu-ray which will not only have 4K, but high dynamic range as well. HDR gives your image more "pop." HDR will give the image 5-6 additional stops of dynamic range, and it provides far more detail in shadows and bright ambient light. So with HDR, you can enjoy the best of both worlds.
John has a plasma TV that's about 5 years old and now it's getting darker. Leo says that's just the nature of the beast. The plasma gas leaks over time and as it does, the image gets darker. So if he has to replace it, what's the best alternative?
Scott says that Vizio has dropped 3D completely from its entire line of HDTVs and is moving towards High Dynamic Range. Leo says that some people are confused between HDR and high frame rate, or HFR. Scott says that some TV makers are still in the HFR camp and many people don't like it because of it makes the image look like a soap opera. Scott also says that LCDs can make the problem worse with motion blur and then frame interpolation is applied that makes the image look even more plasticy. How can you get rid of the soap opera effect? Look for black frame insertion.
Scott gets questions all the time about if we're going to get high dynamic range broadcasting. Scott says not for awhile. Most of the cameras can do it, but the delivery standards are such that it isn't capable to do so with the current standard. But that could change over time since TVs are starting to offer OLED HDR. But until the prices come down, you won't be seeing it any time soon.
Scott really wants to see Inside Out because it's being shown in high dynamic range laser projection. But he's busy getting ready for CE Week, the midterm CES conference in New York. While there, he's also going to attend the Value Electronics TV Panel shootout between the best TVs from each of the manufacturers. Joe Kane is also doing a presentation on High Dynamic Range TV, which Scott says looks stunning, and that Samsung will be first out of the gate to offer an HDR TV.